NASCAR Drivers - Daytona 500 Champions
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The Daytona 500 It's the most prestigious race of Nascar's Sprint Cup Series. Its winner receives the biggest purse. And, because it's the first Nascar race of the season, it generates the most excitement among fans. The Daytona 500 has quite correctly been compared with the World Series and Super Bowl all wrapped up in one.

Historically, races of varying distances had been held on Daytona Beach and adjacent roads until the first 500 mile race was held at Daytona International Speedway in 1959. By 1961, the race was being referred to as the Daytona 500. The legendary track is 2.5 miles (4 km) long; therefore, a 500-mile race requires 200 laps to complete.

Customarily, the winner of the Daytona 500 is presented with the Harley J. Earl Trophy, and the winning car is displayed, in race-winning condition, for one year at Daytona 500 Experience, a museum and gallery adjacent to the Speedway.

2014 Daytona 500 Champion Dale Earnhardt, Jr.

The 2014 Daytona 500, the 56th running of the event, was held on February 23, 2014, at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida. Contested over 200 laps on the 2.5-mile (4 km) asphalt tri-oval, it was the first race of the 2014 Sprint Cup Series season.

Dale Earnhardt, Jr. of Hendrick Motorsports won the race, his second Daytona 500 victory, breaking a 55 race winless streak, while Denny Hamlin finished second and Brad Keselowski finished third.

There were seven cautions and 42 lead changes among 19 leaders.

Earnhardt, Jr. gained the lead for the last time on lap 182. On lap 185, the fifth caution flag came out when Trevor Bayne's car snapped loose and crashed into the outside wall on the back straightaway. When the race restarted on lap 187, Earnhardt, Jr. moved in front of Johnson to secure the lead. On lap 193, the sixth caution came out for a crash in turn 3. It started when Austin Dillon turned Ryan Newman. Newman's car turned sideways and collected five more cars, including Justin Allgaier, Brian Scott, Parker Kligerman, Terry Labonte, and Cole Whitt. This set up a two lap shootout for the last restart. Although close on fuel and with a piece of bear bond from Newman's car stuck to his grill, Earnhardt, Jr. took off on the last restart, moving in front of Jeff Gordon. Over the course of the last lap, an intense battle for the runner-up spots unfolded between Johnson, Gordon, Keselowski, and Hamlin. Heading through turn 4, Harvick tried to force himself between Jamie McMurray and Kyle Busch in turn 4, and a wreck ensued as Harvick was sent into the wall, collecting a number of other cars including Busch, Edwards, and Reed Sorenson. While that was happening, Earnhardt, Jr. held off Hamlin and took the checkered flag to score his second Daytona 500 victory.

Daytona 500 Champions
Year Driver Speed Money Car
1959 Lee Petty 135.521 $19,050 Oldsmobile
1960 Junior Johnson 124.74 $19,600 Chevrolet
1961 Marvin Panch 149.601 $21,050 Pontiac
1962 Fireball Roberts 152.529 $24,190 Pontiac
1963 Tiny Lund 151.566 $24,550 Ford
1964 Richard Petty 154.334 $33,300 Plymouth
1965 Fred Lorenzen 141.539 $27,100 Ford
1966 Richard Petty 160.627 $28,150 Plymouth
1967 Mario Andretti 146.926 $48,900 Ford
1968 Cale Yarborough 143.251 $47,250 Mercury
1969 LeeRoy Yarbrough 157.95 $38,950 Ford
1970 Pete Hamilton 149.601 $44,850 Plymouth
1971 Richard Petty 144.462 $45,450 Plymouth
1972 AJ Foyt 161.55 $44,600 Mercury
1973 Richard Petty 157.205 $33,500 Dodge
1974 Richard Petty 140.894 $34,100 Dodge
1975 Benny Parsons 153.649 $40,900 Chevrolet
1976 David Pearson 152.181 $46,800 Mercury
1977 Cale Yarborough 153.218 $47,200 Chevrolet
1978 Bobby Allison 159.73 $44,300 Ford
1979 Richard Petty 143.977 $73,900 Oldsmobile
1980 Buddy Baker 177.602 $102,175 Oldsmobile
1981 Richard Petty 169.651 $90,575 Buick
1982 Bobby Allison 153.991 $120,630 Buick
1983 Cale Yarborough 155.979 $119,600 Pontiac
1984 Cale Yarborough 150.994 $160,300 Chevrolet
1985 Bill Elliott 172.265 $185,500 Ford
1986 Geoffrey Bodine 148.124 $192,715 Chevrolet
1987 Bill Elliott 176.263 $204,150 Ford
1988 Bobby Allison 137.531 $202,940 Buick
1989 Darrell Waltrip 148.466 $184,900 Chevrolet
1990 Derrike Cope 165.761 $188,150 Chevrolet
1991 Ernie Irvan 148.148 $233,000 Chevrolet
1992 Davey Allison 160.256 $244,050 Ford
1993 Dale Jarrett 154.972 $238,200 Chevrolet
1994 Sterling Marlin 156.931 $258,275 Chevrolet
1995 Sterling Marlin 141.71 $300,460 Chevrolet
1996 Dale Jarrett 154.308 $360,775 Ford
1997 Jeff Gordon 148.295 $377,410 Chevrolet
1998 Dale Earnhardt 172.712 $1,059,105 Chevrolet
1999 Jeff Gordon 161.551 $1,172,246 Chevrolet
2000 Dale Jarrett 155.669 $1,277,975 Ford
2001 Michael Waltrip 161.783 $1,331,185 Chevrolet
2002 Ward Burton 142.971 $1,409,017 Dodge
2003 Michael Waltrip 133.87 $1,400,406 Chevrolet
2004 Dale Earnhardt Jr. 156.345 $1,495,070 Chevrolet
2005 Jeff Gordon 135.173 $1,497,154 Chevrolet
2006 Jimmie Johnson 142.667 $1,505,124 Chevrolet
2007 Kevin Harvick 149.335 $1,510,469 Chevrolet
2008 Ryan Newman 152.672 $1,506,040 Dodge
2009 Matt Kenseth 132.816 $1,530,388 Ford
2010 Jamie McMurray 137.284 $1,514,649 Chevrolet
2011 Trevor Bayne 130.326 $1,462,563 Ford
2012 Matt Kenseth 140.256 $1,589,387 Ford
2013 Jimmie Johnson 159.25 $1,525,275 Chevrolet
2014 Dale Earnhardt Jr. 145.29 $1,506,363 Chevrolet

