Richard Childress is best known as a championship team owner these days, but he was once a NASCAR driver himself. He owns a slate of titles in NASCAR’s top three national series and shows no signs of slowing down. Here are five reasons Childress he could be a NASCAR Hall of Famer.
Childress is also working diligently in charity efforts. He was the recipient of the 2008 Home Depot Humanitarian of the Year Award for his role in establishing the Childress Institute for Pediatric Trauma at Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center
Childress was a NASCAR Cup driver from 1969-81, earning 76 top-10 finishes, six of them top fives, in 285 starts. He finished fifth in the 1975 points standings and was in the top 10 overall in five of his eight seasons as a driver before retiring midway through 1981 year and naming Dale Earnhardt to finish the season.
Diverse talent base
Childress and his teams have amassed 174 victories in NASCAR’s top three levels of competition, including the 1998 and 2007 Daytona 500 and the 1995 and 2003 Brickyard 400.
The diverse owner has brought an incredible level of success to his Cup racing career. An RCR team has finished in the top 10 of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series point standings in 29 of the last 34 seasons. In addition, an RCR team has earned a Sprint Cup Series win in 26 of the last 29 seasons, including 2011. He has Cup wins at all but three of the tracks on the schedule where the series has raced more than once (excluding Kentucky), lacking only victories at Homestead-Miami Speedway, Kansas Speedway and Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
Childress has been a successful team owner for years. He is the first NASCAR owner to win driver and/or owner championships in the Cup (Dale Earnhardt in 1986, '87, '90, '91, '93 and '94), Nationwide (Kevin Harvick in 2001, Harvick and Johnny Sauter in 2003, Harvick in 2006, Jeff Burton and Scott Wimmer in 2007, and Clint Bowyer 2008) and Camping World Truck (Mike Skinner in 1995) series.