The NASCAR Nationwide Series has had a variety of incarnations through the years but when considered collectively, an argument can be made that Jack Ingram is the series’ all-time greatest driver.
- Inducted: 2014
The Iron Man
Jack Ingram's legendary status was cemented with five Xfinity Series championships.
When the series was called Late Model Sportsman, Jack Ingram won three consecutive championships from 1972-1974. When the series was named the NASCAR Busch Series, he won titles in 1982 and 1985.
The last two championships more or less cemented Ingram’s legendary status. In the NASCAR Busch Series’ inaugural 1982 season, he edged another legend, two-time series titlist Sam Ard, by 49 points in the final standings. In 1985, his championship points margin was 29, over Jimmy Hensley. In 1986 Ingram nearly won another title, but those hopes were derailed by a late-season two-race suspension for a controversial rough driving incident.
In his 10 years of competition in what was called the NASCAR Busch Series, Ingram had 31 wins, a record that stood until Mark Martin broke it in 1997. All but two of Ingram’s 31 wins came on short tracks. No wonder then that Ingram has called himself, only half-jokingly, “the best short-track racer ever.”
Ingram was named one of NASCAR’s 50 Greatest Drivers in 1998.
Jack Ingram won 31 NASCAR Busch Series races. He won the series championship in 1982 and 1985. Courtesy of ISC Archives via Getty Images.
Known as a short track ace, Ingram also excelled on the superspeedways. He won the 1975 Permatex 300 at Daytona from the pole. Courtesy of ISC Archives via Getty Images.
Jack Ingram winning at Hickory Motor Speedway behind the wheel of his trademark copper #11. He earned 12 track championships, including two at Hickory. Courtesy of ISC Archives via Getty Images.