Top 10 List: Inductee Wins by Track
by Tom Jensen November 11, 2020
Find out which tracks were the ones where Hall of Famer drivers won most often.
There are plenty of ways to measure success, but in automobile racing, the best metric is the simplest: How often did a given driver win?
The more victories a driver posts, the more successful that driver is.
One variable in the equation is where did a particular driver win most often? Every NASCAR racer has a favorite track or tracks, places where they just seem to dominate.
Of the top-10 NASCAR race winners already inducted into the Hall of Fame, here are the tracks where each of them won most often.
10. Junior Johnson, 50 Wins
A member of the NASCAR Hall of Fame’s inaugural Class of 2010, Johnson enjoyed tremendous success in his home state of North Carolina, where he won seven times at Hickory Motor Speedway and four times each at Bowman-Gray Stadium and his home track, North Wilkesboro Speedway. Johnson was also one of the first drivers to master drafting at Daytona International Speedway, where he won the second annual Daytona 500 in 1960 and 100-mile qualifying races in 1963, 1964 and 1965.
10. Ned Jarrett, 50 Wins
“Gentleman Ned” Jarrett, a two-time premier series champion and member of the NASCAR Hall of Fame Class of 2011, won six times and had 10 top-five finishes in 12 starts at the Piedmont Fairgrounds Speedway in South Carolina. From 1962 until his retirement at the end of the 1965 season, Jarrett also won four premier series races at the facility that might have the most unusual name: Dog Track Speedway, a 0.250-mile dirt track in Moyock, North Carolina.
9. Lee Petty, 54 Wins
There’s an easy way to sum up the career of three-time champion Lee Petty (2011): He was great most everywhere he raced, especially in his home state of North Carolina. There, the patriarch of the Petty clan won four times at the old Asheville-Weaverville Speedway and three times each at Southern States Fairgrounds, North Wilkesboro Speedway and Occoneechee Speedway. Petty, who holds the premier series record with 42 victories on dirt tracks, also was a three-time victor at Virginia’s Martinsville Speedway and Piedmont Interstate Fairgrounds in South Carolina.
8. Rusty Wallace, 55 Wins
Rusty Wallace, a 2013 NASCAR Hall of Fame inductee and 1989 premier series champion, was at his best on NASCAR’s short tracks, where he won 25 races and always seemed to be one of the drivers to beat. Given his short track prowess, it’s no surprise that Wallace won nine times at Bristol Motor Speedway, seven times at Martinsville Speedway and six more at Richmond Raceway. Richmond and Bristol are the two tracks where Wallace had the most top-five finishes (22 each) and top 10s (29 at Bristol, 30 at Richmond).
7. Dale Earnhardt, 76 Wins
It was said of Dale Earnhardt (2010) that he could see the air in the draft, and there’s no question that the seven-time premier series champion was a phenomenal restrictor plate racer. His single best track was Talladega Superspeedway, where he won 10 times, including his remarkable charge to victory in the last four laps in October 2000, in what would be his final premier series race victory. But Earnhardt was no one-trick pony; he won nine times each at the 1.54-mile Atlanta Motor Speedway, the 1.366-mile Darlington Raceway and the 0.533-mile Bristol Motor Speedway.
6. Cale Yarborough, 83 Wins
One of the toughest racers of his or any other era, Cale Yarborough was the first of only two drivers to win three consecutive premier series championships. Yarborough, a 2012 inductee into the NASCAR Hall of Fame, won the titles in 1976, 1977 and 1978, all while driving for Hall of Fame team owner Junior Johnson (2010). In terms of individual tracks, Yarborough demonstrated his impressive versatility by winning nine times each at the 2.5-mile Daytona International Speedway and the 0.533-mile Bristol Motor Speedway, two wildly different tracks. Yarborough also won eight times at Michigan International Speedway.
4. Bobby Allison, 84 Wins
The the leader of the so-called Alabama Gang of racers, Bobby Allison (2011) said his favorite track was Charlotte Motor Speedway, where he won six premier series races. But if you rank Allison’s results by victories, his two best tracks are Dover International Speedway and Richmond Raceway, two tracks where he won seven races each. One of Allison’s most impressive stats happened at the long-defunct Riverside International Raceway road course, where Allison won six races with five different teams: Holman-Moody (1971), Bobby Allison Motorsports (1973), Team Penske (1975), Bud Moore (1979) and Ranier Racing (both races in 1981).
4. Darrell Waltrip, 84 Wins
Few drivers were ever tougher to beat on short tracks than Darrell Waltrip, who was inducted into the NASCAR Hall of Fame in 2012. The Owensboro, Kentucky, native won 47 races at just five short tracks: Bristol Motor Speedway (12), Martinsville Speedway (11), North Wilkesboro Speedway (10), Nashville Fairgrounds (eight) and Richmond International Raceway (six). Waltrip’s short track prowess helped him to earn three premier series championships in a stellar career.
3. Jeff Gordon, 93 Wins
Stellar on road courses and superspeedways alike, Jeff Gordon (2019) posted his best results at tiny Martinsville (Virginia) Speedway, where he won nine times, led 3,776 and had an average finish of 6.74, all career bests at a single track. In addition. Gordon earned 29 top-five and 38 top-10 finishes in 47 starts at Martinsville and didn’t have a single DNF at the 0.526-mile short track. From April 2005 to March 2010, the four-time premier series champion posted 11 consecutive top-five finishes. In his career, Gordon showed his versatility by winning at least five races at 11 different tracks.
2. David Pearson, 105 Wins
A member of the NASCAR Hall of Fame Class of 2011, David Pearson ranks second only to Richard Petty in terms of career premier series race victories. Not surprisingly, the South Carolina native excelled at treacherous Darlington Raceway, a track that perfectly suited his patient driving style. Pearson won 10 times at The Track Too Tough To Tame, including three Southern 500s. Pearson also won nine times at Michigan International Speedway and eight more at Daytona International Speedway, including the famous 1976 Daytona 500, where he and Petty crashed on the last lap.
1. Richard Petty, 200 Wins
A 2010 inductee into the NASCAR Hall of Fame and seven-time premier series champion, Richard Petty is perhaps best known for his record seven Daytona 500 victories. But in truth, The King was a terror on the short tracks of the Southeast. Of Petty’s 200 race wins, 128 of them were on short tracks. Petty won 15 premier series points races each at Martinsville Speedway and North Wilkesboro Speedway. He also won a dozen times at Richmond International Raceway, 11 more at Rockingham Speedway and an even 10 at Daytona International Speedway. And here’s a little known fact: Petty’s best average finish at any track where he had at least five starts came at Birmingham (Alabama) International Raceway, a 0.625-mile track. At BIR, Petty’s average finish in five starts was 1.80, with two victories, two runner-up finishes and a single third-place result.