Tony Stewart retired from his full-time position in NASCAR following the 2016 racing season, but the 45-year old still has a strong passion for racing. Smoke has signed up for 71 races in a variety of series in 2017- and he’s hoping to sign up for even more.
“I wish I would have finished a little better,” Stewart told the Racin’ Boys Network in a recent interview. “But I’m looking forward to all the stuff we’re going to do this year. Late model racing, sprint car racing. I’m building a three-quarter midget to run a couple of fair races this year.”
“I’m going to run a lot of different things at a lot of different places,” he added. “There are some tracks that I’ve never been to that I’m going to get a chance to go to on our schedule. We’re up to 71 races, and I’m guessing we’re going to get another 10 to 15 more races on the schedule before it’s all said and done.”
Stewart’s reason for retiring wasn’t unlike those of many others. The NASCAR schedule is grueling, especially for Stewart, who held his current role as co-owner of Stewart-Haas Racing while also driving the team’s No. 14 Chevrolet full-time. He wanted to spend his time his own way, which meant racing on the dirt as much as possible, apparently.
“I just can’t imagine that there is not more to life than this,” Stewart said in a statement following his retirement announcement last year. “I know there is. I know people who talk about it all the time. I’ve got friends like (NHRA champ) Don Prudhomme and (NASCAR crew chief) Ray Evernham and guys who are already retired who talk about how much fun they are having. I’m like, man that sounds like a good time to me.”