1979 NASCAR Winston Cup Series

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1979 NASCAR Winston Cup Series season
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The 1979 NASCAR Winston Cup Series began on Sunday, January 14 and ended on Sunday, November 18. Richard Petty won his seventh and final Winston Cup championship, winning by 11 points over Darrell Waltrip. Dale Earnhardt was crowned NASCAR Rookie of the Year.

1979 NASCAR Winston Cup Series Drivers[edit]

Team Make # Driver Sponsor Car Owner Crew Chief
Arrington Racing Dodge Magnum 67 Buddy Arrington Reid Trailer Sales Buddy Arrington
Ballard Racing Buick Century 30 Tighe Scott Russ Togs Walter Ballard Harry Hyde
Oldsmobile Cutlass
Buick Century
50 Bruce Hill Global Heat Exchange
Bud Moore Engineering Ford Thunderbird 15 Bobby Allison Hodgdon
Bud Moore
Bud Moore
Cunningham-Kelley Racing Chevrolet Monte Carlo 14 Coo Coo Marlin Cunningham-Kelley H. B. Cunningham
DeWitt Racing Chevrolet Monte Carlo 72 Joe Millikan (R) Appliance Wheels L.G. DeWitt
DiGard Motorsports Chevrolet Monte Carlo 88 Darrell Waltrip Gatorade Bill Gardner Buddy Parrott
Donlavey Racing Mercury Montego
Ford Thunderbird
90 Ricky Rudd Truxmore
Sunny King
Junie Donlavey
Ellington Racing Chevrolet Monte Carlo 1 Donnie Allison Hawaiian Tropic Hoss Ellington Runt Pittman
George Elliott Racing Mercury Montego 9 Bill Elliott Yandle
Thermo King
George Elliott Ernie Elliott
Gordon Racing Oldsmobile Cutlass 24 Cecil Gordon Gordon-Barnicle Cecil Gordon
Gray Racing Chevrolet Monte Carlo 19 Dick May Belden Asphalt Henley Gray
Hagan Racing Chevrolet Monte Carlo 44 Terry Labonte (R) Stratagraph Billy Hagan
Hamby Motorsports Chevrolet Monte Carlo 17 Roger Hamby28 Days Inn Daytona Roger Hamby
Bill Elliott3
Hylton Racing Chevrolet Monte Carlo 48 James Hylton Palatine Auto Parts James Hylton
Junior Johnson & Associates Oldsmobile Cutlass 11 Cale Yarborough Busch Junior Johnson Travis Carter
Kennie Childers Racing Chevrolet Monte Carlo 12 Lennie Pond Kencoal Mining Kennie Childeɹrs
Langley Racing Ford Thunderbird 64 Tommy Gale Sunny King Ford & Honda Elmo Langley
M. C. Anderson Racing Chevrolet Monte Carlo 27 Benny Parsons Griffin Marine M. C. Anderson David Ifft
Marcis Auto Racing Chevrolet Monte Carlo 71 Dave Marcis Mr. Transmission Dave Marcis
McDuffie Racing Chevrolet Monte Carlo 70 J. D. McDuffie Bailey Excavating J. D. McDuffie
Means Racing Chevrolet Monte Carlo 52 Jimmy Means Mr. Transmission Jimmy Means
Nelson Malloch Racing Oldsmobile Cutlass
Chevrolet Monte Carlo
05 Dick Brooks Bearfinder Nelson Malloch
Rod Osterlund Racing Chevrolet Monte Carlo 2 Dale Earnhardt27 (R) Rod Osterlund Racing Rod Osterlund Jake Elder
David Pearson4
Petty Enterprises Chevrolet Monte Carlo 42 Kyle Petty STP Richard Petty
Lee Petty
Maurice Petty
43 Richard Petty Dale Inman
Price Racing Chevrolet Monte Carlo 45 Baxter Price Iron Peddlers Baxter Price
Race Hill Farm Team Chevrolet Monte Carlo 47 Harry Gant (R) Race Hill Farm Jack Beebe
Ranier-Lundy Racing Chevrolet Monte Carlo 28 Buddy Baker Spectra Motor Oil
W.I.N.
Harry Ranier Waddell Wilson
Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet Monte Carlo 3 Richard Childress CRC Chemicals Richard Childress
Robertson Racing Chevrolet Monte Carlo 25 Ronnie Thomas Stone's Cafeteria Don Robertson
Ulrich Racing Chevrolet Monte Carlo
Buick Century
40 D. K. Ulrich Midwestern Farm Lines D. K. Ulrich
Warren Racing Dodge Magnum 79 Frank Warren Native Tan Frank Warren
Wood Brothers Racing Mercury Montego 21 David Pearson8 Purolator Glen Wood Leonard Wood
Neil Bonnett23

