by Charlie Turner
Thanks for stopping by OnPitRow.com and the Bench Racing with Steve and Charlie blog. The best NASCAR and IndyCar news and opinion, exclusive pictures and video. I'm Charlie Turner. Follow me on Twitter @onpitrowMarch 22, 2009 12:00 pm UTC 6 Comments
This is toss up between one of NASCAR’s 50 Greatest Drivers and a 21 race winner who won NASCSAR’s most popular driver award in 1959. Younger fans may have to check out Racer’s Reunion for some background to vote on this first round match in the NASCAR 64 Greatest Drivers Tournament at Bench Racing with Steve and Charlie.
Marvin Panch raced in NASCAR is the 50s and 60s, going up against both Lee and Richard Petty. His best season was ’57 when he won six times and had 27 top tens in 42 starts. He won 17 times in Winston Cup including the ’61 Daytona 500. Panch was selected one of NASCAR’s 50 Greatest Drivers in 1998.
Jack Smith started racing against local bootleggers and raced in the first NASCAR’s first race at Charlotte Speedway in ’49. Smith won 21 times and had 142 top tens in 264 races over a 15 year career. Was famous for flipping his car several times and rolling into a parking lot at Darlington in ’54. He’s the one who won NASCAR’s Most Popular Driver award.
Their names maybe a bit obscure compared to Earnhardt and Petty, but these guys won plenty of races. Might be a tougher match -up than most. Leave your comments for us.