Tony Stewart hits and kills another driver

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  • wow, that's just terrible.
    Lithium
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  • sad story, horrific video. Black suit, black helmet, night race, not a great idea to jump out on the track. Sad day for racing all around.
    NoChops
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  • After watching the video...however much fault you want to put on Tony, equal fault has to go to the guy himself.
    Lithium
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  • As somebody that raced sprint cars for numerous years and all over the place, I can tell you that those tracks are not lit very well at all, this track is no different.

    It looks to me like Tony didn't see him (and would not have expected to see him) that far down on the track until it was too late. It's hard to tell, but it appears Stewart swerved to avoid him at the last second. We'll have to wait for his statement to hear from Tony what happened, but I seriously doubt he aimed for him.

    Having witnessed, first hand, many incidents like this, I can tell you that the driver that cut the guy off and caused him to crash would be doing everything he could to be mister nice guy and not draw the official's attention. In Sprint Car races, the offender, obviously causing a guy to hit the wall, gets sent to the back of the pack, or even black flagged and tossed. Stewart, having a "race first, politics second" mentality, has dirt track etiquette burned into his brain. The last thing on his mind would have been purposely injuring a driver, he wants to win with dignity.

    Drivers getting pissed happens all the time. Pissed drivers walking down the track enough to flip off other drivers or throw helmets/gloves at them, happens too. Somebody walking that far down the track, and obviously in the path of travel, while the yellow flag is just coming out, and cars are just slowing down, well, that never happens.

    This kid was an idiot, IMHO. He should have stayed in his car and got towed to the pits then sucker punched Stewart after he hopped out of his car like smart drivers do.
    HoustonHawk82
     


  • Dude should never have been on the track at night especially. Plus he was a young guy trying to intimidate Stewart which also shows lack of good judgement.
    Largent80
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  • IMHO it looked (and sounded) like he sped up and tried to kick up some dirt in the kids face . He failed miserably and deserves to be punished. No more racing / some jail time.
    EastCoastHawksFan
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  • Stewart wasn't the one that spun out and he had no reason to be pissed. Quite possible he hit the gas in an effort to avoid hitting dude at the last second.
    Largent80
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  • While the video is pretty hard to watch, to come out and accuse him of doing it on purpose and wanting a vehicular manslaughter charge based on the only released video so far is a joke.

    In the video you can't see what direction/path that TS was moving, and the car comes into the shot when the two are roughly 10 feet away from each other. If you slow it down, you can see that Stewart's car's back end is sliding out just slightly towards the kid, then contact is made, and the wheels get jerked back the other way due to the resistance of the kid's body.

    Why in God's name would Stewart risk his entire likely hood and potentially his freedom to scare some 20 year old kid on a dirt track the night before a race at Watkins Glen?

    Unfortunately, this is 100% on the kid for acting like a hot head and trying to get in front of or intimidate Tony Stewart. The track was dark, the kid was wearing all black and was acting reckless. It is a really sad story and I'm sure Mr. Stewart didn't sleep well, if at all, last night.
    JGfromtheNW
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  • I watched the video last night. My first impression (after having viewed it 3 times and not reading articles about it) was that Stewart gunned it to scare the kid. I don't think for a second that it was intentional. Just looked like two poor choices with the worst of consequences.

    Feel terrible for this kid's family and friends. Feel terrible for Stewart as well. If he was trying to be a wise ass with the kid, he's going to have to live with that knowledge.
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  • Stewart:

    “There aren’t words to describe the sadness I feel about the accident that took the life of Kevin Ward Jr. It’s a very emotional time for all involved, and it is the reason I’ve decided not to participate in today’s race at Watkins Glen. My thoughts and prayers are with his family, friends and everyone affected by this tragedy.”


    http://www.forbes.com/sites/mikeozanian ... r=yahootix
    dontbelikethat
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  • The_Z_Man wrote:Yea, if you watch the video in slow-mo, you can see the Stewart stomped on his gas pedal in frustration.

