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Original Issue

Just My Type



After breaking his right tibia and fibula in a race last August, the driver and co-owner of the number 14 Mobil 1/Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet has raced every week this season. On Sunday he had his best finish of the year, fourth, at Bristol.

DAN PATRICK:I know you love Smokey and the Bandit. Have you met Burt Reynolds?

TONY STEWART: I have not. That's on my bucket list.

DP:But you have one of the cars from the movie?

TS: I do. It's sitting at my house in Indiana. I haven't even driven it. I am scared to death to get a scratch on it.

DP:What's the most you ever paid for a car?

TS: I did a trade. The sticker price was $300,000 for a Lamborghini Murciélago.

DP:What did you trade?

TS: Two Shelby Series Ones, a Ferrari FI 355 GT and $50,000.

DP:How many cars do you have?

TS: About 15 or 16.

DP:When did you know your injury was really serious?

TS: In the helicopter [flying] me to Des Moines.

DP:What did your leg feel like?

TS: At first I didn't feel anything. Then the pain crept in, and I realized I was hurt a lot worse than I'd thought.

DP:Any risk you would lose your leg?

TS: There was. Jay Masur, the paramedic who pulled me out of the car, basically saved my leg and my life.

DP:Did any doctors tell you not to race again?

TS: No. People who aren't doctors have.

DP:What's your leg look like?

TS: You would assume a shark bit me in the side of the leg.

DP:Do you drive any differently?

TS: No, I still drive it like I stole it.

DP:How important was Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s Daytona 500 win for the sport?

TS: It was big. For an Earnhardt to win it is awesome. Dale Jr.'s our most popular driver.

DP:Who's more important to the sport, Jimmie Johnson or Junior?

TS: They both are. If you ask race fans, they're going to tell you Dale Jr. The reason they don't pick Jimmie is because Jimmie's won so much. I 100% disagree with fans who say that it's bad for the sport. We're seeing history in the making.

DP:Did you feel like you had to stick up for Danica Patrick, who drives on your team, when Richard Petty said she couldn't win unless everyone stayed home?

TS: I did it because it was right. Richard doesn't know what it's like to drive in this series right now. There's still some ill feelings out there toward her.

DP:You mean because she's a woman?

TS: I think so. And the attention she gets. She's got a great sponsor with GoDaddy in an era when it's hard to find sponsors. I think there's resentment. She's a racer, a lot more than [Richard] gives her credit for. She's learning and progressing. She'll figure it out.

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