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Tony Stewart will not race at Michigan; Jeff Burton to drive No. 14

Aug 14, 2014, 5:47 PM EDT

Tony Stewart will not race in Sunday’s Pure Michigan 400 at Michigan International Speedway.

Stewart’s public relations director, Mike Arning, made the announcement in an email to media late Thursday afternoon.

Stewart will be replaced behind the wheel of the No. 14 Stewart-Haas Racing Chevrolet by Jeff Burton, who is retiring at the end of this season to become a full-time analyst for NASCAR on NBC.

Burton’s placement in Stewart’s car is only for Sunday’s race.

“Stewart’s plans for upcoming Sprint Cup races have yet to be determined,” Arning’s statement noted.

Burton, along with SHR executive vice president Brett Frood and SHR vice president of competition Greg Zipadelli, will meet with the media Friday morning in the infield media center at MIS.

Stewart was replaced in this past Sunday’s race at Watkins Glen by Nationwide Series driver Regan Smith.

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  1. gajohnson52 - Aug 14, 2014 at 6:02 PM

    Hang in there, Tony. We love you. “Stand With Smoke”

    • astrongus - Aug 14, 2014 at 7:03 PM

      Tony Stewart lost control of his emotions and because of it, today, we lay to rest a very young person. This young person was crashed by one of the best drivers in the world. The lane of Ward’s was cut off by Tony Stewart sending him into a vicious crash. We will never know the condition of Ward after that crash, because as he got out of his car during a yellow flag caution, as many drivers do after crashing, he was struck by the only vehicle that was “on the gas” during a yellow flag caution, driven by one of the best drivers in the world. As emergency personnel rushed the victim, Tony Stewart was able to get off the gas and immediately stop……

      • 59desoto - Aug 14, 2014 at 7:27 PM

        No one killed Kevin Ward but himself , your stupid buddy tried to hold on to the wing of Stewards car with his rage and dumb stunt. Kevin’s inexperience as a driver got him wreck cause Tony never touched his car Hope his few second’s of glory was worth the price he paid

      • timd1969 - Aug 14, 2014 at 9:04 PM

        This is tragic and I am not a Stewart fan but still was wondering what vicious crash you are referring too?Looked like a mild spin to me for a sprint car.Actually every comment you made makes me wonder what video you saw as they are all untrue.Guess we saw 2 different videos?Not sure what your thinking or why you would post something made up in your own mind but oh well?God Bless all that were involved in this tragic event

      • scottspetcrash - Aug 17, 2014 at 7:58 PM

        I do not believe you’re using accurate information here. To many rumors to know what really happened yet.

    • 59desoto - Aug 14, 2014 at 7:28 PM

      Standing there

      • astrongus - Aug 14, 2014 at 7:53 PM

        The video shows the best driver in the world completely take the lane of Ward’s. Stewart ended the corner farther outside than anyone else and continued to push the wheels to the outside, if you slow the video down you will see this…..There was no need for that kind of “bullying” during a modest meaningless race by a multi-time Sprint Cup Champion………. NFL players don’t play against red shirt freshman and try to knock their heads off, unless, they lose control of their emotions.

  2. FoozieGrooler - Aug 14, 2014 at 6:04 PM

    ..probably afraid that any day now they’ll issue a warrant for his arrest…

  3. weareluckytohavemikeflorio - Aug 14, 2014 at 6:11 PM

    im hearing via rusty wallace and darrell waltrip that smoke will announce his retirement from all motorsports sometime this week.

    • wrlegrand - Aug 14, 2014 at 6:42 PM

      Clearly trolling, but it would no surprise me in the least if this is how this story ends…

  4. corvusrex96 - Aug 14, 2014 at 6:20 PM

    I still don’t see how he gets charged with anything . Ward was walking down the track on an angle towards the oncoming cars. While it is highly possible that Stewart tried to spray dirt on the guy and instead hit him but that seems almost impossible to prove

    • rgrooms1 - Aug 14, 2014 at 6:54 PM

      It will be hard to prove….and that’s exactly what I think happened. But all racing cases in the past have resulted with no conviction. But it will have serious consequences on his career, sponsorship and so forth even without being found guilty.

