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The 1976 American 500 was the 28th official race (out of 30) in the NASCAR Winston Cup Series season.[2]

1976 American 500
Race details[1]
Race 28 of 30 in the 1976 NASCAR Winston Cup Series season
Layout of Rockingham Speedway
Layout of Rockingham Speedway
Date October 24, 1976 (1976-October-24)
Official name American 500
Location North Carolina Motor Speedway, Rockingham, North Carolina
Course Permanent racing facility
1.017 mi (1.636 km)
Distance 492 laps, 500 mi (804 km)
Weather Mild with temperatures of 72 °F (22 °C); wind speeds of 4.9 miles per hour (7.9 km/h)
Average speed 117.718 miles per hour (189.449 km/h)
Attendance 32,500[2]
Pole position
Driver Wood Brothers
Most laps led
Driver Richard Petty Petty Enterprises
Laps 193
Winner
No. 43 Richard Petty Petty Enterprises
Television in the United States
Network untelevised
Announcers none

Only manual transmission vehicles were allowed to participate in this race; a policy that NASCAR has retained to the present day.

Race reportEdit

This racing event took place on October 24, 1976, at North Carolina Motor Speedway in Rockingham, North Carolina.[2] In order to resolve itself, the race took four hours, fifteen minutes, and one second.[2] Six cautions slowed the race for a duration of 35 laps.[2][3]

As a result, Richard Petty would end up lapping the field as he scores the season sweep at Rockingham.[2][4] Thirty-two thousand and five hundred live spectators attended this event.[2] David Pearson gained the pole position qualifying at a speed of 139.117 miles per hour (223.887 km/h) but eventually finished in sixth place.[2] Henley Gray was officially recorded as the last-place finisher due to an engine issue on the first lap.[2]

Notable crew chiefs to actively participate in the race were Junie Donlavey, Jake Elder, Harry Hyde, Dale Inman, Bud Moore, Tim Brewer among others.[5]

Richard Petty's teenage son Kyle would attend his father's victory celebrations; getting ready for his NASCAR career.[6] The average speed of the race was 117.718 miles per hour (189.449 km/h).[2] Jack Donohue was the only Canadian competitor out of the 36-car grid.[2]

QualifyingEdit

Grid[2] No. Driver Manufacturer
1 21 David Pearson Mercury
2 71 Dave Marcis Dodge
3 15 Buddy Baker Ford
4 43 Richard Petty Dodge
5 1 Donnie Allison Chevrolet
6 67 Buddy Arrington Chevrolet
7 2 Bobby Allison Mercury
8 88 Darrell Waltrip Chevrolet
9 11 Cale Yarborough Chevrolet
10 40 D.K. Ulrich Chevrolet
11 54 Lennie Pond Chevrolet
12 90 Dick Brooks Ford
13 60 Jackie Rogers Chevrolet
14 36 Bobby Wawak Chevrolet
15 92 Skip Manning Chevrolet
16 3 Richard Childress Chevrolet
17 67 Buddy Arrington Dodge
18 55 Sonny Easley Ford
19 49 Henley Gray Dodge
20 5 James Hylton Dodge
21 41 Grant Adcox Chevrolet
22 14 Coo Coo Marlin Chevrolet
23 24 Cecil Gordon Chevrolet
24 05 David Sisco Chevrolet
25 30 Terry Bivins Chevrolet

Finishing orderEdit

TimelineEdit

Section reference: [2]

  • Start: David Pearson was leading the racing grid as the first official lap commenced
  • Lap 2: Bruce Hill blew his engine while driving at high speeds
  • Lap 5: Gary Myers blew his engine while driving at high speeds
  • Lap 32: Dave Marcis took over the lead from David Pearson
  • Lap 76: Bobby Wawak managed to overheat his vehicle
  • Lap 85: Lennie Pond took over the lead from Dave Marcis
  • Lap 88: Travis Tiller blew his engine while driving at high speeds
  • Lap 96: Dave Marcis took over the lead from Lennie Pond
  • Lap 117: Benny Parsons blew his engine while driving at high speeds
  • Lap 127: Dick May blew his engine while driving at high speeds
  • Lap 171: The rear end of James Hylton's vehicle came off in an unsafe manner
  • Lap 180: Lennie Pond took over the lead from Dave Marcis
  • Lap 191: Dave Marcis took over the lead from Lennie Pond
  • Lap 208: Lennie Pond took over the lead from Dave Marcis
  • Lap 216: Donnie Allison took over the lead from Lennie Pond
  • Lap 217: Lennie Pond took over the lead from Donnie Allison
  • Lap 227: Richard Petty took over the lead from Lennie Pond
  • Lap 264: Lennie Pond took over the lead from Richard Petty
  • Lap 299: The throttle on Buddy Baker's vehicle was acting badly enough to knock him out of the race
  • Lap 322: Richard Petty took over the lead from Lennie Pond
  • Lap 324: Lennie Pond took over the lead from Richard Petty
  • Lap 329: Richard Petty took over the lead from Lennie Pond
  • Lap 363: Richard Childress blew his engine while driving at high speeds
  • Lap 389: J.D. McDuffie blew his engine while driving at high speeds
  • Lap 413: Lennie Pond took over the lead from Richard Petty, Dave Marcis blew his engine while driving at high speeds
  • Lap 423: Richard Petty took over the lead from Lennie Pond
  • Lap 486: Donnie Allison's fuel pump was beginning to cause problems for him
  • Finish: Richard Petty was officially declared the winner of the event

Standings after the raceEdit

Pos Driver Points[2] Differential
1   Cale Yarborough 4380 0
2   Richard Petty 4283 -97
3   Benny Parsons 3984 -396
4   Bobby Allison 3948 -432
5   Lennie Pond 3669 -711
6   Dave Marcis 3599 -781
7   Buddy Baker 3539 -841
8   Darrell Waltrip 3316 -1064
9   Richard Childress 3285 -1095
10   Dick Brooks 3211 -1169

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "1976 American 500 weather information". The Old Farmers' Almanac. Retrieved 2012-08-04.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o "1976 American 500 information". Racing Reference. Retrieved 2010-12-05.
  3. ^ "1976 American 500 drivers' sponsor information". Fantasy Racing Cheat Sheet. Retrieved 2014-08-19.
  4. ^ "1976 American 500 information (second reference)". Driver Averages. Archived from the original on 2011-10-05. Retrieved 2010-12-06.
  5. ^ "1976 American 500 crew chiefs information". Racing Reference. Retrieved 2018-08-23.
  6. ^ "Kyle Petty at the 1976 American 500". Google Books. Retrieved 2014-08-19.
Preceded by
1976 National 500
NASCAR Winston Cup Series Season
1976
Succeeded by
1976 Dixie 500
Preceded by
1975
American 500 races
1976
Succeeded by
1977