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Bass Pro Shops 'Proud to Stand By' Tony Stewart

Bass Pro Shops 'Proud to Stand By' Tony Stewart

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On Saturday, Bass Pro Shops announced that it would stand by NASCAR champion Tony Stewart, who will return to the track for the first time this weekend since being involved in a fatal accident on a dirt track that killed Kevin Ward, Jr. 

Bass Pro Shops is one of Stewart’s top sponsors and founder Johnny Morris said the company was “proud to stand by him as he returns this weekend to the sport he loves so much.”

“Today our thoughts are with our friend and fishing buddy Tony Stewart as he prepares to return to racing after what has been a difficult time in his life,” he said in a statement. “Our hearts go out to him and to the family and friends of Kevin Ward, Jr., who died in the tragic sprint car accident on August 9.”

He also mentioned Stewart’s activities off of the track that often has gone unnoticed because Stewart never brings attention to them. 

“Like many other race fans, I love Tony’s passion and skill on the track and to watch this fierce competitor compete. But the off-track Tony Stewart is the man that I have come to respect,” he continued. “Time and time again, I’ve witnessed Tony’s quiet generosity and compassion as he gives to others. By personally supporting numerous programs like Catch-A-Dream Foundation and Victory Junction, Tony has given many ailing children a chance to experience outdoor sports and have fun opportunities they might not otherwise have. 

Here is his full statement, per ESPN’s Marty Smith:

“Today our thoughts are with our friend and fishing buddy Tony Stewart as he prepares to return to racing after what has been a difficult time in his life. Our hearts go out to him and to the family and friends of Kevin Ward, Jr., who died in the tragic sprint car accident on August 9. 

I was able to spend time with Tony last week and it made my heart ache to see him so devastated by this incident.

Like many other race fans, I love Tony’s passion and skill on the track and to watch this fierce competitor compete. But the off-track Tony Stewart is the man that I have come to respect. Time and time again, I’ve witnessed Tony’s quiet generosity and compassion as he gives to others. By personally supporting numerous programs like Catch-A-Dream Foundation and Victory Junction, Tony has given many ailing children a chance to experience outdoor sports and have fun opportunities they might not otherwise have. 

His love or racing goes far beyond his work behind the wheel. It is common for Tony to sign autographs for each and every race fan for hours on-end. Behind the scenes, Tony continually steps in to help junior drivers get started in racing because he cares about the sport and its fans. 

What started as a sponsorship discussion between Tony and I fifteen years ago has turned into a long and special friendship. It’s a friendship that has given me the opportunity to get to know one of the most compassionate and kind-hearted individuals I have ever met. 

On behalf of the Bass Pro Shops Family, and as Tony’s friend, we are proud to stand by him as he returns this weekend to the sport he loves so much.”


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