Darlington Raceway Stock Car Museum

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wikicollecting

2015-06-26 10:53:34

The Darlington Raceway Stock Car Museum is based at the Darlington raceway in South Carolina, and features exhibits and displays illustrating the history of both the course itself and the history of stock car racing in general.

 

History

The museum was officially opened in 1965 as the ‘Joe Weatherly Stock Car Museum’. It was named after the celebrated stock car raced Weatherly, whose larger-than-life personality had earned him the title "The Clown Prince of Stock Car Racing" during his career.

As a driver he had twice been victorious at the Darlington raceway, and had suggested to its President Bob Colvin that it might make a good home for a museum dedicated to the sport.

Weatherly was tragically killed during a race at the Riverside Raceway in California, but his legacy to the sport was such that Colvin built the museum and named it in honour of the driver.

Its name remained until a major expansion of the museum in 2003, when it became the Darlington Raceway Stock Car Museum.

Exhibits

The museum features a wide range of exhibits including some of stock car racing’s most notable and successful vehicles. They include:

  • The 1950 Plymouth driven to victory by Johnny Manz during the first ever Mountain Dew Southern 500
  • The 1956 Ford convertible which holds the record for 22 victories in a single year
  • The 1967 Plymouth driven by racing legend Richard Petty during his record breaking 10 consecutive victories in 1967
  • The 1991 Chevy Lumina driven by Darrell Waltrip, which was involved in one of the sport’s most notorious accidents when it crashed and rolled eight times during the 1991 Pepsi 400

The museum is also home to a large collection of racing memorabilia from some of the sport's most celebrated drivers. Items include Fonty Flock's Bermuda shorts,Joe Weatherly's racing shoes and the concrete hand-prints of nine-time champion Dale Earnhardt, Sr.

NPMA Hall of Fame

The museum is also home to the National Motorsports Press Association Hall of Fame.

This permanent exhibition celebrates NASCAR racing through a series of interactive displays, photographs and memorabilia remembering the greatest drivers and events of the sport’s history.

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