NASCAR driver killed in New Jersey race crash

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(CNN) — NASCAR driver Jason Leffler died Wednesday after he crashed his car at the Bridgeport Speedway in New Jersey, NASCAR said.

He was 37.

Leffler was taking part in “Night of Wings,” a 25-lap event for sprint cars with a $7,000 prize money.

Sprint cars are high-powered cars that usually run on dirt or paved oval tracks.

“NASCAR extends its thoughts, prayers and deepest sympathies to the family of Jason Leffler who passed away earlier this evening,” NASCAR said in a statement. “For more than a decade, Jason was a fierce competitor in our sport and he will be missed.”

In March, another crash involving a sprint car killed two people at a racetrack in California.

That crash took place during warmup laps at Marysville Raceway Park, outside Sacramento. The car lost control, slammed into the pits, killing a 68-year-old man and a 14-year-old boy.

Soon after Leffler’s death was announced, condolences poured in from fellow drivers.

“My heart goes out to @JasonLeffler family. He was a great guy. So friendly and a hell of a racecar driver. So saddened by this. #Restinpeace,” tweeted AJ Allmendinger.

Another driver, Joey Logano, said in a post, “Extremely sad to hear about @JasonLeffler. spent a lot of time racing with him. Gone way too soon. Prayers to his entire family.”

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