Winston Western 500[edit]

The 1979 Winston Western 500 was run on January 14 at Riverside International Raceway at Riverside, California. David Pearson won the pole.

Top Ten Results

  1. 88–Darrell Waltrip
  2. 21–David Pearson
  3. 11–Cale Yarborough
  4. 73–Bill Schmitt
  5. 1–Donnie Allison
  6. 72–Joe Millikan
  7. 28–Buddy Baker
  8. 51–Jim Thirkettle
  9. 74–Tim Williamson
  10. 12–Harry Gant

Busch Clash[edit]

The inaugural Busch Clash, a non-points race for all of the pole winners from the previous season, was run on February 11 at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida. Benny Parsons started on the pole via a random draw.

Results

  1. 28–Buddy Baker
  2. 88–Darrell Waltrip
  3. 11–Cale Yarborough
  4. 27–Benny Parsons
  5. 15–Bobby Allison
  6. 21–David Pearson
  7. 54–Lennie Pond
  8. 5–Neil Bonnett
  9. 70–J. D. McDuffie

125 Mile Qualifying Races[edit]

The two Daytona 500 125-mile qualifying races were run on February 15 at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida. Buddy Baker and Donnie Allison started on the pole for races one and two, respectively.

Race One Top Ten Results

  1. 28–Buddy Baker
  2. 11–Cale Yarborough
  3. 27–Benny Parsons
  4. 15–Bobby Allison
  5. 21–David Pearson
  6. 90–Ricky Rudd
  7. 43–Richard Petty
  8. 67–Buddy Arrington
  9. 50–Bruce Hill
  10. 44–Terry Labonte

Cale Yarborough was pessimistic about rivals' chances against Baker, saying, "Baker is just pure horsepower."

Race Two Top Ten Results

  1. 88–Darrell Waltrip
  2. 51–A. J. Foyt
  3. 05–Dick Brooks
  4. 2–Dale Earnhardt
  5. 02–Dave Marcis
  6. 12–Harry Gant
  7. 47–Geoffrey Bodine
  8. 17–Roger Hamby
  9. 5–Neil Bonnett
  10. 00–John Utsman

Daytona 500[edit]

Main article: 1979 Daytona 500

The 21st annual Daytona 500 was run on February 18 at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida. Buddy Baker won the pole. The race, the first televised nationally in its entirety, ended in spectacular fashion, as races leaders Donnie Allison and Cale Yarborough crashed on the last lap in turn three, allowing Richard Petty to take the lead and win his sixth Daytona 500. During the cool-down lap, Allison and Yarborough got into a heated argument which later escalated into a fist-fight, which was later joined by Bobby Allison, who stepped to try to defend his brother. TV ratings were bolstered that day due to much of the U.S. Northeast being snowed in by a major blizzard. Petty would use the win as a springboard to his record seventh and final, championship but the going was anything but easy.

Top Ten Results

  1. 43–Richard Petty
  2. 88–Darrell Waltrip
  3. 51–A. J. Foyt
  4. 1–Donnie Allison
  5. 11–Cale Yarborough
  6. 30–Tighe Scott
  7. 68–Chuck Bown
  8. 2–Dale Earnhardt
  9. 14–Coo Coo Marlin
  10. 79–Frank Warren

Carolina 500[edit]

The 1979 Carolina 500 was run on March 4 at North Carolina Motor Speedway in Rockingham, North Carolina. Bobby Allison won the pole, but the story was Cale Yarborough and Donnie Allison, who crashed out of the lead on Lap 10 in a wreck that swept up five other cars.

