Ryan Blaney met with the media Friday at Auto Club Speedway and discussed the wreck with Ryan Newman at the end of the Daytona 500.
AFTER DAYTONA A LOT OF PEOPLE WERE CONCERNED ABOUT YOU. HOW ARE YOU DOING? “Good. Getting better. Obviously that Monday night was a tough situation. Nobody knew anything. That was a tough night for a lot of people I believe. Actually Tuesday I got to talk to Greg Newman, Ryan’s dad. I called him on the phone Tuesday night and talked to him a little bit. I told him I would love to talk to Ryan whenever he was up and feeling alright enough to do it. Ryan called me Wednesday night. That was really nice to talk to him. We only talked for five or 10 minutes but I really – that did a lot for me talking to him. There were no hard feelings or anything like that. I look forward to seeing him soon. It is amazing how fast he has recovered from that stuff. Like I said in my little post, I don’t think you will find anyone tougher than that guy. It is remarkable. As he progressed and got better it made me feel better as well.”
WHAT WAS THE REACTION LIKE FROM YOUR FRIENDS AND THE COMMUNITY? “I didn’t want to talk to many people at first. I just wanted to be by myself but my parents insisted. They met me at my house. They were in my house when I got home. That was nice for them to be there. Bubba (Wallace) came over on Tuesday and hung out for a few hours and we talked about some stuff. I stayed off social media and all that stuff. You have people that aren’t even involved and have never even watched the sport that have their own opinion on bad things. The outreach I got from the calls from former drivers and current drivers that week was pretty remarkable. Their support was good. Even though it is unintentional and it is racing it still takes a toll on you when it is off of your nose. You never wanna see anyone get hurt in this sport. We are all competitors but we are also a big family. Ryan and I have gotten along really well and that was just a bad circumstance and it is great that it worked out for the best. It was nice to have the friends and family and drivers and teams support. That really helped me out.”
WERE YOU SURPRISED BY ANYONE IN PARTICULAR THAT REACHED OUT? “No, not really. I just had a bunch of people reach out. A couple of drivers called me. Jeff Burton and Bobby Labonte called me, people that I looked up to a lot as a kid. It was neat that they called me and gave me their peace of mind. That was good. Nobody really surprised me, it was just nice to have that many people reach out. It just showed how many people cared.”
HAVE YOU SEEN A REPLAY OF IT YET OR HAVE YOU AVOIDED IT? “I saw it about two minutes after I got out of the car. I didn’t know how bad it was to be honest with you. That happens, you lose the race by a foot, you get out of the car and then you see a replay of that. I was like, ‘Oh my gosh.’ It was a big, big range of emotions within 10 minutes. It is tough to watch it. I don’t want to see the in-car high speed camera. I don’t want to see that. Yeah, I did see the wreck and it is not comfortable to watch. I don’t think it is comfortable for anybody to watch. It is literally the worst place you can get hit with these cars. It proves a lot about the safety of them for that to happen and Ryan to be okay but there is still a lot we can do to keep these things on the ground and not get over and be in a position to get hit like that. It is definitely not comfortable to watch. I don’t try to watch it.”
— Ford Performance —