ALAMO TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) — As the professional racing community heals following a short track death involving NASCAR driver Tony Stewart, a big name racer is expected to draw a crowd to the Kalamazoo Speedway.
Wednesday, NASCAR’s Kyle Busch will participate in the Kalamazoo Klash at the Kalamazoo Speedway in Alamo Township.
“It’s a good opportunity for me to come out to Kalamazoo,” Busch told 24 Hour News 8 Tuesday. “I’ve never been here before.”
But the shadow of a recent death in racing may hang over the event. Kevin Ward Jr. was killed Saturday on a small track in upstate New York. After a crash, he got out of his car and walked on the dirt track, at which point he was hit by Tony Stewart’s car.
There will be a moment to remember Ward before Wednesday’s race.
“You give your thoughts and prayers to those that are hurt, but … the show goes on,” Busch said. “You’ve obviously got to still be mindful that you’re careful about what you’re doing.”
Big NASCAR names draw spectators and help keep smaller short tracks in business, and many NASCAR racers got their start on a short track.
While there’s always risk in racing, Busch said participating in short track races is important. He said it’s a way to give back and help keep the sport alive.
“They’re what got me to where I am today,” he said. “There’s obviously risk out there, but risk could come on Sundays, as well.”
Wednesday’s race at the Kalamazoo Speedway begins at 6:30 p.m. Adult tickets cost $25.