Richard Childress

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Richard Childress
RichardChildress.jpg
Childress in 2008
Born (1945-09-21) September 21, 1945 (age 73)
Winston-Salem, North Carolina, U.S.
Achievements1986, 1987, 1990, 1991, 1993, 1994 Winston Cup Series Champion car owner
2001, 2003, 2006, 2007 Busch Series Champion car owner
1995, 2011 Camping World Truck Series Champion truck owner
2011 ARCA Racing Series Champion car owner
AwardsNASCAR Hall of Fame Inductee (2017)
Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series career
285 races run over 12 years
Best finish5th (1975)
First race1969 Talladega 500 (Talladega)
Last race1981 Winston Western 500 (Riverside)
Wins Top tens Poles
0 76 0
NASCAR Grand National East Series career
17 races run over 2 years
Best finish9th (1972)
First race1972 Hickory 276 (Hickory)
Last race1973 Buddy Shuman 100 (Hickory)
Wins Top tens Poles
0 3 0
Statistics current as of October 30, 2013.

Richard Childress (born September 21, 1945) is a former NASCAR driver and the current team owner of Richard Childress Racing (RCR). As a business entrepreneur, Childress became one of the wealthiest men in North Carolina. A 2003/2004 business venture was the opening of a vineyard in the Yadkin Valley AVA, an American Viticultural Area located in North Carolina.[1] Childress was born in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. He is on the Board of Directors to the National Rifle Association.[2] His grandsons Austin Dillon and Ty Dillon are NASCAR competitors.

Driving career[edit]

Childress' career in NASCAR's top levels started auspiciously when a drivers' strike at Talladega Superspeedway left NASCAR President William France Sr. looking for scab drivers. Childress started his first race as a scab. By 1971, Childress began racing on the top level as an independent driver, using the number 96. He changed to number 3 in 1976 as a tribute to Junior Johnson's past as a driver. Although he never won as a driver, he proved to be average behind the wheel registering six top-5, seventy-six top-10 finishes, with a career-best of third in 1978.[citation needed]

Ownership of Richard Childress Racing[edit]

Childress working the pits in 1986

He retired from driving in 1981 after Rod Osterlund sold his NASCAR team to J.D. Stacy, and Osterlund's driver, Dale Earnhardt, did not want to drive for Stacy. Childress, with recommendations from R. J. Reynolds Tobacco, chose to retire and put Earnhardt behind the wheel of his No. 3 car, complete with Wrangler Jeans sponsorship. That first alliance lasted for the season. Ricky Rudd was hired in 1982 and drove for two years, giving Childress his first career victory in June 1983 at Riverside. Earnhardt returned for the 1984 season, and together with Childress formed one of the most potent combinations in NASCAR history. They won championships in 1986, 1987, 1990, 1991, 1993, and 1994. In the mid-1990s, Childress began expanding his racing empire, fielding entries in the Busch Series and Craftsman Truck Series. The team won the 1995 Craftsman Truck Series championship with driver Mike Skinner in the series' first season. He expanded to a two-car operation in what is now known as the Sprint Cup, with driver Skinner driving the No. 31. In the first part of the 2000s, he expanded to three cars, with the No. 30 car driven by Jeff Green.

Earnhardt was killed on the last lap of the 2001 Daytona 500. Childress promoted Busch driver Kevin Harvick to drive the renumbered No. 29. Harvick would win in only his third start, at the Atlanta Motor Speedway. With Harvick having won the Busch Series championship in 2001 and 2006, RCR became the first team in NASCAR history to win all three of NASCAR's national championship series. RCR also won the Busch Series owners championships in 2003 with Kevin Harvick and Johnny Sauter and in 2007 with Scott Wimmer and Jeff Burton. RCR won the 2011 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series and the 2013 NASCAR Nationwide Series Championship, both with Childress' grandson Austin Dillon driving the No. 3.[citation needed]

Childress' full-time drivers in the Sprint Cup Series are:

Childress' full-time drivers in the Xfinity Series are:

Personal life[edit]

A section of Interstate 85 between exit 96 and exit 102 has been declared the Richard Childress Freeway.

Richard Childress currently resides in one of the largest mansions in northwestern Davidson County, North Carolina. The Richard Childress Racing Museum is located in nearby Lexington, along with numerous racing maintenance shops. The Childress Vineyards winery is located a few miles south of the museum in Lexington at the US 52/US 64 interchange. Childress remains active in his current county of residence, attending fundraisers and supporting local candidates for office.[citation needed] He also owns a home in the famous Spruce Creek Fly In, Port Orange, Florida which he purchased from his friend, Mark Martin.

