Kevin Ward Jr. Died of Massive Blunt Trauma After Tony Stewart Hit

Breaking News Emails

Get breaking news alerts and special reports. The news and stories that matter, delivered weekday mornings.

Kevin Ward Jr., the dirt-track racer who was run over on the track by NASCAR star Tony Stewart, died of massive blunt trauma, the medical examiner ruled Monday after an autopsy. The ruling was announced at a press conference by Philip Povero, the sheriff of Ontario County, New York. He said an investigation had uncovered no facts to suggest criminal behavior by Stewart, but he stressed that the investigation was not finished.

Ward, 20, charged into the middle of the track during a race on Saturday night after Stewart buzzed him and he spun out. As Stewart's car approached Ward, it appeared to fishtail, and Ward was sucked under a wheel and thrown into the air. Stewart sat out his NASCAR race the following day. He said in a statement that “there aren’t words to describe the sadness I feel.”


— Erin McClam