Who is Tony Stewart?
Anthony Wayne Stewart was born on 20 May 1971, in Columbus, Indiana USA, and is a retired professional stock car racing driver, known under the nickname Smoke. He won three NASCAR Cup Series championships as a driver, and is now a NASCAR team owner.
The Net Worth of Tony Stewart
How rich is Tony Stewart? As of mid-2018, sources estimate a net worth that is at $70 million, mostly earned through success in the racing industry. Throughout his career he’s won various championships, and numerous endorsements have also earned him considerable amounts of money. As he continues his career, it is expected that his wealth will also continue to increase.
Beginnings – Early Life, Education, and Racing
Tony grew up as a middle child of three siblings, but his parents divorced while he was growing up and his mother remarried while he was in Columbus North High School. At a young age, he was already interested in racing, and began racing go karts as a part of the World Karting Association, winning his first championship in 1987, leading him to try his hand at other forms of racing.
This was with the United Midget Racing Association (UMRA), then in 1991 he joined the United States Auto Club (USAC), becoming the rookie of the year, and subsequently winning three championships in 1994, ’95 and ‘96. He became the first driver to win the USAC’s version of the Triple Crown, winning championships in all three divisions. Aside from racing IndyCars, he also raced stock cars, and made his debut in the NASCAR Busch Series in 1996, however, his start there was not as smooth as initially hoped.
Developing a Racing Career
In 1997, Stewart had struggles at improving his standing in the Indy Racing League (IRL). After some failed races, he finally got his first career win at Pikes Peak in which he led most of a 200 lap race. He managed to win the IRL title that year, and also continued midget racing in which he won two more titles. He earned the nickname “Smoke” during this time, mainly for blowing his engine numerous times throughout his championship-winning year. In 1998, he became more integrated into the Busch Series thanks to some impressive finishes, leading him to be signed by Joe Gibbs.
He continued to win throughout the year, although in the Indy 500 he suffered engine failure, and he eventually became a full time driver in 1999 as he entered the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series. He started his Sprint career strongly and impressed numerous people with his rookie performance, breaking numerous records during that year including the 1987 Davey Allison record for most wins by a rookie, so it wasn’t a surprise when he got the Winston Cup Rookie of the Year Award.
Later Career and After Racing
Tony would go on to become a three-time Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series champion, and continued competing full time in the Sprint Cup series until the 2016 season, driving for his own Stewart-Haas Racing team, although two of his Cup Series championship wins were when he drove for car owner Joe Gibbs. During the latter part of his driving career, he became interested in owning various racing teams, starting with open-wheel short track racing cars, and he even purchased the All Star Circuit of Champions.
— Tony Stewart (@TonyStewart) November 8, 2017
He also owns a 50% stake in Haas CNC Racing, later renamed to Stewart-Haas Racing, as well as owning several motorsport venues, including the Eldora Speedway located at Rossburg, Ohio, and the Paducah International Raceway. He also owns the Macon Speedway in Illinois alongside a few other co-owners. Aside from his racing endeavors, he also founded the Tony Stewart Foundation, which helps to raise and donate funds to help chronically ill children, and also supports injured drivers, as well as supporting the protection of various animal species.
Marriage and Acting
For many years, Stewart joked that he would never get married, but that all changed when he met model and former Playboy playmate Penelope Jimenez in 2016. After a year of dating, the two announced through social media that they had become engaged, and they married later in 2017. Jimenez has been known for her modelling work in the early-2000s leading up to her Playboy appearance as Miss March 2003. She’s also done acting work mainly in support including in films such as “The Scorpion King”, and the TV series “The Bold and the Beautiful”. Stewart has also done his own acting work, appearing in projects such as “Last Man Standing”, “Over the Wall”, and “Herbie Fully Loaded”.