March 24, 2014 — via NBC Sports PR, Jerry Bonkowski — Photo courtesy FOX 8 WGHP — CONCORD, N.C. — Robert Lynn “Bobby” Waltrip, middle brother of NASCAR Hall of Fame driver and Fox Sports announcer Darrell Waltrip and NASCAR team owner and fellow Fox Sports announcer Michael Waltrip, died Sunday.
It’s unknown when Darrell and Michael Waltrip were informed of their brother’s death. Both worked the Fox Sports’ Sunday afternoon telecast of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Auto Club 400 race at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, Calif.
Michael, the youngest of the three Waltrip brothers, confirmed his brother’s passing on Twitter Sunday evening.
Bobby Waltrip grew up in Owensboro, Ky., but had lived in the Concord, N.C. area the last 25 years.
While he never followed his brothers into NASCAR as a race car driver — although he did work for Darrell in the late 1980s and early 1990s when the latter formed his own Winston Cup team — Bobby became a major force in the world of go-kart racing, first as a successful kart racer himself and later as an announcer and promoter in the sport in both the World Karting Association (WKA) and the American Karting Association (AKRA).
He was believed to be in his early 60s at the time of his death.
Few details of Bobby Waltrip’s death were available late Sunday night, but condolences from friends of Darrell and Michael began pouring in Sunday night, including those from fellow NASCAR colleague Dale Earnhardt, Jr.
Bobby Waltrip’s death marked the second passing of a close relative of the Fox Sports NASCAR broadcasting crew in as many days. Howard R. Roberts, father of announcer John Roberts, died Saturday.
The condolences of the entire staff at Speed77 Radio and RaceChaser Online go out to the entire Waltrip family and the FOX Sports family as well during this difficult time.