    I liken it to punching a wall and breaking your hand when you are pissed off.

    Did you want to break your hand, did you foresee those consequences? No! You were pissed off and being irrational.

    At the same time the dude was an idiot running around a race track and looking to cause trouble, which is probably what pissed TS off.

    Still... you are looking at a manslaughter situation, and with the Stewart's history of anger out there on tape - much more problematic for his defense.


    There are so many things wrong with this.

    A sprint car is a high horsepower beast that is designed to be in a controlled slide all the way around a dirt track and the driver controls the slide using a combination of throttle, steering wheel, and brakes. You can't avoid someone in the middle of the track by releasing the throttle and turning the wheel like you would in a family car because all that would do is bring the tail around increasing the likelihood they would be hit. The driver has to use the throttle to control the car.

    The visibility in these cars is also very poor. Not only are dirt tracks usually poorly lit but dirt is floating in the air and visors become coated. On top of that the wing restricts the drivers vision on his upper right side making it likely that Stewart never saw him as he came around the track until the last second.

    Walking up to a sprint car in motion on a dirt track is dangerously foolish under any circumstances. Trying to speculate on Stewart's mindset based on a poor video that shows nothing about what he did prior to hitting Ward is absurd.
    TXHawk
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  • Sorry boys and girls but what little I follow car racing now a days is enough to know that Tony Stewart would not have intentionally do that sort of thing.

    Under racing conditions at night I doubt the drivers can see much of anything except the other cars. They would never expect to have another driver on the track. I used to go 150 in short spurts in my drag racing days and can attest to how little real side vision you have. These guys go that fast and faster and I'm sure your side vision is at best minimal.

    :les:
    The Radish
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  • I'm not so sure about that Les. Premeditated murder? No. But manslaughter in a heated moment? I think Tony is capable of losing composure and control. He has instilled a reputation for being a hot head in the minds of many. There was the following incident with a young driver a little over a year ago.

    The stalking figure of Tony Stewart moving toward Joey Logano belied the ill intention the three-time Cup champion fostered for the 22-year-old driver.

    Upon arrival, Stewart pushed Logano, and punches quickly followed. In a chaotic scene, the two were separated.



    "I'm gonna bust his ass" -- Tony Stewart

    Tony processes the wealth and influence to benefit from public relations specialist who will manage and shape public perceptions of Kevin Ward's death at the hands of Stewart. Still perceptions of manslaughter will now be tied to his legacy in the minds of many. Everybody loses ...... and none more than Kevin Ward Jr.
    Last edited by Jville on Sun Aug 10, 2014 9:15 pm, edited 3 times in total.
    Jville
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  • I've watched the video too a few times (pretty brutal). It's important to remember that the guy taking the video is likely a couple hundred yards away from the incident and that there were several cars on the track. The more I saw the video with that in mind, the more I began to think that the revving sound isn't coming from Stewart's car, but is from one closer to the camera and out of frame and the timing is coincidental. It really looks like Stewart tried to skid around the kid at the last second after seeing the kid and the kid was just too far down into his racing line.

    On first look, you think OMG, he aimed for the kid and gunned the gas to mow him down, but after looking at it from a driver's point of view and realizing it's dark, there's a caution flag, so his vision is locked on the car ahead to keep the safe line, and Stewart is going into a turn on dirt in a sprint car, which behaves much differently than a family sedan on pavement, I believe this is just an awful accident, that unfortunately could have been avoided if the kid stayed in his car.
    Reaneypark
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  • The more I think about it. The more I wonder if the racing community failed Kevin Ward Jr.

    An opinion article on Tony's temper and self control.

    There has been a long series of incidents where Tony Stewart let his temper get the best of him going all the way back to his rookie year when Tony tried to climb in Kenny Irwin's window to get to him after an incident in Martinsville. Other incidents include post race run-ins with Jeff Gordon, shoving incident in Daytona with Robby Gordon, multiple incidents with reporters... and the list goes on.