Top Ten Results

  1. 15–Bobby Allison
  2. 72–Joe Millikan
  3. 05–Dick Brooks
  4. 30–Tighe Scott
  5. 3–Richard Childress
  6. 40–D. K. Ulrich
  7. 48–James Hylton
  8. 37–Dave Watson
  9. 79–Frank Warren
  10. 27–Benny Parsons

Richmond 400[edit]

The 1979 Richmond 400 was run on March 11 at Richmond Fairgrounds Raceway in Richmond, Virginia. The race had been postponed from its original date of February 25. Bobby Allison won the pole.

Top Ten Results

  1. 11–Cale Yarborough
  2. 15–Bobby Allison
  3. 88–Darrell Waltrip
  4. 27–Benny Parsons
  5. 43–Richard Petty
  6. 72–Joe Millikan
  7. 70–J. D. McDuffie
  8. 44–Terry Labonte
  9. 1–Donnie Allison
  10. 40–D. K. Ulrich

Atlanta 500[edit]

The 1979 Atlanta 500 was run on March 18 at Atlanta International Raceway in Hampton, Georgia. Buddy Baker won the pole and after a late yellow got tires and stormed away from Bobby Allison for his first win since May 1976. Driver Dave Watson accidentally struck a bystander on pit road and quit the race; it turned out to be his final race.

Top Ten Results

  1. 28–Buddy Baker
  2. 15–Bobby Allison
  3. 88–Darrell Waltrip
  4. 11–Cale Yarborough
  5. 27–Benny Parsons
  6. 02–Dave Marcis
  7. 1–Donnie Allison
  8. 72–Joe Millikan
  9. 90–Ricky Rudd
  10. 05–Dick Brooks

Northwestern Bank 400[edit]

The 1979 Northwestern Bank 400 was run on March 25 at North Wilkesboro Speedway in North Wilkesboro, North Carolina. Benny Parsons won the pole.

Top Ten Results

  1. 15–Bobby Allison
  2. 43–Richard Petty
  3. 27–Benny Parsons
  4. 2–Dale Earnhardt
  5. 88–Darrell Waltrip
  6. 70–J. D. McDuffie
  7. 3–Richard Childress
  8. 28–Buddy Baker
  9. 11–Cale Yarborough
  10. 72–Joe Millikan

Southeastern 500[edit]

The 1979 Southeastern 500 was run on April 1 at Bristol International Raceway in Bristol, Tennessee. Buddy Baker won the pole.

Top Ten Results

  1. 2–Dale Earnhardt
  2. 15–Bobby Allison
  3. 88–Darrell Waltrip
  4. 43–Richard Petty
  5. 27–Benny Parsons
  6. 1–Donnie Allison
  7. 44–Terry Labonte
  8. 72–Joe Millikan
  9. 48–James Hylton
  10. 90–Ricky Rudd
  • This was Dale Earnhardt's first Winston Cup career victory (and was a then-record for fewest races to 1st win in Cup Series, with Dale winning in just his 18th Cup start)

CRC Chemicals Rebel 500[edit]

The 1979 CRC Chemicals Rebel 500 was run on April 8 at Darlington Raceway in Darlington, South Carolina. Donnie Allison won the pole.

Top Ten Results

  1. 88–Darrell Waltrip
  2. 43–Richard Petty
  3. 1–Donnie Allison
  4. 27–Benny Parsons
  5. 28–Buddy Baker
  6. 11–Cale Yarborough
  7. 9–Bill Elliott
  8. 90–Ricky Rudd
  9. 05–Dick Brooks
  10. 72–Joe Millikan
  • Waltrip won this race following a fierce duel with Richard Petty; they exchanged the lead eight times in the final five laps and three times on the last lap alone.
  • This was also David Pearson's last race with the Wood Brothers, for whom he had driven the #21 Mercury since 1972. Following a tire-change pit stop, Pearson reached the pit road exit, when two tires came off his car (the lug nuts had not been tightened when he left the pits). Within a week, Pearson was fired from the team and replaced by Neil Bonnett.

