Who is the greatest driver of all time in the world of Motorsports? Over the next couple of weeks the readers here are Beyond The Flag are going to help answer that question with this March Madness inspired bracket. The bracket includes 64 drivers from either NASCAR, Indy Car or Formula One. Each round the readers will vote in head-to-head matchups and whichever driver receives the most votes in that matchup will move onto the next round. In the end there will only be one driver left.
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If you would like to see the entire bracket you can do so here, All-Time Greatest Driver Bracket.
Now before we reveal the first matchups, let’s take a moment to look at what makes a driver great.
- Success – Wins and championships are the easiest way to determine how great a driver was in most cases. It’s hard to argue how great a driver is when they have never won a title. That being said, remember that some of the greats in other sports like Dan Marino and Charles Barkley never won titles.
- Career – Often times greatness happens over a long period of time as opposed to a couple of good years. When voting do you best to take in a drivers full body of work.
- Impact – Sometimes the greatness of a driver is measured in the impact that they have on the sport. Very few athletes have transcended sports but there are some drivers in this bracket that have done just that. Their popularity and the impact that they have made mean more than any number of wins or championships.
In this article you will only find the matchups for the Second Round of the Bracket for the Richard Petty Region. If you haven’t voted on the other first round matchups you can find those links below.
- Round 1 – Dale Earnhardt Region
- Round 1 – AJ Foyt Region (not available yet)
- Round 1 – Michael Schumacher Region (not available yet)
No. 1 Richard Petty vs. No. 16 Kyle Busch
Richard Petty: Petty is one of only two NASCAR drivers to win seven championships. He also leads all driver in wins with 200, that’s 95 more than the driver in second place on the list. Petty has won seven Daytona 500’s in his career. He holds the record for most wins in a season with 27 as well as most consecutive wins having won 10 straight in 1967.
Kyle Busch: Busch is one of the few drivers on this list to not have a championship ( in Sprint Cup, F1 or Indy Car) or be near the top of the leader board when it comes to wins. Busch won the Nationwide title in 2009. Busch has had extended success in all three of NASCAR’s top series, something most drivers let go of once they make it to the Sprint Cup Series. He has 141 wins between the Sprint Cup Series, Xfinity Series (formerly Nationwide) and the Truck Series.
No. 8 Nigel Mansell vs. No. 9. Michael Andretti
Nigel Mansell: Mansell won the F1 title in 1992. He has 31 career wins to go along with 59 podiums and 480 career points. Mansell accomplished all of that in less than 200 career starts.
Michael Andretti: Andretti won the Indy Car title in 1991. He dabbled in F1 but didn’t have much success. He finished his Indy Car career with 42 wins in 317 starts.
No. 5 Nikkie Lauda vs. No. 12 Mark Martin
Nikki Lauda: Lauda is a three-time F1 Series champion. He won 25 races and had 54 podiums in 171 starts.
Mark Martin: Martin is a five-time IROC champ and a four-time ASA National Touring champion. In his NASCAR Sprint Cup Series career he won 40 races. Martin also has 56 wins between the Xfinity Series and Truck Series, he will be inducted into the NASCAR Hall of Fame in 2015.
No. 4 Alain Prost vs. No. 13 Dale Jarrett
Alain Prost: Prost is a four-time F1 Series champion. In 199 starts he amassed 51 wins and 106 podiums. He finished his career with 798.5 points earned.
Dale Jarrett: Jarrett won the NASCAR title in 1999. He is also a three-time Daytona 500 winner and a two-time Brickyard 400 winner. He finished his career with 32 wins and was inducted into the NASCAR Hall of Fame in 2014.
No. 6 Bobby Rahal vs. No. 11 Mika Hakkinen
Bobby Rahal: Rahal is a three-time Indy Car Series champion. In 266 career races he finished with 24 wins and 88 podiums.
Mika Hakkinen: Hakkinen won two F1 Series titles. He finished his career with 20 wins and 51 podiums in 161 starts.
No. 3 Sebastien Bourdais vs. No. 14 Benny Parsons
Sebastien Bourdais: Bourdais is a four-time Champ Car Series champion having won four straight titles from 2004-2007. In 73 races he had 31 wins and 44 podiums. Bourdais has also won in the Indy Car Series.
Benny Parsons: Parsons won the NASCAR title in 1973, he is also a two-time ARCA Series champion. Parsons won 21 times in his NASCAR career including one win in the Daytona 500.
No. 7 Tony Stewart vs. No. 10 Junior Johnson
Tony Stewart: Stewart is a three-time NASCAR champion. He is also an Indy Racing League champion, a IROC champion and a USAC Triple Crown champion. He is a two-time Brickyard 400 winner but has never won the Daytona 500. Stewart also has three wins in the Indy Car Series to go along with seven podiums and eight poles; all of which have come in only 26 starts.
Junior Johnson: Johnson has 50 career wins in NASCAR which is good enough for 11th of the all-time list. He also won six titles in NASCAR as a car owner.
No. 2 Juan Fangio vs. No. 15 Danica Patrick
Juan Fangio: Fangio is a five-time F1 Series champion. In only 51 starts he won 24 races and had 35 podiums. Fangio averaged a win almost every other race.
Danica Patrick: Patrick makes the bracket based on her impact on the sport for women. Patrick was named the Most Popular Driver in Indy Car from 2005-2010. She also won the 2005 Indy Car Rookie of the Year Award and the 2012 Most Popular Driver Award in the NASCAR Xfinity Series. She finished her Indy Car career with one win and seven podiums.