Stewart sidelined; Jarrett weighs in
Photo by NASCAR Media Group
Tony Stewart and Dale Jarrett pose for a photo at Indianapolis Motor Speedway in 2006.

By Justin Melillo
Staff Reporter
February 5, 2016

Tony Stewart’s hopes of winning a Daytona 500 are presumptuously over.

Before his farewell season begins, Stewart will have to sit out the start of the 2016 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series with a lower back injury, per a release from Stewart-Haas Racing.

The injury is described as a burst fracture of the L1 Vertebra, and a timetable has not yet been set for Stewart’s return.

Stewart announced late last year that 2016 will be his last in NASCAR’s top series.

The season kicks off with the Daytona 500, a race that Stewart has never been able to capture victory in.

 also announced that an interim driver has not yet been named.

Photo by Corey Carpenter/
Tony Stewart races during the Bank of America 500 at Charlotte Motor Speedway in October 2015.
1999 NASCAR Sprint Cup champion Dale Jarrett weighed in his thoughts on who a potential replacement driver could be for the ride.

“Don’t be surprised if the opportunity doesn’t open up for somebody we’re probably not even really considering or thinking about,” Jarrett said on NBC Sports Network’s NASCAR America program, adding, “But a young driver that’s out there and probably first and foremost; thinking of someone that has ties to Chevrolet because this obviously is something that’s very important to that racing operation there at Stewart-Haas. And, I think that would be of 
utmost importance to them. 

“Think about people in that light—a young driver that may have that chance to be put in that type of situation, just as a driver, and not knowing how long it may last, but a great opportunity for them and it does Stewart-Haas certainly a huge favor in the respect.”

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