    Recently Tony was fined and put on probation by both NASCAR and Home Depot for an incident with a photographer after the Brickyard 400. Now we have Tony Stewart being investigated by the Sullivan County, TN sheriff's department for allegedly shoving a woman after the race in Bristol, and a safety worker from New Hampshire is accusing Tony of punching him after Stewart wrecked out of the July race.

    Tony Stewart just doesn't have it in him to make nice when he's upset. Worse than that, his outbursts always seem to be physical. If he were yelling at reporters, fans and safety workers that would make for a good story, but wouldn't be worthy of fines and suspensions. However punching, shoving and hitting with his car just can not be tolerated.


    http://nascar.about.com/library/weekly/aa091602a.htm

    Image
    A June 2014 article .....
    We’re not certain that Stewart’s sidelined threat of “I’m going to run over him every chance I’ve got from now ‘til the end of the year, every chance I’ve got . . .” was delivered to Kenseth during the race, but he certainly received the message after.

    However, Kenseth already has endured his share of being run over by Stewart this year — at Sonoma in June and last month at Indianapolis. Kenseth attempted to reach out to his fellow driver after the Sonoma incident, but Stewart came at the No. 17 Ford again at Indy. But Bristol was over the top, even for Stewart.

    Link >>> http://www.foxsports.com/nascar/story/Tony-Stewart-Matt-Kenseth-Bristol-incident-part-of-larger-NASCAR-feud-082712
    Jville
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  • Having been around racing a little, the one major rule during the track meeting is to stay in your car until track personnel get to you. Unless there is a fire. It is driven into your head from day one.

    As for those sprint cars, you're driving a shopping cart with essentially the only control being the throttle.

    As for how and why it happened, from the grainy videos I've seen, imo it's impossible to tell TS' s intentions. Sad situation no matter what.
    HOLLYWOOD
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  • Jville wrote:I'm not so sure about that Les. Premeditated murder? No. But manslaughter in a heated moment? I think Tony is capable of losing composure and control. He has instilled a reputation for being a hot head in the minds of many. There was the following incident with a young driver a little over a year ago.

    The stalking figure of Tony Stewart moving toward Joey Logano belied the ill intention the three-time Cup champion fostered for the 22-year-old driver.

    Upon arrival, Stewart pushed Logano, and punches quickly followed. In a chaotic scene, the two were separated.



    "I'm gonna bust his ass" -- Tony Stewart

    Tony processes the wealth and influence to benefit from public relations specialist who will manage and shape public perceptions of Kevin Ward's death at the hands of Stewart. Still perceptions of manslaughter will now be tied to his legacy in the minds of many. Everybody loses ...... and none more than Kevin Ward Jr.


    Stewart's car wasn't wrecked. Based on the video It's not even certain that his car even touched Ward's car, so why would he be in such an angry mood as he came around that he decided go after Ward even if it was without intent to hit him? There was only one person on that video who had indisputably lost his cool and that was Ward who had no business charging into the middle of a live track. The video provides no evidence whatsoever of Stewart's state of mind.
    TXHawk
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  • The references point to a pattern of incidents and self control issues ...... and are not isolated to a singular incident. There are plenty more for anyone who wants to do the searches.
    Jville
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  • Jville wrote:The references point to a pattern of incidents and self control issues ...... and are not isolated to a singular incident. There are plenty more for anyone who wants to do the searches.


    None of that explains why Stewart would be so angry about an incident that didn't damage his car at all or even slow him down and that he might not have even realized happened since Ward was behind him and it's not clear that their cars even touched.

    The only indisputable evidence on that video is that one driver absolutely did lose his temper and was the primary cause of the tragedy and it wasn't Tony Stewart.
    TXHawk
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  • Again, My brother and I raced sprint cars all through the 90's. I have driven a sprint car, at speed, on a banked clay surface, on a dusty pit area surface, in the gravel, in the mud, and (much to the chagrin of the Sheriff's department) on paved surfaces. I am VERY familiar with the controls and the visibility with those race cars and can completely put myself in Stewart's position.

