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Three memorable moments at Bristol

By Jessica Ruffin

CONCORD, N.C.—With the track’s high banking, skyscraping stands and resonating sound, there’s nothing quite like night racing at Bristol (Tennessee) Motor Speedway. Since the organization began competing there in 1984, Bristol has provided Hendrick Motorsports with many memories and unforgettable moments. As the drivers prepare to head to Tennessee this weekend, let’s take a look back at three memorable moments for Hendrick Motorsports at Bristol.

Aug. 26, 1989: Darrell Waltrip was looking to record his fifth win of the 1989 Cup season when he arrived at Bristol Motor Speedway on Aug. 26. After qualifying ninth, Waltrip led a race-high 239 laps on his way to taking the checkered flag for Hendrick Motorsports, his win marking Rick Hendrick’s first Cup win at the bullring-style race track as an owner. To this day, Waltrip remains the all-time winner at the Tennessee track with 12 victories.

March 21, 2010: Even with four Cup championships under his belt, Jimmie Johnson had never reached Victory Lane at Bristol Motor Speedway as of the start to the 2010 Sprint Cup season. All that changed on March 21, 2010 when he strapped into his No. 48 Lowe’s Chevrolet for more than 266 miles of short-track racing. After pacing the field for 84 laps, Johnson crossed the finish line first, marking his first career win at Bristol. Johnson went on to win three more NASCAR Sprint Cup events that season before earning his fifth Cup championship title at the end of the year.

March 17, 2013: After coming off a runner-up finish at Las Vegas the weekend before, Kasey Kahne rolled into Bristol with his sights set on a win. He began the 500-lap race from the outside pole position and led 109 laps en route to claiming the checkers and visiting Victory Lane. Kahne is currently the reigning Bristol champion for Hendrick Motorsports, as he was the most recent Hendrick Motorsports driver to record a victory at the short track. 

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