Five NASCAR Drivers Voted in to Hall of Fame
Five NASCAR drivers have been voted into the Hall of Fame, they were Wendell Scott, Bill Elliott, Joe Weatherley, Rex White and Fred Lorenzen. This is a first for the hall of fame, to have all drivers voted in for one year as is having an African-American driver voted in.
Scott was part of NASCAR between 1961 and 1973. His only race win was in 1963 at Speedway Park, Jacksonville, Florida when he started in 12th place. He took part in 495 Sprint Cup series races and came in the top ten in 147 of them.
When his name was read out there was applause and shouts from the crowd gathered which included family, officials and fans. He was the second man voted on after Elliott.
Scott died in 1990 but he is still remembered as being the first African-American driver to be a full0time NASACAR top series driver. Before he joined the top ranks he won over 100 races locally. As a legacy he left his Drive for Diversity initiative which is a youth program for female and multicultural drivers across all motor sports and was started in 2004. Scott even has his story roughly told in the film Greased Lightning.
Bill Elliott was also a popular choice having won 44 races including the 1988 Sprint Cup Championship race. He is ranked as the 16th best ever NASCAR driver and he was the first to win the Winston Million bonus in 1985. Elliott said afterwards that it was the pinnacle of his career to get the honour but admitted that it was a surprise.
Weatherley died in 1964 and was famous for winning back to back championships in 1962 and 1963 but also 25 races in total. White won 28 races between 1956 and 1964. Lorenzen came from a background as a mechanic but soon became a driver and won his first three races of his first full season and managed at one point to win eight of sixteen races that he took part in.
Anne Bledsoe France was given the Landmark Award, having been secretary and treasurer for NASCAR.
There will be a ceremony in January when the five will be enshrined.