Rusty Wallace was one of the most popular NASCAR drivers on the circuit during his 25-year career from 1980 – 2005. His accomplishments include 55 wins, 349 Top 10 finishes, a 1984 Cup Series Rookie of the year, then a Cup Series championship in 1989. Despite all that, Wallace called his 2013 induction into the NASCAR Hall of Fame “The biggest day of my driving career.”
Wallace added after his induction ceremony
“I feel so different. I feel so happy. I feel like my career has finally got a period on the end. People are already acting different. They are acting kinder. They are calling me Mr. Wallace and treating me different.”
Wallace remains and ambassador to the sport, as a commentator and promoter of the sport. Click here for his full induction speech.
It’s unclear why it took NASCAR so long to form the Hall, housed in Charlotte, North Carolina. The circuit has been popular since the Richard Petty days of the 1960′s and 70′s, featured racing legends Mario Andretti, Cale Yarborough, and A.J. Foyt. But finally the Hall finally opened in 2010, 4 years after plans were finalized.
But having drivers like Rusty Wallace inducted, giving the Hall context, and being exciting about it surely will make this a must-visit stop for NASCAR fans in years to come.
The NASCAR Hall of Fame will probably be unique in the recognition of support teams (like Crew Chiefs, owners, etc.) more than other sports. After all, NASCAR drivers are always heavily dependent upon their pit crews and mechanics and would get nowhere without them.
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