Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Tony Kanaan appears on PTI

Andretti Green Racing’s Tony Kanaan recently appeared on ESPN’s Pardon The Interruption yesterday to address several issues, most notably the Edmonton race in which he caught fire in the pits. Below are some of the highlights of the Interview. Kanaan will be in action this weekend as the IndyCar Series heads to Kentucky Motor Speedway for its 12th race of the season.

PTI: It was scary to watch the video of the fire, how are you physically?
TK: I am ok guys, it was very scary, I have a little bit of burns on my face, but you can’t see them because I haven’t been shaving.

PTI: What was it like to actually be on fire?
TK: Ahh, it’s pretty scary, I’ve only seen that on the TV shows ,it was a scary moment, when I felt that splash of fuel and I caught fire, it wasn’t a pleasant situation.

PTI: You said you knew you were in for it the moment you were splashed in fuel, Tony why’d you keep driving at that point?

TK: Well hears the thing, I knew I was going to catch fire, I knew it was probably going to hurt a lot of my mechanics, so my car was totally sucked and wet before it took fire, I want to make sure I didn’t burn my guys, that’s why I drove away from them. I knew I was safe in the car for a little bit, thank god all the other members of the teams helped me out and they took me out on time.

PTI: Thank you god you had your helmet visor down, I know most drivers have it up during pit stops, how much worse could this have been if you had that visor up?
TK: If I had that visor up, when that fuel splashed it landed on my hand and on my suit and it would have landed on my face, and my face would have caught fire. The safety equipment that we have, helmet, driver suits and gloves, it’s awesome. I was defiantly on fire for more than 45 seconds.

PTI: I’ll always felt that every driver out there, because of the nature of the sport, could be his last, and given that, do you guys think your nuts knowing that it could happen?
TK: I mean, that’s why we get paid what we get paid, we are a unique group of people. We don’t know that every time we get in the car, if we are going to get out of the car in one piece, ten pieces, and that’s the nature of our business and that’s what makes us so unique, I don’t think about it, that’s my job and we are in danger everywhere.

PTI: You plan to race again this weekend, are you a little bit more skittish or are you the same guy you’ve always been?
TK: Actually I am the same guy; I just want to race again. I am having such a tough year that I just want to go back.

PTI: Have people close to you, said Tony don’t do this.
TK: My mom, she actually told me to driver slower (laugh) so I don’t know how to do that.

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