List of NASCAR drivers who have won in each of top three series

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The National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR) is an American business venture that sanctions and governs multiple auto-racing sports events. The top three NASCAR national divisions are: Sprint Cup Series, operating since 1949; Xfinity Series, operating since 1982, and; Camping World Truck Series, operating since 1995. NASCAR drivers who have won in each of top three series are labeled Triple Threats.[1]

Starting with the inaugural 1995 season of the Camping World Truck Series, counting through the end of the 2015 NASCAR racing season, only 27 drivers have earned the Triple Threat moniker. The first driver to accomplish the feat was Ken Schrader, with his "Truck" win on 15 April 1995.

Triple Threats[edit]

Below is a list of 27 drivers, through August 28, 2016, who have won at least one race in each of the top three NASCAR national divisions.

The shortest time from first win to Triple Threat, and the youngest driver to become a Triple Threat, was accomplished by Kyle Busch, scoring his first win in each series within a 16-month span from May 14, 2004 to September 4, 2005—completing the feat at 20 years 4 months of age.

While no driver has completed all three of their first-ever Triple Threat wins in a single season, 7 of these drivers did go on to score a subsequent Triple Threat season: Terry Labonte (1995), Kevin Harvick (2003, 2010), Kyle Busch (2005–2011, 2013–2016), Denny Hamlin (2011), Brad Keselowski (2014), Joey Logano (2015), and Kyle Larson (2016).

With a win in the Truck race at Martinsville on April 9, 2005, Bobby Labonte became the first driver to complete a Triple Threat at the same track: 1992 Busch Winston Classic; 2002 Winston Cup Virginia 500; and 2005 Craftsman Truck Kroger 250.

With his win in the Cup race at Bristol on August 21, 2010, Kyle Busch became the first driver to complete a Triple Threat on the same weekend, winning the Bristol Motor Speedway-hosted: O'Reilly Auto Parts 200; Food City 250; and Irwin Tools Night Race.[2]

Showing only their first win in each of the top three NASCAR national divisions, the Triple Threat drivers are:

Driver 1st Sprint Cup Series Win 1st Xfinity Series Win 1st Camping World Truck Series Win
1. Ken Schrader 07-31-1988 Talladega 09-16-1989 Dover 04-15-1995 Saugus
2. Terry Labonte 09-01-1980 Darlington 10-05-1985 Charlotte 09-07-1995 Richmond
3. Mark Martin 10-22-1989 Rockingham 05-30-1987 Dover 09-28-1996 North Wilkesboro
4. Bobby Hamilton 10-27-1996 Phoenix 09-09-1989 Richmond 04-10-2000 Martinsville
5. Kevin Harvick 03-11-2001 Atlanta 07-29-2000 Gateway 11-08-2002 Phoenix
6. Greg Biffle 07-05-2003 Daytona 04-14-2001 Nashville SS 05-08-1999 Memphis
7. Jimmy Spencer 07-02-1994 Daytona 03-25-1989 Hickory 09-13-2003 New Hampshire
8. Jamie McMurray 10-13-2002 Charlotte 10-26-2002 Atlanta 10-23-2004 Martinsville
9. Tony Stewart 09-11-1999 Richmond 02-19-2005 Daytona 09-05-2002 Richmond
10. Steve Park 08-13-2000 Watkins Glen 04-19-1997 Nashville 02-25-2005 Fontana
11. Carl Edwards 03-20-2005 Atlanta 03-19-2005 Atlanta 07-12-2003 Kentucky
12. Bobby Labonte 05-28-1995 Charlotte 04-13-1991 Bristol 04-09-2005 Martinsville
13. Kasey Kahne 05-14-2005 Richmond 11-15-2003 Homestead 11-13-2004 Darlington
14. Kyle Busch 09-04-2005 Fontana 05-14-2004 Richmond 05-20-2005 Charlotte
15. Ricky Craven 10-15-2001 Martinsville 07-07-1991 Oxford Plains 10-22-2005 Martinsville
16. Kurt Busch 03-24-2002 Bristol 04-08-2006 Texas 07-01-2000 Milwaukee
17. Johnny Benson Jr. 11-03-2002 Rockingham 11-17-1994 Dover 06-17-2006 Michigan
18. Clint Bowyer 09-16-2007 New Hampshire 06-12-2005 Nashville 11-03-2006 Texas
19. Ryan Newman 09-15-2002 New Hampshire 08-18-2001 Michigan 10-25-2008 Atlanta
20. David Reutimann 05-25-2009 Charlotte 10-27-2007 Memphis 08-13-2005 Nashville SS
21. Elliott Sadler 03-25-2001 Bristol 05-18-1997 Nazareth 07-31-2010 Pocono
22. Michael Waltrip 02-18-2001 Daytona 09-17-1988 Dover 02-18-2011 Daytona
23. Denny Hamlin 06-11-2006 Pocono 03-05-2006 Mexico City 10-29-2011 Martinsville
24. Aric Almirola 07-06-2014 Daytona 06-23-2007 Milwaukee 05-15-2010 Dover
25. Brad Keselowski 04-26-2009 Talladega 06-07-2008 Nashville SS 08-21-2014 Bristol
26. Joey Logano 06-28-2009 New Hampshire 06-14-2008 Kentucky 03-28-2015 Martinsville
27. Kyle Larson 08-28-2016 Michigan 03-22-2014 Fontana 04-14-2013 Rockingham

Drivers with wins in two of the top three series[edit]

As of the end of the 2015 NASCAR racing season, an additional 45 drivers have scored wins in two of the top three NASCAR national divisions. Some of these drivers have retired from racing, making it unlikely that they will return (and win) to become a Triple Threat, while driver Jason Leffler's opportunity ended with his racing death on June 12, 2013.

