FanDuel - WFBC

October 14, 2009

NASCAR reveals names of first Hall of Fame class: NASCAR on Wednesday announced the inaugural class of the NASCAR Hall of Fame that includes: Dale Earnhardt, Bill France Sr., Bill France Jr., Junior Johnson and Richard Petty. Noticeably absent was David Pearson. "When I seen the two Frances was in, I knew I didn't have a chance," Pearson said moments after the ceremony ended.

posted by Demophon to auto racing at 06:27 PM - 17 comments

Following a week in which we were reminded that Tony Stewart once compared NASCAR to the WWE after Kasey Khane accused NASCAR of calling a caution for the purpose of the "show" for the fans, we also find out that everyone needs to pander to the France family with Bill Jr being part of the first induction class. No one doubts he deserves to get in, but that 5th spot should have gone to David Pearson, and the younger France would have been fittingly in the second class. Now the issue is who didn't get in, not those who did.

posted by Demophon at 06:54 PM on October 14

Demophon, thanks for the post. I'm pretty sure this is going to get edited by the Pantheon to remove the editorializing. Oddly enough, I was going to point you to the SportsFilter guidelines, but I don't see anything about it there. Didn't that used to be there? It's on the Wiki.

I agree about France Jr. Deserves to get in -- just not in front of Pearson.

posted by wfrazerjr at 07:07 PM on October 14

We discourage editorializing in the link, but I don't think it ever was addressed in the guidelines. I moved the opinion into a comment.

posted by rcade at 07:24 PM on October 14

Who would bother to visit a "hall of fame" with only five members, anyway? Unless you happened to be in the neighborhood already and they were only charging a couple of bucks it seems like it wouldn't be much of a value.

posted by mr_crash_davis at 07:27 PM on October 14

Bill France Jr. ahead of David Pearson? Absolutely ridiculous. Another reminder on why I quit caring.

posted by lost_cause at 08:06 PM on October 14

Who would bother to visit a "hall of fame" with only five members, anyway?

Members of the France family?

posted by Mr Bismarck at 10:25 PM on October 14

*Insert obligatory derogatory comment about real racing turning right here*

posted by Drood at 10:50 PM on October 14

Thanks for the tips. This was my first post to start a topic. I will remember that going forward.
Who would bother to visit a "hall of fame" with only five members, anyway?
I agree that I wouldn't make it a point to visit to see the 5 commemorations, but I would visit a NASCAR museum which is also a part of a Hall of Fame. It may be better to call it the NASCAR museum, but that just doesn't sound as prestigious as the NASCAR Hall of Fame does on the letter head.

posted by Demophon at 09:37 AM on October 15

Who would bother to visit a "hall of fame" with only five members, anyway?

Just to pick a number out of a hat, starting the hall with 40 members would cheapen the accomplishment for those 40.

posted by rcade at 10:14 AM on October 15

Both Big Bill and Bill Jr. deserve to be in the hall of fame along with the drivers because of what they did for the sport. The inaugural class should have consisted of 5 drivers or owners and the two Frances for what they did for Nascar. I chose 7 because of the Pro Football hall can induct as many as 7 and as few as 3 in a given year.

posted by twgibsr at 12:36 PM on October 15

Good opportunity to link to Tom Wolfe's profile on Junior Johnson, The Last American Hero is Junior Johnson. Yes!, widely considered one of the best pieces of American sports writing of the past 50 years and selected by Esquire as one of its top seven features of all time.

Great excerpt on Johnson and Pearson getting all competitive in practice laps:

Anyway, at Hickory, which was a Saturday night race, all the good old boys started pouring into the stands before sundown, so they wouldn't miss anything, the practice runs or the qualifying or anything. And pretty soon, the dew hasn't even started falling before Junior Johnson and David Pearson, one of Dodge's best drivers, are out there on practice runs, just warming up, and they happen to come up alongside each other on the second curve, and -- the thing is, here are two men, each of them driving $15,000 automobiles, each of them standing to make $50,000 to $100,000 for the season if they don't get themselves killed, and they meet on a curve on a goddamned practice run on a dirt track, and neither of them can resist it. Coming out of the turn they go into a wild-ass race down the backstretch, both of them trying to get into the third turn first, and all the way across the infield you can hear them ricocheting off each other and bouncing at a hundred miles an hour on loose dirt, and then they go into ferocious power slides, red dust all over the goddamned place, and then out of this goddamned red-dust cloud, out of the fourth turn, here comes Junior Johnson first, like a shot, with Pearson right on his tail, and the good old boys in the stands going wild, and the qualifying runs haven't started yet, let alone the race.

posted by holden at 02:52 PM on October 15

Didn't MLB start their HoF with a class of 36? That seemed to work out well for them.

posted by billsaysthis at 08:40 PM on October 15

Didn't MLB start their HoF with a class of 36? That seemed to work out well for them.

They started with 5 as well.

posted by goddam at 09:44 PM on October 15

*Insert obligatory derogatory comment about real racing turning right here*

*Insert obligatory derogatory comment about you shitting all over every single NASCAR thread that appears on this site.*

Jesus, dude, we get it. Do everybody a favor, and just stop coming into NASCAR-related threads if all you're going to do is disparage the sport.

posted by The_Black_Hand at 09:22 AM on October 16

And, I'd take Kulwicki and/or Yarborough in the Hall before France Junior.

posted by The_Black_Hand at 09:23 AM on October 16

*Insert obligatory derogatory comment about real racing turning right here*

If the only point of your comment is to disparage a sport, don't participate in discussions about it.

posted by rcade at 10:51 AM on October 16

I agree, TBH, France Sr. yes, but I would have saved France Jr. for the second round.

Kulwicki, most definitely! He was a man who accomplished his goals in a brief time with so little. And I believe the first collage graduate to win the Winston Cup Championship.

posted by steelergirl at 11:25 AM on October 17

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