NASCAR Racing Facts and Records
Start your engines! NASCAR season is underway. Check out these facts, records and history of NASCAR racing.
NASCAR Racing - History
Stock car racing began in the southern United States in the 1920s during the age of Prohibition (that's the time when selling or drinking alchohol was illegal in the United States). Bootleggers would deliver illegally made booze from hidden stills to hundreds of markets across the southeastern United States. To avoid police, bootleggers would need to have fast cars and be great drivers. Eventually, these bootleggers began to race against each other to see who was the best driver and who had the fastest car. The sport of stock car racing was born!
The first official NASCAR race was held at the Charlotte, North Carolina fairgrounds in 1949. Jim Roper won the first race, driving a 1949 Lincoln.
The first Daytona 500 - NASCAR's biggest race - was held in 1959. Lee Petty won the race by edging out Johnny Beauchamp in a photo finish.
NASCAR Racing - Driver Records
Richard Petty and Dale Earnhardt each won the NASCAR Championships a record seven times.
Bill Elliot holds the record for fastest lap speed in a stock car. He raced around the Talledega International Speedway at 212.809 miles per hour!
The first NASCAR driver to complete the Indy 500 and the Coca-Cola 600 in the same day was Tony Stewart, who finished both races in 1999.
NASCAR Racing - Fun Facts
The winner of each NASCAR race receives 180 points in the driver standings. Drivers receive five extra points for leading a lap and an additional five points for leading the most laps.
The temperature inside a stock car can reach 140 degrees