Crompton couldn’t watch Supercars races he missed

Neil Crompton (middle). Picture: Dirk Klynsmith

Neil Crompton has opened up on his excitement at making an imminent return to the Repco Supercars Championship paddock after a health-enforced absence from the previous three events.

The legendary commentator was diagnosed with prostate cancer in April and subsequently missed the Darwin Triple Crown and Townsville double-header as he recovered from surgery.

That absence was rare for Crompton, who’s been a regular fixture at events since the 1980s – and it wasn’t exactly easy on the Supercars Hall of Famer.

“From time to time, I’ve laughed about this before and I’ve said that it’s a giant family, sometimes a dysfunctional family, but still a giant family,” Crompton told Speedcafe.com.

“There’s incredible anxiety when you’re not a part of it when it’s been your life, so I found it so difficult – I surprised somebody the other day by telling them I didn’t actually watch it [the events he missed].

“I looked at the highlights and obviously made phone calls and I got the results and I know the cadence of the season, but I just couldn’t, didn’t want to watch it.

“Because this was not something that I chose to do obviously, and under normal circumstances you’re there.”

With the Supercars season finally set to resume later this month at Sydney Motorsport Park to kickstart a run of five events in six weekends, Crompton cannot wait to be back on deck.

“Absence makes the heart grow fonder, goes the cliché,” he said.

“Not being around my extended family for those events was really hard so being able to go back to SMSP and then just participate in the normal manner, I’m really desperately looking forward to, so that will be really good.

“And what the absence did was it reminded me of how much everybody in that paddock means to me.

“So it’s probably like an enforced break away from your wife or partner; now I can’t wait to get back, it will be a frenzy, I’ll jump all over it and my tail will be wagging in the paddock,” he added.

“It’s what I love and what I have always loved and what I revere and respect and I just can’t wait to see the men and women of the game again and get back on with celebrating all of the good, bad and indifferent things that go on in it.”

Crompton’s autobiography, Neil Crompton: Best Seat in the House, went on sale last week.

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