Robert Yates was a rare breed, excelling in any field he chose, placing him among NASCAR's greats.
- Inducted: 2018
- Position:Owner / Engine Builder
Engine Builder and Team Owner
Yates began his career at Holman-Moody Racing in 1968 and landed a job with NASCAR Hall of Famer Junior Johnson (2010) in 1971.
The rest is history. He provided the power behind NASCAR Hall of Famers Bobby Allison (2011) and Cale Yarborough (2012), later leading Allison to a series championship in 1983 with DiGard Racing.
In the late 1980s, Yates launched his own team, Robert Yates Racing. Success came quickly—NASCAR Hall of Fame nominee and driver Davey Allison won the 1992 Daytona 500 and finished third in that season’s championship standings.
In 1996, Yates expanded to a two-car team with NASCAR Hall of Famer Dale Jarrett (2014) and Ernie Irvan and immediately won that year’s Daytona 500 with Jarrett. After that, Jarrett would go on to win another Daytona 500 in 2000, a year after winning the NASCAR premier series championship—all in Yates-owned Fords. His lineage continues today, as son Doug carries on his legacy as one of the top engine builders in the sport.
Robert Yates built engines for DiGard Racing, who fielded cars for drivers such as Darrell Waltrip and Bobby Allison. Photo by ISC Archives via Getty Images.
Celebrating in victory lane with Davey Allison (C) and Larry McReynolds (L) after winning the Daytona 500 in 1992. Photo by ISC Archives via Getty Images.
Dale Jarrett celebrates after winning at Talladega in 2005, marking Robert Yates Racing's 57th and final win. Photo by Rusty Jarrett/Getty Images.