Austin Dillon

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Austin Dillon
Austin Dillon Road America 2013.jpg
Dillon at Road America in 2013
Born (1990-04-27) April 27, 1990 (age 24)
Lewisville, North Carolina, U.S.
Achievements 2011 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Champion
2013 NASCAR Nationwide Series Champion
Awards 2008 K&N Pro Series East Rookie of the Year
2010 Camping World Truck Series Rookie of the Year
2011 Camping World Truck Series Most Popular Driver
2012 NASCAR Nationwide Series Rookie of the Year
NASCAR Sprint Cup Series career
36 race(s) run over 4 year(s)
Car no., team No. 3 (Richard Childress Racing)
2013 position 54th
Best champ.
finish
54th (2013)
First race 2011 Hollywood Casino 400 (Kansas)
Last race 2014 Pure Michigan 400 (Michigan)
Wins Top tens Poles
0 3 1
NASCAR Nationwide Series career
77 race(s) run over 6 year(s)
2013 position 1st
Best champ.
finish
1st (2013)
First race 2008 Emerson Radio 250 (Richmond)
Last race 2013 Ford EcoBoost 300 (Homestead)
First win 2012 Feed the Children 300 (Kentucky)
Last win 2012 Kentucky 300 (Kentucky)
Wins Top tens Poles
2 53 10
NASCAR Camping World Truck Series career
61 race(s) run over 5 year(s)
Truck no., team No. 20 (NTS Motorsports)
No. 3 (Richard Childress Racing)
No. 2 (Richard Childress Racing)
2013 position 86th
Best champ.
finish
1st (2011)
First race 2009 Lucas Oil 200 (Iowa)
Last race 2014 Careers for Veterans 200 (Michigan)
First win 2010 Lucas Oil 200 (Iowa)
Last win 2014 Pocono Mountains 150 (Pocono)
Wins Top tens Poles
6 39 12
NASCAR Canadian Tire Series career
1 race(s) run over 1 year(s)
Best champ.
finish
45th (2012)
First race 2012 NAPA Autopro 100 (Montreal)
Wins Top tens Poles
0 1 0
Statistics current as of August 17, 2014.

Austin Dillon (born April 27, 1990)[1] is an American stock car racing driver. He is the son of former driver and RCR general manager Mike Dillon, brother of Ty Dillon and grandson of Richard Childress. He currently drives the No. 3 Dow Chemical Company/General Mills Chevrolet SS for Richard Childress Racing in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.

After winning Rookie of the Year in the Camping World Truck Series in 2010, Dillon won the Truck Series championship in 2011, and later the Nationwide Series Championship in 2013, also one year after his ROTY title in 2012. He holds the record for most consecutive poles in the Nationwide Series with four.

Racing career[edit]

2008: K&N Pro Series East[edit]

Dillon was the 2008 Sunoco Rookie of the Year in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series East after one win at Greenville-Pickens Speedway, one Pole and ten top-10s in 13 races.[2] In 2008 and 2009, he drove the #2 Chevrolet Impala part-time for Richard Childress Racing in the NASCAR Nationwide Series with sponsorship from Chevrolet. His career best finish was 4th at Memphis Motorsports Park in 2008.

2009–2011: Camping World Truck Series[edit]

He made his first Camping World Truck Series start at Iowa Speedway, driving the #3 truck. This was the first time that the No. 3 had appeared in any of the three major series since Dale Earnhardt, Jr. used it in the Nationwide Series back in 2002. Dillon was supposed to start the Mountain Dew 250 at Talladega Superspeedway during the 2009 Camping World Truck Series season, but the truck failed track inspections, thus his time was removed and was not allowed to race. Dillon would drive the #3 truck full-time in 2010 for Rookie of the Year, with sponsorship from Bass Pro Shops. Despite crashing out early at Daytona, Dillon got his first career pole at Texas Motor Speedway in June and finished 3rd and led 20 laps. On July 11, 2010, Dillon scored his first career NASCAR victory in the Lucas Oil 200 at Iowa Speedway in the Camping World Truck Series and won a Truck Series race in a truck wearing the No. 3 for the first time since Bryan Reffner won for Team Menard in 2000 at Texas Motor Speedway.

Dillion would win his record setting 5th pole the most for a rookie in series history. Along with the pole he would lead over 92 laps of 146 to claim his 2nd win of the season at Las Vegas and the second of his career. Dillon was also rookie of the year ending the season with 2 wins 7 top 5s and 16 top 10s.

In 2011, Dillon scored his first win of the year at Nashville Superspeedway. Dillon scored his second win of 2011 at Chicagoland Speedway, beating Kevin Harvick and Kyle Busch. After rain shortened the season finale at the Homestead-Miami Speedway, Dillon was crowned 2011 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Champion. He also won the 2011 CWTS Most Popular Driver Award. In 2012 he moved up to the Nationwide Series full-time, driving the #3 for RCR.

