Pop Secret Microwave Popcorn 400

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Pop Secret Microwave Popcorn 400
Popsec400.jpg
Rockingham Speedway.svg
NASCAR Winston Cup Series
Venue North Carolina Speedway
Location Rockingham, North Carolina, United States
Corporate sponsor Pop Secret
First race 1965
Last race 2003
Distance 399.681 miles (643.224 km)
Laps 393
Previous names American 500 (1965–1981)
Walter W. Hodgdon American 500 (1982–1984)
Nationwise 500 (1985–1986)
AC Delco 500 (1987–1994)
AC Delco 400 (1995–1998)
Pop Secret Microwave Popcorn 400 (1999–2003)
Most wins (driver) Richard Petty
Cale Yarborough (4)
Most wins (team) Junior Johnson & Associates (8)
Most wins (manufacturer) Ford (12)
Circuit information
Surface Asphalt
Length 1.017 mi (1.637 km)
Turns 4

The Pop Secret Microwave Popcorn 400 was a NASCAR Winston Cup event that took place in November at the North Carolina Motor Speedway from 1965 to 2003. It was the first NASCAR Cup Series victory for three drivers including Mark Martin in 1989, Ward Burton in 1995, and Johnny Benson in 2002.

This race, typically run as the penultimate race of the NASCAR season, was dropped from the schedule after the 2003 season. The Pop Secret sponsorship was moved over to the newly acquired Labor Day date at California Speedway, while the late season date was originally taken over by the Southern 500 at Darlington and is now occupied by the AAA Texas 500 at Texas.

Past winners[edit]

Year Date No. Driver Team Manufacturer Race Distance Race Time Average Speed
(mph)
Report
Laps Miles (km)
1965 October 31 41 Curtis Turner Wood Brothers Racing Ford 500 500 (804.672) 4:54:17 101.942 Report
1966 October 30 28 Fred Lorenzen Holman-Moody Ford 500 500 (804.672) 4:47:30 104.348 Report
1967 October 29 11 Bobby Allison Holman-Moody Ford 500 500 (804.672) 5:04:49 98.42 Report
1968 October 27 43 Richard Petty Petty Enterprises Plymouth 500 500 (804.672) 4:45:33 105.06 Report
1969 October 26 98 LeeRoy Yarbrough Junior Johnson & Associates Ford 492 500.364 (805.257) 4:28:12 111.938 Report
1970 November 15 21 Cale Yarborough Wood Brothers Racing Mercury 492 500.364 (805.257) 4:14:24 117.811 Report
1971 October 24 43 Richard Petty Petty Enterprises Plymouth 492 500.364 (805.257) 4:24:43 113.405 Report
1972 October 22 12 Bobby Allison Richard Howard Chevrolet 492 500.364 (805.257) 4:13:49 118.275 Report
1973 October 21 21 David Pearson Wood Brothers Racing Mercury 492 500.364 (805.257) 4:14:57 117.749 Report
1974 October 20 21 David Pearson Wood Brothers Racing Mercury 492 500.364 (805.257) 4:13:21 118.493 Report
1975 October 19 11 Cale Yarborough Junior Johnson & Associates Chevrolet 492 500.364 (805.257) 4:09:54 120.129 Report
1976 October 24 43 Richard Petty Petty Enterprises Dodge 492 500.364 (805.257) 4:15:01 117.718 Report
1977 October 23 1 Donnie Allison Ellington Racing Chevrolet 492 500.364 (805.257) 4:24:18 113.584 Report
1978 October 22 11 Cale Yarborough Junior Johnson & Associates Oldsmobile 492 500.364 (805.257) 4:15:58 117.288 Report
1979 October 21 43 Richard Petty Petty Enterprises Chevrolet 492 500.364 (805.257) 4:37:04 108.356 Report
1980 October 19 11 Cale Yarborough Junior Johnson & Associates Chevrolet 492 500.364 (805.257) 4:22:59 114.159 Report
1981 November 1 11 Darrell Waltrip Junior Johnson & Associates Buick 492 500.364 (805.257) 4:39:32 107.399 Report
1982 October 31 11 Darrell Waltrip Junior Johnson & Associates Buick 492 500.364 (805.257) 4:20:47 115.122 Report
1983 October 30 44 Terry Labonte Billy Hagan Chevrolet 492 500.364 (805.257) 4:11:36 119.324 Report
1984 October 21 9 Bill Elliott Melling Racing Ford 492 500.364 (805.257) 4:26:35 112.617 Report
1985 October 20 11 Darrell Waltrip Junior Johnson & Associates Chevrolet 492 500.364 (805.257) 4:13:40 118.344 Report
1986 October 19 12 Neil Bonnett Junior Johnson & Associates Chevrolet 492 500.364 (805.257) 3:57:33 126.381 Report
1987 October 25 9 Bill Elliott Melling Racing Ford 492 500.364 (805.257) 4:13:52 118.258 Report
1988 October 23 27 Rusty Wallace Blue Max Racing Pontiac 492 500.364 (805.257) 4:29:07 111.557 Report
1989 October 22 6 Mark Martin Roush Racing Ford 492 500.364 (805.257) 4:23:10 114.079 Report
1990 October 21 7 Alan Kulwicki AK Racing Ford 492 500.364 (805.257) 3:57:25 126.452 Report
1991 October 20 28 Davey Allison Robert Yates Racing Ford 492 500.364 (805.257) 3:55:51 127.292 Report
1992 October 25 42 Kyle Petty SABCO Racing Pontiac 492 500.364 (805.257) 3:49:37 130.748 Report
1993 October 24 2 Rusty Wallace Penske Racing Pontiac 492 500.364 (805.257) 4:23:16 114.036 Report
1994 October 23 3 Dale Earnhardt Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet 492 500.364 (805.257) 3:57:30 126.408 Report
1995 October 22 22 Ward Burton Bill Davis Racing Pontiac 393 399.681 (643.224) 3:28:56 114.778 Report
1996 October 20 10 Ricky Rudd Rudd Performance
Motorsports
Ford 393 399.681 (643.224) 3:16:03 122.32 Report
1997 October 27 43 Bobby Hamilton Petty Enterprises Pontiac 393 399.681 (643.224) 3:17:00 121.73 Report
1998 November 1 24 Jeff Gordon Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 393 399.681 (643.224) 3:06:44 128.423 Report
1999 October 24 99 Jeff Burton Roush Racing Ford 393 399.681 (643.224) 3:02:55 131.103 Report
2000 October 22 88 Dale Jarrett Robert Yates Racing Ford 393 399.681 (643.224) 3:37:11 110.418 Report
2001 November 4 33 Joe Nemechek Andy Petree Racing Chevrolet 393 399.681 (643.224) 3:05:59 128.941 Report
2002 November 3 10 Johnny Benson Jr. MB2 Motorsports Pontiac 393 399.681 (643.224) 3:06:35 128.526 Report
2003 November 9 9 Bill Elliott Evernham Motorsports Dodge 393 399.681 (643.224) 3:34:44 111.677 Report

