By 1967, the car makers were back in the NASCAR Grand National chase in full force. At Daytona, more than 80 cars filed into the big speedway, and all factory teams were on hand with the exception of General Motors. A record crowd of 94,250 paid to attend the Daytona 500, which was won in 1967 by Mario Andretti. The excitement at Daytona set the tone for the rest of the thrilling season. In this article, you can follow all the highlights, see photos, and peruse the standings to get a full picture of the 1967 NASCAR Grand National tour.
February 24, 1967
Fred Lorenzen scores his 26th career victory in the 100-mile qualifying race at Daytona. Lorenzen drives the 100 miles without making a pit stop. LeeRoy Yarbrough wins the other Twin 100-miler.
Curtis Turner became the first driver to surpass 180 mph on an official qualifying run in Daytona 500 time trials. Turner's #13 Smokey Yunick Chevelle was clocked at 180.831 mph, earning the pole position. It was a controversial achievement for two reasons. First, it meant an unsponsored GM car had beaten the Ford and Chrysler factory entries. Second, the car was roughly 7/8 scale. Anengine failure in the final 100 miles put Turner out of the Daytona 500. See more pictures of NASCAR.
February 26, 1967: Daytona 500
USAC star Mario Andretti leads the final 33 laps and wins the Daytona 500. It is Andretti's first NASCAR Grand National win.
April 2, 1967: Atlanta 500
Cale Yarborough dominates the Atlanta 500, leading 301 of the 334 laps to record his first career win on a superspeedway. Curtis Turner, driving the Smokey Yunick Chevrolet, escapes injury in a wild practice crash.
Formula One champion Jimmy Clark made one NASCAR Grand National start in his career. Driving a Holman-Moody Ford in the October 29 American 500 at Rockingham, Clark started midpack and completed 144 laps before the engine let go. Having been accustomed to shorter races, Clark had fellow F-1 driver Jochen Rindt standing by as a relief driver. The early engine failure prevented Rindt from getting into the car.
April 16, 1967: Gwyn Staley Memorial 400
Darel Dieringer wins the Gwyn Staley Memorial 400 at North Wilkesboro Speedway. Dieringer starts on the pole in Junior Johnson's Ford and is never threatened.
May 13, 1967: Rebel 400
Richard Petty guides his Plymouth to victory in the Darlington Rebel 400, finishing a lap ahead of David Pearson. It is Petty's 55th career NASCAR Grand National win, putting him first on the all-time victory list. Ford star Fred Lorenzen retires before the race, giving up his seat in the Holman-Moody Ford to Pearson.
Number 97 Henley Gray takes the low groove in the Daytona 500 as #40 Jerry Grant and #11 Mario Andretti fade high to make a pass. Andretti drove his Holman-Moody Ford to a convincing victory in NASCAR's crown jewel event. Grant finished fifth, while Gray took 17th.
June 18, 1967: Carolina 500
Richard Petty romps to victory in the Carolina 500 at Rockingham for his 11th win of the season. The win pushes Petty atop the NASCAR points standings for the first time.
August 12, 1967
Richard Petty hustles his Plymouth to another win in the 250-lapper at Bowman Gray Stadium. The triumph is Petty's 19th of the season, breaking Tim Flock's record of 18 wins during the 1955 campaign.
Mario Andretti breezes down the short chute at Daytona International Speedway during the Daytona 500. Andretti led 112 of the 200 laps and racked up a win in only his seventh career NASCAR Grand National start. Andretti never came close to winning another NASCAR event.
October 1, 1967: Wilkes 400
With several of the top racing officials from Ford Motor Co. looking on, Richard Petty continues his phenomenal winning streak by taking the Wilkes 400 at North Wilkesboro Speedway. Petty scores his record-shattering 10th consecutive victory, a feat that might never be topped.
October 15, 1967: Charlotte National 500
Buddy Baker grabs his first career NASCAR Grand National win in the Charlotte National 500, halting Richard Petty's 10-race winning streak. It is Baker's 215th start.
Darel Dieringer and Richard Petty lead the charge into the first turn on the opening lap of the April 23 Virginia 500 at Martinsville Speedway. Dieringer was eliminated in a crash four laps later. Cale Yarborough's #21 Wood Brothers Ford led most of the race, but a late-race gallop netted Petty the victory.
October 29, 1967: American 500
Bobby Allison, driving the retired Fred Lorenzen's Ford, wins the American 500 at Rockingham. Allison gives Ford its first NASCAR Grand National win in nearly three months. Formula One driver Jimmy Clark finishes 30th in his first NASCAR start.
November 5, 1967
Bobby Allison prevails in a bumper-grinding shootout with Richard Petty to win the season finale at Asheville-Weaverville Speedway. Petty wraps up the NASCAR Grand National championship by 6,028 points over runner-up James Hylton.
For a comprehensive list of standings from the 1967 NASCAR Grand National tour, see the next page.
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