If Aric Almirola ever wanted a gracious way to bow out of NASCAR, he got it one year ago with a fiery crash in the spring race at Kansas Speedway.
Instead of encouraging him to retire, sitting out of the car for seven weeks reinvigorated Almirola and underscored just how much he missed the sport.
“I’m actually grateful now,” Almirola said on NASCAR America about the accident. “I feel like it actually reenergized my career and me as a race car driver. Because doing it year in and year out, week in and week out, it really becomes mundane. Being involved in the sport, you almost take it for granted after you’ve been in it for so long.
“And so, to have something like breaking my back sideline me unexpectedly and really take me out of the ordinary – it forced me to step away. But it also forced me to evaluate, is this really what I want to do?”
The answer was a resounding yes.
For more, watch the above video.