For the first time since surviving a scary plane crash on August 14, Dale Earnhardt Jr. is back at a racetrack.
"Things have been great. We’ve just been taking time to ourselves and have been very good," Earnhardt said Friday at Darlington. "My wife [Amy] loves to be at the races when I’m driving so her and [daughter] Isla are going to be here that’ll be great.
"I’m excited to just be back at a track. This is familiar to me, the faces, the people, the media. It’s great to be doing something normal."
The normalcy is almost mandatory for 44-year-old Earnhardt, who preferred to keep his focus off the crash and onto Saturday’s race.
"It was a very scary experience," he said of the crash. "I really try not to think about it too much. Things happen for a reason and you just try to learn from it and move on. I love my daughter so much and enjoy being around her. I look forward to seeing her grow up. That just made you realize that much more. I’m just thankful and ready to live our lives.
"We’re just happy to be healthy and to have a weekend like this to look forward to. Try to get back to my job as a broadcaster and NBC with all the things we’re excited about. We’re ready to focus on those things."
Earnhardt has had no shortage of support following the lucky escape.
"It’s a process we’ll go through," he said. "I don’t know. I don’t really have those answers right now. I’ve got a lot of great people around me and a lot of great contacts to be able to help me with any hurdles and obstacles."
— Kickin the Tires —