Tony Stewart: ‘My life may never be the same’

Driver Tony Stewart reacts during practice for the Brickyard 400 Sprint Cup series auto race at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, Saturday, July 26, 2014. (AP Photo/AJ Mast)

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – Tony Stewart says arguing about a grand jury’s decision not to indict him is a waste of time.

Monday, for the first time since that grand jury decision, Stewart said his life may never be the same again, he expects he will now, begin moving back toward normal.

“You know I think after talking with you guys today, we’ll start getting back into doing meet and greets and appearances again,” said Stewart, speaking softly during a news conference that lasted more than half an hour.

He said moving forward doesn’t mean forgetting what happened.

“I think this has given me time to sit and think about other aspects of my life and what they are going to mean to me in the future,” Stewart said.

Stewart said he hasn’t stopped thinking about the Aug. 9 incident on a sprint car track in upstate New York that killed Kevin Ward Junior.

“You know I do this stuff and I go run those cars to have a good time. And that’s all I wanted to do that night. I wanted to go have fun,” he said.

The fun turned to tragedy when Stewart and Ward’s cars tangled. Ward got out of his car and ran up the track and was hit by Stewart. A grand jury said there was no evidence it was anything but an accident. At the same time, it was revealed Ward Jr. had marijuana in his system.

“Honestly, for me, it didn’t change anything. To me, a young driver lost his life. And it didn’t matter why,” he said.

Stewart said he hasn’t reached out to Ward’s family.

“I know what happened. And I know it was an accident. But I’m offering to talk to them if it helps them with closure,” he said.

Stewart said for him, leaving racing is not an option.

“I think it might change as far as how much of it. And what I do. But there was never a thought in my head about stopping. That would take the life out of me. Stewart says he doesn’t know if he’ll ever get back in his sprint car.

As for all the talk that the grand jury got it wrong when it didn’t indict Stewart he said, ” It’s not about picking sides. A young man lost his life. And I don’t care what side you’re on, it doesn’t change that.”

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