Funeral for Buddy Baker set for Tuesday, Aug. 18, in Charlotte

Buddy Baker prior to the 1984 Daytona 500.

The funeral for NASCAR legend Buddy Baker will take place at Avondale Presbyterian Church, 2821 Park Rd., Charlotte, N.C., on Tuesday, Aug. 18 at 2 p.m. ET.

Dr. John Earl, Pastor, will conduct the service, with Baker’s burial to follow at Sharon Memorial Park-Monroe Road in Charlotte. Funeral services are being provided by The Good Samaritan Funeral Home in Denver, N.C.

Baker’s family has asked that in lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Humane Society of Iredell County, 110 Robinson Road, Mooresville, N.C., 28117.

Baker, 74, died Monday of lung cancer.

The son of NASCAR Hall of Fame member Buck Baker, Buddy is best known as the winner of the 1980 Daytona 500. In that race, Baker averaged 177.602 miles per hour, a record that still stands today.

In addition to his Daytona triumph, Baker was the first driver to turn a lap of more than 200 mph in a stock car, which he achieved at Talladega Superspeedway on March 24, 1970, when he ran 200.447 miles per hour.

For his career, Baker posted 19 race victories, 202 top fives and 38 poles in 700 starts in what is now known as the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series. He excelled at superspeedway racing, winning four times at Talladega, and capturing the inaugural Busch Clash at Daytona in 1979, as well as the aforementioned 1980 Daytona 500.

Other career highlights for Baker included back-to-back World 600 victories at Charlotte Motor Speedway in 1972-73 and a victory in the 1970 Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway, where Baker lapped the entire field. Baker is one of only eight drivers in NASCAR history to win the sport’s four majors — Daytona 500, Southern 500, Coca-Cola 600 and Aaron’s 499.

He was named one of NASCAR’s 50 Greatest Drivers in 1998, and last year was first nominated for inclusion into the NASCAR Hall of Fame.

After his retirement, Baker worked as a television and radio commentator and as an instructor at his father’s racing school.