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The 1991 Banquet Frozen Foods 300 was a NASCAR Winston Cup Series racing event that occurred on June 9, 1991, at Sears Point International Raceway in the American community of Sonoma, California.

1991 Banquet Frozen Foods 300
Race details[1]
Race 12 of 29 in the 1991 NASCAR Winston Cup Series season
Track map for Sonoma Raceway. The NASCAR track is emphasized in this version.
Track map for Sonoma Raceway. The NASCAR track is emphasized in this version.
Date June 9, 1991 (1991-June-09)
Location Sonoma Raceway, Sonoma, California
Course Permanent racing facility
1.99 mi (3.2 km)
Distance 74 laps, 172.88 mi (308.69 km)
Weather Warm with temperatures reaching up to 82.9 °F (28.3 °C); wind speeds up to 12 miles per hour (19 km/h)
Pole position
Driver Hendrick Motorsports
Most laps led
Driver Rusty Wallace Penske Racing South
Laps 45
Winner
No. 28 Davey Allison Yates Racing

Scott Gaylord would make his NASCAR Cup Series debut in this racing event.[2] Butch Gilliland, the father of current NASCAR Sprint Cup Series competitor David Gilliland, failed to qualify for this race along with three other drivers.

Kyle Petty would break his leg at a crash in Talladega and was unable to compete; Tommy Kendall took over the #42 Mello Yello machine while Petty was recuperating.[3] Petty's first race after his injury would end up being the 1991 Heinz Southern 500; a fall race at Darlington Raceway.

Contents

SummaryEdit

While the average green flag run would be 10 laps, 19% of this 74-lap race would be run under some sort of caution flag. A grid of 43 American-born drivers qualified for this road course racing event; R.K. Smith would blow his engine on the second lap, making him the last-place finisher. John Krebs would be the lowest-finishing driver to complete the race while Hershel McGriff would see his ambitions ruined by a crash on lap 61. Ford, Chevrolet and Pontiac vehicles would form the clear majority of the manufacturers involved.[4]

After more than two and a half hours of racing, Davey Allison would defeat the first winner of the annual event Ricky Rudd by a margin of one second after Rudd was black-flagged at the checkers for a previous contact with Allison in the race. Their intense rivalry at this racing event proved their expertise on road courses when most of the other NASCAR drivers in the 1990s were more concerned about racing on oval tracks and struggled to survive in places like Sonoma and Watkins Glen.[5] While Rudd was originally considered to be the winner since he finished first, NASCAR officials spotted a flagrant incident involving him and second-place driver Davey Allison. Rudd's tapping of Davey Allison at the White flag earned him a black-flag of 5 seconds added to his total time; enough to put Allison as the winner.[6] National media would cover the closing moments of this controversial race. As a result, Sonoma Raceway would forever be put on the map of motorsports history.[7]

Three accidents and an oil spill on the track would cause most of the yellow flag occurrences. While Rusty Wallace would lead the most laps in this race, his lack of consistency kept him from besting either Rudd or Allison. The cars in this racing event averaged speeds of nearly 73.000 miles per hour (117.482 km/h).[4] Dale Earnhardt would keep his NASCAR Winston Cup championship points lead but would lead Ricky Rudd by a mere 53 points after this race.[4] Individual race earnings for each driver ranged from the winner's portion of $61,950 ($170,725.31 when adjusted for inflation) to the last-place finisher's portion of $3,475 ($6,392.2 when adjusted for inflation). NASCAR officials at this race were authorized to hand out a grand total of $458,960 to all the qualifying drivers of this event ($844,248.68 when adjusted for inflation).[8]

ResultsEdit

TimelineEdit

Section reference: [4]

  • Start: Ricky Rudd was leading the racing grid to the start/finish line as the green flag was waved
  • Lap 4: Caution due to R.K. Smith's accident, ended on lap 6
  • Lap 12: Rusty Wallace took over the lead from Ricky Rudd
  • Lap 17: John Krebs took over the lead from Rusty Wallace
  • Lap 18: Robert Sprague took over the lead from John Krebs
  • Lap 19: Rusty Wallace took over the lead from Robert Sprague
  • Lap 23: Caution due to oil on track, ended on lap 25
  • Lap 39: Morgan Shepher's engine stopped working on this lap
  • Lap 46: Dale Jarrett took over the lead from Rusty Wallace
  • Lap 47: Rusty Wallace took over the lead from Dale Jarrett
  • Lap 53: Transmission problems ended Mike Chase's hopes of winning the event
  • Lap 54: Robert Sprague's engine stopped working on this lap
  • Lap 58: The rear end of Irv Hoevv's vehicle came off in a very unsafe manner
  • Lap 60: Tommy Kendall took over the lead from Rusty Wallace
  • Lap 61: Hershel McGriff had a terminal crash
  • Lap 64: Caution due to Richard Petty's accident, ended on lap 67
  • Lap 72: Davey Allison took over the lead from Tommy Kendall
  • Lap 73: Ricky Rudd took over the lead from Davey Allison
  • Lap 74: Davey Allison took over the lead from Ricky Rudd
  • Finish: Davey Allison was officially declared the winner of the event

