1986 Firecracker 400

The 1986 Firecracker 400 was a NASCAR Winston Cup Series race that took place on July 4, 1986, at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida.

1986 Firecracker 400
Race details[1][2]
Race 15 of 29 in the 1986 NASCAR Winston Cup Series season
Track map of Daytona International Speedway.
Track map of Daytona International Speedway.
Date July 4, 1986 (1986-July-04)
Official name Firecracker 400
Location Daytona Speedway, Daytona Beach, Florida
Course Permanent racing facility
2.000 mi (3.218 km)
Distance 160 laps, 400 mi (643 km)
Weather Very hot with temperatures of 87.1 °F (30.6 °C); wind speeds of 13.00 miles per hour (20.92 km/h)
Average speed 131.916 miles per hour (212.298 km/h)
Attendance 78,000[3]
Pole position
Driver Ranier-Lundy Racing
Time 44.222 seconds
Most laps led
Driver Dale Earnhardt Richard Childress Racing
Laps 69
No. 3 Tim Richmond Hendrick Motorsports
Television in the United States
Network ABC
Announcers Chris Economaki (color commentator)
Keith Jackson (lap-by-lap announcer)

Race reportEdit

It took three hours and one minute for Tim Richmond to defeat Sterling Marlin by 1.35 seconds after 160 laps.[2][3] Putting aside his win in the 1982 consolation race, this was Tim Richmond's only win at Daytona in his career.[2][3] Starting with his win at Pocono two races before this, he went on a tear for the rest of the 1986 NASCAR Winston Cup Series season, culminating in the best season of his career.

Cale Yarborough would earn the pole position with a speed of 203.519 miles per hour (327.532 km/h).[3] There were eight cautions for 51 laps; making the average speed of the race 131.916 miles per hour (212.298 km/h).[2][3] There would be a n attendance of 78000. A. J. Foyt's had the last-place finish due to an engine problem on lap 2.[2][3] Other notable drivers at the race included: Sterling Marlin, Darrell Waltrip, Kyle Petty, Ricky Rudd, Rusty Wallace, and Bill Elliott.[2][3] All of the 42 drivers on the grid were born in the United States of America.[3]

Richard Petty would make his 1000th start in this race; making him one of the most durable figures in NASCAR history. Sterling Marlin would get his first "top five" finish here and in several other races before going on to win the 1994 Daytona 500. Yarborough would make one of his final starts from the pole position in his NASCAR career in this race. Jody Ridley would retire from NASCAR after this race. Dale Earnhardt lost an engine which dumped oil on his tires and caused him to wreck on lap 151.[3] This would be his final DNF until the August 1994 race at Michigan International Speedway.

Notable crew chiefs for the race included Junie Donlavey, Robin Pemberton, Jeff McDuffie, Joey Arrington, Dale Inman, Travis Carter, Waddell Wilson, Larry McReynolds among others.[4]


Drivers who failed qualify for this race were Phil Barkdoll, Blackie Wangerin, Ronnie Thomas, James Hylton, Harold Marks, J.D. McDuffie and Brad Teague. Qualifying times ranged from 44.2 seconds to 45.6 seconds; speeds varied from 196.993 miles per hour (317.030 km/h) for the 40th-place starter to 203.519 miles per hour (327.532 km/h) for the pole position winner.[5]

Finishing orderEdit

Section reference:[3]


Section reference:[3]

  • Start: Buddy Baker was leading the starting grid as the race entered its first official lap.
  • Lap 2: A.J. Foyt's engine was giving him troubles, forcing him to exit the race.
  • Lap 13: Ron Bouchard had a terminal crash.
  • Lap 14: Ched Filip had a terminal crash.
  • Lap 33: Greg Sacks had a terminal crash, Tommy Ellis' engine stopped working properly.
  • Lap 50: Morgan Shepherd just could not handle his vehicle properly anymore.
  • Lap 78: Benny Parsons fell out with engine failure.
  • Lap 83: Eddie Bierschwale fell out with engine failure.
  • Lap 92: Ken Ragan's transmission started to act in a strange manner.
  • Lap 106: The clutch on Doug Heveron's vehicle no longer worked properly.
  • Lap 130: The brakes on Rodney Combs' vehicle were no longer satisfactory.
  • Lap 143: Harry Gant fell out with engine failure.
  • Lap 145: Connie Saylor had a terminal crash.
  • Lap 147: Geoffrey Bodine fell out with engine failure.
  • Lap 151: Dale Earnhardt had a terminal crash.
  • Finish: Tim Richmond was officially declared the winner of the event.

Standings after the raceEdit

Pos Driver Points[3] Differential
1   Dale Earnhardt 2344 0
2   Darrell Waltrip 2166 -178
3   Tim Richmond 2045 -299
4   Bill Elliott 2037 -307
5   Bobby Allison 2033 -311
6   Rusty Wallace 1998 -346
7   Ricky Rudd 1958 -386
8   Terry Labonte 1859 -485
9   Harry Gant 1858 -486
10   Bobby Hillin, Jr. 1815 -529


  1. ^ Weather information at The Old Farmers' Almanac
  2. ^ a b c d e f 1986 Firecracker 400 information at Database Racing
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l 1986 Firecracker 400 information at Racing Reference
  4. ^ 1986 Firecracker 400 crew chiefs information at Racing Reference
  5. ^ Qualifying information for the 1986 Firecracker 400 at Racing Reference
Preceded by
1986 Miller American 400
NASCAR Winston Cup Series Season
Succeeded by
1986 Summer 500