TORONTO - The question in the wake of the tragic death of Kevin Ward Jr. on the Upper New York state half mile dirt oval at Canandaigua Motorsports Park continues to be: What effect will this have on the career of Tony Stewart?
Stewart’s No. 14 360 Sprint car struck and killed the 20-year old Ward on Saturday night after the youngster walked down a live track to confront Stewart, who he blamed for wrecking him one lap earlier in a 25-lap Empire Super Sprint race.
Already Stewart’s racing schedule for this season has been radically altered, missing the NASCAR Sprint Cup Cheez-It 355 at Watkins Glen International on Sunday — a race that Stewart had previously won five times.
It was a lost opportunity to put him and his No. 14 Stewart Haas Racing Chevrolet team into the Chase for the Sprint Cup Championship.
And on Monday of this week Mike Arning, SHR’s public relations boss, told USA Today that Stewart’s planned schedule of more dirt track races has been indefinitely suspended.