Jack Roush, the winningest owner in NASCAR history, still loves being at the track, particularly at Michigan International Speedway, where he’s hosting clients and employees this weekend in a private suite overlooking pit lane.
The Northville resident spoke to Detroit Free Press sports writer George Sipple on Saturday about the improvements made by his Roush-Fenway Racing drivers compared to 2016, how much longer he'll be involved in NASCAR and his place in automotive history. The interview comes ahead of Sunday's Monster Energy Cup Series race at MIS:
On his future as a NASCAR owner: "I’m 75 years old. I get up maybe with not quite as much as energy as I had the day before. Certainly it seems that it is weighing heavier on me in my 70s than it was in my 60s or my 50s. I just don’t know how long I can operate, can keep making a contribution to the team, in the place of someone else that might have the role of being the supreme leader.
On still having a passion to be at the track: "I enjoy race weekend. I enjoy moments like this when I have a chance to talk about the teams and the drivers. I don’t know what I would do beside watch racing if I wasn’t here to be a part of it.
"Still love it. My health is reasonable for my age I think I can keep going for a while. Whether it is three years, five years or 10 years, I can’t say. We’ll just see what the future brings for me."
On his plans to retire: "No exit strategy in mind … . I don’t have a plan in three years to not be doing what I’m doing today."
On being inducted in to the Automotive Hall of Fame in July: "It’s a very humbling experience to have myself considered to be one of the guys that’s included along with 800 other folks worldwide that have made significant contributions to the automobile industry worldwide. That Hall of Fame has been around since 1939. To be considered as one of the guys that made a meaningful impact on the industry is a great honor."
On winning more than any other owner in NASCAR history: "That also is a humbling thing. I’ve ridden on the back of giants.
"I’ve been surrounded by great people and as a team we’ve won more races, I guess, than anybody else in NASCAR. In total, I’ve won over 500 national events in my drag racing decade and my 15 or 16 years of road racing. This is my 31st year in NASCAR. So we’ve had a lot of time to amass the victories and we’ve had a lot of great people that brought their energy and commitments to the teams to make that possible." Detroit Free Press