Other Free Encyclopedias » Famous Sports Stars » Auto Racing » Junior Johnson Biography - Son Of A Moonshiner, Professional Racer, Chronology, Awards And Accomplishments, Fifty Nascar Wins - CONTACT INFORMATION

Junior Johnson - Professional Racer

nascar national inducted wins

Not all of the income for the Johnsons derived from bootlegging, however. Johnson worked the family farm with his brothers, and was plowing a field behind a mule one day in the late 1940s when his brother L.P. asked him to pilot his car at a race at North Wilkesboro Speedway. Believing a car race would be more fun than plowing a field, Johnson consented. He eventually placed second, casting the die for a long, distinguished career as NASCAR's bad boy, often adapting such tricks as the bootleg turn on corners of oval tracks.

In 1953, Johnson entered his first NASCAR race at the 1953 Southern 500 held in Darlington. He began to establish speed records and local race tracks until his arrest in 1956. Upon his release from prison, he proceeded to make his mark as one of NASCAR's most innovative and intimidating drivers. The world of stock car racing had changed significantly in the late 1950s; changes that included paved tracks, the organization of NASCAR, and the participation of marketing and gear heads from Detroit's Big Three automakers.

Chronology

1930 Born Robert Glenn Johnson, in Ingle Hollow, North Carolina
1953 Makes his NASCAR driving debut at Southern 500, Darlington
1956 Arrested for moonshining, and spends eleven months in prison
1958 Earns six victories in twenty-seven starts
1960 Wins Daytona 500 and discovers aerodynamic drafting in car owned by John Masoni
1962 Wins National 400
1963 Wins eight Grand National events, including National 400 and Dixie 400
1965 Wins thirteen races, including Rebel 300
1966 Announces his retirement from driving to run racing operation
1970 Introduces NASCAR's William French to R.J. Reynolds' Ralph Seagraves, which initiates the Winston Cup NASCAR series
1986 President Ronald Reagan grants Johnson a presidential pardon
1990 Inducted into International Motorsports Hall of Fame
1995 Sells team and retires from racing with more than 139 NASCAR victories, 128 pole positions, and six Winston Cup Championships as a team owner

Awards and Accomplishments

1960 Won Daytona 500
1962 Won National 400
1963 Won eight Grand National events, including National 400 and Dixie 400
1965 Won thirteen races, including Rebel 300
1973 Inducted into National Motorsports Press Association Hall of Fame
1986 Granted presidential pardon by President Ronald Reagan
1990 Inducted into International Motorsports Hall of Fame
1995 Sold team and retired from racing with more than 139 NASCAR victories, 128 pole positions, and six Winston Cup Championships as a team owner
1996 Inducted into Charlotte (North Carolina) Motor Speedway Court of Legends
1997 Inducted into Bristol (Tennessee) Motor Speedway Heroes of Bristol Hall of Fame
1998 Named greatest NASCAR driver of all time by Sports Illustrated magazine
Junior Johnson - Chronology [next] [back] Junior Johnson - Son Of A Moonshiner

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