Virginia 500[edit]

The 1979 Virginia 500 was run on April 22 at Martinsville Speedway in Martinsville, Virginia. Darrell Waltrip won the pole.

Top Ten Results

  1. 43–Richard Petty
  2. 28–Buddy Baker
  3. 88–Darrell Waltrip
  4. 15–Bobby Allison
  5. 72–Joe Millikan
  6. 47–Harry Gant
  7. 48–James Hylton
  8. 2–Dale Earnhardt
  9. 44–Terry Labonte
  10. 70–J. D. McDuffie
  • This was Petty's first win on a short track since 1975 and his first win in a Chevrolet.

Winston 500[edit]

The 1979 Winston 500 was run on May 6 at Alabama International Motor Speedway in Talladega, Alabama. Darrell Waltrip won the pole.

Top Ten Results

  1. 15–Bobby Allison
  2. 88–Darrell Waltrip
  3. 67–Buddy Arrington
  4. 43–Richard Petty
  5. 72–Joe Millikan
  6. 9–Bill Elliott
  7. 64–Tommy Gale
  8. 79–Frank Warren
  9. 44–Terry Labonte
  10. 14–Coo Coo Marlin
  • A 17-car crash erupted on the fourth lap when race-leader Baker blew a tire; Cale Yarborough came to a stop and got out of his car, then was hit by Dave Marcis' car, momentarily losing feeling in his legs; he recovered later that day.

Sun-Drop Music City USA 420[edit]

The 1979 Sun-Drop Music City USA 420 was run on May 12 at Nashville Speedway in Nashville, Tennessee. Joe Millikan won the pole.

Top Ten Results

  1. 11–Cale Yarborough
  2. 43–Richard Petty
  3. 15–Bobby Allison
  4. 2–Dale Earnhardt
  5. 70–J. D. McDuffie
  6. 3–Richard Childress
  7. 27–Benny Parsons
  8. 28–Buddy Baker
  9. 44–Terry Labonte
  10. 90–Ricky Rudd

Race notes The finish was marred by controversy. Richard Petty and Bobby Allison asserted that Cale Yarborough was a lap down at the finish. Said Petty, "He lost one lap when he spun (with J.D. McDuffie), then he lost another when he spent 22 seconds in the pits." Allison agreed, saying, "Richard won this race and I finished second. I don't know how they had Cale winning."

Mason-Dixon 500[edit]

The 1979 Mason-Dixon 500 was run on May 20 at Dover Downs International Speedway in Dover, Delaware. Darrell Waltrip won the pole.

Top Ten Results

  1. 21–Neil Bonnett
  2. 11–Cale Yarborough
  3. 28–Buddy Baker
  4. 15–Bobby Allison
  5. 2–Dale Earnhardt
  6. 44–Terry Labonte
  7. 27–Benny Parsons
  8. 72–Joe Millikan
  9. 12–Lennie Pond
  10. 67–Buddy Arrington

World 600[edit]

The 1979 World 600 was run on May 27 at Charlotte Motor Speedway in Concord, North Carolina. Neil Bonnett won the pole.

Top Ten Results

  1. 88–Darrell Waltrip
  2. 43–Richard Petty
  3. 2–Dale Earnhardt
  4. 11–Cale Yarborough
  5. 27–Benny Parsons
  6. 90–Ricky Rudd
  7. 44–Terry Labonte
  8. 7–Al Holbert
  9. 12–Lennie Pond
  10. 3–Richard Childress
  • The race saw 59 lead changes, a still-standing track record.

Texas 400[edit]

Main article: 1979 Texas 400

The 1979 Texas 400 was run on June 3 at Texas World Speedway in College Station, Texas. Buddy Baker won the pole. It was NASCAR's first visit to the track in College Station, Texas since 1973; the track had closed in 1974 but reopened with USAC racing in 1976.

Top Ten Results

  1. 88–Darrell Waltrip
  2. 15–Donnie Allison
  3. 28–Buddy Baker
  4. 11–Cale Yarborough
  5. 44–Terry Labonte
  6. 43–Richard Petty
  7. 3–Richard Childress
  8. 72–Joe Millikan
  9. 67–Buddy Arrington
  10. 48–James Hylton

NAPA Riverside 400[edit]

The 1979 NAPA Riverside 400 was run on June 10 at Riverside International Raceway in Riverside, California. Dale Earnhardt won the pole.