NASCAR Drivers: Bios, Apparel and Merchandise

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Dale Earnhardt Jr. BioDale Earnhardt Jr. Bio, Apparel and Fan Gear - His father, the late Dale Earnhardt, Sr., was a seven-time Winston Cup (presently the Nextel Cup) champion. His grandfather, Ralph Earnhardt, has been selected as one of NASCAR's 50 best all-time drivers. His maternal grandfather, Robert Gee, was a well known NASCAR fabricator and mechanic. It's no exaggeration to say Dale Earnhardt, Jr. was born with racing in his blood...

 
Dale Earnhardt Sr. BioDale Earnhardt Sr. Bio, Apparel and Fan Gear - Born into a racing family in Kannapolis, North Carolina on April 29, 1951 - his dad, Ralph Earnhardt, has been named one of the 50 greatest NASCAR drivers of all time - Dale Earnhardt began driving in local events when he was 14 years old. At 24, two years after his father died of heart failure while working on his race car, he debuted on the NASCAR circuit...

 

 
Carl Edwards BioCarl Edwards Bio, Apparel and Fan Gear - On March 19th and 20th of 2005 Carl Edwards made NASCAR history at the Atlanta Motor Speedway in Hampton, Georgia, by recording his first Busch Series win and his first Nextel Cup Series win during the same weekend. On Saturday, he won the Busch Series Aaron's 312, and on Sunday he edged out Jimmie Johnson by .02 seconds to win the Nextel Cup Golden Corral 500...

 

 
Jeff Gordon BioJeff Gordon Bio, Apparel and Fan Gear - He was already driving at age 4 1/2 and had won his first Quarter Midget Championship by age 8. At age 9 he was competing with and beating drivers twice his age. Obviously, this kid, Jeff Gordon, had a future in racing...

 

 
Kevin Harvick 29 BioKevin Harvick Bio, Apparel and Fan Gear - In 1980, as a reward for successfully completing kindergarten with highest honors (summa cum laude), Kevin Harvick was given a go-kart by his parents. Soon after, on the local tracks of Bakersfield, California, his racing career was launched. From the onset, his talents, dedication and determination were obvious. In ten years of driving on the go-cart circuit, he captured seven National and two Grand National Championships...

 

 
Jimmie Johnson BioJimmie Johnson Bio, Apparel and Fan Gear - Like many NASCAR stars, Jimmie Johnson got into racing young, very young. Born September 17, 1975, he started racing motorcycles at age 5. At age 8 he won the 60cc class championship. He competed in several off-road leagues including SODA and SCORE International both of which named him Rookie of the Year...

 
kasey kahneKasey Kahne Bio, Apparel and Fan Gear - Like many of our NASCAR all-star driver, Kasey Kahne (born April 10, 1980) began his competitive driving as a boy, racing on the dirt tracks of Washington State. In 1994, in a car maintained by his father, he won four micro-midget events. He graduated quickly from Micro Midgets to Mini-Sprints and captured the Hannigan Speedway championship in 1996 with 11 wins in 14 starts...

 
Matt Kenseth BioMatt Kenseth Bio, Apparel and Fan Gear - Matt Kenseth's (born March 10,1972) successful racing career can be traced back to a deal he struck with his father when he was 13 years old. His dad would buy him a race car and drive it himself until Matt reached the age of 16. Meanwhile, Matt would work on the car and keep it running...

 
Tony Stewart BioTony Stewart Bio, Apparel and Fan Gear - After a slow start, in 2005, that saw him in 10th place following the Pocono in June with only 6 top-ten finishes and 8 finishes in 15th or worse, Tony Stewart went on an amazing tear that earned him his second Nextel Cup championship. At one point during his charge, he won 5 of 7 races and ended the year with 19 top-nine finishes in his last 22 races...

 


 

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