Girish Mahajan (Editor)

1980 Firecracker 400

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Official name  Firecracker 400
1980 Firecracker 400
Date  July 4, 1980 (1980-July-04)
Location  Daytona Speedway, Daytona Beach, Florida
Course  Permanent racing facility 2.500 mi (4.023 km)
Distance  160 laps, 400 mi (643 km)
Weather  Temperatures reaching a maximum of 88.9 °F (31.6 °C); wind speeds reaching a maximum of 10.1 miles per hour (16.3 km/h)

The 1980 Firecracker 400 was a NASCAR Winston Cup Series racing event that took place on July 4, 1980, at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida.


One hundred and sixty laps of stock car racing would result in a final win for Mercury in the Winston Cup Series (now Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series) before the manufacturer was "legislated out of NASCAR" due to rule changes reducing the wheelbase of the tires from 110 inches (9.2 ft) to 105 inches (8.8 ft).


Bobby Allison would be the final driver to win for the Mercury brand name for the Ford Motor Company; he would beat David Pearson by six car lengths. Other notable competitors included Dale Earnhardt, Richard Petty, Richard Childress and Bill Elliott. Out of forty participants, eleven competitors failed to finish the race. Cale Yarborough would be credited for finishing last place with an overheated engine. The race took two hours, eighteen minutes, and eleven seconds to complete. All drivers were born in the United States of America. Only manual transmission vehicles were allowed to participate in this race; a policy that NASCAR has retained to the present day.

Safety regulations made within the 1980s and 1990s would slow down the speed of vehicles in both the Firecracker 400 and the Daytona 500. The average speed for this race was a race record 173.473 miles per hour (279.178 km/h) while the pole position speed was 194.670 miles per hour (313.291 km/h). Three cautions were given out for eleven laps. Fifty-four thousand spectators were in attendance. Out of the forty drivers in the grid, ten of them would fail to finish the race due to car problems. On the day after the race, Lennie Pond would make a celebrity appearance at a Burger King in nearby South Daytona; entertaining customers for three hours in the days before celebrity appearances were mainstream in the racing community.

Rick Wilson made his NASCAR debut in this event while Phil Finney and John Greenwood would retire from all forms of NASCAR racing after participating in this race.

Finishing order

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


1980 Firecracker 400 Wikipedia