  1. 15–Bobby Allison
  2. 88–Darrell Waltrip
  3. 43–Richard Petty
  4. 11–Cale Yarborough
  5. 27–Benny Parsons
  6. 3–Richard Childress
  7. 70–J. D. McDuffie
  8. 93–Norm Palmer
  9. 67–Buddy Arrington
  10. 72–Joe Millikan

Gabriel 400[edit]

The 1979 Gabriel 400 was run on June 17 at Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn, Michigan. Neil Bonnett won the pole.

Top Ten Results

  1. 28–Buddy Baker
  2. 1–Donnie Allison
  3. 11–Cale Yarborough
  4. 21–Neil Bonnett
  5. 43–Richard Petty
  6. 2–Dale Earnhardt
  7. 15–Bobby Allison
  8. 90–Ricky Rudd
  9. 30–Tighe Scott
  10. 05–Dick Brooks
  • The lead changed 47 times among 11 drivers. Dale Earnhardt was criticized by Darrell Waltrip and Richard Petty when he nearly spun out trying to pass Neil Bonnett late in the race in front of both ("He nearly took us all out in the third turn," Waltrip said after the race).

Firecracker 400][edit]

Main article: 1979 Firecracker 400

The 1979 Firecracker 400 was run on July 4 at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida. Buddy Baker won the pole.

Top Ten Results

  1. 21–Neil Bonnett
  2. 27–Benny Parsons
  3. 2–Dale Earnhardt
  4. 88–Darrell Waltrip
  5. 43–Richard Petty
  6. 68–Chuck Bown
  7. 47–Harry Gant
  8. 72–Joe Millikan
  9. 05–Dick Brooks
  10. 51–A. J. Foyt

Busch Nashville 420[edit]

The 1979 Busch Nashville 420 was run on July 14 at Nashville Speedway in Nashville, Tennessee. Darrell Waltrip won the pole.

Top Ten Results

  1. 88–Darrell Waltrip
  2. 11–Cale Yarborough
  3. 2–Dale Earnhardt
  4. 27–Benny Parsons
  5. 43–Richard Petty
  6. 48–James Hylton
  7. 3–Richard Childress
  8. 70–J. D. McDuffie
  9. 25–Ronnie Thomas
  10. 52–Jimmy Means

Coca-Cola 500[edit]

The 1979 Coca-Cola 500 was run on July 30 at Pocono International Raceway in Long Pond, Pennsylvania. Initially scheduled for July 29, day-long rains forced postponement. Harry Gant won the pole.

Top Ten Results

  1. 11–Cale Yarborough
  2. 43–Richard Petty
  3. 28–Buddy Baker
  4. 27–Benny Parsons
  5. 90–Ricky Rudd
  6. 72–Joe Millikan
  7. 22–Darrell Waltrip
  8. 21–Neil Bonnett
  9. 15–Bobby Allison
  10. 30–Tighe Scott

Race notes

The lead changed a still-standing track record 55 times. Dale Earnhardt suffered broke collar bones in a bad crash in Turn Two. Darrell Waltrip lost five spots when he pitted under yellow with four to go for tires but the race never restarted. It cost him 19 points, a margin he would regret at the end of the season.

Talladega 500[edit]

The 1979 Talladega 500 was run on August 5 at Alabama International Motor Speedway in Talladega, Alabama. Neil Bonnett won the pole.

Top Ten Results

  1. 88–Darrell Waltrip
  2. 2–David Pearson
  3. 90–Ricky Rudd
  4. 43–Richard Petty
  5. 77–Jody Ridley
  6. 30–Tighe Scott
  7. 47–Harry Gant
  8. 67–Buddy Arrington
  9. 42–Kyle Petty
  10. 3–Richard Childress

This was David Pearson's first race after leaving the Wood Brothers. Pearson was hired to drive the #2 temporarily after Dale Earnhardt's injury.

