What did Dario Franchitti have to say in his first public appearance since a career ending crash in Houston in October?
Dario Franchitti spoke publically for the first time since his career ending accident in Houston earlier this year.
He kicked it off by thanking everyone around him, including the media for writing so many great things during his recovery, and ultimately helping him through his forced retirement.
“It’s been so nice to know that I was appreciated. It helped with the recovery so far,” said Franchitti.
Only a couple days passed from the moment he was told by doctors that his racing career was over and the moment he told the world, but said that the first person to know was Chip Ganassi, his team owner.
“The important thing for me was to tell Chip, I think it was two days from when I got told to when I told Chip,” he said.
“There has to be some sort of negotiation here, but there wasn’t.”
“Being told I wasn’t going to race anymore, that was a whole different stage,” Franchitti said.
“Pretty quickly I realized how much I was going to miss doing what I do.
The next hard part was TK being announced in the ten car. As much as I wanted that to happen, I realized it was real.”
Franchitti was asked what he felt was the defining moment in his career, and instead of that first, second, or third Indy 500 win, he said it came much earlier in his career.
“Back in 1991, Charlie (Kimball) was 6, and I was only about 12,” he said.
“I was racing Vauxhall Junior. It was the last race, and I had to win the race to win the championship, and I did. That put me in front of Jackie (Stewart) and got the ball rolling. That was probably the defining moment believe it or not.”
Franchitti is still unsure what his role in IndyCar will be, but says whatever he does, from broadcasting to working with the Target Chip Ganassi Racing team, he wants to be able to do it 100 percent.
“I am open to it, absolutely. Whatever you do, you have to do it properly,” said Franchitti.
“I have to take into account if I can work with a team and give 100 percent to the team. If I could, then I would be interested. There is no point if I was going to do it half-assed, you just don’t do that. I would have to add something If I am going to come along.”
Franchitti ended the press conference talking about what race, if he was cleared to drive once more, he would want to do.
“That would be a tough one. If I had to pick one race to do?,” asked Franchitti.
“Le Mans was one of those things I wanted to do in the future, but a chance to go for a fourth (Indy 500 title) would be amazing. May will be tough because of that. It is just the hand I was dealt.”