One of the most popular drivers of NASCAR, Ned Jarrett began driving at the age of nine, when his father let him drive their family car to church. Ned began racing in 1952, at Hickory Motor Speedway, where he finished tenth. His first win came two years later at the Rambi Raceway. The two time championship winner, in the years 1961 and 1965, has 50 NASCAR Cup Series races and 36 pole position and an astonishing 239 top-10 finishes to his credit. “Gentleman Ned”, as he was nicknamed due to his calm demeanor, had his biggest win at the Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway, in 1965. He won the race by 14 laps, which is the largest margin in the history of NASCAR.
Before he won the NASCAR Cup Series championships, Ned had already been crowned NASCAR Busch Series champion in 1957 and 1958. Apart from a successful racing career, Ned also began career as a racing announcer and in the early 1960s started his own radio program. In 1978, Ned was radio broadcaster for MRN Radio and later worked with Fox Sports Network, CBS and ESPN. His daily program on MRN Radio is called “Ned Jarrett’s World of Racing”.
Ned Jarrett retired from racing in 1966, at the age of 34, and has been inducted in the National Motorsports Press Association’s Hall of Fame, in 1972, the International Motorsports Hall of Fame, in 1991, the Motorsports Hall of Fame of America, in 1997, the North Carolina Sports Hall of Fame, in 1990 and the National Auto Racing Hall of Fame, American Auto Racing Writers and Broadcasters Association Hall of Fame, in 1992.