Champion Spark Plug 400[edit]

The 1979 Champion Spark Plug 400 was run on August 19 at Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn, Michigan. David Pearson won the pole.

Top Ten Results

  1. 43–Richard Petty
  2. 28–Buddy Baker
  3. 27–Benny Parsons
  4. 2–David Pearson
  5. 08–John Anderson
  6. 72–Joe Millikan
  7. 90–Ricky Rudd
  8. 30–Tighe Scott
  9. 70–J. D. McDuffie
  10. 3–Richard Childress

Blackie Wangerin flipped out of track on Lap 2.

Volunteer 500[edit]

The 1979 Volunteer 500 was run on August 25 at Bristol International Raceway in Bristol, Tennessee. Richard Petty won the pole; it was his final pole as a driver and last for his racecar until 1996.

Top Ten Results

  1. 88–Darrell Waltrip
  2. 43–Richard Petty
  3. 15–Bobby Allison
  4. 27–Benny Parsons
  5. 11–Cale Yarborough
  6. 72–Joe Millikan
  7. 2–David Pearson
  8. 44–Terry Labonte
  9. 90–Ricky Rudd
  10. 17–Bill Elliott

Southern 500[edit]

The 1979 Southern 500 was run on September 3 at Darlington Raceway in Darlington, South Carolina. Bobby Allison won the pole. David Pearson won the race for Rod Osterlund in place of Dale Earnhardt who was sidelined due to rib injuries.

Top Ten Results

  1. 2–David Pearson
  2. 17–Bill Elliott
  3. 44–Terry Labonte
  4. 28–Buddy Baker
  5. 27–Benny Parsons
  6. 71–Dave Marcis
  7. 05–Dick Brooks
  8. 90–Ricky Rudd
  9. 43–Richard Petty
  10. 15–Bobby Allison
  • Darrell Waltrip had over a lap lead when he had an accident. Darrell Waltrip had to make a pit stop which put David Pearson on the lead lap as well. Waltrip was passed by David Pearson and then involved in a second accident. David Pearson would win by 2 laps over second place.

Capital City 400[edit]

The 1979 Capital City 400 was run on September 9 at Richmond Fairgrounds Raceway in Richmond, Virginia. Dale Earnhardt won the pole.

Top Ten Results

  1. 15–Bobby Allison
  2. 88–Darrell Waltrip
  3. 90–Ricky Rudd
  4. 2–Dale Earnhardt
  5. 11–Cale Yarborough
  6. 43–Richard Petty
  7. 71–Dave Marcis
  8. 27–Benny Parsons
  9. 47–Harry Gant
  10. 72–Joe Millikan

CRC Chemicals 500[edit]

The 1979 CRC Chemicals 500 was run on September 16 at Dover Downs International Speedway in Dover, Delaware. Dale Earnhardt won the pole.

Top Ten Results

  1. 43–Richard Petty
  2. 1–Donnie Allison
  3. 11–Cale Yarborough
  4. 28–Buddy Baker
  5. 72–Joe Millikan
  6. 15–Bobby Allison
  7. 71–Dave Marcis
  8. 90–Ricky Rudd
  9. 2–Dale Earnhardt
  10. 30–Tighe Scott

Old Dominion 500[edit]

The 1979 Old Dominion 500 was run on September 23 at Martinsville Speedway in Martinsville, Virginia. Darrell Waltrip won the pole.

Top Ten Results

  1. 28–Buddy Baker
  2. 43–Richard Petty
  3. 72–Joe Millikan
  4. 15–Bobby Allison
  5. 71–Dave Marcis
  6. 90–Ricky Rudd
  7. 67–Buddy Arrington
  8. 11–Cale Yarborough
  9. 44–Terry Labonte
  10. 40–D. K. Ulrich

Waltrip blew his engine after leading 188 laps; the DiGard team changed engines in a record 11 minutes. NASCAR outlawed mid-race engine changes after the 1979 season.

NAPA National 500[edit]

The 1979 NAPA National 500 was run on October 7 at Charlotte Motor Speedway in Concord, North Carolina. Neil Bonnett won the pole; it was the thirteenth straight Charlotte pole for the Wood Brothers.

