Driver Dies After Being Struck By NASCAR Racer Tony Stewart’s Car

The incident happened at a sprint car race at Canandaigua Motorsports Park in New York. Stewart-Haas racing announced that Tony Stewart will not be participating in Sunday’s NASCAR race.


AP reported, “Stewart’s racing team manager Greg Zipadelli said Stewart will not be participating in NASCAR’s event Sunday at Watkins Glen.”

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2. The Ontario County, N.Y., Sheriff’s Department confirmed Sunday morning that a driver has been killed after he got out of his car to confront race rival Tony Stewart following an accident.

Though the Sheriff’s Department declined to identify the driver, multiple witnesses confirmed it was 20-year-old Kevin Ward, Yahoo News reported. He was pronounced dead at 11:15 p.m. ET Saturday.

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3. Video posted to YouTube shows Ward getting out of his car at Canandaigua Motorsports Park and gesticulating after Stewart’s car drifted into his, sending his car into a wall.

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4. Several cars pass by him, before he is eventually hit by Stewart’s car and flung forward.

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5. Watch the incident below (warning: graphic content.)

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7. The name of the driver was confirmed by Jim Utter of the Charlotte Observer.

Driver Kevin Ward Jr. was dead on arrival at the hospital

— Jim Utter (@jim_utter)
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8. The Sheriff’s Department says there are no charges pending.

Povero identifies Tony Stewart as hitting driver on the track. Driver was transported by ambulance. Driver was dead on arrival.

— Prescott Rossi (@PrescottRossi)
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Sheriff Povero: "Mr. Stewart has been fully cooperative... He is very upset and confirmed his contiuning cooperation."

— Prescott Rossi (@PrescottRossi)
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10. However, law enforcement agencies are inspecting the scene.

Sheriff deputies are surrounding the area of the incident. All people at the track have been told to leave immediately.

— Alex Hayden (@TheAlexHayden)
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11. Tony Stewart released the following statement on Sunday regarding the fatal accident.

There aren’t words to describe the sadness I feel about the accident that took the life of Kevin Ward Jr. It’s a very emotional time for all involved, and it is the reason I’ve decided not to participate in today’s race at Watkins Glen. My thoughts and prayers are with his family, friends and everyone affected by this tragedy.

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12. Stewart only returned to sprint car racing last month, nearly a year after he broke his leg in a serious crash.

Reuters Photographer / Reuters / Reuters
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ESPN reported:

The accident cost him the second-half of the NASCAR season, and he didn’t return to racing in any form until February when preparation for NASCAR’s season-opening Daytona 500 began. He refused to stop his extracurricular racing despite the injury and was scheduled to race Sunday.

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Alan White is a senior reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in London.
Contact Alan White at

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