Fellow IndyCar driver calls Dario Franchitti a 'living legend'

Dario Franchitti celebrates his Indy 500 win in 2010.

The people who have raced alongside Dario Franchitti know all too well the danger for drivers.

When racing is what you live and breathe, you can't be thinking about the risks, every time you get into your race car.

"This is what we love to do and we all love to do it," said IndyCar driver/owner Ed Carpenter. "God has a plan for all of us in life and we're not in control of everything that happens."

That's why knowing when it's time to walk away from the sport isn't an easy choice.

"It's hard to ever know what you're going to do next," said Carpenter who added, he hasn't reached that point yet.

"I don't know when I'm going to stop," he said.

When he does, though, Carpenter hopes it will be on his own terms.

"There's a day for everyone when its over, you know? Sometimes you get to make the decision on your own terms and sometimes you don't," he explained.

Carpenter said he was surprised at the news fellow race car driver and competitor Dario Franchitti was retiring.

"I don't think he would have made this decision if he didn't know it was the best thing for him right now," he said.

Carpenter said he hasn't talked with Franchitti since the announcement, but called him a tough competitor and a living legend. He said the decision to retire probably wasn't easy for Franchitti.

"For sure it would be hard because, it's our career its what we do, you know," Carpenter continued. "But at the same time, you know, it's not what all of life is about, you know? I've got a beautiful family, a wife and three kids."

Carpenter's family knows the risks, every time he gets into that car.

"We have talked about it because it is the type of decision especially when you get older where your family has to be on board with what you're doing," said Carpenter.

Still, Carpenter said he knows one thing.

"If it ever got to a point where I was worried about all the things that could happen, you know, that would be probably the biggest indicator that its time to take the next phase in my career," he said.

For Ed Carpenter, though, that point has not come yet.