    Even with a clean tear-off, glare wisps across the plastic shield as you pass under the track lights and you have to operate with faith and familiarity just to get around. Even under yellow, those cars are running about 60 mph until they get lined back up where they go about 35-40 to re-take the green. These cars are direct-drive, they only have an in and out shifter, and must be push-started. Drivers must ease from fast to slow operation and will get on the gas to keep the engine from lugging. You don't want lug a $40,000 alcohol-burning, mechanically fuel injected engine, so drivers will keep them revved to insure a clean burn and proper oil pressure. It is like keeping your car in fifth gear when you slow from freeway speed down to a 45 zone and not being able to downshift. Go too slow and it jerks and bucks on you.

    At parade speeds, these cars are extremely difficult to keep straight on the tacky clay surface. The best analogy for somebody to get what I mean, is to compare it to a personal watercraft. Anybody ridden a Seadoo or a Waverunner? No brakes, and you can only turn by getting on the gas. Same damn thing. It is a controlled chaos of sorts.

    Like driving in the snow, Stewart was on a trajectory through the corner at about half speed. By the time he saw the kid he would have had to make the only correction his muscle memory would have had and burp the throttle to try and avoid him. But it was too late.

    This kid was wearing a black driving suit and was at a place on the track that other drivers would not expect him to be. Safety policies dictate that not even track safety personnel can traverse the racing surface until the red flag, and this kid put himself in harm's way getting out of his car during the yellow. The ONLY place that a sprint car driver is safe on the track is strapped into car with roll bars around them. What this unfortunate driver did was to effectively render himself defenseless by getting out. He paid the ultimate price for it.

    Sadness should be the emotion here, not anger.
    HoustonHawk82
     


  • Question. In these sprint cars, does the driver communicate with the pit crew like they do in Nascar?
    Diezel Dawg
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  • Here 's a Facebook entry by Mark Tychoniewicz who worked on the 45 car that was ahead of Stewart and also barely missed Ward:

    i have driven these cars,the right side board on the top wing will block out an entire car let alone a person standing there,i now work on the 45 car in the video and the driver said he just saw him at the last second and just missed him,Tony had even less time to react to the situation.people in the stands or watching this video have no idea how fast these thing happen and how limited our view is inside the car.it was a very bad turn of events that happened but we all know the dangers involved in the sport we love.
    TXHawk
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  • Diezel Dawg wrote:Question. In these sprint cars, does the driver communicate with the pit crew like they do in Nascar?


    Nope. No radios.

    The only electronics used are transponders that are used to tell who is in what position on the track, and the magneto used to fire the ignition system.
    HoustonHawk82
     


  • Here is are some excellent videos showing pretty much all you need to know...




    HoustonHawk82
     


  • Yeah I think I'll take HoustonHawks word on this one. Kind of sad people are going after TS, regardless of his heated past, when all we have is one video. And a poor one at that
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  • Not that I need to prove anything, but here is a crappy pic (of a pic) of us right after winning the trophy dash in 1996. I'm the good looking guy in the white shirt and Q hat standing just to the left of my bro who drove that night.


    Image
    HoustonHawk82
     


  • HoustonHawk82 wrote:Here is are some excellent videos showing pretty much all you need to know...






    Interesting videos. You can see from the second one how bad visibilty is from the glare and dirt. Also the driver actually turns the wheel to the right while making left turns while using the throttle to maintain a racing line. Very difficult to do. It also explains why Stewart might goose the throttle to maneuver around a driver in the middle of the track.
    TXHawk
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  • If anyone for a second thinks that Tony didn't see that driver you're absolutely nuts.

    Tony Stewart is a professional driver, and a dang good one at that. He knows his car and his surroundings. From watching the video it was clear Stewart was trying to buzz the other driver to let him know that it's not ok to come after him, unfortunately he lost control too much and hit the other driver.

