Red Farmer

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"Red" Farmer
Born ? Disputed (1928-1932)
Nashville, Tennessee, United States
Achievements 1969 Late Model Sportsman Division Champion
1970 Late Model Sportsman Division Champion
1971 Late Model Sportsman Division Champion
1956 NASCAR Modified Champion
Awards Named one of NASCAR's 50 Greatest Drivers (1998)
National Dirt Late Model Hall of Fame (2002)
International Motorsports Hall of Fame (2004)
NASCAR Sprint Cup Series career
36 race(s) run over 13 year(s)
Best finish 50th (1968)
First race 1953 untitled race (Daytona Beach)
Last race 1975 Talladega 500 (Talladega)
Wins Top tens Poles
0 3 0
NASCAR Nationwide Series career
2 race(s) run over 1 year(s)
Best finish 72nd (1992)
First race 1992 Fram Filter 500k (Talladega)
Last race 1992 Kroger 200 (IRP)
Wins Top tens Poles
0 0 0
Statistics current as of May 3, 2013.

Charles "Red" Farmer (born in Nashville, Tennessee) is a former NASCAR racecar driver. His birthday is disputed but he was born sometime between 1928 and 1932.

Racing career[edit]

His first race was at Opa-locka Speedway near Miami, Florida in a 1934 Ford in 1948. He became famous as a member of the Alabama Gang and he considered his hometown to be Hueytown, Alabama. Estimates of Farmer's career victories range from 700 to 900 victories, most occurring in the late 1950s and early 60's. He raced 36 NASCAR races from 1953 to 1975. He won numerous championships at local tracks. He was the NASCAR National Late Model Sportsman champion (later Nationwide Series) for three consecutive years from 1969 to 1971. Farmer's best finish in NASCAR's top division was a fourth at both the 1972 Talladega 500, and the 1968 Middle Georgia 500 near Macon, Georgia). He had so few Cup races because he was content to run primarily in the Late Model Sportsman. He was named NASCAR's most popular driver 4 times. Red later raced in the white and gold #97 car. In the mid 60's, however, Red raced a white, gold, and red Ford Fairlane, #F-97.

He was Davey Allison's crew chief in the Busch Series.

Red has retained his skills as a driver in spite of his age. He competed in two Busch Grand National races in 1992, and the season opening ARCA event at Daytona in 1993. On June 2005, Farmer, now over 70, turned heads in winning a heat over current NASCAR Sprint Cup stars, and finished 8th in the feature during the Sprint Prelude to the Dream at Eldora Speedway, owned by Tony Stewart.

As of 2012, Farmer still regularly competes at Talladega Short Track,[1] a 1/3 mile oval dirt track in Eastaboga, Alabama located near the Talladega Superspeedway.[2] His Grandson, Lee Burdett, also races there.

Awards[edit]

His accolades are numerous. He's a member of 5 halls of fame. Red was named one of the 50 Greatest Drivers in NASCAR history in 1998. He was a member of the first Class of Inductees into the Talladega-Texaco Walk Of Fame. When the International Motorsports Hall of Fame inducted Red, they had to waive their rule of 5 years of retirement - they figured that he never would retire.

Birthdate[edit]

The International Motorsports Hall of Fame lists his birthyear as 1928,[3] but other sources list his birthdate as October 15, 1932.[4] He was asked by stockcarracing.com: "You've been coy about your age over the years. I've read that you were born in 1928, 1929, or maybe even 1930 or 1931. What year was it?" Farmer replied: "Hey, I ain't sure. When I was born I was too young to read the birth certificate." The interviewer followed up with "We'll just go with 1928, how's that?" Farmer replied "There is so many that I can't even figure it out. I ain't even sure myself anymore."[5]

Helicopter crash[edit]

On July 12, 1993, Farmer was a passenger in a helicopter crash at Talladega Superspeedway that took the life of NASCAR driver Davey Allison, which occurred as Allison was attempting to land the aircraft in a nearby parking lot. The two were en route to the track in order to watch David Bonnett (son of fellow Alabama Gang driver Neil Bonnett) drive in a practice session.[6] Farmer suffered a broken collarbone and fractured ribs in the crash.[7]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Demmons, Doug (September 26, 2013). "NASCAR legend Red Farmer has a prescription for what ails short tracks". The Birmingham News. Retrieved 5 July 2013. 
  2. ^ "Talladega Short Track - Track Information". Retrieved 5 July 2013. 
  3. ^ Biography at the International Motorsports Hall of Fame at the Wayback Machine (archived May 8, 2006), Retrieved November 6, 2006
  4. ^ Career NASCAR statistics at racing-reference.info
  5. ^ StockcarRacing.com interview
  6. ^ Siano, Joseph (July 14, 1993). "Davey Allison, Stock-Car Driver, Dies at 32 After Helicopter Crash". The New York Times. Retrieved 5 July 2013. 
  7. ^ Hinton, Ed (July 26, 1993). "Requiem For A Racing Man". Sports Illustrated. Retrieved 5 July 2013. 

External links[edit]