2011–present: Sprint Cup and Nationwide[edit]

Dillon made his first career start in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series on October 9, 2011, in the Hollywood Casino 400 at Kansas Speedway. He finished 26th in his No. 98 Camping World Curb/Agajanian Racing Chevrolet Impala.[3]

On November 4, 2011, Richard Childress Racing announced that Dillon would be moving up to the NASCAR Nationwide Series in 2012, driving the No. 3 that Dale Earnhardt made famous, with sponsorship from AdvoCare and American Ethanol.[4][5]

Dillon's 2012 Nationwide Series car

Dillon scored top-five finishes in each of the first two races of the 2012 Nationwide Series season.

Dillon competed in the Sprint Cup Series on a limited basis in 2012, starting at Michigan International Speedway in June, driving the No. 33 Chevrolet for Richard Childress Racing.[3][6]

On June 29, 2012, Dillon recorded his first Nationwide series win at Kentucky Speedway; he dominated the race by leading all but 8 laps and won by over 9.8 seconds over second place. However, NASCAR officials announced the car had failed post-race inspection because the rear ride heights were too low.[7] The penalty cost Dillon six points and the championship lead. Dillon won the pole at the Subway Jalapeno 250 at Daytona, but again failed inspection and was stripped of his starting spot. Dillon nearly won the race until a last-lap spin lowered him to fourth.

Dillion also participated in one race in the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series at Circuit Gilles-Villeuneuve in Montreal in August 2012. Dillion finished 7th while driving the no. 4 car for Fitzpatrick Motorsports.[8]

Dillon announced in August 2012 that he would continue to drive full-time in the Nationwide Series for 2013, along with running seven Sprint Cup Series races that year, including the 2013 Daytona 500.[9] In January 2013 it was announced that some of Dillon's Sprint Cup races that season would be in Phoenix Racing's No. 51 Chevrolet.[10]

Dillon returned to the Truck Series for the inaugural Mudsummer Classic at Eldora Speedway, leading a race-high 63 laps,[11] and won after a green-white-checker finish.[12] The truck, the trophy and the famed piece of dirt track are on display at NASCAR Hall of Fame. Later in the year Dillon substituted for the ailing Brennan Newberry in the Truck Series race at Chicagoland Speedway.[13]

2013 championship car

In early August 2013, it was announced that Dillon would substitute for Tony Stewart in the No. 14 Stewart-Haas Racing Chevrolet at Michigan due to Stewart's leg injury;[14] he would also drive the car at Talladega Superspeedway in October.[15] In Dillon's run at Talladega, he performed well during the event, and was running in the top five for most of the day; at the white flag, Dillon was third behind Jamie McMurray and Dale Earnhardt, Jr. and was about to give Earnhardt, Jr. a push for an attempt to make a winning pass when he was turned by Ricky Stenhouse, Jr., slammed the backstretch wall, then was sent airborne when struck head-on by Casey Mears.[16]

On November 16, 2013, Dillon won the NASCAR Nationwide Series Championship with a 12th-place finish in the season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway. Dillon's series championship was unusual because he did not win any races during the season; this marked the first time in any of NASCAR's three national series that a season champion went winless.[17]

On December 11, 2013, it was announced by RCR that Dillon will drive the #3 in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series with Cheerios and The Dow Chemical Company as his primary sponsors. It would be the #3 car's first Sprint Cup appearance in 13 years.[18]

To this day many fans are upset with Dillon, claiming that he is being very disrespectful for driving the legendary #3 car after the 7-time Champion, Dale Earnhardt, died in the #3 car. Part of this outrage comes from a previous feud in 2013 where Dillon's younger brother Ty feuded with RCR teammate Kevin Harvick and Harvick called the Dillon boys "Spoiled punk-(expletive) rich kids who have no respect for what they do in this sport." Though Harvick had later apologized for the comments, he received praise from many fans and experts for his comments. Not only that but the Earnhardt fans and 90% of Earnhardt's family (Excluding Dale Earnhardt Jr.) also believe that the #3 is the personal property of the Earnhardt family; while Dale Earnhardt Jr., Austin Dillon, RCR, the fellow drivers, & NASCAR do not see it that way. Despite Dale Sr.'s mother later accepting the #3's return, many fans to this day still think it's wrong.

During 2014 Daytona 500 qualifying, Dillon clinched the pole position with a speed of 196.019 miles per hour (315.462 km/h).[19] Dillon had a rather fast start to 2014, posting an 8th place finish in the Daytona 500 and two consecutive 11th place finishes at Bristol and Fontana.

After a long streak of bad finishes, Austin Dillon rebounded in the 2014 Pocono 400. He qualified 11th and ran in the top ten during the first half of the event. However any chance at a top ten finish or win had ended on lap 106 when Dillon was penalized by NASCAR for moving lanes before the restart. After going down 3 laps, Dillon recovered for 17th. Dillon returned to Daytona, the site of his most notable Daytona 500 pole, with a career best finish of 5th, when the race was shortened due to rain. Dillon then earned another top 10 finish at Indianapolis. Austin Dillon then won his 6th truck race at Pocono, his first win since Eldora.