Top Ten Results

  1. 11–Cale Yarborough
  2. 15–Bobby Allison
  3. 88–Darrell Waltrip
  4. 43–Richard Petty
  5. 1–Donnie Allison
  6. 27–Benny Parsons
  7. 9–Bill Elliott
  8. 05–Dick Brooks
  9. 40–D. K. Ulrich
  10. 2–Dale Earnhardt

Holly Farms 400[edit]

The 1979 Holly Farms 400 was run on October 14 at North Wilkesboro Speedway in North Wilkesboro, North Carolina. The race had been postponed two weeks due to rain. Dale Earnhardt won the pole.

Top Ten Results

  1. 27–Benny Parsons
  2. 15–Bobby Allison
  3. 43–Richard Petty
  4. 2–Dale Earnhardt
  5. 90–Ricky Rudd
  6. 44–Terry Labonte
  7. 25–Ronnie Thomas
  8. 40–D. K. Ulrich
  9. 67–Buddy Arrington
  10. 3–Richard Childress
  • The story of the race was Bobby Allison and Darrell Waltrip. On Lap 309 Waltrip sideswiped past Allison in Turn Three; coming onto the frontstretch Allison hooked Waltrip head-on into the wall. Benny Parsons took the lead at that point; Waltrip got repairs and under yellow began crowding Allison to the wall; NASCAR black-flagged Waltrip, but after pitting he went after Allison again. NASCAR competition director Bill Gazaway went onto the track and personally waved another black flag to Waltrip, making sure Waltrip stayed out of the way of the leaders. The wreck narrowed Waltrip's point lead over Richard Petty.

American 500[edit]

The 1979 American 500 was run on October 21 at North Carolina Motor Speedway in Rockingham, North Carolina. Buddy Baker won the pole.

Top Ten Results

  1. 43–Richard Petty
  2. 27–Benny Parsons
  3. 11–Cale Yarborough
  4. 1–Donnie Allison
  5. 2–Dale Earnhardt
  6. 88–Darrell Waltrip
  7. 3–Richard Childress
  8. 25–Ronnie Thomas
  9. 71–Dave Marcis
  10. 51–Slick Johnson
  • With the win, Petty finished erasing a 229-point gap to Waltrip and led the points standings.

Dixie 500[edit]

The 1979 Dixie 500 was run on November 4 at Atlanta International Raceway in Hampton, Georgia. Buddy Baker won the pole.

Top Ten Results

  1. 21–Neil Bonnett
  2. 2–Dale Earnhardt
  3. 11–Cale Yarborough
  4. 15–Bobby Allison
  5. 88–Darrell Waltrip
  6. 43–Richard Petty
  7. 44–Terry Labonte
  8. 90–Ricky Rudd
  9. 72–Joe Millikan
  10. 77–Jody Ridley
  • Waltrip took a two-point lead over Petty; it was the second straight race where the point lead changed hands.

Los Angeles Times 500[edit]

The 1979 Los Angeles Times 500 was run on November 18 at Ontario Motor Speedway in Ontario, California. Cale Yarborough won the pole.

Top Ten Results

  1. 27–Benny Parsons
  2. 15–Bobby Allison
  3. 11–Cale Yarborough
  4. 28–Buddy Baker
  5. 43–Richard Petty
  6. 21–Neil Bonnett
  7. 05–Dick Brooks
  8. 88–Darrell Waltrip
  9. 2–Dale Earnhardt
  10. 90–Ricky Rudd
  • Waltrip finished a lap down when he spun with John Rezek and pitted before the leaders did. Richard Petty won the championship by 11 points, then the smallest margin of victory in NASCAR history and the first time in the sanctioning body's history the point lead changed hands in the final race.

Final point standings[edit]

  1. 43-Richard Petty 4830
  2. 88-Darrell Waltrip 4819
  3. 15-Bobby Allison 4633
  4. 11-Cale Yarborough 4604
  5. 27-Benny Parsons 4256
  6. 72-Joe Millikan 4014
  7. 2-Dale Earnhardt 3749
  8. 3-Richard Childress 3735
  9. 90-Ricky Rudd 3642
  10. 44-Terry Labonte 3615

External links[edit]