What is the NASCAR Hall of Fame?: Opening May 11, 2010 in Uptown Charlotte, NC, the 150,000-square-foot NASCAR Hall of Fame is an interactive, entertainment attraction honoring the history and heritage of NASCAR. The high-tech venue, designed to educate and entertain race fans and non-fans alike, includes artifacts, interactive exhibits, 275-person state-of-the-art theater, Hall of Honor, Buffalo Wild Wings restaurant, Sports Avenue retail outlet and NASCAR Media Group-operated broadcast studio. The five-acre site also includes a privately developed 19-story office tower and 102,000-square-foot expansion to the Charlotte Convention Center, highlighted by a 40,000 square-foot ballroom. The NASCAR Hall of Fame is owned by the City of Charlotte, licensed by NASCAR and operated by the Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority. www.nascarhall.com.
2nd Hall of Fame class announced:
NASCAR announced today the second class of inductees into the NASCAR Hall of Fame. That class consists of: David Pearson - 94%; Bobby Allison - 62%; Lee Petty - 62%; Ned Jarrett - 58%; Bud Moore - 45%.
The NASCAR Hall of Fame Voting Panel, consisting of members of the Nominating Committee along with 31 others representing all facets of the NASCAR industry, met in a closed session in Charlotte, N.C., to vote on the induction class of 2011. The announcement was made in the Great Hall inside the NASCAR Hall of Fame.
The class was determined by 53 votes cast by the panel and the nationwide fan vote conducted through NASCAR.COM. The accounting firm of Ernst & Young presided over the tabulation of the votes.
The Class of 2011 will be officially inducted in a ceremony in May 2011 at the NASCAR Hall of Fame in Charlotte.
The results of the voting for the five chosen in this class proved quite competitive. Also receiving votes were Dale Inman, Cale Yarborough and Darrell Waltrip.
As part of the inclusive voting process, hundreds of thousands of NASCAR fans submitted votes online at NASCAR.COM. That remarkable feedback once again demonstrated fans’ passion and knowledge of the sport and its heritage. The fans’ top five: Bobby Allison, David Pearson, Lee Petty, Darrell Waltrip and Cale Yarborough. Here were the 25 nominees for induction into the 2011 NASCAR Hall of Fame class: Bobby Allison, Buck Baker, Red Byron, Richard Childress, Jerry Cook, Richie Evans, Tim Flock, Rick Hendrick, Jack Ingram, Dale Inman, Ned Jarrett, Fred Lorenzen, Bud Moore, Raymond Parks, Benny Parsons, David Pearson, Lee Petty, Fireball Roberts, T. Wayne Robertson, Herb Thomas, Curtis Turner, Darrell Waltrip, Joe Weatherly, Glen Wood and Cale Yarborough. The NASCAR Hall of Fame broke ground in Charlotte on Jan. 25, 2007 and opened to the public on May 11, 2010. The facility honors the history and heritage of NASCAR and the many who have contributed to the success of the sport.(10-13-2010)
Highlighting the Class of 2011:
Hometown: Hueytown, Ala.
Bobby Allison, the 1983 champion of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, ended his career with 84 victories – tied for third on the all-time victory list with Darrell Waltrip.
A charter member of the “Alabama Gang,” the longtime resident of Hueytown, Ala., has become one of NASCAR’s most beloved former competitors, in large part because of his remarkable resilience after a career-ending accident at Pocono Raceway in 1988 – just several months after he won the Daytona 500.
Allison continues to be cherished by the millions of fans who remember his long list of accomplishments:
His 1983 championship season;
His 1983 championship season;
His three (1978, ’82 ’88) Daytona 500 victories – especially the third, when he beat his son Davey to the finish, earning what would be his last victory;
His two NASCAR Modified Division championships, in 1964 and 1965;
His two NASCAR Modified Special Division titles in 1962-63;
And his fantastic 1972 season when he won 10 races, had 12 second-place efforts and 11 poles, in the process finishing second to Richard Petty in the series championship standings.
