Tony Stewart leads list of 2020 NASCAR Hall of Fame nominees

Jim Utter

The list of 20 nominees for the Class of 2020 includes six first-time nominees whose careers span the entirety of NASCAR competition.

Stewart, who is currently co-owner of Stewart-Haas Racing and continues to compete on dirt tracks across the country, won 49 races in the Cup series, including two wins in the prestigious Brickyard 400. Stewart, 47, won the Cup title three times (most recently in 2011) and also collected 11 wins in what is now the Xfinity Series and a pair in Trucks.

This was his first year he was eligible to be nominated.

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Among the other first-time nominees are two-time Xfinity Series champion Sam Ard; the original member of the “Alabama Gang,” Neil Bonnett; former Daytona 500 winner Marvin Panch; and short track ace Jim Paschal.

The nominees were selected by a nominating committee consisting of representatives from NASCAR, the NASCAR Hall of Fame, track owners from major facilities and historic short tracks and the media. The committee’s votes were tabulated by accounting firm EY.

From the list of 20 nominees, five inductees will be elected by the NASCAR Hall of Fame Voting Panel, which includes a nationwide fan vote on Voting Day for the 2019 class will be May 2.

NASCAR also announced five nominees for the Landmark Award. They are Edsel Ford II, Mike Helton, Dr. Joseph Mattioli, Alvin Hawkins and Ralph Seagraves.

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Following are the 20 nominees for induction into the NASCAR Hall of Fame, listed alphabetically:

Sam Ard, NASCAR Xfinity Series pioneer and two-time champion

Buddy Baker, won 19 times in the NASCAR Cup Series, including the Daytona 500 and Southern 500

Neil Bonnett, won 18 times in the NASCAR Cup Series, including consecutive Coca-Cola 600 victories

Red Farmer, three-time Late Model Sportsman champion; 1956 Modified champion

Ray Fox, legendary engine builder, crew chief and car owner

Harry Gant, winner of 18 NASCAR Cup Series races, including two Southern 500 victories

Joe Gibbs, combined for nine car owner championships in Cup and XFINITY series

John Holman, won two NASCAR Cup Series championships as co-owner of Holman-Moody Racing

Harry Hyde, 1970 NASCAR Cup Series championship crew chief

Bobby Labonte, won a championship in both the Cup Series and XFINITY Series

Hershel McGriff, 1986 NASCAR west series champion

Ralph Moody, won two NASCAR Cup Series championships as co-owner of Holman-Moody Racing

Marvin Panch, won 17 times in the NASCAR Cup Series, including the 1961 Daytona 500

Jim Paschal, 23 of his 25 NASCAR Cup Series wins came on short tracks

Larry Phillips, only five-time NASCAR weekly series national champion

Ricky Rudd, won 23 times in NASCAR Cup Series, including the 1997 Brickyard 400

Mike Stefanik, winner of record-tying nine NASCAR championships

Tony Stewart, three-time NASCAR Cup Series champion, two-time Brickyard 400 winner

Red Vogt, the first master mechanic of NASCAR, and a founding member

Waddell Wilson, won three NASCAR Cup Series championships as an engine builder

The five nominees for the Landmark Award, listed alphabetically, are as follows:

Edsel Ford II, Member of the Board of Directors for Ford Motor Company, long-time NASCAR supporter

Alvin Hawkins, NASCAR’s first flagman; established NASCAR racing at Bowman Gray Stadium with Bill France Sr.

Mike Helton, named third president of NASCAR in 2000; career included track operator roles at Atlanta Motor Speedway and Talladega Superspeedway

Dr. Joseph Mattioli, founder of Pocono Raceway

Ralph Seagraves, formed groundbreaking Winston-NASCAR partnership as executive with R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company

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