100 Top NASCAR Drivers Of All-Time | Best Of The Best

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A view of the statue of Dale Earnhardt Sr. Credit: Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports
A view of the statue of Dale Earnhardt Sr. Credit: Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports /

The Numbers

  • 1980, 1986, 1987, 1990, 1991, 1993 and 1994 Sprint Cup Series Champion
  • 76 Sprint Cup Series wins
  • 1995 Brickyard 400 winner and 1998 Daytona 500 winner
  • Voted Most Popular Driver in 2001 after his tragic death
  • Inducted into the NASCAR Hall of Fame in 2010

The History

There is only one ‘Intimidator’ in NASCAR and that was Dale Earnhardt.

Earnhardt raced like no driver before him and nobody else after him has done it quite the way in which he did it. Earnhardt is in the No. 1 spot on this list for his impact on the sport just as much as he is for his stats. Earnhardt finishes his NASCAR career with 76 wins and seven championships and he is widely regarded as the greatest driver to ever race.

Earnhardt’s last title came in 1994. Coincidentally, it was in 1995 that Jeff Gordon really broke into the scene and Earnhardt Jr. did not win another title after that. Aside from the seven titles he also won all the major races that were out there for him to win. Earnhardt won the Daytona 500 in 1998, he also won the Brickyard 400 (1995), Southern 500 (1987, 1989 and 1990), Coca-Cola 600 (1986, 1992 and 1993), Winston 500 (1990, 1994 and 1999) and The Winston in 1987, 1989 and 1993.

The Legend

Additionally, Earnhardt was a multiple time IROC champion. He won IROC titles in 1990, 1995, 1999 and 2000. Despite his success and huge fan base, Earnhardt was only voted Most Popular Driver once and that was in 2001 following his tragic death during the closing laps of the Daytona 500. Earnhardt’s impact was also felt long after his death as NASCAR became much safer following his accident. Many believe that NASCAR might not be as safe as it is right now if it wasn’t for that fateful day in Daytona.

Along with his 76 wins Earnhardt also compiled 22 poles and 428 top-10 finishes in 676 races. He also ran 136 races in the Xfinity Series where he won 13 times. In 1998 Earnhardt was part of NASCAR’s list of the sports 50 Greatest Drivers, he was also inducted into the NASCAR Hall of Fame in 2010.

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