Fittingly, Allison was named one of NASCAR’s “50 Greatest Drivers” in 1998.
Hometown: Newton, N.C.
Ned Jarrett had it all – hard-charging capabilities combined with the consistency essential to stock-car success. The combination produced two NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championships. His 50 career victories are tied for 10th all-time with Junior Johnson. He also won a total of 28 races during the 1964 and ’65 seasons.
Jarrett won his first series title in 1961 while driving a Chevrolet for W.G. Holloway Jr. He finished with only one victory, but posted an impressive 34 top 10s in 46 starts. In 1965, he won his second title while driving for DuPont heir Bondy Long, and despite a back injury sustained at Greenville, S.C., Jarrett finished with 13 wins and 42 top fives in 54 starts that season. He also won the Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway by 14 laps, (17.5 miles), still the largest margin of victory in NASCAR Sprint Cup history.
In addition to his immense success in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, Jarrett also captured two championships in the Sportsman Division (1957 and 1958).
Nicknamed “Gentleman Ned,” Jarrett and his wife, Martha, reside in Hickory, N.C. Their family includes son Dale, who won the 1999 NASCAR Sprint Cup title. Since retiring, the elder Jarrett has become one of NASCAR’s greatest ambassadors. He’s also considered instrumental to the sport’s growth through his second career as a broadcaster. Now retired from broadcasting, he is especially remembered for the emotional call of his son Dale’s 1993 Daytona 500 victory.
Jarrett was named one of NASCAR’s “50 Greatest Drivers” in 1998.
Hometown: Spartanburg, S.C.
A decorated World War II infantryman, Bud Moore became a successful NASCAR Sprint Cup owner almost immediately upon fielding a team in 1961. Moore won back-to-back championships in 1962-63 with Joe Weatherly. Earlier, in 1957, Moore – who referred to himself as “a country mechanic” – was crew chief for champion Buck Baker.
During 37 seasons in NASCAR’s premier division, Moore’s cars won 63 times and finished 298 and 463 times respectively among the top five and top 10. His cars also won 43 poles in the team’s 959 starts. Moore-owned cars have visited Victory Lane in most of the sport’s biggest events including the Daytona 500 and Southern 500.
Moore’s cars, both fast and dependable, attracted the sport’s top drivers. They included Weatherly, Dale Earnhardt, Fireball Roberts, David Pearson, Billy Wade, Darel Dieringer, Bobby Isaac, Buddy Baker, Benny Parsons, Bobby Allison, Ricky Rudd and Geoffrey Bodine.
As a top performer among Ford’s motorsports stable, Moore frequently was tapped to spearhead the company’s other racing endeavors. Among his successes was the 1970 Sports Car Club of America championship with Parnelli Jones.
Hometown: Spartanburg, S.C.
David Pearson, a.k.a. The Silver Fox, was the model of NASCAR efficiency during his career.
With little exaggeration, when Pearson showed up at a race track, he won.
His 105 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series victories ranks second all-time, and he amassed that figure in only 574 races – a winning percentage of 18.29.
In a career that spanned 27 years, Pearson never once ran every single race in a given season. When he came close to running the full schedule, he won a championship – or came darn close.
In 1966, Pearson ran 42 of 49 races to win his first championship. In his 1968 championship winning campaign, he ran 48 of 49 races. And in 1969, he ran 51 of 54 en route to his third and final title.
His consistent greatness might best be defined by his 1974 performance, a season he did not win the championship. He finished third that year behind Richard Petty and Cale Yarborough – but raced only 19 of 30 races.
Ranking second in wins and poles, Pearson’s numbers are eclipsed only by Petty. Pearson won the Daytona 500 once (1976), but had six victories overall at Daytona International Speedway.
(b. 3-14-14 – d. 4-5-2000)
Hometown: Randleman, N.C.
It took a while – three whole days – for officials to declare Lee Petty the winner of the first Daytona 500.
So in many ways, we have Petty to thank for the yearly spectacle that is “The Great American Race.” That’s because he created the very first spectacle.