In 2008, Richard and his wife Judy established The Childress Institute for Pediatric Trauma[3] with the mission to lead national efforts to reduce death and disability following injury to children less than 18 years old.[4] The Childress Institute is focused on funding research and medical education throughout the U.S. to improve treatment, as well as raising public awareness.[4]

Childress has a number of racers in his family. His son-in-law is RCR general manager Mike Dillon, long-time Nationwide Series driver who made one Sprint Cup start (1998 California 500) in an RCR car. Austin and Ty Dillon (sons of Mike, grandchildren of Richard) are NASCAR drivers.

In 2017 he was elevated from Second Vice President[5] to First Vice President[6] of the National Rifle Association,which in accordance with NRA tradition would mean he could expected to serve as the organization's president from 2019 to 2021. However,in 2018 Oliver North was designated to take over as president.

Controversies[edit]

Alleged favoritism towards teams[edit]

During the 2003 Pontiac Excitement 400, there was a feud between RCR drivers Kevin Harvick and Jeff Green. In 2001, Green helped RCR start what is currently the #27 Chevrolet team in the Cup series. Back then, the #27 was #30 and it was sponsored by AOL, with Green as the driver. Harvick and Green had a Busch Series rivalry, but rejected notions that they couldn't get along. During the race, Kevin Harvick wrecked Green with 128 laps to go, taking Green out of the race. An upset Green replied by confronting Harvick's crew chief Todd Berrier in the #29 pit stall, forcing Richard Childress to restrain him. Green later said to the medias that, "It's tough to be teammates when it seems like there is only one car at RCR." Green was fired the next day by Richard Childress, who said that change was needed after the relationship had gone awry.(21)

Kyle Busch[edit]

Childress was involved in a physical altercation with fellow Camping World Truck Series owner and current driver Kyle Busch following the Truck race on June 4, 2011. Joey Coulter, driver of Childress's No. 22 Chevrolet Silverado, battled tightly for position with the No. 18 Toyota Tundra of Busch. Coulter would eventually hold off Busch, taking the 5th spot in the O'Reilly Auto Parts 250. Once the race had concluded, Busch purposely bumped into the 22 truck on the cool-down lap.[7] Childress reportedly approached Busch in the garage area, took off his jewelry (a gold watch) and proceeded to punch Busch in the face. The fight was broken up and insults were exchanged before Childress put Busch in a headlock and hit him again.[8]

Two days later, NASCAR fined Childress $150,000 and placed him on probation through the end of the year.[9] Busch was not fined or disciplined. NASCAR President Mike Helton stated that "[Busch] did nothing that would have warranted the actions of Richard Childress."[10]

2010 New Hampshire controversy[edit]

In 2010 at the Sylvania 300, Clint Bowyer won the race in Childress' No. 33 Cheerio's car. However his car failed inspection twice. The car didn't meet specifications. Two days later NASCAR penalized Bowyer's team with a 6-week crew chief suspension, a 150-point deduction and a $150,000 fine for crew chief Shane Wilson. NASCAR executive Robin Pemberton said Childress' team didn't lose the win only because Mike Helton considered the team punished enough.

Childress filed an appeal. The penalty dropped Bowyer back to 12th in points, 185 points behind then championship leader Denny Hamlin. Childress appealed the decision, which reduced the suspension to four races and $100,000, but the 150-point deduction was upheld. The penalty eliminated any shot Bowyer had at the Cup series championship that year. Despite the penalties, Childress was pleased with the outcome of the penalties being reduced, claiming that chief appellate officer John Middlebrook was fair in the appeal.

Childress maintained during the appeals and to this day that the car failed inspection because it had been damaged by a pushing truck that pushed the car into victory lane when it ran out of gas.

Tire deflations[edit]

Following the 2015 Auto Club 400, NASCAR officials received rumors that teams in NASCAR were purposely deflating their tires. Deflation of the tires provides more control and grip on the track. Officials confiscated the tires of several teams including the No. 31 Richard Childress Racing car driven by Ryan Newman. Two weeks later, NASCAR penalized Childress's team with a $125,000 fine and a 6-race suspension for No. 31 crew chief Luke Lambert, and other key players. Also Newman was stripped of 75 driver & owner points. The penalty dropped him from 8th in the standings to 26th.

Childress and Newman appealed the penalties. They filed an appeal to the National Motorsports Appeal Panel. A hearing was scheduled for April 16. The penalties were slightly reduced. The $125,000 fine for Lambert was reduced to $75,000, the point deductions were reduced to 50 but the suspensions were upheld. Childress filed an appeal to the Final Appeals Board. There, the appeals board upheld the penalties, leaving Lambert and key players suspended. Newman dropped from 8th to 18th in the standings as a result.