Below is an alphabetical list of drivers who have scored victories in just two of the top three series.[3]

Driver 1st Sprint Cup Series Win 1st Xfinity Series Win 1st Camping World Truck Series Win
A. J. Allmendinger 08-10-2014 Watkins Glen 06-22-2013 Road America
Marcos Ambrose 08-15-2011 Watkins Glen 08-09-2008 Watkins Glen
Trevor Bayne 02-20-2011 Daytona 11-05-2011 Texas
Ryan Blaney 09-21-2013 Kentucky 09-15-2012 Iowa
Mike Bliss 10-15-2004 Charlotte 10-30-1995 North Wilkesboro
Todd Bodine 06-01-1991 Dover 10-02-2004 Fontana
Ron Bouchard 08-02-1981 Talladega 04-14-1984 Darlington
Chris Buescher 08-01-2016 Pocono 08-16-2014 Mid-Ohio
James Buescher 02-25-2012 Daytona 04-21-2012 Kansas
Jeff Burton 04-06-1997 Texas 09-22-1990 Martinsville
Derrike Cope 02-18-1990 Daytona 05-07-1994 New Hampshire
Austin Dillon 06-29-2012 Kentucky 07-11-2010 Iowa
Ty Dillon 07-26-2014 Indianapolis 08-31-2012 Atlanta
Dale Earnhardt Jr. 04-02-2000 Texas 04-04-1998 Texas
Bill Elliott 11-20-1983 Riverside 06-26-1993 Watkins Glen
Chase Elliott 04-04-2014 Texas 09-01-2013 Mosport
Ron Fellows 06-28-1998 Watkins Glen 08-24-1997 Watkins Glen
Brendan Gaughan 06-21-2014 Road America 06-07-2002 Texas
Jeff Gordon 05-29-1994 Charlotte 03-14-1992 Atlanta
Robby Gordon 11-23-2001 New Hampshire 09-10-2004 Richmond
Ron Hornaday Jr. 07-16-2000 Nazareth 04-08-1995 Tucson
Jimmie Johnson 04-28-2002 Fontana 07-14-2001 Chicago
Erik Jones 04-10-2015 Texas 11-08-2013 Phoenix
Matt Kenseth 05-28-2000 Charlotte 02-21-1998 Rockingham
Jason Leffler 06-12-2004 Nashville SS 05-30-2003 Dover
Sterling Marlin 02-20-1994 Daytona 10-06-1990 Charlotte
Casey Mears 05-27-2007 Charlotte 07-08-2006 Chicago
Paul Menard 07-31-2011 Indianapolis 06-24-2006 Milwaukee
Butch Miller 06-21-1986 IRP 07-15-1995 Colorado
Juan Pablo Montoya 06-24-2007 Sonoma 03-04-2007 Mexico City
Joe Nemechek 09-19-1999 New Hampshire 08-01-1992 IRP
Nelson Piquet, Jr. 06-23-2012 Road America 08-18-2012 Michigan
David Ragan 07-02-2011 Daytona 04-25-2009 Talladega
Scott Riggs 04-13-2002 Nashville SS 04-07-2001 Martinsville
Boris Said 08-29-2010 Montreal 10-11-1998 Sonoma
Johnny Sauter 07-13-2002 Chicago 09-26-2009 Las Vegas
Dennis Setzer 07-16-1994 South Boston 10-18-1998 Mesa Marin
Morgan Shepherd 04-26-1981 Martinsville 05-23-1982 Hickory
Mike Skinner 03-13-1999 Atlanta 02-05-1995 Phoenix
Regan Smith 05-07-2011 Darlington 11-17-2012 Homestead
Jack Sprague 06-08-2002 Nashville 04-21-1996 Phoenix
Martin Truex Jr. 06-04-2007 Dover 03-27-2004 Bristol
Brian Vickers 10-08-2006 Talladega 08-02-2003 IRP
Mike Wallace 06-04-1994 Dover 03-20-1999 Homestead

Driver championships in two of the top divisions[edit]

In the history of NASCAR (to the end of the 2015 season), only 7 drivers have accomplished championship seasons in more than one of the top three national divisions. Of these, 4 have championships in both the Sprint Cup and Xfinity Series, while 3 have championships in both the Xfinity and Truck Series.

The feat was first accomplished by Bobby Labonte, with a championship season in the 2000 Winston Cup Series (now the Sprint Cup) to go with his championship season in the 1991 Busch Series (now the Xfinity Series). Labonte was also the first ever driver to become a Triple Threat winner.

The quickest to accomplish this feat, from the start of his NASCAR career, is Austin Dillon, who started NASCAR racing in a regional series in 2008 and had won national championships in both the Xfinity and Truck Series by 2013.

All but one of these drivers (the exception being Dillon) are also members of the Triple Threat club shown above.

Driver 1st Sprint Cup Championship 1st Xfinity Championship 1st Camping World Truck Championship
1. Bobby Labonte 2000 Champion Winston Cup Series 1991 Champion Busch Series
2. Greg Biffle 2002 Champion Busch Series 2000 Champion Craftsman Truck Series
3. Johnny Benson Jr. 1995 Champion Busch Series 2008 Champion Craftsman Truck Series
4. Brad Keselowski 2012 Champion 2010 Champion Nationwide Series
5. Austin Dillon 2013 Champion Nationwide Series 2011 Champion
6. Kevin Harvick 2014 Champion 2001 Champion Busch Series
7. Kyle Busch 2015 Champion 2009 Champion Nationwide Series
signifies Triple Threat driver

References[edit]