Statistical Advance: SHOWTIME Southern 500 At Darlington Raceway

Credit: John Harrelson/Getty Images for NASCAR

Darlington Raceway Data

Track Size: 1.366 miles
· Banking/Corners: 23-25 degrees
· Banking/Frontstretch: 6 degrees
· Banking/Backstretch: 6 degrees
· Frontstretch: 1,229 feet
· Backstretch: 1,229 feet

History

· Built as a 1.25-mile paved superspeedway in 1949-50, Darlington Raceway hosted the first 500-mile race in NASCAR history and the first on asphalt on Sept. 4, 1950.
· The track was re-measured to 1.375 miles in 1953.
· The track was re-configured to 1.366 miles following the spring race in 1970.
· The track was repaved in 1995.
· The 2005 race was the first Saturday night race at Darlington.
· The track was repaved again prior to the 2008 season.
· There have been 107 NASCAR Sprint Cup races at Darlington Raceway since the track opened in 1950.
· There was one race per year in 1950, 1951, from 1953-1959, and again every year since 2005. Darlington held two races a season in all other years.
· Curtis Turner won the first pole, in 1950.
· Johnny Mantz won the first race, in 1950.
· 47 drivers have posted poles at Darlington.
· David Pearson leads all drivers with 12 poles at Darlington.
· 44 drivers have won races at Darlington; 25 drivers have won more than once there.
· David Pearson leads all drivers with 10 victories, followed by Dale Earnhardt with nine.
· Jeff Gordon is third overall and leads all active drivers, with seven victories.
· Hendrick Motorsports has won 13 races at Darlington, more than any other organization.
· Darlington is the site of one of the closest race finishes in NASCAR history. Ricky Craven edged Kurt Busch by 0.002 seconds on March 16, 2003 – which is tied with Talladega (April 17, 2011) as the closest margin of victory since NASCAR instituted electronic timing in 1993.

Driver Rating at Darlington

Jeff Gordon 117.6
Greg Biffle 113.8
Denny Hamlin 109.1
Jimmie Johnson 102.8
Ryan Newman 99.9
Kyle Busch 97.2
Martin Truex Jr. 93.3
Dale Earnhardt Jr. 92.9
Kasey Kahne . 90.3
Mark Martin 90.1
Jeff Burton 89.8
Matt Kenseth 89.8

Note: Driver Rating compiled from 2005-2010 races (6 total) at Darlington.

Qualifying/Race Data

2010 pole winner: Jamie McMurray (180.370 mph, 27.264 seconds)
2010 race winner: Denny Hamlin (126.605 mph, 05-08-10)
Track qualifying record: Jamie McMurray (180.370 mph, 27.264 seconds, 05-08-10)
Track race record: Kyle Busch (140.350 mph, 05-10-08)

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