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Jason Leffler dies after accident at dirt-track race

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NASCAR driver Jason Leffler was fatally injured in a crash Wednesday night at Bridgeport (N.J.) Speedway.

Geoff Burke

NASCAR driver Jason Leffler died from injuries sustained in a sprint car accident Wednesday night at Bridgeport (N.J.) Speedway.

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

According to the track's Facebook page, Leffler was competing in a 410 Sprint Car heat race when the accident occurred. He was transported to a local medical facility where he was pronounced dead shortly after 9 p.m. ET, New Jersey State Police told the Associated Press.

Leffler, 37, made 73 starts in the Sprint Cup Series with his last race coming in Sunday's event at Pocono Raceway, where he finished 43rd. His best Cup result was 10th in the 2001 season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

He is best known for his time spent in the Nationwide Series, where he competed in 294 races with two wins -- Nashville Superspeedway in 2004 and at O'Reilly Raceway Park in 2007. He finished a career-best third in the 2007 standings.

Before switching to NASCAR, Leffler competed in the USAC Series where he won three consecutive Midget championships (1997-99). He also ran in the 2000 Indianapolis 500, where he finished 17th.

Bridgeport Speedway is a 0.625-mile dirt oval located in Swedesboro, N.J.