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Bristol Motor Speedway: History

Bristol Motor Speedway:

History

  • Groundbreaking for Bristol International Speedway, as Bristol Motor Speedway was originally known, took place in 1960. The track was an exact half-mile.
  • First NASCAR Sprint Cup race was July 30, 1961; Jack Smith won the event (with relief from Johnny Allen).
  • All of the NSCS races have been scheduled for 500 laps, except for both races in 1976 and the second in 1977, which were 400 laps.
  • In the fall of 1969, the track was reshaped and re-measured to .533-miles.
  • The name changed to Bristol International Raceway in 1978.
  • The first night race was held in the fall of 1978.
  • The surface was changed from asphalt to concrete in 1992.
  • The name changed to Bristol Motor Speedway in May 1996.
  • The track was resurfaced between races in 2007, and the turns were ground down in 2012 to eliminate part of the progressive banking.

Starts

  • There have been 109 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Bristol Motor Speedway since the first race in 1961, two races each season.
  • 436 drivers have competed in at least one NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Bristol; 304 in more than one.
  • NASCAR Hall of Famer Richard Petty leads the series in starts at Bristol with 60. Jeff Gordon leads all active drivers with 45 starts.
  • Jeff Gordon leads (active drivers) the series in average starting position at Bristol with a 7.667.
  • Ryan Newman leads the series (active drivers) with the most NASCAR Sprint Cup Series starts at Bristol without visiting Victory Lane at 27.
  • Paul Menard (16 starts) leads the series in starts with the fewest DNFs (0) at Bristol.
  • AJ Allmendinger made his first NASCAR Sprint Cup career start at Bristol (03/25/2007).


Poles

  • Fred Lorenzen won the inaugural Coors Light pole with a speed of 79.225 mph in a Ford.
  • 48 different drivers have poles at Bristol, led by Mark Martin and Cale Yarborough with nine each. Jeff Gordon leads all active drivers with five.
  • 10 different drivers have posted consecutive poles at Bristol Motor Speedway; Mark Martin is the only of the 10 to win four consecutive poles at Bristol: Fireball Roberts (swept 1962), Fred Lorenzen (swept 1963), Richard Petty (1967-’68), Bobby Allison (swept 1972), Cale Yarborough (swept 1973; swept 1977; swept 1980), Darrell Waltrip (swept 1981), Geoff Bodine (swept 1986), Mark Martin (swept 1995-1996– all four races; and swept 2009); Rusty Wallace (swept 1998), Jeff Gordon (swept 2002) and Denny Hamlin (fall 2013, spring 2014).
  • Youngest Bristol pole winner: Joey Logano (3/21/2010 – 19 years, 9 months, 25 days) – his first series career pole.
  • Oldest Bristol pole winner: Harry Gant (8/27/1994 – 54 years, 7 months, 17 days).
  • Seven different drivers have posted their first NASCAR Sprint Cup Series career pole at Bristol. Joey Logano is the only active driver to win his first NSCS career pole at Bristol (03/21/2010).

 

Wins

  • 42 different drivers have won at Bristol, led by Darrell Waltrip (12). Kurt Busch, Jeff Gordon and Kyle Busch each have five wins, the most among active drivers.
  • 12 drivers have won consecutive races at Bristol led by Darrell Waltrip with seven consecutive victories from 1981-1984. The other 11 are Fred Lorenzen (1963-1964 sweep), David Pearson (1968 sweep), Bobby Allison (1972 sweep), Cale Yarborough did it twice (1974 sweep and four straight from 1976-1977), Richard Petty (1975 sweep), Dale Earnhardt also did twice (1985 sweep and 1987 sweep), Alan Kulwicki (1992 sweep), Rusty Wallace (2000 sweep), Kurt Busch (2003 sweep and 2004 spring race), Kyle Busch (2009 sweep), and Brad Keselowski (2011 fall-2012 spring).
  • Youngest Bristol winner: Kyle Busch (03/25/2007 – 21 years, 10 months, 23 days).
  • Oldest Bristol winner: Dale Earnhardt (08/28/1999 – 48 years, 3 months, 30 days).
  • Five drivers have posted their first NASCAR Sprint Cup Series career win at Bristol Motor Speedway: Dale Earnhardt (04/01/1979), Rusty Wallace (04/06/1986), Ernie Irvan (03/25/1990), Elliott Sadler (03/25/2001) and Kurt Busch (03/24/2002).
  • Junior Johnson leads the series in car owner wins at Bristol with 16; Roger Penske and Jack Roush are tied among active car owners for the most wins at Bristol with 11 each.
  • The race winner has started from the pole 23 times (21.1%) – the most productive starting position. The last driver to win from the pole was Matt Kenseth earlier this season.
  • Five drivers have won from the pole position multiple times: Bobby Allison (1972 twice), Cale Yarborough (1973, 1977 twice, 1980), Darrell Waltrip (1981 twice, 1982), Rusty Wallace (1991, 1993, 1999, 2000) and Matt Kenseth (2005 and 2015).

