Monday, May 6, 2013

2013 Bojangles Southern 500: Darlington Track Facts

At Darlington Raceway:
·         Darlington Raceway was built as a 1.25-mile paved superspeedway in 1949-1950.
·         Darlington Raceway hosted the first 500-mile race in NASCAR history and the first on asphalt on Sept. 4, 1950 – won by Johnny Mantz.
·         The track was re-measured to 1.375 miles in 1953.
·         The track was re-configured to 1.366 miles following the spring race in 1970.
·         The track was repaved in 1995.
·         The 2005 race was the first Saturday night race at Darlington.
·         The track was repaved again prior to the 2008 season.
·         There have been 109 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Darlington Raceway. The 1.366-mile track has hosted the fourth most NASCAR Sprint Cup points paying races.  
·         700 drivers have competed in at least one NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Darlington Raceway; 423 in more than one.
·         NASCAR Hall of Famer Richard Petty leads the series in starts at Darlington with 65. Terry Labonte leads all active drivers with 54 starts; followed by Mark Martin with 46.
·         Curtis Turner won the inaugural Coors Light pole at Darlington in 1950 with a speed of 82.034 mph.  
·         47 drivers have Coors Light poles at Darlington, led by David Pearson with 12. Kasey Kahne leads all active drivers with four.
·         Nine drivers have won consecutive Coors Light poles at Darlington. David Pearson holds the record for most consecutive poles at Darlington with five (1975 -1977).
·         Youngest Darlington pole winner: Kurt Busch (9/2/2001 – 23 years, 0 months, 29 days).
·         Oldest Darlington pole winner: David Pearson (9/6/1982 – 47 years, 8 months, 15 days).
·         45 different drivers have won at Darlington Raceway, led by David Pearson with 10. Jeff Gordon leads all active drivers with seven.
·         Youngest Darlington winner: Kyle Busch (5/10/2008 – 23 years, 0 months, 8 days).
·         Oldest Darlington winner: Harry Gant (9/1/1991 – 51 years, 7 months, 22 days).
·         Hendrick Motorsports has the most wins at Darlington in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series with 14.
·         11 different manufacturers have won in the NSCS at Darlington; led by Chevrolet with 40 victories; followed byFord with 28.
·         19 of the 109 (17.4%) NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Darlington have been won from the Coors Light pole; the most recent was Dale Jarrett in 1997.
·         The pole starting position is the most proficient starting position in the field, producing more winners (19) than any other starting position at Darlington. The outside front row (second-place) has produced the second most wins (17).   
·         36 of the 109 (33.0%) NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Darlington have been won from the front row: 19 from the pole and 17 from second-place.
·         94 of the 109 (86.2%) NASCAR Sprint Cup races at Darlington have been won from a top-10 starting position.
·         Six of the 109 (5.6%) NASCAR Sprint Cup races at Darlington have been won from a starting position outside the top 20.
·         The deepest in the field that a race winner has started at Darlington was 43rd by Johnny Mantz in 1950 – the inaugural NSCS event. The furthest back an active winner has started was 23rd by Regan Smith (2011).
·         Buddy Baker and Richard Petty are tied for theseries most runner-up finishes at Darlington with eight each.Mark Martin leads all active drivers in second-place finishes at Darlington with six; followed by Jeff Gordon with four.
·         Richard Petty leads the series in top-five finishes at Darlington with 25. Jeff Gordon leads all active drivers with 18.
·         Bill Elliott leads the series in top-10 finishes at Darlington with 35. Mark Martin leads all active drivers with 26.
·         Jeff Gordon leads all active drivers in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in average starting position at Darlington with a 6.719.
·         Denny Hamlin leads all active drivers in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in average finishing position at Darlington with a 5.857.
·         Three active NASCAR Sprint Cup drivers have an average finish in the top 10 at Darlington: Denny Hamlin (5.8),Jimmie Johnson (9.1) and Brad Keselowski (9.2).
·         13 drivers in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series have posted consecutive wins at Darlington; Dale Earnhardt (1989-1990)and Jeff Gordon (1995-1996)are tied for theseries lead in consecutive wins at Darlington with three each.
