Puneet Varma

1968 Northern 300

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Official name  Northern 300
1968 Northern 300
Date  July 14, 1968 (1968-July-14)
Location  Trenton Speedway, Trenton, New Jersey
Course  Permanent racing facility 1.000 mi (1.609 km)
Distance  300 laps, 300 mi (500 km)
Weather  Warm with temperatures approaching 82.9 °F (28.3 °C); wind speeds up to 9.9 miles per hour (15.9 km/h)

The 1968 Northern 300 was a NASCAR Grand National Series (now Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series) event that was held on July 14, 1968, at Trenton Speedway in Trenton, New Jersey.

Contents

Background

The first race at the Fairgrounds was held on September 24, 1900, but there was no further racing there until 1907. Regular racing began in 1912 and continued until 1941. A new 1 mile dirt oval was opened in 1946. In 1957 the track was paved. It operated in that configuration until 1968 when the track was expanded to 1.5 miles (2.41 km) and a "kidney bean" shape with a 20° right-hand dogleg on the back stretch and a wider turn 3 & 4 complex than turns 1 & 2. The track closed in 1980 and the Fairgrounds itself closed 3 years later. The former site of the speedway is now occupied by the Grounds for Sculpture, a UPS shipping facility, and the housing development known as "Hamilton Lakes".

Summary

Three hundred laps were done on a paved oval track spanning 1.000 mile (1.609 km). The total time of the race was three hours and twenty-two minutes; LeeRoy Yarbrough defeated David Pearson by more than one lap in front of 16800 people. Speeds for the race were: 89.079 miles per hour (143.359 km/h) as the average and 103.717 miles per hour (166.916 km/h) as the pole position speed. Five cautions were waved for twenty-eight laps. Retired Canadian driver Frog Fagan participated in this race. Total winnings for this race were $17,725 USD ($122,073.52 when considering inflation).

Bobby Allison was driving a 1966 Chevrolet Chevelle to this event. While he flourished early on as an independent race car driver, he quickly floundered after being able to compete against NASCAR racing legends like LeeRoy Yarbrough and David Pearson on a consistent basis.

Gene Black, Blaine Kauffman, and David Mote would end their top-level professional stock car careers at this event. The transition to purposely-built racers began in the early 1960s and occurred gradually over that decade. Changes made to the sport by the late 1960s brought an end to the "strictly stock" vehicles of the 1950s; most of the cars were trailered to events or hauled in by trucks.

Finishing order

† signifies that the driver is known to be deceased
* Driver failed to finish race

Timeline

  • Start of race: LeeRoy Yarbrough began the event with the pole position
  • Lap 2: David Pearson took over the lead from LeeRoy Yarbrough
  • Lap 3: LeeRoy Yarbrough took over the lead from David Pearson
  • Lap 18: Roy Tyner blew his vehicle's engine while racing at high speeds
  • Lap 39: Bobby Isaac took over the lead from LeeRoy Yarbrough
  • Lap 40: Richard Petty took over the lead from Bobby Isaac
  • Lap 41: LeeRoy Yarbrough took over the lead from Richard Petty
  • Lap 74: Don Tarr had a terminal crash, forcing him to retire from the event prematurely
  • Lap 96: Richard Petty took over the lead from LeeRoy Yarbrough
  • Lap 97: LeeRoy Yarbrough took over the lead from Richard Petty
  • Lap 111: Stan Meserve managed to lose the rear end of his vehicle
  • Lap 119: Earl Brooks had a terminal crash, forcing him to retire from the event early
  • Lap 134: Richard Petty took over the lead from LeeRoy Yarbrough
  • Lap 135: Bobby Isaac took over the lead from Richard Petty
  • Lap 136: Richard Petty took over the lead from Bobby Isaac
  • Lap 145: LeeRoy Yarbrough took over the lead from Richard Petty
  • Lap 162: Richard Petty blew his vehicle's engine while racing at high speeds
  • Lap 168: Buck Baker blew his vehicle's engine while racing at high speeds
  • Lap 191: Buddy Baker blew his vehicle's engine while racing at high speeds
  • Lap 231: Darel Dieringer blew his vehicle's engine while racing at high speeds
  • Lap 249: Blaine Kauffmann notice that the oil in his vehicle was leaking badly, forcing him to exit the race with a somewhat respectable 17th-place finish
  • Lap 250: Bobby Isaac blew his vehicle's engine while racing at high speeds
  • Lap 254: Bill Champion blew his vehicle's engine while racing at high speeds
  • Finish: LeeRoy Yarbrough was officially declared the winner of the event
  • References

    1968 Northern 300 Wikipedia


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