    Just because it's stupid for the other driver to be out on the track doesn't mean it's ok for him to have been killed.

    This was involuntary manslaughter and should be prosecuted as such.
    SonicHawk
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  • And those videos are not during a caution.

    This accident occurred under caution (and after Stewart had completed an entire lap). Every other driver clearly was able to see the driver on the track.
    SonicHawk
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  • Stewart has a history of a temper and not taking BS from other drivers. I have absolutely no doubt in my mind that Stewart had no intention of injuring or of course killing the other driver, but that was the result.
    SonicHawk
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  • SonicHawk wrote:And those videos are not during a caution.

    This accident occurred under caution (and after Stewart had completed an entire lap). Every other driver clearly was able to see the driver on the track.


    The 45 car in front of Stewart's swerves and narrowly misses him
    -The Glove-
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  • SonicHawk wrote:If anyone for a second thinks that Tony didn't see that driver you're absolutely nuts.

    Tony Stewart is a professional driver, and a dang good one at that. He knows his car and his surroundings. From watching the video it was clear Stewart was trying to buzz the other driver to let him know that it's not ok to come after him, unfortunately he lost control too much and hit the other driver.

    Just because it's stupid for the other driver to be out on the track doesn't mean it's ok for him to have been killed.

    This was involuntary manslaughter and should be prosecuted as such.


    really?

    If it was so cut and dry, why haven't charges been filed already?

    I could say it was suicide by cop...er, car and be able to argue the point as well as you could about Tony trying to buzz him.

    There is no crosswalk on a racetrack. Tony could have had an itch in his pants and was taking care of it. It was under caution after all. You have no idea what he was doing, looking at etc. The girl in turn three had some massive cans!

    We weren't on the track or behind the wheel of the 14 when it happened. Please stop saying a poor video explains it all... it doesn't.
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  • He hasn't been charged because it's going to be a hard case to prosecute and there are few cases in which charges for events like this are immediate. This is clearly not murder which he would be handcuffed and taken to jail immediately.

    You're just making excuses for Tony, when a driver is under caution he should be alert. That's the whole point of 'caution'. Now you're just making an argument for gross negligence (which is what I actually think Tony will settle for and is probably a fairer charge than involuntary manslaughter).

    No, I wasn't on the track, but I'm also not an idiot. Tony Stewart is a professional at the absolute top of his game. This guy makes a living of having situational awareness at 200MPH, to think that he somehow wasn't aware of the other driver's location at 40mph is beyond me.
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  • Tony was also driving significantly faster than the 45 and should have been driving on inside line (since he was well aware where the caution flag car ended up).
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  • not making excuses at all. Juan Pablo was under caution when he took out that truck dryer and caused an explosion at Daytona. Stuff happens.

    By your argument, Montoya, record holing F1, Monaco GP, Indy 500 winner, 24 hr. LeMan, two time Cup winner should have been able to miss that truck. He didn't.

    Tony didn't miss a kid running down the middle of the track. I still say it was a terrible accident.

    but to each his own.
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  • SonicHawk wrote:Tony was also driving significantly faster than the 45 and should have been driving on inside line (since he was well aware where the caution flag car ended up).


    He was pretty much on the same line as car 45 that had to swerve to miss Ward. Ward is also moving down the track
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  • NoChops wrote:not making excuses at all. Juan Pablo was under caution when he took out that truck dryer and caused an explosion at Daytona. Stuff happens.

    By your argument, Montoya, record holing F1, Monaco GP, Indy 500 winner, 24 hr. LeMan, two time Cup winner should have been able to miss that truck. He didn't.

    Tony didn't miss a kid running down the middle of the track. I still say it was a terrible accident.

    but to each his own.