On the final lap, Petty and Johnny Beauchamp barreled toward the finish line, in what would become one of the closest finishes in the prestigious race’s history. So close, in fact, that race officials put a hold on the results for three days. A photo snapped at the finish line confirmed Petty’s win, his first in another championship winning season.
But that first Daytona 500 is only one of many Petty accomplishments. His career was a long list of “firsts” and “mosts.” Along with winning the first Daytona 500, Petty also was the first driver to capture three championships in what now is the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.
And up until the time his own son, Richard, caught and passed him, Lee won more races than any other driver – 54. That number still ranks ninth all-time.
But maybe his greatest legacy is his own name – and lineage. Petty, who started Petty Enterprises, is the father of “The King” Richard Petty and the grandfather of Kyle Petty.
Second NASCAR Hall Of Fame Class Officially Enshrined: With each win, and each championship, a legend grew. And now, those legends have a permanent home. The second class of the NASCAR Hall of Fame – champions all – captured over 350 victories and a dozen championships in NASCAR’s premier series. The five inductees – Bobby Allison, Ned Jarrett, Bud Moore, David Pearson and Lee Petty – make up the second class of the NASCAR Hall of Fame in Charlotte, N.C., which was officially inducted tonight, Monday, May 23. “This is fast becoming a night we all look forward to on the calendar,” said NASCAR Chairman and CEO Brian France, in his opening remarks during tonight’s Induction Ceremony. “To the second class, thank you for the memories and moments you gave this great sport.”
The common thread each inductee shares: NASCAR premier series championships. Allison won his lone premier series title in 1983, but his NASCAR Hall of Fame credentials may lie elsewhere. He won 84 times – tied for third on the all-time list – and three were in NASCAR’s most prominent race, the Daytona 500 (1978, ’82 and ’88). Not to be overshadowed, a proud piece of the Allison legacy: His two NASCAR Modified Series championships, in 1964-65.
“I went through a lot of things,” Allison said in his acceptance speech. “I got involved with a lot of people along the way. I won some races. Struggled, got better, did poorly, got better and everything. But the bottom line, it was just an incredible career. And this involved so many people.”
Two-careers-in-one landed Jarrett in the Hall. His first, that as a prolific driver, made him a NASCAR legend. His second, as an everyman broadcaster, made him a household name. Jarrett won 50 races, two NASCAR premier series championships (1961 and ’65) and two NASCAR Sportsman Division titles (1957-58), and later worked as an analyst for several networks, including MRN, CBS and ESPN.
“When it was announced several years ago there would be a NASCAR Hall of Fame, and when my name was among the original 25 nominees, my prayer from then on was to live long enough to be elected,” said Jarrett. “I’ve had to work hard on my health to be able to be here and enjoy this tremendous honor … I am very humbled by this huge honor, and I don’t take it lightly.”
Moore’s life is a storyteller’s dream. A World War II veteran who won five Purple Hearts, Moore went on to become one of the top owners and crew chiefs in NASCAR history. Credited with having a hand in shaping the beginnings of NASCAR, Moore won 63 premier series races as an owner, and three championships – as a crew chief for Buck Baker in 1957 and an owner for Joe Weatherly in 1962-63.
“My daughter-in-law, Carol, recently asked me how I wanted to be remembered,” said Moore during his induction speech. “The answer is simple: As one who made many contributions to the building of the sport, one whose handshake was as good as any contract, who always gave a straight answer and would never sugar coat it either. But most of all, to be remembered as a man who loved his family, his country and the sport of racing.”
Pearson’s 105 NASCAR premier series victories, which ranks second all-time, and three championships place him firmly on the short-list of “best NASCAR drivers ever.” Pearson never competed in every race in a season, yet tallied his astonishing wins total and still won multiple championships. In his acceptance speech, Pearson gave a nod to his prime competition in the “greatest ever” argument. “I want to thank Richard Petty, too,” Pearson said. “He's probably the one that made me win as many as I did. I run hard because he'd make me run hard. Sometimes he would make a mistake and I'd pass him. Of course, I didn't ever make mistakes. … I've had more fun running with him than anybody I ever run with 'cause I knew if I ever went to a racetrack and he was there, if I could beat him, I'd win the race.”
