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The 1974 Dixie 500 was a NASCAR Winston Cup Series racing event held on July 28, 1974, at Atlanta International Raceway in Hampton, Georgia.

1974 Dixie 500
Race details[1]
Race 19 of 30 in the 1974 NASCAR Winston Cup Series season
Layout of Atlanta International Speedway, used until 1996
Layout of Atlanta International Speedway, used until 1996
Date July 28, 1974 (1974-July-28)
Official name Dixie 500
Location Atlanta International Raceway, Hampton, Georgia
Course Permanent racing facility
1.522 mi (2.449 km)
Distance 328 laps, 499.2 mi (803.3 km)
Weather Very hot with temperatures of 88 °F (31 °C); wind speeds of 10.1 miles per hour (16.3 km/h)
Average speed 131.651 miles per hour (211.872 km/h)
Attendance 38,000[2]
Pole position
Driver Junior Johnson & Associates
Most laps led
Driver David Pearson Wood Brothers
Laps 114
Winner
No. 43 Richard Petty Petty Enterprises
Television in the United States
Network untelevised
Announcers none

Souvenir programs of this event was generally handed out to people at a rate of $2 USD per copy ($10.16 when adjusted for inflation). Only manual transmission vehicles were allowed to participate in this race; a policy that NASCAR has retained to the present day.

Contents

BackgroundEdit

Atlanta International Raceway (now Atlanta Motor Speedway) is one of ten current intermediate track to hold NASCAR races; the others are Charlotte Motor Speedway, Chicagoland Speedway, Darlington Raceway, Homestead Miami Speedway, Kansas Speedway, Kentucky Speedway, Las Vegas Motor Speedway, New Hampshire Motor Speedway, and Texas Motor Speedway.[3] However, at the time, only Charlotte and Darlington were built.

The layout at Atlanta International Speedway at the time was a four-turn traditional oval track that is 1.54 miles (2.48 km) long.[4] The track's turns are banked at twenty-four degrees, while the front stretch, the location of the finish line, and the back stretch are banked at five.[4]

SummaryEdit

There were 36 drivers in this 328-lap racing event; Dan Daughtry was the unfortunate last-place finish due to troubles with his engine on lap 10. Cale Yarborough earned the pole position for driving speeds up to 156.75 miles per hour (252.26 km/h) during solo qualifying sessions. Earl Ross, a Canadian NASCAR driver, was the only foreigner on the starting grid. Donnie Allison, Buddy Baker and Richard Petty would dominate the opening laps of this event. This would be the last time that a Winston Cup Atlanta race was run during the summer.[2]

Speeds at this event reached up to 131.651 miles per hour (211.872 km/h) throughout the entire three-hour-and-forty-two-minute spectacle. The green flag was officially waved at approximately 1:00 PM Eastern Daylight Saving Time while the checkered flag was waved at approximately 4:42 PM EDST. Buddy Baker, David Pearson, and Richard Petty would dominate the final laps of the race. In the end, Richard Petty went on to defeat David Pearson by exactly 21 seconds. 38,000 live spectators would see other notable drivers such as Elmo Langley, J.D. McDuffie, James Hylton, Donnie Allison and Bill Champion.[2]

Jimmy Crawford would make his final NASCAR Winston Cup Series start in this race; he finished in 31st place.[2]

Individual winnings ranged from the winner's share of $19,350 ($98,304 when adjusted for inflation) to a meager $875 for the last-place finisher ($4,445 when adjusted for inflation). The total prize purse for this racing event was $101,295 ($514,609 when adjusted for inflation).[5]

QualifyingEdit

Grid[2] No. Driver Manufacturer
1 11 Cale Yarborough '74 Chevrolet
2 43 Richard Petty '74 Dodge
3 15 Buddy Baker '73 Ford
4 54 Lennie Pond '74 Chevrolet
5 88 Donnie Allison '74 Chevrolet
6 72 Benny Parsons '74 Chevrolet
7 90 Charlie Glotzbach '72 Ford
8 21 David Pearson '73 Mercury
9 52 Earl Ross '74 Chevrolet
10 12 Bobby Allison '74 AMC Matador
11 93 Jackie Rogers '74 Chevrolet
12 95 Darrell Waltrip '74 Chevrolet
13 96 Richard Childress '73 Chevrolet
14 98 Richie Panch '72 Chevrolet
15 28 Bobby Isaac '74 Chevrolet
16 2 Dave Marcis '73 Dodge
17 35 Dan Daughtry '72 Ford
18 48 James Hylton '74 Chevrolet
19 30 Walter Ballard '74 Chevrolet
20 24 Cecil Gordon '72 Chevrolet
21 14 Coo Coo Marlin '73 Chevrolet
22 49 G.C. Spencer '74 Dodge
23 79 Frank Warren '74 Dodge
24 70 J.D. McDuffie '72 Chevrolet
25 7 Dean Dalton '74 Chevrolet

Top ten finishersEdit

Pos[2] Grid No. Driver Manufacturer Laps Laps led Time/Status
1 2 43 Richard Petty Dodge 328 94 3:42:31
2 8 21 David Pearson Mercury 328 114 +21 seconds
3 3 15 Buddy Baker Ford 327 9 +1 lap
4 12 95 Darrell Waltrip Chevrolet 324 0 +4 laps
5 4 54 Lennie Pond Chevrolet 319 0 +9 laps
6 16 2 Dave Marcis Dodge 317 0 +11 laps
7 32 18 Joe Frasson Dodge 316 0 +12 laps
8 6 72 Benny Parsons Chevrolet 316 0 +12 laps
9 21 14 Coo Coo Marlin Chevrolet 314 0 +14 laps
10 20 24 Cecil Gordon Chevrolet 314 0 +14 laps

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Weather information for the 1974 Dixie 500 at The Old Farmers' Almanac
  2. ^ a b c d e f 1974 Dixie 500 racing information at Racing Reference
  3. ^ "NASCAR Race Tracks". NASCAR. Archived from the original on June 28, 2011. Retrieved September 2, 2011.
  4. ^ a b "NASCAR Tracks—The Atlanta Motor Speedway". Atlanta Motor Speedway. Archived from the original on 2011-07-21. Retrieved September 2, 2011.
  5. ^ 1974 Dixie 500 racing information at Fantasy Racing Cheat Sheet
Preceded by
1973
Dixie 500 races
1974
Succeeded by
1975
Preceded by
1974 Motor State 360
Richard Petty's Career Wins
1960-1984
Succeeded by
1974 Purlator 500