Tony Stewart’s racing career at a glance

Here are highlights of Tony Stewart’s racing career, gleaned from Republic archives and the driver’s website,

1978: First go-kart race, in Westport, Indiana, when he was about 7 years old

1980: Wins the 4-cycle rookie junior class at the Bartholomew County 4-H Fairgrounds

1983: International Karting Federation Grand National champion

1987: World Karting Association grand champion

1991: United States Auto Club Rookie of the Year

1994: Wins the USAC Midget title

1995: First driver to win the USAC Triple Crown by winning the Midget, Sprint and Silver Crown divisions

1996: Indianapolis 500 Rookie of the Year

1997: Wins the IndyCar Series championship

1999: Wins first NASCAR Cup race on Sept. 11 at Richmond, Virginia. Wins three races total in the season and earns NASCAR Winston Cup Rookie of the Year honors.

2000: Forms Tony Stewart Racing, which fields World of Outlaw and USAC teams.

2001: Finishes sixth in the Indianapolis 500 open-wheel race and third in the Coca-Cola 600 NASCAR Cup race on the same day.

2002: Wins first NASCAR Cup championship, beating Mark Martin by 38 points.

2003: Forms the Tony Stewart Foundation, which raises funds for chronically ill children, injured drivers and the protection of animals.

2005: Wins the Brickyard 400 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway for the first time, and wins second NASCAR Cup championship, beating Greg Biffle and Carl Edwards by 25 points.

2006: Wins the International Race of Champions title during the series’ final year of operation.

2007: Wins Brickyard 400 for second time.

2008: Announces departure from Joe Gibbs Racing to become an owner/driver in NASCAR’s Sprint Cup Series with Stewart/Haas Racing.

2009: First driver/owner to win a Sprint Cup race since Ricky Rudd in 1998.

2011: Stewart wins third NASCAR Cup championship title, beating Carl Edwards on the tiebreaker (season wins) after both tied for the overall points lead. Stewart erased a three-point deficit in the standings by winning the season-ending Ford 400; Edwards finished second.

2013: Stewart scores 48th career NASCAR victory (currently his last) with win at Dover, Delaware, in June. Stewart breaks his right tibia and fibula when he hits a lapped car and flips during the 30-lap American Sprint Car Series feature in August at Southern Iowa Speedway in Oskaloosa, Iowa. Stewart misses the remainder of the NASCAR season.

August 2014: At a race at the Canandaigua (New York) Motorsports Park, Stewart’s car hits and kills sprint-car driver Kevin Ward Jr., who exited his car and appeared to confront Stewart. The 25-lap race was under caution when Ward was struck. Stewart’s car was behind another, which swerved to avoid the driver, before he hit Ward.

September 2014: A 23-person Ontario County grand jury declines to indict Stewart on either of two charges: manslaughter in the second degree and criminally negligent homicide.

August 2015: Family of Kevin Ward Jr. files wrongful death lawsuit against Stewart.

Sept. 30, 2015: News conference planned for Stewart. He is expected to formally announce his retirement from NASCAR racing after the 2016 season.

Compiled by Kirk Johannesen, Republic assistant managing editor

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Kirk Johannesen is assistant managing editor of The Republic. He can be reached at or (812) 379-5639.