ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Richard Petty - A Profile of The King of NASCAR

Updated on November 26, 2007

Known worldwide as "The King" of stock car racing, Richard Petty is one of the most popular figures in all of sports. Born July 2, 1937 in Level Cross, North Carolina, Petty established many records that will likely never be approached. However, it is Petty's special relationship with the fans and his accessibility to the media that have been just as much responsible for his popularity as was his success on the track. Petty has been known to stand for hours signing autographs until each and every fan who wants an autograph is accommodated.

Petty is easily recognized by his trademark sunglasses and cowboy hat. He is also known for his association with longtime sponsors STP and Goody's Headache Powders.

Petty, brother Maurice, and cousin Dale Inman formed the crew for father Lee Petty's cars in the early days of NASCAR. Lee was a 3-time NASCAR champion.

Richard drove his first professional race in 1958, and was named Rookie of the Year in 1959. Maurice was the engine builder for Richard's famous #43, and Inman served as the crew chief on "Old Blue" as the cars became known for their light blue color . The trio remained together for all of Petty's 7 NASCAR championships and most of his 200 victories, the majority of which were won driving Plymouths and Dodges. Petty retired from driving in 1992, but continues in the sport as the owner of Petty Enterprises, which fields cars for son Kyle and Bobby Labonte. Petty also operates the Richard Petty Museum and is involved with the rest of the family in the Victory Junction Gang Camp, for which Petty donated the land for construction.

Career Highlights

  • 200 Wins (95 more than 2nd place on the career list - David Pearson)
  • 7 NASCAR Points Championships (1964, 1967, 1971, 1972, 1974, 1975, 1979)
  • 7 Daytona 500 Victories
  • Dominated 1964 Daytona 500 by leading 184 of 200 laps in a Plymouth with a Hemi engine
  • 27 Wins in 1967
  • 10 Consecutive Wins in 1967
  • 127 Pole Positions
  • Top-5 Finisher in 356 Races
  • 1,185 Races Started
  • 513 Consecutive Starts from 1971-1989
  • After retiring, Petty was awarded the Medal of Freedom, America's highest civilian award. He is the first motorsports athlete ever to be honored with this award.
  • One of the inaugural inductees into the North Carolina Sports Hall of Fame in 1963.
  • Inducted into the International Motorsports Hall of Fame in 1997.
  • Named one of NASCAR's 50 Greatest Drivers in 1998.
  • Inducted in the Motorsports Hall of Fame of America in 1989.
  • Petty's voice and his 1970 Plymouth Superbird are prominent in the 2006 Pixar file Cars. Petty's wife Lynda plays his wife as a station wagon in the movie as well.

The President & The King

In a script too unbelievable for Hollywood, Petty's much-anticipated 200th and final victory came:

  • At his favorite track - Daytona (during the Firecracker 400)
  • On America's birthday - July 4, 1984
  • Driving a red, white, & blue car
  • In a fender-banging photo-finish duel with long-time competitor Cale Yarborough
  • With President Ronald Reagan in attendance. This marked the first time that a sitting president had attended a NASCAR race.

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • profile image

      Nascar Racing 

      10 years ago

      man.. im jealous.

    • profile image

      sarah 

      10 years ago

      your hot

    • profile image

      jacob 

      10 years ago

      helo

      man

    • profile image

      jacob 

      10 years ago

      helo

    • MayberryNC profile imageAUTHOR

      MayberryNC 

      10 years ago

      Kenneth...That's great that you got to meet him. I'm one of the millions who have stood in line to get his autograph (a couple of times.) It's his special relationship with the fans and the media that have made him so popular. I checked out your web site...Very nice!

    • profile image

      Kenneth 

      10 years ago

      I finally met The King just a couple of weeks ago...what an honor! He was very cordial....what a legend. To think he won 200 races just boggles the mind! No one will ever top that record.

      Kenneth HollandEditorhttp://AutoRacingSport.com

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)