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NASCAR and Moonshine

Updated on March 7, 2014

Caught in the Act


Where it All Began: Map of Mountainous Areas for Moonshine Making and Running

show route and directions
A markerGreat Smoky Mountains -
Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Gatlinburg, TN 37738, USA
get directions

B markerWest Virginia -
West Virginia, USA
get directions

Birthplace of Moonshine

Moonshine, White Lightning, Hooch, in the Appalachian & Great Smoky Mountains

In January of 1920 the United States Government passed the 18th Amendment banning the possession, sale or consumption of alcohol. “Intoxicating Liquors” were illegal except for during medical or religious practices.

The demand for liquor grew and grew. Many people were costing the government and tying up the court system for possession charges. Like anything illegal and in demand, organized crime had a growing market of customers and other activity. In 1933, the 21st Amendment repealed the 18th, and alcohol was legal again.

During the time between 1920 and 1933 illegal liquor of many types was processed in secret. One famous secretly made liquor, is Moonshine from the Appalachian mountain range (and Great Smoky Mountains) in the south eastern part of the United States; primarily West Virginia and North Carolina. Moonshiners would have to transport their product via car, among other means of transportation. Many developed the ability to drive a car at high speeds maintaining total control over the vehicle risking their freedom and running from the law enforcers.

The Birth of the National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR)

NASCAR started as a primarily South Eastern U.S. Sport, founded by Bill France, Sr. in 1947. The first NASCAR race was held in Daytona Beach, FL on February 15, 1948. However, it wasn’t until the 1970’s that the sport became popular among Americans from every state. Since the 1920’s and 1930’s Daytona Beach is the city where land speed records were tested and broken by people from all over the world. It made perfect sense to build a track in that city. Today, Daytona 500 is synonymous with the first Sprint Cup Series NASCAR race.

There is a lot more to racing than making a series of left turns. There is a points system in place. The pit crews are in competition as well. The mechanics and auto designers play a huge part behind the scenes, all in compliance with NASCAR policies, which can change with each season’s start.

Indy 500 racetrack, in Indianapolis, IN was built in 1909 for motorcycle racing. That track is now one of the most popular to visit among racing fans.

In November, at Homestead Race Track in Homestead, Florida (the last race of each season) those that made it to the chase will be racing for the season championship, as well as the specific race itself. The chase includes the 12 drivers with the highest amount of points by the end of the 26th race in Richmond, Virginia (usually in early September). However, only the top 10 will be invited to the NASCAR Championship week held in New York City every year until recently moved to Las Vegas, NV.

NASCAR in 1985


The Points System

The season Champion is the driver who ends the last race with the most points. There are various ways to earn points. Below is the 2012 season points system.

  • Leading one lap in any race – 1 point
  • Leading the most laps in any race – 1 point
  • Winning the race – 46 points
  • Runner up points – 2nd place earns 42 points – 3rd place 41 and decreases per each placement for the entire team of drivers.

Modern NASCAR Statistics in the Highest Racing Series

Longest Running Champion – Bill Elliott, #94 won 16 championships out of 19 years.

  • Won Most Championships – Dale Earnhardt, Sr., #3 and Richard Petty, #43 are tied at 7 championship wins
  • The Most Popular Driver – since 2009, Dale Earnhardt, Jr., #88, has been voted the most popular driver.
  • Female Drivers in Higher Racing Series –the Winston Cup, Nextel Cup, or Sprint Cup Series female pioneers were Janet Guthrie, Shawna Robinson. Danica Patrick, #7, is currently the only female Sprint Cup driver. The original females, Louise Smith was one of the first women drivers in 1949 before NASCAR was became NASCAR, and was known as Strictly Stock car racing.


I certainly hope you found this article helpful and entertaining. I like to learn from others. So, please, say what you would like to say in the comments section; as long as you are professional.

"Be kind to one another" ~ Ellen

God Bless You ~ Margaret Sullivan

Who is your favorite Sprint Cup driver?

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    • Mmargie1966 profile image

      Mmargie1966 5 years ago from Gainesville, GA

      Why thank you :)

      I wasn't interested in it at all until my husband started to teach me about it. Now I'm hooked!

    • adjkp25 profile image

      David 5 years ago from Northern California

      I'm probably a casual fan of NASCAR but I did appreciate the history of the sport that you have mentioned here.

      Voted up.

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 5 years ago

      This was a good read and I enjoyed learning about the NasCar point system. My vote is for Martin, he's still a good guy and races with heart. Thanks for sharing.

    • Mmargie1966 profile image

      Mmargie1966 5 years ago from Gainesville, GA

      Thanks so much! Carl Edwards is my much as I wanted to be mad at Tony Stewart last season, I just couldn't. Your driver EARNED that championship! Congrats!

    • strkngfang profile image

      strkngfang 5 years ago

      Great write up. I've been an avid Tony Stewart fan throughout his career. Learned a lot about the sport I didn't know. Voted Up.