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NASCAR 167 43 Who should be in next NASCAR Hall of Fame class? 31576922 Red Byron Red+Byron NASCAR

Byron, of Anniston, Ala., was a NASCAR original. He won the sanctioning body's first race in 1948 on the Daytona Beach road course. He also won the series' first championship in 1948. The following season, he won the first title in what is now the Sprint Cup Series driving for owner Raymond Parks.

The Strictly Stock schedule had eight races, and Byron won two of them. He drove with a brace attached to the clutch pedal to assist with a leg he injured in World War II. He continued to be involved in racing, developing an American car capable of winning the 24 Hours of Le Mans sports car event.
 

 

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NASCAR 167 43 Who should be in next NASCAR Hall of Fame class? 31576925 Jerry Cook Jerry+Cook NASCAR

Cook was a menace in the modified division. The New York native competed from 1963-82, making 1,474 starts. He won 342 races and stormed to six championships, four consecutive from 1974-77. Cook didn't leave racing when he retired, either. He helped shape what is now known as the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour and, in 1985, was named the series director. He remains with NASCAR as competition administrator.

 

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NASCAR 167 43 Who should be in next NASCAR Hall of Fame class? 31576921 Joe Weatherly Joe+Weatherly NASCAR

Personable and talented, the Norfolk, Va. native competed from 1952-64, winning 25 races in 229 starts. He won the championship in 1962-63 in NASCAR's premier division after carving out a career in NASCAR's Modified Division, where he won the title in 1953.

His titles came under diverse circumstances — he won for Hall of Famer Bud Moore in 1962, then while driving for nine different teams the following year. His impact went beyond the track — Weatherly earned the nickname the "Clown Prince of Stock Car Racing" for his antics.
 

 

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NASCAR 167 43 Who should be in next NASCAR Hall of Fame class? 31576924 Glenn 'Fireball' Roberts Glenn+%27Fireball%27+Roberts NASCAR

Roberts competed in NASCAR from 1950-64, earning 33 victories and 32 pole positions. He was a superstar in the sport's early days. He won the Daytona 500 in 1962 and the Southern 500 in 1958 and '63. He was capable of reeling off a streak of wins with little notice: In '58 he ran only 10 races, but won six of them and finished 11th in the final NASCAR standings.

 

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NASCAR 167 43 Who should be in next NASCAR Hall of Fame class? 31576920 Rick Hendrick Rick+Hendrick+ NASCAR

Hendrick has raised the bar of what an owner can achieve in the NASCAR ranks. He has a series-best 10 Sprint Cup titles to his credit — five with Jimmie Johnson, four with Jeff Gordon and one with Terry Labonte — as well as three Camping World Truck titles with Jack Sprague. In 3,115 Cup starts, Hendrick has 209 wins. He has 1,411 top-10 finishes, 857 of them top fives. He also has 23 wins in the Nationwide and 25 in the Truck series.

 

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NASCAR 167 43 Who should be in next NASCAR Hall of Fame class? 31576923 Elite group Elite+group NASCAR

Richard Petty (left) was selected as part of the NASCAR Hall of Fame's inaugural class. Leonard Wood (right) joined the elite group in 2013. A stellar group of drivers, owners and NASCAR executives has been enshrined. So who should the next five members of the Hall of Fame be?

 

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