Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Mark Martin Named to 2017 Hall of Fame Class

Mark Martin is among the five nominees for the 2017 Hall of Fame class, the NASCAR Hall of Fame announced on Wednesday.

Martin is joined by Benny Parsons, Rick Hendrick, Raymond Parks and Richard Childress in the 2017 class.

Martin, who was nominated for the second-straight year, is regarded as one of the greatest drivers to never win a championship.  He has five runner-up finishes in the championship standings to four current and future Hall of Famers: Dale Earnhardt, Jeff Gordon, Tony Stewart and Jimmie Johnson.
Photo courtesy NASCAR

Throughout a career that spanned parts of four decades, Martin had 40 career Sprint Cup Series victories and 56 career Sprint Cup poles.  Martin, however, never won NASCAR's biggest events, the Daytona 500 and Brickyard 400.  He came close in 2007, finishing second to Kevin Harvick by .002 seconds in the Daytona 500.

Martin also had 49 career Xfinity Series victories, even though he never raced a full season in the series.  He held the record for most Xfinity Series wins before Kyle Busch won race No. 50 in 2011.  Along with 7 Truck Series victories, Martin has 96 NASCAR victories across the three national touring series, which puts him seventh on the all-time list behind Richard Petty, Busch, David Pearson, Gordon, Darrell Waltrip and Earnhardt.

Martin made his Sprint Cup debut on April 5, 1981.  After running off-and-on in the Sprint Cup Series for most of the decade, Martin teamed up with Jack Roush to become the first driver for Roush Racing in 1988.

Martin originally announced his retirement in 2005, with that year deemed his "Salute to You Tour."  But Roush needed a driver to fill the seat of the No. 6 car for 2006, so Martin returned for another full season.  Martin left Roush following 2006, and he raced a partial schedule for Ginn Racing and Dale Earnhardt Inc. in 2007 and 2008.

In 2009, Martin returned to a full-time schedule with Hendrick Motorsports for the next three years.  In 2009, Martin picked up his final five career victories, and was part of a 1-2-3 team finish in the championship standings with Johnson and Gordon.

Martin retired following the 2013 season, after running a partial schedule for Michael Waltrip Racing in 2012 and 2013. 

No comments:

Post a Comment