NASCAR legend Tony Stewart is set to announce that he will be retiring from racing just over a year after the crash he was a part of which killed Kevin Ward Jr.
According to Daily Mail, Stewart will announce that he is retiring after the 2016 season during a news conference on Wednesday. Stewart has reportedly been trying to find a replacement for the No. 14 Chevrolet, and it looks like the frontrunner is Clint Bowyer.
Stewart has admitted that his confidence as a driver was destroyed after the fatal car crash last year. During the incident, Ward Jr., 20, was killed as he walked on a dirt track at the Canandaigua Motorsports Park in upstate New York. His parents, Pamela and Kevin Sr, have since filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Stewart, saying that he acted recklessly when his car hit their son.
“Stewart was not aware that anyone had exited their vehicle,” said Stewart’s lawyer, Brian Gwitt, adding that the driver, “did not see Ward, Jr. or anyone else walking on foot on the track until just prior to contact, and did not know the identity of the person walking on the track until afterward.”
Gwitt went on to say that Ward Jr. was under the influence of marijuana, and that he died because he exited his vehicle in the middle of a race.
Last year, a grand jury voted not to indict Stewart, and he has kept a relatively low profile since then.
Aside from this scandal, Stewart is one of the most accomplished drivers in NASCAR history. He has won an astounding 48 Cup victories, meaning that he will likely enter the Hall of Fame.
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