The patriarch of one of the most successful families in the sport’s history, Lee Petty joins his son, Richard, in the NASCAR Hall of Fame. Petty won 54 NASCAR premier series races, and was the first to win three NASCAR premier series championships. He also founded Petty Enterprise, the juggernaut that amassed 10 driver championships under his watch. Petty, the only deceased member of the second class, was inducted into the Hall by grandsons Kyle, Mark, Ritchie and Tim Petty. Sons Richard and Maurice accepted the induction on Lee’s behalf.
“[Lee Petty] lived in his world and he didn't want anybody to tell him how to live in his world,” said Richard. “His big deal was to take care of his own. If you got in the way, didn't make a whole lot of difference to him, he got you out of the way. … Hopefully he's up there somewhere saying, ‘Okay, I know I'd get there, might have to push somebody out of the way to get there.’”
The inductors for the other four inductees: MRN broadcaster Barney Hall for Bud Moore; children Dale and Glenn Jarrett and Patti Makar for Ned Jarrett; brother Donnie Allison for Bobby Allison; and former public relations director for Darlington Raceway Russell Branham and Wood Brothers co-owner Leonard Wood for David Pearson.
Special congratulatory videos opened each inductee’s segment, with a number of high-profiled names starring in each. Those involved: University of Alabama Head Football Coach Nick Saban for Bobby Allison; former NASCAR broadcaster Ken Squier for Ned Jarrett; broadcast journalist and author Tom Brokaw for Bud Moore; NASCAR Hall of Famer Richard Petty for David Pearson; and former President of the United States George H.W. Bush for Lee Petty. The five inductee exhibits officially open tomorrow (Tuesday) at the NASCAR Hall of Fame. For info on the NASCAR Hall of Fame, visit nascarhall.com.(NASCAR)(5-24-2011)
Former president welcomes Petty to Hall of Fame: President George H.W. Bush is no stranger to successful family dynasties, and the 41st President of the United States will share some of his perspective as he welcomes Petty family patriarch Lee Petty into the NASCAR Hall of Fame via video on May 23. "President Bush welcoming my grandfather into the NASCAR Hall of Fame is huge because when he raced, I don't think there was a president in the White House who knew what stock car racing was," said Kyle Petty, Lee Petty's grandson and SPEED analyst. "It's kind of like when President Reagan was there for The King's 200th win. That was a big deal for The King but it also was a big deal for our family and our sport. I don't think my grandfather would ever have expected anything like this because the president recognizing a NASCAR driver's accomplishments was so far outside of the realm of what he thought possible back then."
"The participation by President Bush amplifies the significance of the roles these inductees played as part of the fabric of our country," said SPEED President Hunter Nickell. "SPEED is honored to be sharing an event of this magnitude with passionate race fans everywhere."
Tom Brokaw, longtime anchor of NBC Nightly News and the author of The Greatest Generation, the best-selling book about the men and women who lived through the Great Depression and fought in World War II, will welcome Moore into the Hall. Moore, a veteran of WW II and successful NASCAR team owner, was among the soldiers who stormed the beach at Normandy on D-Day.
The University of Alabama's national championship-winning coach Nick Saban pays tribute to Allison, a founding member of racing's famed Alabama Gang, which included Allison, his brother Donnie, Red Farmer, Bobby's son, Davey, Neil and David Bonnett and Hut Stricklin.
Richard Petty, a member of the inaugural class of the NASCAR Hall of Fame and the undisputed "King" of NASCAR racing welcomes arch-rival David Pearson into the Hall, as the pair combined for an amazing 63 first/second place finishes. Legendary race broadcaster Ken Squier welcomes two-time NASCAR champion and broadcasting pioneer Ned Jarrett.(SPEED)(5-22-2011)
(all five headshots - ISC Archives/Getty Images)
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