Puneet Varma

1949 Wilkes 200

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Official name  Wilkes 200
1949 Wilkes 200
Date  October 16, 1949 (1949-October-16)
Location  North Wilkesboro Speedway, North Wilkesboro, North Carolina
Course  Permanent racing facility 0.625 mi (1.006 km)
Distance  200 laps, 100 mi (150 km)
Weather  Chilly with temperatures reaching up to 68.0 °F (20.0 °C); wind speeds reaching up to 7 miles per hour (11 km/h)

The 1949 Wilkes 200 was a NASCAR Strictly Stock (now Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series) racing event that took place on October 16, 1949.

Contents

Ten thousand people would attend this live racing event where Kenneth Wagner qualified for the race with a pole position speed of 57.563 miles per hour (92.639 km/h) – the equivalent of 31.27 seconds. The entire race took place on a dirt track spanning 0.500 miles (0.805 km) per lap. Weather conditions for the race were recorded at nearby Hickory Regional Airport; a public airport located three miles (5 km) west of the central business district of nearby Hickory, North Carolina.

Summary

This would be the final race of the 1949 NASCAR season and would take place at North Wilkesboro Speedway in North Wilkesboro, North Carolina. Bob Flock would defeat Lee Petty by an entire football field – 100 yards (91 m) – to win NASCAR's first racing event with an established name. Flock would earn a mere $1,500 in prize winnings ($15,098.60 when inflation is taken into effect). Frank Mundy would receive a last-place finish for only finishing 38 laps out of the mandated 200 laps. Bill Blair would lead the most laps in this race with 180 laps led out of 200. Red Byron would go on to win NASCAR's first ever championship while Sara Christian would become one of its first female drivers.

Byron almost became a cripple after being shot by an enemy fighter plane while serving as a tail gunner on a B-24 Liberator bomber during World War II. He spent two years in military hospitals rehabilitating his leg so that he could compete in NASCAR after the war ended.

Timeline

  • Start of race: Bill Blair starts off the race in the pole position
  • Lap 38: Frank Mundy withdrew from the race for reasons unknown
  • Lap 155: Red Byron withdrew from the race for reasons unknown, he was assumed not have been paid for participating in this event
  • Lap 181: Bob Flock takes over the lead from Bill Blair
  • Lap 188: Sara Christian ended the racing event 12 laps behind Herb Thomas
  • Lap 191: Bill Blair had a terminal problem with his engine, forcing him out of the race
  • Lap 196: Roy Hall may or may not have finished the race six laps behind Thomas, records of this race were not kept in the NASCAR archives
  • Finish: Bob Flock was officially declared the winner of the event
  • Top ten finishers

    1. Bob Flock (No.7)
    2. Lee Petty (No. 42)
    3. Fonty Flock (No. 47), 1 lap behind
    4. Clyde Minter (No. 19), 1 lap behind
    5. Herb Thomas (No. 92), 3 laps behind
    6. Roy Hall (No. 14), 4 laps behind
    7. Ray Erickson (No. 5), 6 laps behind
    8. Raymond Lewis (No. 9), 6 laps behind
    9. Curtis Turner (No. 41), 7 laps behind
    10. Bill Blair (No. 44), 9 laps behind

    References

    1949 Wilkes 200 Wikipedia


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