Waltrip, Johnson to attend Goodwood Festival of Speed

Waltrip/Johnson and Classic Bud ...

Waltrip/Johnson and Classic Bud #11 Car to Attend Goodwood Festival of Speed

American Racing Legend Darrell Waltrip Attending Major European Automotive Event

Three-time Winston Cup champ is a guest of honor at England's Goodwood Festival of Speed

DETROIT, May 21, 2001 - Compile a list of the National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing's (NASCAR) greatest drivers in history, and it's a sure bet Darrell Waltrip's name will be included. Waltrip, a three-time NASCAR Winston Cup champion, netted 84 career victories, all behind the wheel of General Motors products. In celebration of that winning combination, it's a natural fit that Waltrip appears at the July 6-8 Goodwood Festival of Speed in West Sussex, England, with GM - reuniting a winning combination.

Darrell Waltrip attending England's Goodwood Festival of Speed as a guest of General Motors

"I'm excited about this visit. GM's been good to me over the years, and a trip to Goodwood is a dream come true," said the 54-year-old Waltrip. "Stevie (Waltrip's wife) and my daughters, Jessica Leigh and Sarah Kaitlyn, have been invited, too, and they've already planned out the entire trip. I just hope my family will let me at least get behind the wheel to drive the one-mile hill climb."

Reunited: Waltrip's #11 Chevrolet driven to the 1985 Winston Cup Championship is bound for Goodwood

Waltrip, with a racing career spanning nearly 30 years (starting in 1972 and ending with a "Victory Tour" in 2000) will be reunited with his #11 Budweiser Chevrolet Monte Carlo driven for team owner Junior Johnson, a NASCAR legend in his own right.

Waltrip drove the #11 Chevrolet when he captured the 1985 Winston Cup Championship. Shipped to Goodwood, England, as a centerpiece in GM's motorsports heritage program, the car is on loan from the International Motorsports Hall of Fame in Talladega, Ala.

"Getting a chance to see the #11 again is going to bring back some memories," Waltrip said. "I remember taking the lead two laps from the finish to win the Winston. The engine blew up on the last lap, and we had to rebuild the car from the ground up in time for the Coca-Cola 600 the next day (at that time, the races ran back-to-back, now they race on consecutive weekends). "

At one point, NASCAR told the team they couldn't rebuild, at which point, Johnson threatened to pack up the car and go home. Eventually, NASCAR let them continue work, and Waltrip won the race the next day.

"Goodwood is an event for true motorsports enthusiasts, and GM is providing a special opportunity for a European audience to see a part of NASCAR history," he added.

Waltrip has won 84 races, good for third place in the NASCAR record book

Waltrip, the Winston Cup champion in 1981, 1982 and 1985, has the third-most starts (809) in the series; his 84 wins rank him in a third-place tie with Bobby Allison for all-time Winston Cup victories. He also won NASCAR's Most Popular Driver honors in 1989 and 1990.

Retiring at the end of the 2000 season, Waltrip joined FOX Sports as a national television broadcaster. He now provides race commentary for America's most popular motorsports racing series, NASCAR.

NASCAR, whose roots can be found at the dirt tracks in the southeastern portion of the United States, has grown tremendously in popularity - developing into the largest major spectator sport with tracks located all over the US, from California to the Carolinas.

The annual Goodwood Festival of Speed is expected to attract thousands of guests over the course of two days this year. Considered by event organizers as "the greatest gathering of motor racing machinery on the planet," the festival provides both celebrities and automobile lovers a rare opportunity to observe motorsports heritage first hand.

General Motors heritage reflects a tradition of excellence continuing in production models today

General Motors, the world's largest vehicle manufacturer, is a worldwide leader in automotive branding, technology and design. Its heritage has been and always will be an integral element in shaping future endeavors.

-GM Racing-

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About this article
Series Automotive , Vintage
Drivers Darrell Waltrip , Junior Johnson , Bobby Allison