Stewart Released From Hospital

Max Papis

Max Papis overcame a spin to finish 15th, his best result in a NASCAR Sprint Cup race since 2009. (Photo: Getty Images)


WATKINS GLEN, N.Y. -  Stewart-Haas Racing announced Sunday night that Tony Stewart had been released from the hospital and was "resting as comfortably as he can at home.''

The announcement came a few hours after Max Papis finished 15th in Stewart's car in the NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Watkins Glen International - the first time Stewart has missed a Cup race in his career.  Stewart broke his leg in a sprint car crash Monday in Iowa.  He's had two surgeries since on the right leg.

Greg Zipadelli, competition director for Stewart-Haas Racing, said after the race that the team would make its decision Monday afternoon on who will drive Stewart’s car next weekend at Michigan International Speedway.

Zipadelli also said he hoped to have the team’s plans for the rest of the year set by Wednesday.  Although no timetable has been set for Stewart’s return, indications are it’s unlikely he’ll race again this season.

"Some cards are falling by the hour," Zipadelli said.  "We’ll take (Sunday night) and work things out.  I want to get with (Stewart), and make sure he agrees and is happy with what we’re going to do."

Zipadelli said he planned to talk to Stewart either Sunday night or Monday about the choice. 

Sunday afternoon, the focus was on the track.

"One lap at a time," crew chief Steve Addington radioed Papis before the race started.  "One position at a time.  Let’s get after them."

Papis tried after starting 29th, but he fought the car’s handling early in the race.  He was running 20th when he spun on Lap 43 after contact with Greg Biffle.  Papis fell back to 33rd.

"I felt that we were definitely bound to have a top-10 finish," Papis said.  "Really glad that Greg Biffle came over and apologized when he turned me around.  I think that really cost us a solid top 10.  Besides that, I drove the wheels off the car every lap."

Papis caught a break with the caution on Lap 61 that disrupted a cycle of green-flag pit stops.  He made his final stop before the caution and that moved him up in the field.  He fell back after that before gaining a couple of spots late to earn his best finish in a Cup race since placing eighth at this track in 2009.

"I’m really proud of the job I did," Papis said.  "Never give up.  That’s the spirit Tony wanted me to have. These guys are tough guys.  The last three laps, people were crazy.  One of the things I noticed was that there was not one second of driving around at 90 percent.  It was all the time at 100 percent."

So is Papis ready for more?

"Now, it’s time for people who know how to turn left only," he said.

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