    • bell1571 - Aug 14, 2014 at 7:18 PM

      You might want to get better versed in the law, then you will see how he can be charged. Start with the chapter on manslaughter.

      • corvusrex96 - Aug 14, 2014 at 8:18 PM

        I understand the law, but again due to Ward’s actions and the ambiguous video i dont see how it is even remotely possible to convict Stewart

  5. rowdyjay - Aug 14, 2014 at 6:22 PM

    This whole thing is out of control. Tony would never try to kill anyone but he does need to address this with the media. I really cant see him retiring but what happens to shr and his sprint car teams if those rumors are true. Its unlike stewart to not speak about this or any issue. I met him a lernerville speedway and he was always a nice guys. Zippy should not have said business as usual on this matter. It was just heartless on his part when tony was broken up on this. May wards family and tony find peace

    • Bob Loblaw - Aug 15, 2014 at 8:46 AM

      He can not address the media because anything he says can be used against him. He isn’t off the hook for legal problems here and there is absolutely no way he can address this until the police are 100% not going to charge him with any crime.

  6. umakenosense - Aug 14, 2014 at 6:29 PM

    Why does he need to address the media. Doesn’t matter what he says. It will be wrong. I don’t need him to stand at a microphone and apologize. Families and friends from both sides are changed forever no words will change that. The media needs to let it go and let the justice system handle it. If anything even needs handling.

  7. mightbegoingtohellforthis - Aug 14, 2014 at 6:34 PM

    With potential charges and/or a lawsuit pending, Tony Stewart needs to let his lawyer do all the talking.

  8. jinx21fan - Aug 14, 2014 at 6:41 PM

    Not racing, but has time to do Conan?

    • jinx21fan - Aug 14, 2014 at 9:00 PM

      For those of you saying he might not race again, watch the Conan interview. Tony is in the best shape he’s been in years! He’s obviously taking better care of himself, I think he’ll be back!

  9. rgrooms1 - Aug 14, 2014 at 6:49 PM

    Heck of a driver that’s got himself in a lot of trouble over something could have been avoided. I think their both at fault. But the one that is alive is at fault a lot more….

  10. chad4208 - Aug 14, 2014 at 7:26 PM

    and the uniformed morons continue to spew uninformed remarks…

  11. 59desoto - Aug 14, 2014 at 7:42 PM

    This will have lasting effects but no one is reasonable for Kevin Wards death than himself , his temper and ego trying to be a home town hero is what killed him. A drivers who raced against Ward Sr talk about what a hot head he could be and another has said Tony did everything possible to miss Ward and track owner have said they back Toney and Ward was solely to blame. Push the video cleaned up , zoomed and run in slow motion revels more clues the raw video don’t. Heard the 2nd video may also prove Stewards case.

  12. natsvette - Aug 14, 2014 at 8:28 PM

    I just watched this video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o3aDXRPLkSM&bpctr=1408064071

    He grabbed Tony Stewarts Wing. How is that Stewarts fault for this accident!

    • jinx21fan - Aug 14, 2014 at 8:57 PM

      Next time paste the “embed” code

  13. stagedoorjohnny - Aug 14, 2014 at 9:12 PM

    Some facts to consider…

    1.) The second video that someone remarked that possibly showed Mr. Ward grabbing Mr. Stewart’s wing is inconclusive. It doesn’t show anything of the kind accurately.

    2.) According to Robin Miller or Racer.com some of Mr. Stewart’s friends have said they feared that Mr. Stewart actually did try to spray some dirt on Mr. Ward or even to scare him and tragically misguided the distance. This is from some of Mr. Stewart’s friends.

    3.) At least a half dozen other bush league drivers avoided Mr. Ward previous to Mr. Stewart’s car all the while slowing down for the yellow caution while Mr. Stewart’s car is now confirmed to be revving up as he approaches Mr. Ward.

