Stewart lawsuit mediation efforts fail

Mediation efforts to resolve a wrongful death lawsuit brought by the parents of Kevin Ward Jr. against former NASCAR driver Tony Stewart have failed.

Court documents state that both parties participated in a mediation conference April 18 before Judge Glenn Norton in St. Louis, but did not reach an agreement.

Stewart and Ward competed in an Empire Super Sprints race Aug. 9, 2014, at Canandaigua (New York) Motorsports Park, where Stewart’s car struck and killed Ward. Kevin Ward Sr. and Pam Ward filed the lawsuit and blame Stewart for their son’s death.

Stewart, 45, of Columbus, has asked that claims of wrongful death and conscious pain and suffering and terror be dismissed in the lawsuit filed by the parents of Kevin Ward Jr., who was 20 when he died. If Stewart’s request is granted, only an intentional/reckless conduct claim would remain.

A hearing to consider Stewart’s request is set for 10 a.m. June 23 in United States District Court in Utica, New York.

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