Kanaan: "This is a very dangerous sport - Not everybody can do this"

Tony Kanaan had some strong comments concerning the recent wrecks we've seen during Indy 500 practice.

INDIANAPOLIS - Media, fans, and series officials alike have been discussing the violent week we've seen at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Three cars flipped completely over, one burned, and another has James Hinchcliffe in a hospital tonight.

An accepted risk

Tony Kanaan gave his take on the recent accidents and in my opinion, he couldn't have put it any better.

"This a very dangerous sport," said Kanaan. "It always has been - How many people can we name that are no longer with us? Us as drivers, we are fully aware of that. Every time we hop into that race car, we don't know if we're going to come out of it - If we're going to come out of it in one piece."

"That's what we have to live with and that's what makes us different than other people. Not everybody can do this. It is tough, it's never easy to see a friend of yours get hurt or lose a friend of yours. But this is the sport we chose."

The day I think it’s unsafe and I feel scared is the day you see me on the other side of the camera ... This is for the tough guys

Tony Kanaan

"Not to be rude to anybody in the field but if you don't feel comfortable with that, then I think they should not be in the race car. "

In regards to the fact that most of these wrecks are ending up with cars upside down, "When people crash, anything can happen. And those were four completely different accidents. I trust the engineers, the guys who build the aero kits. I'm not concerned. I'm ready to put on a good show for the fans that are coming here to watch us. Accidents happen and we hate them, but it's part of our job."

We are racers

As for what IndyCar did this past weekend in the name of safety, Kanaan couldn't say either way if it was the right or wrong decision. "It's tough to say," he told Motorsport.com "That would be a question for Derrick Walker. I trust what my engineers (and) what Chevy told me."

"I would be talking about something I don't fully understand so my opinion is irrelevant. What I do understand is that when we crash, we have a risk to flip."

"Am I willing to take that risk? ... 100%."

"It's like when you're little and you fall off your bicycle and your dad puts you right back on and says go ride it."

"The day I think it’s unsafe and I feel scared is the day you see me on the other side of the camera. I’m a racer, and I want to race Sunday. This is for the Indianapolis 500. This is for the tough guys."

"This is how we're wired - This is who we are."

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Event Indy 500
Track Indianapolis Motor Speedway
Drivers Tony Kanaan
Article type Press conference