The list of 20 nominees to the NASCAR Hall of Fame Class of 2018 is out and there are five new names.
And like the other 15 already nominated, these are some true giants of the sport, all five being people who could make a strong case for getting in right away. Here they are:
Getty Images for NASCAR Hall ofStreeter Lecka
In a career cut tragically short by a helicopter crash, Allison created an excellent body of work, winning 19 races in just 191 starts in NASCAR’s top division. In both 1991 and ’92, Allison finished third in points, narrowly missing out on the ’92 Premier Series championship. Allison was a great talent and someone beloved by race fans. And he won some of NASCAR’s biggest races, including the Daytona 500 and the all-star race and showed versatility by winning on most every type of track.
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In 25 seasons, Joe Gibbs Racing has won 140 Premier Series races and four championships with three drivers — Bobby Labonte, Tony Stewart and Kyle Busch. JGR also has the best XFINITY Series program in NASCAR. With fellow car owners Richard Childress and Rick Hendrick already in the Hall and Jack Roush a nominee, Gibbs absolutely belongs with them.
Getty Images for NASCARChris Trotman
One of the most successful business leaders in American history, Penske has also had worldwide success in a variety of forms of motorsports, including NASCAR, Indy cars, sports cars and even Formula One. All told, his teams have won 28 championships in various motorsports disciplines. Penske built Auto Club Speedway and owned Michigan International Speedway.
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Named one of NASCAR’s 50 greatest drivers in 1998, Farmer is a charter member of the Alabama Gang that includes the Allison family. An accomplished short-track racer, Farmer is estimated to have won as many as 900 races in his career. For three consecutive years, Farmer won the NASCAR National Late Model Sportsmen Series championship.
Now an analyst for FS1’s NASCAR Race Hub, Labonte won the 2000 championship in what is now the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series. Labonte also won championships in the NASCAR Late Model Series (1987), NASCAR XFINITY Series (1991) and the IROC Series (2001). All told, Labonte won 21 Cup races and had 115 top-five and 203 top-10 finishes.