Race resultsEdit

Pos Grid No. Driver Team Manufacturer Laps Points
1 13 28 Davey Allison Robert Yates Racing Ford 74 180
2 1 5 Ricky Rudd Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 74 175
3 4 2 Rusty Wallace Penske Racing South Pontiac 74 175
4 11 4 Ernie Irvan Morgan-McClure Motorsports Chevrolet 74 160
5 6 25 Ken Schrader Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 74 155
6 2 94 Terry Labonte Hagan Racing Oldsmobile 74 150
7 3 3 Dale Earnhardt Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet 74 146
8 12 97 Geoff Bodine Junior Johnson & Associates Ford 74 142
9 14 6 Mark Martin Roush Racing Ford 74 138
10 8 30 Michael Waltrip Bahari Racing Pontiac 74 134
11 28 26 Brett Bodine King Racing Buick 74 130
12 9 66 Lake Speed Cale Yarborough Racing Pontiac 74 127
13 25 73 Bill Schmitt Schmitt Racing Ford 74 124
14 32 24 Mickey Gibbs Team III Racing Pontiac 74 121
15 29 76 Bill Sedgwick Spears Motorsports Chevrolet 74 118
16 19 8 Rick Wilson Stavola Brothers Racing Buick 74 115
17 7 7 Alan Kulwicki AK Racing Ford 74 112
18 5 42 Tommy Kendall Team Sabco Pontiac 74 114
19 41 1 Rick Mast Precision Products Racing Oldsmobile 73 106
20 26 9 Bill Elliott Melling Racing Ford 73 103
21 33 52 Bobby Hillin, Jr. Jimmy Means Racing Pontiac 73 100
22 35 68 Bobby Hamilton # Tri-Star Motorsports Oldsmobile 73 97
23 34 49 Stanley Smith # Stanley Smith Motorsports Buick 73 94
24 16 71 Dave Marcis Marcis Auto Racing Chevrolet 72 91
25 10 17 Darrell Waltrip DarWal Inc. Chevrolet 71 88
26 15 22 Sterling Marlin Junior Johnson & Associates Ford 71 85
27 23 33 Harry Gant Leo Jackson Motorsports Oldsmobile 70 82
28 27 19 Chad Little Little Racing Ford 67 79
29 38 98 Jimmy Spencer Travis Carter Enterprises Chevrolet 65 76
30 30 10 Derrike Cope Bob Whitcomb Racing Chevrolet 64 73
31 17 75 Joe Ruttman RahMoc Enterprises Oldsmobile 64 70
32 22 04 Hershel McGriff Lipseia Racing Pontiac 61 67
33 31 00 Scott Gaylord Oliver Racing Oldsmobile 61 64
34 39 43 Richard Petty Petty Enterprises Pontiac 59 61
35 24 12 Hut Stricklin Bobby Allison Motorsports Buick 59 58
36 18 44 Irv Hoerr Labonte Motorsports Oldsmobile 58 55
37 37 55 Ted Musgrave RaDiUs Motorsports Pontiac 58 52
38 40 99 John Krebs Krebs Racing Pontiac 57 49
39 43 91 Robert Sprague Rouse Racing Ford 54 46
40 42 23 Mike Chase Freymiller Racing Ford 53 43
41 21 21 Dale Jarrett Wood Brothers Racing Ford 46 40
42 20 15 Morgan Shepherd Bud Moore Engineering Ford 39 37
43 36 09 R. K. Smith Midgley Motorsports Pontiac 2 34
# Rookie of the Year candidate / † Driver change following qualifying
Source:[4]

ReferencesEdit

Preceded by
1991 Budweiser 500
NASCAR Winston Cup Series Season
1991
Succeeded by
1991 Champion Spark Plug 500
Preceded by
1990
Banquet Frozen Foods 300 races
1991
Succeeded by
1992