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Races left before -- -- NASCAR's chase for the Sprint Cup that stock car -- ten race playoff to determine the series champion.
The point leader right now is driver Tony Stewart who just a year ago left Joseph Gibbs racing -- to become an owner driver of his own team.
Under Stewart Haas racing.
Under that title Stewart has won three times in his number fourteen Chrysler a bit of a shocker for the racing world.
Which wasn't exactly expecting him to be as successful -- his new team as he was early out earlier today Tony made a pit stop right here outside our studio and we talked.
About his transition from driver to management in this economy.
Hi -- business.
It's been pretty good and it's you know last year when we started obviously is when the economy was taken a turn for the worse -- You know that's where have a great partners like Office Depot and old spice for so critical on and the success we've had this.
Then having them come onboard it's it's.
-- one of those years where you try to not.
Necessarily and in all business -- Make sure that -- watching exactly how you're spending your dollars but.
More so than ever everybody's watching their budgets no regrets about having left Joseph gives adjust the moment when the downward turn really began.
Now I mean this was this was probably.
It wasn't the best timing wise this was an opportunity came along that.
-- may not have an opportunity like -- -- the rest my life so you know there's not many drivers that have been offered ownership roles within organizations.
You know it was you know having Haas automation as a parent company.
But -- got the starter for us that that was an opportunity.
You know we have to look at serious.
I felt like was an opportunity.
-- partnerships are tough.
Nothing leads to more.
Businesses going under than fights between partners power you get along and how to get how do you divide the management duties mighty mighty.
Partners -- -- -- -- started Haas automation and -- gene is a great guy he he loves the racing that.
Doesn't have the time what's his company.
To be able to come and focus on the cup side so that that's where my role so we're glad he doesn't have the time you know we we love happening there and and -- is a very very Smart individual and very Smart passionate about racing.
We wish she could be there every day.
Because of that because the fact that he can't get there that's what makes my -- so crucial in the company is.
You know for me to worry about the racing side and then that lets -- focus on the on the scene -- companies who knew the great thing is that for two guys didn't know each other when we started this.
He he's put a lot of trust and needed to make sure that this company -- -- successful.
You you must miss Joseph Gibbs he's one of the sweetest guys in the world absolutely from everything we've had him on the show a couple of times there's.
If you have to have a boss I guess -- be the best -- they have but there's nothing that beats being your own bosses.
This you know this was.
An opportunity for me to be just like -- and to be a car during the series there's going to be a day that I can't drive race cars so to have the opportunity -- -- -- Joseph Gibson and be you know an -- seamless.
That was what made -- so hard there was because -- -- do you like there was so much and and have had a great relationship when he went through -- for twelve years.
That's also I think we've had some of success that we've had is because I've learned from -- And it didn't matter whether it was and NFL the NH RA or.
Anything that Joe's done NASCAR.
Everything that he's done he's been successful and haven't somebody like -- -- learn from it is definitely an asset for now.
-- sort of bearing a lead which is which is sitting right behind you there I decide I don't want to.
Focus just done you'll forgive me Tony but that cars -- thing of beauty there is it what are the kind of innovations that you've had.
To put into this car this year that she didn't have in years.
Pass this year -- we've partnered up with Hendrick Motorsports so -- running Hendrick -- is running Hendrick engines.
That's a little different package -- what I'm used to -- This -- did you see as the CEO IndyCar -- NASCAR came up with and there's a lot of safety design changes that have made us a lot safer in the race cars.
Show us now exactly what's new about the car that you didn't have before well a lot of it can't see it's actually underneath the shell -- it's the design change what plates in the side doors that.
Protect the drivers more there's -- there's a phone barrier between.
A lot of the panels here inside.
They're they have styrofoam blocks and what that doesn't just soaks up the energy so.
It's actually a little styrofoam can actually save your life yeah and with this new car we've been able to move the driver further away from the driver's door away from the windows so.
-- gives us an extra amount of barrier that we have in case we have a left side impact so what's what's the closest he ever came Tony I mean what's the the most data through all of this stuff to protect it.
And at worst crash I ever had wasn't actually in a stock car it was in an IndyCar and I had a broken shoulder blade collarbone -- in the back my left hip.
In a stock car -- -- the safety that we had been really really did we had a crash in 2001 which was the same day that we lost Dale Earnhardt senior and.
We actually got involved in a crash flew in -- -- was slipping in the air and I was running third at the time of the crash and I landed on my teammate who is running 23.
So that's how many cars slipped by underneath us in the meantime so.
So so you were airborne for about three or four -- again it's unbelievable Office -- I understand has served as a program to help -- kids with.
Bad medicine -- things -- normally the Office Depot cards read but this was a special paint scheme that they did for the the national backpack program and back to school and that's the great thing about.
The partnerships that we have as they do you Office Depot foundation gives so much back -- to the communities and this year they're gonna get that -- -- two millionth backpack on this backpack program we're gonna give away over 300000 this year alone see -- it's a great promotion.
To see these kids that are underprivileged children.
Give -- a backpack and school supplies that you -- that gives them the morale boost that they need to go back to school and know that that's crucial and get them.
You know our office got a couple of different foundation so it's not only Office Depot and backtracked you've got a couple of private -- -- -- Tony Stewart foundation pictured your family's work would tell us a little bit about that.
And Tony Stewart foundation we have you know a lot of children's charities animal charities and and we try to help injured drivers talk about the injured drivers you're lucky enough to be as wonderful as yards you get great -- not all drivers and sponsors.
And those who don't when they get an -- when they get hurt.
They must have a real tough time.
I had to get by you see of a lot of the short track level and there's a lot of guys that run traveling series that.
You know beat these guys think they put every dollar and every dime that they have another racing programs and it's easy to overlook insurance and -- disability insurance and that's one thing that.
Where our foundation helps -- of those guys that.
That don't have that insurance that that's something that we really pushed through our foundation is awareness of these guys to try to get disability insurance and and that -- some of that level.
-- best select T I'm so happy -- cars a lot safer than it used civilians as of all the support it because we need you around as long as long as -- -- thank you very much here with.
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