1979 World 600

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1979 World 600
Race details
Race 13 of 31 in the 1979 NASCAR Winston Cup Series season
Map of Charlotte Motor Speedway
Map of Charlotte Motor Speedway
Date May 27, 1979 (1979-May-27)
Location Charlotte Motor Speedway (Concord, North Carolina)
Course Permanent racing facility
1.500 mi (2.414 km)
Distance 400 laps, 600 mi (965 km)
Weather Temperatures reaching up to 75.9 °F (24.4 °C); wind speeds up to 18.1 miles per hour (29.1 km/h)[1]
Average speed 136.674 miles per hour (219.955 km/h)
Pole position
Driver Neil Bonnett Wood Brothers Racing
Most laps led
Driver Darrell Waltrip DiGard Motorsports
Laps 175
No. 88
Darrell Waltrip
DiGard Motorsports
Television in the United States
Network CBS
Announcers Ken Squier
David Hobbs

The 1979 World 600 was a NASCAR Winston Cup Series race that took place on May 27, 1979, at Charlotte Motor Speedway in Concord, North Carolina.

Before the performance, a skydiver was brought in to bring thrills to the live audience; he would parachute into one of the turns. There was also an invocation service followed by the American national anthem. Vehicles that were entered into this race would have a wheelbase of 115 inches or 2.9 metres; bringing a form of stock car racing that emulates the production vehicles of the late-1970s. NASCAR's decision to reduce the wheelbase size to 110 inches or 2.8 metres would scale down the adrenaline level of the Cup Series races starting in 1981.


Darrell Waltrip and Dale Earnhardt would fight it out on the closing laps of this race; Richard Petty would make a comeback and lose to Darrell Waltrip by a time of nearly six seconds.[2]

While Earnhardt seemed to be the natural choice to win the race due to the 122 laps that he led, Waltrip would mount an incredible racing strategy; causing him to lead at the most opportune times in the race. While Bobby Allison felt like a survivor after the race was over, Tighe Scott would see his opportunity for a "top ten" finished ruined with a tie rod issue on lap 372. Ron Hutcherson and Chuck Bown would fail to start the race due to various issues with their vehicle. There were 41 drivers on the starting grid; all of them born in the United States of America.[2] The duration of this race was 263 minutes with a live audience of 136,000 in attendance for what would become a race loaded with lead changes. Chevrolet vehicles dominated the starting grid; as they were the dominant American manufacturer during the late-1970s.[2]

Winnings for this event ranged from the winner's portion of $55,400 ($180,018.25 when adjusted for inflation) to the last-place takings of $1,165 ($3,785.58 when adjusted for inflation). NASCAR officials on-track handed out a grand total of $321,780 to everyone who qualified ($1,045,600.58 when adjusted for inflation).[3]

Top twenty finishers[edit]

Standings after the race[edit]

Pos Driver Points[2]
1 Darrell Waltrip 2066
2 Bobby Allison 2013
3 Cale Yarborough 1897
4 Richard Petty 1887
5 Dale Earnhardt 1756


  1. ^ Weather information for the 1979 World 600 at The Old Farmers' Almanac
  2. ^ a b c d 1979 World 600 at Racing Reference
  3. ^ 1979 World 600 at Fantasy Racing Cheat Sheet
Preceded by
1979 Mason-Dixon 500
NASCAR Winston Cup Season
Succeeded by
1979 Texas 400
Preceded by
World 600 races
Succeeded by