·         All 10 active NASCAR Sprint Cup Series winners at Darlington Raceway participated in at least two or more races before visiting Victory Lane. Among active drivers, Kyle Busch won at Darlington in the fewest previous appearances (three).
·         Mark Martin competed at Darlington Raceway 15 times before winning in 2009; the longest span of any of the 10 active NASCAR Sprint Cup Series winners.
·         Among the 10 active NSCS Darlington winners Mark Martin (15), Bobby Labonte (14) and Jeff Burton (10) all made 10 or more attempts before their first win.
·         Ken Schrader leads the series among active drivers with the most NASCAR Sprint Cup Series starts at Darlington without visiting Victory Lane at 44.
·         Since the advent of electronic scoring the closest margin of victory in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at Darlington Raceway was the (3/16/2003) race won by Ricky Craven with a MOV of 0.002 second – the MOV is tied with the 2011 Talladega race as the closest finishes in the NSCS using electronic scoring.
·         There have been three NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races resulting with a green-white-checkered finish at Darlington Raceway: 2005 (367/370), 2011 (367/370) and 2012 (367/368).
·         Eight of the 109 races at Darlington Raceway have been shortened due to weather conditions; the most recent was the fall race of 2000.
·         Qualifying has been cancelled due to weather conditions in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at Darlington Raceway five times; most recently was the fall race of 2004.
·         Terry Labonte (9/4/1978) made his series debut at Darlington Raceway.
·         Ken Schrader (3/29/1987), Kurt Busch (9/2/2001) and Clint Bowyer (5/13/2007) posted their first NASCAR Sprint Cup Coors Light poles at Darlington.
·         Regan Smith (5/7/2011) and Terry Labonte (9/1/1980) posted their first NASCAR Sprint Cup Series wins at Darlington.    
·         Three female drivers have competed at Darlington Raceway in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series–
o    Janet Guthrie  - (9/5/1977) - starting 26th and finishing 16th
o    Patty Moise - (3/17/2002) - starting 42nd and finishing 42nd
o    Danica Patrick - (5/12/2012) - starting 38th and finishing 31st
·         Jeff Gordon leads all active drivers in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in laps led at Darlington with 1,720 laps led in 32 starts.
Darlington Raceway Data
Season Race #: 11 of 36 (5-11-13)
Track Size: 1.366-miles
Banking/Turns 1 & 2: 25 degrees
Banking/Turns 3 & 4: 23 degrees
Banking/Frontstretch: 6 degrees
Banking/Backstretch: 6 degrees
Frontstretch Length: 1,229 feet
Backstretch Length: 1,229 feet
Race Length: 367 laps / 501.3 miles
Top 12 Driver Rating at Darlington
Jeff Gordon.............................. 111.8
Greg Biffle................................ 110.5
Denny Hamlin........................... 109.5
Jimmie Johnson........................ 105.7
Kyle Busch.............................. 102.3
Kasey Kahne............................. 98.3
Ryan Newman............................ 97.6
Martin Truex Jr........................... 95.2
Carl Edwards............................. 93.9
Dale Earnhardt Jr....................... 90.4
Tony Stewart............................. 90.0
Matt Kenseth............................. 86.5
Note: Driver Ratings compiled from 2005-2012 races (eight total) among active drivers at Darlington Raceway.
Qualifying/Race Data
2012 pole winnerGreg Biffle, Ford, 180.257 mph, 27.281 secs. 5-10-12
2012 race winnerJimmie Johnson, Chevrolet, 133.802 mph, (03:45:25), 5-12-12
Track qualifying record: Kasey Kahne, Toyota, 181.254 mph, 27.131 secs. 5-06-11
Track race record: Kyle Busch, Toyota, 140.350 mph, (03:34:14), 5-10-08
NASCAR in South Carolina
·         There have been 219 NASCAR Sprint Cup races in South Carolina.
Track Name
Darlington Raceway
Columbia Speedway
Greenville-Pickens Speedway
Piedmont Interstate Fairgrounds
Rambi Race Track
Myrtle Beach
Coastal Speedway
Myrtle Beach
Lancaster Speedway
Gamecock Speedway
Hartsville Speedway
Newberry Speedway
·         133 drivers in NASCAR national series history have their home state recorded as South Carolina.
·         11 drivers from South Carolina have won at least one race in NASCAR’s three national series; eight have won in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.
David Pearson
Cale Yarborough
Rex White
Cotton Owens
Tiny Lund
James Hylton
Johnny Allen
Joe Eubanks
Larry Pearson
Jason Keller
Butch Lindley

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