Personal life[edit]

Dillon is attending High Point University on a part-time basis.[20] Dillon also played in the 2002 Little League World Series in South Williamsport, Pennsylvania.[21]

Dillon is a Christian. Dillon stated repetitively in a few interviews that whenever he wins he gives 50% of the credit to God.

Dillon is also the co-chair of the Reagan Foundation's National Youth Leadership Committee.[citation needed]

Motorsports career results[edit]

NASCAR[edit]

(key) (Bold - Pole position awarded by time. Italics - Pole position earned by points standings. * – Most laps led.)

Sprint Cup Series[edit]

Nationwide Series[edit]

Camping World Truck Series[edit]

* Season in progress
1 Ineligible for series points

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Driver's stats at racing-reference.info
  2. ^ Driver's bio at teamdillonracing.com
  3. ^ a b "Austin Dillon Event Preview: Michigan 400". Richard Childress Racing. June 12, 2012. Retrieved 2012-06-13. 
  4. ^ Bromberg, Nick (November 4, 2011). "Austin Dillon to drive No. 3 in Nationwide Series in 2012". From the Marbles. Yahoo! Sports. Retrieved 2012-03-04. 
  5. ^ "American Ethanol to sponsor Austin Dillon, Richard Childress Racing in 2012". AutoWeek. January 22, 2012. Retrieved 2012-03-04. 
  6. ^ "American Ethanol Launches Public Awareness Campaign". Hoosier Ag Today. June 8, 2012. Retrieved 2012-06-11. 
  7. ^ Rookie Dillon's car fails postrace inspection after dominating Nationwide win in Kentucky
  8. ^ "NCATS Montreal 8/18/12 Results". Nascar. Retrieved 2012-08-18. 
  9. ^ Turnbull, Doug (August 11, 2012). "Dillons’ NASCAR future paved in gold (or black)". WSB Radio. Atlanta, GA. Retrieved 2012-08-11. 
  10. ^ Newton, David (January 11, 2013). "Austin Dillon to drive 51 car at Vegas". ESPN. Retrieved 2013-01-11. 
  11. ^ DiZinno, Tony (July 24, 2013). "Austin Dillon wins NASCAR Trucks’ inaugural Mudsummer Classic". NBC Sports. Retrieved 2013-07-24. 
  12. ^ "Austin Dillon wins on dirt at Eldora". Sports Illustrated. July 24, 2013. Retrieved 2013-07-24. 
  13. ^ "Former champ Dillon to drive Truck". Fox Sports. September 13, 2013. Retrieved 2013-09-13. 
  14. ^ Bromberg, Nick (2013-08-12). "Austin Dillon subbing for Tony Stewart at Michigan". Yahoo! Sports. Retrieved 2013-08-12. 
  15. ^ "Tony Stewart to miss rest of season because of broken bones in his leg". Washington Post (Washington, DC). August 19, 2013. Retrieved 2013-08-19. [dead link]
  16. ^ Gluck, Jeff (October 20, 2013). "Austin Dillon goes on wild ride in last lap at Talladega". USA Today (McLean, VA). Retrieved 2013-11-19. 
  17. ^ Olson, Jeff (November 16, 2013). "Austin Dillon wins Nationwide title in celebrated No. 3". USA Today. 
  18. ^ Racing, RCR (December 11, 2013). "RCR announces lineup for 2014". Richard Childress Racing. Retrieved December 11, 2013. 
  19. ^ Fryer, Jenna (February 16, 2014). "Austin Dillon puts No. 3 on pole for Daytona 500". Yahoo! Sports. Retrieved February 16, 2014. 
  20. ^ Haynes, Pam. "HPU's Austin Dillon Races To Another Success In NASCAR World Truck Series". High Point University. Retrieved 22 April 2013. 
  21. ^ Pockrass, Bob (2013-08-16). "Austin Dillon used to pressure after playing in Little League World Series". Sporting News. Retrieved 2013-09-25. 

External links[edit]

Sporting positions
Preceded by
Ricky Stenhouse, Jr.
NASCAR Nationwide Series Champion
2013
Succeeded by
Incumbent
Preceded by
Todd Bodine
NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Champion
2011
Succeeded by
James Buescher
Achievements
Preceded by
Timmy Hill
NASCAR Nationwide Series Rookie of the Year
2012
Succeeded by
Kyle Larson
Preceded by
Johnny Sauter
NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Rookie of the Year
2010
Succeeded by
Joey Coulter
Awards
Preceded by
Narain Karthikeyan
NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Most Popular Driver
2011
Succeeded by
Nelson Piquet, Jr.