    Montoya had a mechanical issue, not driver error. Thanks for his driving history, didn't help your point. Had Montoya killed someone it would CLEARLY have been an accident.
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  • -The Glove- wrote:
    SonicHawk wrote:Tony was also driving significantly faster than the 45 and should have been driving on inside line (since he was well aware where the caution flag car ended up).


    He was pretty much on the same line as car 45 that had to swerve to miss Ward. Ward is also moving down the track


    That's not an excuse for a professional like Tony Stewart.
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  • HoustonHawk82 wrote:Here is are some excellent videos showing pretty much all you need to know...






    Nice visual aids and insightful background perspectives. :th2thumbs: Although, I think Kevin Ward's death will forever be controversial.

    My experience is on two wheels during day light hours.

    I did attend a world of outlaws event once. Watched Steve Kinser win and school the field with a flat inside rear tire. Got to talk with him. Shook his hand. And left with his autograph, I gave that autograph book on sprint cars to my friend and mechanic for his birthday. Although I never saw him race, he spent a lot of his weekends racing four wheels around a local dirt oval. I spend my weekends on two wheels.
    Last edited by Jville on Mon Aug 11, 2014 11:51 am, edited 1 time in total.
    Jville
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  • If Tony Stewart is a good a driver, then he would not be fixating on the area that the kid was standing or even see him until he was coming out of the turn which gives him almost no time to react especially considering the kid kept moving toward the inner part of the track, giving him less room to avoid him. When Tony came out of the turn the kid appears to be standing directly in line with where Tony's vehicle is going, leaving Tony with almost 0 options. There's a good chance that his car lost control because he had to turn his wheel to the left to try and go around the kid.

    But I don't know. I'm not a racing or physics expert. Most of the racing experts I've seen comment on this are siding with Tony.

    Sadly, there are always those witch-hunters out for blood anytime something bad happens.
    fenderbender123
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  • SonicHawk wrote:
    -The Glove- wrote:
    SonicHawk wrote:Tony was also driving significantly faster than the 45 and should have been driving on inside line (since he was well aware where the caution flag car ended up).


    He was pretty much on the same line as car 45 that had to swerve to miss Ward. Ward is also moving down the track


    That's not an excuse for a professional like Tony Stewart.


    You're right. He should have been able to avoid Ward no matter what
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  • fenderbender123 wrote:If Tony Stewart is a good a driver, then he would not be fixating on the area that the kid was standing or even see him until he was coming out of the turn which gives him almost no time to react especially considering the kid kept moving toward the inner part of the track, giving him less room to avoid him. When Tony came out of the turn the kid appears to be standing directly in line with where Tony's vehicle is going, leaving Tony with almost 0 options. There's a good chance that his car lost control because he had to turn his wheel to the left to try and go around the kid.

    But I don't know. I'm not a racing or physics expert. Most of the racing experts I've seen comment on this are siding with Tony.

    Sadly, there are always those witch-hunters out for blood anytime something bad happens.


    He's under caution and he knows where that kid ended up (he put him there), there's absolutely no question in my mind that he intended to 'scare' the kid throwing a bit of dirt in his face.

    He's not racing so he's not necessarily fixating on being a racing driver.
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  • The_Z_Man wrote:This was what another driver said who witnessed it:

    "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."

    We'll see if he backs away from the statement later on, but these words are pretty damning from a fellow driver.


    This is apparently a quote from one of Ward's friends who was obviously overly-emotional and not thinking rationally after the incident. To say that his comments are likely biased and should be taken with a pound of salt is an understatement.
    fenderbender123
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  • SonicHawk wrote:
    fenderbender123 wrote:If Tony Stewart is a good a driver, then he would not be fixating on the area that the kid was standing or even see him until he was coming out of the turn which gives him almost no time to react especially considering the kid kept moving toward the inner part of the track, giving him less room to avoid him. When Tony came out of the turn the kid appears to be standing directly in line with where Tony's vehicle is going, leaving Tony with almost 0 options. There's a good chance that his car lost control because he had to turn his wheel to the left to try and go around the kid.