 

Wins

  • 36 of the 109 (33%) races at Bristol have been won from the front row: Pole position (23 wins); second-place (13 wins).
  • 87 of the 109 (79.8%) races have been won from a top-10 starting position; including 54 from the first four spots.
  • Five of the 109 (4.5%) races have been won from a starting position outside the top 20; most recent was Dale Earnhardt Jr. in 2004 – he started 30th.
  • The deepest in the field that a race winner has started is 38th, by Elliott Sadler in 2001.
  • Eight different manufacturers have won in the NSCS at Bristol; led by Chevrolet with 43 victories; followed by Ford (35), Dodge (8), Pontiac (8), Toyota (7), Buick (4), Plymouth (3) and Oldsmobile (1).
  • Four car numbers have produced eight or more Bristol NSCS wins:

Car Number – (Number of Wins) – Most Recent Win

  • 11 – (19 wins) – Denny Hamlin, 2012
  • 2 – (12 wins) – Brad Keselowski, 2012
  • 17 – (eight wins) – Matt Kenseth, 2006
  • 3 – (eight wins) – Dale Earnhardt, 1999

 

Additional Finishing Position Stats

  • Richard Petty leads the series in runner-up finishes at Bristol with 10; Kevin Harvick leads all active drivers with four.
  • Darrell Waltrip and Richard Petty lead the series in top-five finishes at Bristol with 26 each. Jeff Gordon leads all active drivers with 17; followed by Matt Kenseth (13).
  • Richard Petty has leads the series in top-10 finishes at Bristol with 37. Jeff Gordon leads the series among active drivers in top-10 finishes with 25; followed by Matt Kenseth (20).
  • Ricky Stenhouse Jr. leads the series (active drivers) in average finishing position at Bristol with an 9.200.

 

Track/Event Specific Stats

  • Nine of the last 11 races have ended with a Margin of Victory of less than a second at BMS.
  • There has been five green-white-checkered finishes at Bristol – all five were the spring race: 2007 (500/504); 2008 (500/506); 2009 (500/503); 2014 (500/503); 2015 (500/511).
  • Two of the 109 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Bristol Motor Speedway have been shortened due to weather conditions; the most recent was the event on 3/31/1996.  
  • Qualifying has been cancelled due to weather conditions in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at Bristol Motor Speedway three times; most recently August 25, 2012.    


Track/Event Specific Stats

  • Since the advent of electronic scoring the closest margin of victory in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at Bristol is the 3/25/2007 race won by Kyle Busch with a MOV of 0.064 second.

 

Female Competitor Stats

  • Two female drivers have made NASCAR Sprint Cup Series starts at Bristol: Janet Guthrie and Danica Patrick.
Driver Starting Position Finishing Position Date
Danica Patrick 26 9 4/19/2015
Danica Patrick 24 27 8/23/2014
Danica Patrick 36 18 3/16/2014
Danica Patrick 22 26 8/24/2013
Danica Patrick 41 28 3/17/2013
Danica Patrick 43 29 8/25/2012
Averages 32.0 22.8  
Driver Starting Position Finishing Position Date
Janet Guthrie 9 6 8/28/1977
Janet Guthrie 21 11 4/17/1977
Averages 15.0 8.5  

 

NASCAR in Tennessee

  • There have been 170 NASCAR Sprint Cup races among six tracks in Tennessee.
Track Name City NSCS
Bristol Motor Speedway Bristol 109
Nashville Speedway Lebanon 42
Smokey Mountain Raceway Maryville 12
Kingsport Speedway Kingsport 3
Chattanooga International Raceway Chattanooga 2
Tennessee-Carolina Speedway Newport 2

 

  • The first NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race held in Tennessee was at Tennessee-Carolina Speedway on 10/07/1956 won by Fireball Roberts.

