(CANANDAIGUA, N.Y.) — NASCAR driver Tony Stewart was involved in a wreck that killed one person at Canandaigua Motorsports Park in the late hours of Saturday night. While authorities have not released the name of the victim, many witnesses identified him as Kevin Ward, Jr.
Video of the crash shows Stewart and Ward colliding, spinning out the 20-year old. Ward then proceeded to get out of his car and point at Stewart. As the 42-year old came around the turn again, Ward walked closer and was then struck by Stewart’s tire and thrown 50 feet.
Stewart-Haas Racing released a statement early Sunday morning.
“A tragic accident took place last night during a sprint car race in which Tony Stewart was participating,” the statement read. “Tony was unhurt, but a fellow competitor lost his life. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family and friends. We’re still attempting to sort through all the details and we appreciate your understanding during this difficult time.”
The Ontario County Sherrif’s Department did not release the name of the victim but did confirm he was pronounced dead at a local hospital. Stewart was “fully cooperative” during his questioning according to Sherrif Philip Povero. The current investigation is not a criminal one.
Canandaigua Motorsports Park cancelled all remaining races on Saturday as the investigation began. Stewart is still scheduled to race in Sunday’s Sprint Cup race at Watkins Glen, about an hour away from Canandaigua.
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Emanuella Grinberg, CNN
Adam Forsgren, EastIdahoNews.com Columnist