Motorsports career results[edit]

NASCAR[edit]

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

Grand National Series[edit]

NASCAR Grand National Series results
Year Team No. Make 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50 51 52 53 54 NGNC Pts Ref
1969 Richard Childress Racing 13 Chevy MGR MGY RSD DAY DAY DAY CAR AUG BRI ATL CLB HCY GPS RCH NWS MAR AWS DAR BLV LGY CLT MGR SMR MCH KPT GPS NCF DAY DOV TPN TRN BLV BRI NSV SMR ATL MCH SBO BGS AWS DAR HCY RCH TAL
23
CLB MAR NWS CLT SVH AUG CAR JFC MGR TWS NA 0 [11]
1971 Garn Racing 96 Chevy RSD DAY DAY DAY ONT RCH CAR HCY BRI ATL CLB GPS SMR NWS MAR DAR SBO
21
TAL ASH KPT
22
CLT DOV
18
MCH RSD HOU GPS
23
DAY BRI
DNQ
AST
28
ISP
31
TRN
36
NSV
21
ATL BGS
21
ONA MCH TAL CLB
27
HCY DAR MAR
DNQ
CLT RCH
20
NWS TWS 46th 601 [12]
Faustina Racing 5 Plymouth DOV
30
CAR MGR

Winston Cup Series[edit]

NASCAR Winston Cup Series results
Year Team No. Make 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 NWCC Pts Ref
1972 Richard Childress Racing 96 Chevy RSD DAY RCH
29
ONT
DNQ
CAR
37
ATL BRI
18
DAR NWS
27
MAR
29
TAL CLT DOV
37
TWS
31
DAY BRI
26
TRN
18
ATL TAL MCH NSV
16
DAR RCH
25
DOV
33
MAR
33
NWS
25
CLT CAR TWS 37th 1521.25 [13]
Warren Racing Plymouth MCH
19
RSD
1973 Garn Racing Chevy RSD DAY
DNQ
RCH CAR
9
BRI
20
ATL
13
NWS
16
DAR
4
MAR
24
TAL
22
NSV
23
CLT
11
DOV
18
TWS
35
MCH
14
DAY
27
BRI
25
ATL
23
TAL
31
NSV
20
DAR
40
RCH
12
DOV
16
NWS
17
MAR
25
CLT
18
CAR
14
15th 5169.5 [14]
98 RSD
17
1974 96 RSD DAY
40
RCH
16
CAR
36
BRI
20
ATL
27
DAR
39
NWS
22
MAR
10
TAL
11
NSV
26
DOV
21
CLT
34
RSD
15
MCH
6
DAY
23
BRI
24
NSV
23
ATL
11
POC
12
TAL
13
MCH
27
DAR
18
RCH
24
DOV
18
NWS
7
MAR
24
CLT
41
CAR
24
ONT
12
16th 735.44 [15]
1975 88 RSD
11
5th 3818 [16]
96 DAY
18
RCH
9
CAR
6
BRI
9
ATL
15
NWS
17
DAR
22
MAR
9
TAL
10
NSV
16
DOV
16
CLT
23
RSD
9
MCH
10
DAY
13
NSV
6
POC
5
TAL
13
MCH
31
DAR
7
DOV
6
NWS
8
MAR
4
CLT
8
RCH
21
CAR
21
BRI
13
ATL
12
ONT
10
1976 Richard Childress Racing 3 Chevy RSD
7
DAY
9
CAR
23
RCH
6
BRI
20
ATL
11
NWS
9
DAR
9
MAR
8
TAL
24
NSV
17
DOV
10
CLT
17
RSD
11
MCH
18
DAY
12
NSV
28
POC
9
TAL
8
MCH
13
BRI
10
DAR
36
RCH
25
DOV
20
MAR
10
NWS
23
CLT
15
CAR
27
ATL
25
ONT
36
11th 3428 [17]
1977 RSD
6
DAY
23
RCH
10
CAR
17
ATL
19
NWS
8
DAR
17
BRI
8
MAR
10
TAL
21
NSV
26
DOV
21
CLT
14
RSD
8
MCH
34
DAY
19
NSV
27
POC
17
TAL
20
MCH
33
BRI
8
DAR
8
RCH
26
DOV
7
MAR
15
NWS
6
CLT
16
CAR
18
ATL
21
ONT
10
9th 3463 [18]
1978 RSD
20
RCH
8
CAR
8
DAR
27
10th 3566 [19]
Olds DAY
13
ATL
15
BRI
6
DAR
28
NWS
10
MAR
8
TAL
9
DOV
33
CLT
20
NSV
8
RSD
15
MCH
10
DAY
24
NSV
3
POC
24
TAL
25
MCH
31
BRI
7
RCH
11
DOV
12
MAR
12
NWS
14
CLT
9
CAR
10
ATL
30
ONT
11
1979 RSD
15
DAY
17
ATL
20
TAL
24
CLT
10
TWS
7
RSD
6
MCH
23
DAY
37
TAL
10
MCH
10
8th 3735 [20]
Chevy CAR
5
RCH
26
NWS
7
BRI
11
DAR
16
MAR
14
NSV
6
DOV
29
NSV
7
POC
12
BRI
11
DAR
29
RCH
15
DOV
13
MAR
13
CLT
14
NWS
10
CAR
7
ATL
15
ONT
16
1980 RSD
6
CAR
14
NWS
11
MAR
11
NSV
29
DOV
8
TWS
6
RSD
18
MCH
14
NSV
9
POC
9
MCH
27
BRI
9
DAR
12
RCH
11
DOV
37
NWS
19
MAR
25
CLT
11
CAR
7
ATL
9
ONT
21
10th 3742 [21]
Olds DAY
13
RCH
22
ATL
13
BRI
29
DAR
21
TAL
12
CLT
11
DAY
8
TAL
6
1981 Chevy RSD
4
25th 2144 [22]
Pontiac DAY
38
RCH
13
CAR
22
ATL
17
BRI
16
NWS
17
DAR
31
MAR
22
TAL
13
NSV
13
DOV
17
CLT
19
TWS
14
RSD
18
MCH
19
DAY
21
NSV
17
POC
23
TAL
26
MCH BRI DAR RCH DOV MAR NWS CLT CAR ATL
Junior Johnson & Associates 41 Buick RSD
39
Daytona 500[edit]
Year Team Manufacturer Start Finish
1973 Garn Racing Chevy DNQ
1974 36 40
1975 36 18
1976 Richard Childress Racing Chevy 36 9
1977 32 23
1978 Olds 19 13
1979 31 17
1980 22 13
1981 Pontiac 18 38