Multiple winners (drivers)[edit]

Alan Kulwicki's 1990 winner trophy
# Wins Manufacturer Years Won
4 Richard Petty 1968, 1971, 1976, 1979
Cale Yarborough 1970, 1975, 1978, 1980
3 Darrell Waltrip 1981–1982, 1985
Bill Elliott 1984, 1987, 2003
2 Bobby Allison 1967, 1972
David Pearson 1973–1974
Rusty Wallace 1988, 1993

Multiple winners (manufacturers)[edit]

# Wins Manufacturer Years Won
12 Ford 1965–1967, 1969, 1984, 1987, 1989–1991, 1996, 1999–2000
11 Chevrolet 1972, 1975, 1977, 1979–1980, 1983, 1985–1986, 1994, 1998, 2001
6 Pontiac 1988, 1992–1993, 1995, 1997, 2002
3 Mercury 1970, 1973–1974
2 Plymouth 1968, 1971
Buick 1981–1982
Dodge 1976, 2003

Notable races[edit]

  • 1965: Curtis Turner posted his final Grand National win, driving the Wood Brothers Racing #21 following his reinstatement to NASCAR.
  • 1967: Bobby Allison posted his first Rockingham win.
  • 1968: Richard Petty outlasted Cale Yarborough and Bobby Isaac for his only win of the season on a track bigger than a short track.
  • 1972: Bobby Allison battled Richard Petty, David Pearson, and Buddy Baker, ultimately leading 217 laps for his tenth win of 1972 and final win with the Richard Howard team led by Junior Johnson.
  • 1973: Pearson posted his eleventh win of the 1973 season while Benny Parsons won the season championship despite severe damage in an early crash.
  • 1976: Richard Petty defeated Lennie Pond for the win, despite several green-flag pitstops — Petty won despite 125 total seconds in the pits to Pond's 54 seconds.
  • 1977: Donnie Allison outclassed the field for his second win of the season.
  • 1979: Darrell Waltrip, entering the race with the Winston Cup point lead, finished a distant sixth as Petty grabbed the win and the point lead.
  • 1980: Multiple crashes thinned the field as Cale Yarborough took the win in a close points race with sophomore Dale Earnhardt. The race lead changed 35 times.
  • 1981: Darrell Waltrip and Bobby Allison, locked in a bitter point battle, finished 1-2; the lead changed 33 times in total and five times over the final 32 laps between Waltrip and Allison.
  • 1982: Allison spun out of the pits on his final pitstop and Waltrip seized the win.
  • 1983: Terry Labonte broke out of a duel with Tim Richmond for the win, his first in three years.
  • 1984: Bill Elliott edged Harry Gant in a photo finish after Gant seized the lead with two to go.
  • 2003: Bill Elliott's victory in this race was the last win of his career.

Television broadcasters[edit]

Year Network Lap-by-lap Color commentator(s)
1980 MRN TV
1981
1982 ESPN Bob Jenkins Larry Nuber
1983 ESPN Bob Jenkins Larry Nuber
1984 SETN Mike Joy Benny Parsons
1985 TBS Ken Squier Benny Parsons
1986 TBS Ken Squier Dave Despain
1987 TBS Ken Squier Johnny Hayes
1988 ESPN Bob Jenkins Ned Jarrett
1989 ESPN Bob Jenkins Benny Parsons and Ned Jarrett
1990 ESPN Bob Jenkins Benny Parsons and Ned Jarrett
1991 TNN Mike Joy Buddy Baker and Neil Bonnett
1992 TNN Mike Joy Buddy Baker and Neil Bonnett
1993 TNN Mike Joy Buddy Baker and Neil Bonnett
1994 TNN Mike Joy Buddy Baker and David Pearson
1995 TNN Mike Joy Buddy Baker and Dick Berggren
1996 TNN Eli Gold Buddy Baker and Dick Berggren
1997 TNN Eli Gold Buddy Baker and Dick Berggren
1998 TNN Eli Gold Buddy Baker and Dick Berggren
1999 TNN Eli Gold Buddy Baker and Dick Berggren
2000 TNN Eli Gold Buddy Baker and Dick Berggren
2001 TNT Allen Bestwick Benny Parsons and Wally Dallenbach
2002 TNT Allen Bestwick Benny Parsons and Wally Dallenbach
2003 TNT Allen Bestwick Benny Parsons and Wally Dallenbach

External links[edit]