Stewart won't race in Indy 500

Reigning Winston Cup champion Tony Stewart has put an abrupt end to speculation that he would compete in this year's Indianapolis 500 race, following reports over the weekend that he would replace the injured Dario Franchitti at Andretti Green Racing

Stewart won't race in Indy 500

Stewart issued a statement Monday saying he would not try to race at Indianapolis and the Coca-Cola 600 NASCAR race at Charlotte on the same day, as he did in 1999 and 2001, because the travel requirements and time demands of trying to compete at the Indy 500 and Coca-Cola 600 Winston Cup race on the same day were too much.

"When you go back and forth between Indy and Charlotte, it puts a strain on the entire team," Stewart said in the statement released Monday by Tony Stewart Motorsports. "As much as my heart wants to do it, I can't justify putting my personal ambitions ahead of the sacrifices made by my race team.

"It's flattering to know that my name still comes up this time of year as someone teams want to have in their car at Indy. But as I've said from the beginning of the season, I am not going to compete in the Indianapolis 500, and my reasons are still the same."

Stewart also said his desire to win the Indy 500 isn't as strong as it used to be. "I don't have to prove I can win that race," he said. "I want to win that race really bad, but there are a lot of guys that haven't won the Indy 500. I always had the feeling that if I never won that race it was going to be a void in my career. I don't feel that way anymore."

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