BY KYLE STEPHENS
Nestled in the rolling hills of North Carolina, North Wilkesboro Speedway is a long-beloved track among NASCAR fans.
First opened in 1949, North Wilkesboro Speedway was a half-mile oval track that quickly became a fan favorite. Its unique layout features tight turns, which made for exciting racing and close finishes.
For decades, the track played host to two NASCAR Cup Series races each year. The track drew fans from across the country to witness the high-speed action, until NASCAR stepped away after 1996.
The 2023 NASCAR All Star race is drawing closer and marking a grand return of the famed track, risen from the dead. Here are some of the most successful drivers at North Wilkesboro Speedway.
Richard Petty – 15 Wins
Richard Petty is perhaps the most iconic driver in NASCAR history. His record at North Wilkesboro Speedway is truly a testament to his skill behind the wheel.
“The King” won an incredible 15 Cup Series races at the track. His first victory came in 1962. Then, his final win came in 1981.
His dominance at North Wilkesboro therefore helped cement his legacy as one of the greatest drivers of all time.
Darrell Waltrip – 10 Wins
Darrell Waltrip is a three-time Cup Series champion and one of the most successful drivers in NASCAR history.
He won ten races at North Wilkesboro Speedway between 1977 and 1991. His aggressive driving style and colorful personality also made him a fan favorite at the track.
Dale Earnhardt – 5 Wins
Dale Earnhardt was one of the most accomplished drivers of his era. He also had a lot of success at North Wilkesboro Speedway.
Earnhardt won five Cup Series races at the track. His first victory came in 1986. Then, his final win came in 1995.
Cale Yarborough – 5 Wins
Cale Yarborough is another NASCAR legend who had a lot of success at North Wilkesboro Speedway.
He also won five Cup Series races at the track. His first victory came in 1974 and his final win came in 1978.
Yarborough’s aggressive driving style and competitive spirit made him a fan favorite. He then backed that up with a record at the track that’s a testament to his skill and determination.
These four drivers are just a few examples of the many talented racers who have competed at North Wilkesboro Speedway. Their impressive records are therefore a reminder of the excitement and drama that the track brought to the world of NASCAR.
These drivers also won multiple times at North Wilkesboro:
- Bobby Allison, Junior Johnson, Terry Labonte – 4 wins apiece
- Geoff Bodine, Lee Petty, Herb Thomas, Rusty Wallace, Rex White – 3 wins apiece
- Buck Baker, Fonty Flock, Mark Martin, Marvin Panch, David Pearson – 2 wins apiece
The following drivers won at North Wilkesboro just once:
- Davey Allison, Brett Bodine, Neil Bonnett, Darel Deringer, Bob Flock, Tim Flock, Harry Gant, Jeff Gordon, Dick Hutcherson, Bobby Isaac, Fred Lorenzen, Tiny Lund, Hershel McGriff, Benny Parsons, Jim Paschal, Dick Rathman, Tim Richmond, Fireball Roberts, Leon Sales, Jack Smith, Speedy Thompson
While North Wilkesboro Speedway sat dormant on the NASCAR circuit since 1996, NASCAR will once again go there for the NASCAR All-Star Race this Sunday (8 p.m. ET; TV: FS1).