Tennessee Drivers

  • 105 drivers in NASCAR national series history have their home state recorded as Tennessee.
  • 14 drivers from Tennessee have won at least one race in NASCAR’s three national series.
Driver NSCS NXS NCWTS
Darrell Waltrip 84 13 0
Sterling Marlin 10 2 0
Bobby Hamilton 4 1 10
Joe Lee Johnson 2 0 0
Trevor Bayne 1 2 0
Paul Lewis 1 0 0
Bobby Hamilton Jr 0 5 0
Jeff Purvis 0 4 0
L.D. Ottinger 0 3 0
Mike Alexander 0 2 0
Casey Atwood 0 2 0
Brad Teague 0 1 0
Chad Chaffin 0 0 2
John King 0 0 1

 

  • Darrell Waltrip, from Franklin, Tennessee, was inducted into the 2012 class of the NASCAR Hall of Fame. Waltrip is the only Tennessee native driver to win a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship.
  • Only two of the 14 drivers from Tennessee have won at least one race in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at a track located in the state of Tennessee: Darrell Waltrip (Bristol, 12 wins; Nashville eight wins) and Joe Lee Johnson (Nashville, one win).


Milestones

DRIVER HAS NEEDS MILESTONE DESCRIPTION  
 
Jeff Gordon 784 4 788th NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Consecutive Start In four starts Jeff Gordon will tie Ricky Rudd (788) for the series all-time lead in consecutive starts.  
Dale Earnhardt Jr. 99 1 100th NASCAR Sprint Cup Consecutive Start Dale Earnhardt Jr. is 19th on the active NSCS consecutive starts list, 31 consecutive starts behind Aric Almirola in 18th (131 consecutive starts).  
Ryan Newman 499 1 500th NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Start Newman is 36th on the all-time NSCS starts list, 18 starts behind Morgan Shepherd in 35th (517 starts).  
Denny Hamlin 349 1 350th NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Start Hamlin is 68th on the all-time NSCS starts list, seven starts behind Martin Truex Jr. in 67th (356 starts).  
Landon Cassill 174 1 175th NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Start Cassill is 146th on the all-time NSCS starts list, two starts behind Regan Smith, Walter Ballard and Michael McDowell all tied for 143rd (176 starts).  
Ricky Stenhouse Jr. 99 1 100th NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Start Stenhouse is 192nd on the all-time NSCS starts list, one start behind Bruce Hill in 191st (100 starts).  
Jimmie Johnson 74 2 76th NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Win Jimmie Johnson is eighth on the all-time NSCS wins list, two wins behind NASCAR Hall of Famer Dale Earnhardt in seventh (76 wins).  
Tony Stewart 48 2 50th NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Win Stewart is 13th on the all-time NSCS wins list, two wins behind NASCAR Hall of Famer Ned Jarrett in 12th (50 wins).  
Carl Edwards 24 1 25th NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Win Edwards is 31st on the all-time NSCS wins list, one win behind Dale Earnhardt Jr., Joe Weatherly and Denny Hamlin tied for 28th (25 wins).  
Tony Stewart 299 1 300th NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Top-10 Finish Stewart is 17th on the all-time NSCS top-10 finishes list, two top 10s behind James Hylton in 16th (301 top 10s).  
Kevin Harvick 249 1 250th NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Top-10 Finish Harvick is 23rd on the all-time NSCS top-10 finishes list, one top 10 behind Lee Petty in 22nd (250 top 10s).  
Joey Logano 99 1 100th NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Top-10 Finish Logano is 68th on the all-time NSCS top-10 finishes list, three top 10s behind Buddy Arrington in 67th (102 top 10s).  
Jeff Gordon 24,831 169 25,000 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Laps Led Gordon can become the sixth driver in NSCS history to lead 25,000 laps; joining Richard Petty, Dale Earnhardt, Cale Yarborough, David Pearson and Bobby Allison.  
Matt Kenseth 9,748 252 10,000 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Laps Led Kenseth can become the 16th driver in series history to lead 10,000 or more laps.  
Kevin Harvick 7,969 31 8,000 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Laps Led Kevin Harvick can become the 24th driver in series history to lead 8,000 or more laps.  
#43 car 199 1 200 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Wins The No. 43 car is second on the all-time NSCS wins list, five wins behind the No. 11 car in first (204). The last win for the No. 43 car came at Daytona last season.  
Chevrolet 749 1 750th NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Win Chevrolet will attempt to post the manufacturer’s 750th win in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series this weekend. Chevrolet leads the series in wins.

08/18/2015 - Posted by | Uncategorized |

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