    Again, these are known facts as of now. More later.

    • jinx21fan - Aug 14, 2014 at 9:24 PM

      Fact 4.) Mr. Stewart has apparently composed some sort of hit list or as he is calling it a “Pecking Order”. Lord only knows who is on it, stay in your car Jeff Gordon, stay in your car!!

    • stagedoorjohnny - Aug 14, 2014 at 9:34 PM

      http://www.racer.com/latest-stories/item/107403-miller-tony-stewart-and-the-tragedy-at-canandaigua?showall=&limitstart=

      second page, fourth paragraph

    • scottspetcrash - Aug 17, 2014 at 8:10 PM

      Unfortunately these are not all facts and Robin Miller and Tony Stewart have never ever been friends! Get your facts straight before posting meaningless misguided information.

  14. charger383 - Aug 14, 2014 at 9:45 PM

    only charge I can see in this is Ward for JAYWALKING

    • sw19womble - Aug 15, 2014 at 7:32 AM

      You can get shot dead in Ferguson, Missouri, for that.

  15. jinx21fan - Aug 14, 2014 at 9:57 PM

    Now see, I have to question Tony’s PR guys on this one. The wanted to show everyone what it was like driving with Tony. I got tell ya, I’m not sure it accomplished what they set out to do …

  16. stagedoorjohnny - Aug 14, 2014 at 10:01 PM

    …”A few of Tony’s friends called to say they’re worried he might have tried to squirt a little dirt on Ward or scare the kid and misjudged the distance.”
    Robin Miller of Racer.com

    http://www.racer.com/latest-stories/item/107403-miller-tony-stewart-and-the-tragedy-at-canandaigua?showall=&limitstart=

    Question. If some here have expressed the same sentiment and have been called idiots, morons, stupid and such by some then does this make those of Tony’s friends the same. And does it make Mr. Stewart the big idiot, moron or stupid?

  17. worknman24hours - Aug 15, 2014 at 7:30 AM

    For the forseeable future,Tony Stewart has more important things then him being in a racing car to think about.

    Tony Stewart has an entire group of hundreds of people who depend on him for a living now.

    That fact alone makes anything he does from now on,very important to their futures as well as his.

    What happened to Ward Jr. was an accident.

    While each driver could have done things better to stop it,the accident is over and a man is dead.

    Now the law has to move through it’s investigation and bring a closure to this fatal incident.

    While this process goes on,also because he is not in the Chase anyway and because Tony was’nt healed fully anyway,he has no reason to get back into the car until next year at the earliest.

    Sadly,Tony also has to think of his family as well as this process moves forward because the emotions are still running high and people with little reason or self control can do crazy things directed at Tony’s family and friends over this.

    While I applaud those of you who publicly support Tony I would ask you to realize their is also a group of people who support Ward Jr.s family and friends just as fiercely and when you inflame one side over the other bad things can happen.

    This is not going to be a win-lose deal here.

    Both men have lost things very precious to them.

    Ward Jr. his life,his family their son and Tony Stewart will be forever known as the guy who accidentally ran him down.

    So let’s stop talking about this like their is a place we can get to where there will be a winner in this debate because clearly both men have lost and now the only way to move on is to let the process move forward and hope both families get fair treatment under the law.

    • jxegh - Aug 15, 2014 at 12:34 PM

      That, my friend, was the best post concerning this tragedy

  18. kellysue0601 - Aug 15, 2014 at 9:12 AM

    Come on!! With all of those people watching everyone knows he wasn’t trying to hit the guy!! Don’t you guys think he is going through Hell for what happened!! Are you people human beings!! Have a freaking heart!.

    • abninf - Aug 16, 2014 at 1:28 PM

      I don’t think anyone is saying he purposely tried to hit the guy. You people have poor reading comprehension. He purposely tried to scare him or spray dirt on him and we see how it went.

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