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Childress Vineyards". Childress Vineyards. Retrieved 2013-10-02.
  2. ^ "Board Spotlight: Richard Childress | NRA Publications and Magazines". Nrapublications.org. Archived from the original on 2013-10-04. Retrieved 2013-10-02.
  3. ^ "NASCAR Foundation". Archived from the original on 2013-10-05.
  4. ^ a b "Childress Institute for Pediatric Trauma mission".
  5. ^ Richard Childress named NRA Second Vice-President
  6. ^ [1]
  7. ^ "NASCAR owner Richard Childress reportedly fights Kyle Busch - latimes.com". Latimesblogs.latimes.com. 2011-06-05. Retrieved 2013-10-02.
  8. ^ "Kyle Busch, Richard Childress have an altercation after Trucks race". baltimoresun.com. 2011-06-05. Retrieved 2013-10-02.
  9. ^ "Richard Childress fined $150K for altercation with Kyle Busch - ESPN". Sports.espn.go.com. 2011-06-07. Retrieved 2013-10-02.
  10. ^ "NASCAR clears Kyle Busch in incident". Msn.foxsports.com. 2011-06-06. Retrieved 2013-10-02.
  11. ^ "Richard Childress – 1969 NASCAR Grand National Results". Racing-Reference. Retrieved May 12, 2016.
  12. ^ "Richard Childress – 1971 NASCAR Winston Cup Results". Racing-Reference. Retrieved May 12, 2016.
  13. ^ "Richard Childress – 1972 NASCAR Winston Cup Results". Racing-Reference. Retrieved May 12, 2016.
  14. ^ "Richard Childress – 1973 NASCAR Winston Cup Results". Racing-Reference. Retrieved May 12, 2016.
  15. ^ "Richard Childress – 1974 NASCAR Winston Cup Results". Racing-Reference. Retrieved May 12, 2016.
  16. ^ "Richard Childress – 1975 NASCAR Winston Cup Results". Racing-Reference. Retrieved May 12, 2016.
  17. ^ "Richard Childress – 1976 NASCAR Winston Cup Results". Racing-Reference. Retrieved May 12, 2016.
  18. ^ "Richard Childress – 1977 NASCAR Winston Cup Results". Racing-Reference. Retrieved May 12, 2016.
  19. ^ "Richard Childress – 1978 NASCAR Winston Cup Results". Racing-Reference. Retrieved May 12, 2016.
  20. ^ "Richard Childress – 1979 NASCAR Winston Cup Results". Racing-Reference. Retrieved May 12, 2016.
  21. ^ "Richard Childress – 1980 NASCAR Winston Cup Results". Racing-Reference. Retrieved May 12, 2016.
  22. ^ "Richard Childress – 1981 NASCAR Winston Cup Results". Racing-Reference. Retrieved May 12, 2016.

21. Rodman, Dave (2003). Green out at RCR, no replacement named. NASCAR.com. Retrieved October 19, 2006.

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]