Ryan Newman calls his recovery 'a miracle' in first comments since fiery Daytona 500 crash

NASCAR driver Ryan Newman experienced a near tragic crash less than a month ago during the final lap Daytona 500, when his vehicle was is crashed into by another causing his car to flip over, hitting the wall on the way. The driver has already made a miraculous recovery and impressed fans by walking out of the hospital under his own power less than 48 hours after the accident that left people fearing the worst.

Other than a visit to Roush Fenway Racing and photos from him and family members of his recovery, Newman has been rather quiet about how his life has been since the crash.

On Wednesday, Newman paid a visit to NBC's 'The Today Show' to discuss his progress, how his car helped save his life and his feelings about driving since the incident.

Newman was in good spirits talking about the crash and said watching the crash back humbles him. 

He said:

"Still humbling to watch it and know that I'm sitting here without a headache, which is amazing, just a miracle on so many levels ... You look at the crash you think, that's spectacular in a bad way. But you look at the car afterwards, you think of all he things that went right for me to be sitting here."

Some of these things that went right are thanks to years of safety innovations in NASCAR and feedback from drivers like Newman, who has been a safety advocate throughout his career. 

"There's so many things that happened in the last 20 years that I've been a part of this sport that helped me to be able to sit here today," he says, thanking those who design elements of the car. "Lots of things that happened that aligned."

Another element that contributed to his safety was the way he was hit, though with a car coming at you at 190 mph while you yourself are going at a similar speed there will of course be some injury involved. Newman described his injury as a "bruised brain" and says it will just take some time to heal.

There are parts of the race he doesn't remember, since the impact did lead to him blacking out, but he left with no broken bones and injuries that have not impacted his daily quality of life significantly. 

Filled with gratitude, he continued to thank anyone and everyone who has helped him. "The outpouring of emotion from not only the NASCAR community, but across the country, has been truly humbling," he said. "I want to personally thank everyone including the Man upstairs for their support, encouragement and the numerous offers of assistance."

To sum it up he says, "I just feel so lucky on so many levels."

Despite going through such a traumatic event, this will not turn Newman away from racing in the future. When asked why he would go back after cheating death he put it simply, "I love it." 

He started racing at 4 years old, and admits being away from the car this long has been difficult. "It's who I am," Newman says about racing.

The timeline for his return is not yet known, but when he is ready, Newman will be back behind the wheel. 

"I've spoken with Jack Roush and he has assured me that the #6 car will be waiting and ready for my return," he said. "I'm looking forward to getting behind the wheel and battling for another race win in the Roush Fenway Ford."

For now, he is enjoying life with his daughters, who he said were fine with the explanation of "Daddy's fine" after watching the crash live. 

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