    But I don't know. I'm not a racing or physics expert. Most of the racing experts I've seen comment on this are siding with Tony.

    Sadly, there are always those witch-hunters out for blood anytime something bad happens.


    He's under caution and he knows where that kid ended up (he put him there), there's absolutely no question in my mind that he intended to 'scare' the kid throwing a bit of dirt in his face.

    He's not racing so he's not necessarily fixating on being a racing driver.


    Watch it again and you'll clearly see that Tony didn't cause the wreck or even saw what happened as he was in front (those cars don't have mirrors). The kid wrecked the car himself by taking a bad angle around a corner so Tony didn't even have a reason to be mad at the kid.

    I'm seeing a lot of comments around the web similar to this:

    So... What happens when you combine huge tires (lots of traction) with a solid axle (difficult to turn) and reduced speed (due to yellow flag, resulting in still more traction)? The car becomes very difficult to turn (known as understeer). In fact, it would become far easier to turn by revving the engine to break the rear wheels lose (power-induced oversteer).

    So, Stewart comes around the corner, the car in front of him dodges out of the way, revealing a road-raging driver running out in the track. Stewart tries to dodge: He turns the wheel and blips the throttle to get the car to rotate... To point in the right direction so when it regains traction it will miss the object (driver) he's trying to avoid. It was simply too late and/or driver too far out in the track for the physics to play out. The result? Driver gets hit by the rear tire.


    That was from reddit. Most people who seem to know what they're talking about are not faulting Tony.

    Maybe somebody who has more knowledge can confirm this, Tony likely doesn't know the kid is there until after the corner, and if he comes out of it pointed in the direction the kid is standing, and the above quote is correct in how those cars operate, then Tony has to turn his wheel and accelerate to change his direction and avoid the kid. I just don't see how any driver could have made a clean swerve around him if they came out of that turn like that. Look at the other cars that barely miss him, they all come out of the corner more on the inside. Tony didn't, and thus was in a much more difficult position to make a maneuver around him.
    Last edited by fenderbender123 on Mon Aug 11, 2014 12:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.
    fenderbender123
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  • On a poorly lit banked, clay track this idiot gets out of his car to wag a finger at T.S.

    That right there is all you need to know. There is no criminal action in what happened. Dude put himself in harms way, and harm won.
    Largent80
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  • fenderbender123 wrote:
    So... What happens when you combine huge tires (lots of traction) with a solid axle (difficult to turn) and reduced speed (due to yellow flag, resulting in still more traction)? The car becomes very difficult to turn (known as understeer). In fact, it would become far easier to turn by revving the engine to break the rear wheels lose (power-induced oversteer).

    So, Stewart comes around the corner, the car in front of him dodges out of the way, revealing a road-raging driver running out in the track. Stewart tries to dodge: He turns the wheel and blips the throttle to get the car to rotate... To point in the right direction so when it regains traction it will miss the object (driver) he's trying to avoid. It was simply too late and/or driver too far out in the track for the physics to play out. The result? Driver gets hit by the rear tire.


    That was from reddit. Most people who seem to know what they're talking about are not faulting Tony.


    'Most people who seem to know...' Yeah, that's a dickhole comment. There are a lot of Tony Stewart fans out there who are doing everything they can to blame everyone but him.

    You're not arguing what I've been saying.. In no way have I suggested that Stewart intentionally did this. Yes, those cars are incredibly difficult to handle.

    While this 'redditors' comment is great, STEWART IS WELL AWARE OF WHERE THIS WRECK TOOK PLACE AND SHOULD HAVE BEEN NO WHERE NEAR THE MIDDLE OF THE TRACK.

    You have a driver in Stewart who has an absolute history of misbehaving on the track, he's cocky and on a track he's unfamiliar with with a brash kid who's trying to upstage him. It's a horrible accident, but it occurred due to the negligence of Stewart. That's a crime.
    SonicHawk
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  • Since you're going to use a reddit comment... here's another one from someone who's not a Stewart fan.

