NASCAR legend Tony Stewart will race in New Zealand this year.

The 46-year-old three-time NASCAR Cup winner will contest the Porter Hire International Sprint Car Series in early December.

The series begins on December 9 at Vodafone Speedway - Western Springs in Auckland before heading to Robertson Holden Speedway Palmerston North for a midweek meeting ahead of a return to Auckland the following weekend.

Stewart will attend the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Award Banquet at the Wynn Las Vegas in the first week of December before grabbing his helmet and race suit to head to New Zealand for his first ever visit.

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"This has taken months to put this deal together", said promoter Greg Mosen. "Tony has an extremely busy schedule, so getting this together is going to be great for the profile of Speedway here in New Zealand" he added.

Stewart will be piloting his Rush Truck Centers Artic Cat J&J Sprint Car which is being shipped late October to ensure it arrives here in time. Jimmy Carr is traveling with Tony to ensure the car is up to the task.