NASCAR driver Tony Stewart’s famous temper has struck again, this time on a dirt track in New York, just north of Watkins Glen, where Stewart was to race this weekend. Stewart and fellow driver, Kevin Ward, got into an altercation during a sprint car race. According to reports, Ward approached Stewart to confront him and Stewart clipped Ward with his car, sending Ward, who was still on foot, flying through the air and then laying motionless when he landed. Ward was taken to a local hospital and was listed in serious condition.
According to reports, Kevin Ward, Jr., 20, has died from his injuries. This was confirmed by Jim Utter from the Charlotte Observer via his twitter.
Driver Kevin Ward Jr. was dead on arrival at the hospital
— Jim Utter (@jim_utter) August 10, 2014
The incident began after Stewart clipped Ward during a Empire Super Sprints race at Canandaigua (N.Y.) Motorsports park, which is about an hour from Watkins Glen where Stewart was to start 13th tomorrow. Tyler Graves, who was sitting in the turn one grandstands told The Sporting News what happened.
Tony pinched him into the frontstretch wall, a racing thing. The right rear tire went down, he spun on the exit of (Turn) 2. They threw the caution and everything was toned down. Kevin got out of his car. … He was throwing his arms up all over the place at Tony for most of the corner.
After a yellow flag, Ward excited his vehicle and confronted Stewart on foot, while Stewart remained in his car. As Graves explains further, Stewart then gunned the engine and tragedy struck.
“I know Tony could see him. I know how you can see out of these cars. When Tony got close to him, he hit the throttle. When you hit a throttle on a sprint car, the car sets sideways. It set sideways, the right rear tire hit Kevin, Kevin was sucked underneath and was stuck under it for a second or two and then it threw him about 50 yards.”
Ontario County (N.Y.) sheriff’s department is investigating the incident and have yet to release a statement, according to ESPN.
Video has now surfaced of the accident. Warning, as it is graphic.
Tony Stewart is no stranger to sprint car races, and has been known to compete in races whenever he can. Last August, as reported here on The Inquisitr, Stewart crashed during a race, breaking his leg and ending his NASCAR season in the process. He is also well known for his temper on the track.
[Image courtesy of Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images]