    Vision can certainly be a major issue in dirt racing. As a big dumb mouth-breather I used to always have issues with my visor fogging up, especially on humid evenings. Sometimes I'd pull all my tear-offs at one time and have to wipe mud off my visor with different parts of my gloves each time (if you use an already muddy part you just compound the problem) for an entire race.
    Now for my opinion on the incident (sorry, gotta do it): Tony is one of the world's best racers. He's run thousands of caution laps and understands what's going on on an oval track better than anyone probably. Due to his experience level I struggle to grasp that Tony had no clue Ward was on the track in a rage. I'd bet Tony saw him as he entered turn one. That is what you always do under yellow, you look around to spot the obstacle ahead. I refuse to believe that Tony didn't see the kid until the last second. I know, this is totally a gut belief but I simply can't shake it. You don't wheel sprinters like Tony can without exceptional awareness and eyesight. I'd like to know if they wear track channel radios in the series they were running. If so, the tower would have certainly told the drivers to get low in turn two and possibly warned of a driver on the track. Haven't heard anything about that though.
    In the area of equipment failure I see it this way: He has the best equipment and crew everywhere he dirt races so its hard for me to believe that his mask fogged or he goofed his tear-offs up. They make tear-off setups that are almost impossible to screw up and there are all sorts of fogless this and that. I needed them but couldn't afford it.
    These things, in addition to the video, lead me to believe that Tony was just trying to buzz the tires right by the kid to spook him a little. He got too close, Ward kept pressing and a fatal collision occurred. Two bad choices ended a life and damaged many others. I might be wrong but I doubt anyone will ever know for sure.
    All this said I feel bad for Tony but even worse for Kevin Ward's family and friends.


    This one was upvoted to death and given gold. So suck it. ;)
    SonicHawk
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  • HoustonHawk82 wrote:Again, My brother and I raced sprint cars all through the 90's. I have driven a sprint car, at speed, on a banked clay surface, on a dusty pit area surface, in the gravel, in the mud, and (much to the chagrin of the Sheriff's department) on paved surfaces. I am VERY familiar with the controls and the visibility with those race cars and can completely put myself in Stewart's position.

    Even with a clean tear-off, glare wisps across the plastic shield as you pass under the track lights and you have to operate with faith and familiarity just to get around. Even under yellow, those cars are running about 60 mph until they get lined back up where they go about 35-40 to re-take the green. These cars are direct-drive, they only have an in and out shifter, and must be push-started. Drivers must ease from fast to slow operation and will get on the gas to keep the engine from lugging. You don't want lug a $40,000 alcohol-burning, mechanically fuel injected engine, so drivers will keep them revved to insure a clean burn and proper oil pressure. It is like keeping your car in fifth gear when you slow from freeway speed down to a 45 zone and not being able to downshift. Go too slow and it jerks and bucks on you.

    At parade speeds, these cars are extremely difficult to keep straight on the tacky clay surface. The best analogy for somebody to get what I mean, is to compare it to a personal watercraft. Anybody ridden a Seadoo or a Waverunner? No brakes, and you can only turn by getting on the gas. Same damn thing. It is a controlled chaos of sorts.

    Like driving in the snow, Stewart was on a trajectory through the corner at about half speed. By the time he saw the kid he would have had to make the only correction his muscle memory would have had and burp the throttle to try and avoid him. But it was too late.

    This kid was wearing a black driving suit and was at a place on the track that other drivers would not expect him to be. Safety policies dictate that not even track safety personnel can traverse the racing surface until the red flag, and this kid put himself in harm's way getting out of his car during the yellow. The ONLY place that a sprint car driver is safe on the track is strapped into car with roll bars around them. What this unfortunate driver did was to effectively render himself defenseless by getting out. He paid the ultimate price for it.

    Sadness should be the emotion here, not anger.


    This is 100% on-point.
    JGfromtheNW
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