Tony Stewart visited injured NASCAR fans in hospital image

After crashing and finishing a disappointing 41st in Sunday’s Daytona 500, Tony Stewart did not return home, but paid a visit to injured fans during Saturday’s Nationwide Series race.

A terrible crash on the last lap scattered debris into the stands, injuring dozens of spectators. Stewart, who won the race in which the crash occurred, spent more than two hours visiting the six patients still hospitalized at Halifax Health and chatted with five of them, according to Stewart-Haas Racing spokesman Mike Arning.

The driver gave autographed hats to each patient from sponsor Bass Pro Shops. However, Stewart’s visit was not intended to be public, but word began to leak via Twitter on Monday afternoon. Immediately after his win Saturday, Stewart expressed concern for the fans.

“We’ve always known since racing was started this was a dangerous sport, but we assume that risk, and it’s hard when the fans get caught up in it. So as much as we want to celebrate now and as much as this is a big deal to all of us, I’m more worried about the drivers (injured) and the fans in the stands right now, because I could see it all in the mirror, and it didn’t look good from where I was at, either,” Stewart said after the Saturday race.

On Sunday, Stewart’s early crash that ended his hopes of winning a Daytona 500 for the first time.