Nov 18, 2012; Homestead, FL, USA; NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers race past the turn one grandstands as the sun sets during the Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead Miami Speedway. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

2013 Marks 20th Anniversary of NASCAR's Tragic Year


In 2013 it will be the 20th anniversary of one of the worst years NASCAR has ever had. Davey Allison and Alan Kulwicki were both killed during the 1993 season. Davey was killed in a helicopter incident in Alabama and Alan was killed in a plane crash in Tennessee.

Davey Allison was the son of Bobby Allison and a rising star. Most fans agreed he would have won multiple championships. He came close in the 1992 season but crashed in the final race and it cost him the championship. Davey had not even raced in 9 full Winston (now Sprint) Cup seasons and had already posted 19 wins, 66 top fives and 92 top tens. That is unreal and I think he would have been one of the top 5 greatest drivers in NASCAR.

On July 12th 1993 Davey flew his helicopter to talladega to see his friend Neil Bonnett and his son David test Davids Busch car. Along with Davey was the great Red Farmer (who was not killed in the crash). Davey’s helicopter crashed into the infield. The cause of the crash was blamed on Davey’s inexperience to fly. When I went to do one of those things where you drive the track I actually met one of the people who worked on Bobby Allison’s modified cars. He knew Davey very well and we had been talking about old NASCAR and he said to me that Davey and his brother Clifford (who was killed in Busch series practice at Michigan) were daredevils and always thought they could do dangerous things. Its was a sad lost to the sport especially because Davey didn’t get the chance to show all of his talent.

Alan Kulwicki the last owner/drivers to win a championship until Tony Stewart did it in 2011. Kulwicki was responsible for the famous “polish victory lap” which is where the driver goes backwards around the track. He was the 1986 Rookie of the year and the 1992 Winston Cup Champion. In his 9 years in Winston Cup he posted 5 wins, 75 top 10s and 1 championship. Alan Kulwicki was killed in an airplane crash near Blountville, Tennessee. The crash was believed to be caused by the pilots inability to use the anti-ice system to clear ice from the engine.

It was one of the worst years in NASCAR history and hopefully NASCAR will never see a year where to superstars are killed.

 

Tags: Alan Kulwicki Davey Allison NASCAR Sprint Cup Series

  • Matt Schafer

    Hard to imagine that was 20 years ago. I was just a kid back then.