Top 10 Tuesday: Drivers of the Northeast

Spencer Neff

With the Sprint Cup Series racing in Pennsylvania and New York in consecutive weeks, here is a look at the top drivers in racing who call the Northeast home.

10. Ricky Craven: Another driver to win in all three national series, Craven is originally from Newburgh, Maine. A runner-up in the former NASCAR Busch Series in 1993 and 1994, Craven won in the closest finish in Cup Series history at Darlington in 2003, when he edged Kurt Busch by .002 seconds for his last of two career victories in the series.

9. John Andretti: The cousin of Michael, John demonstrated impressive versatility throughout his career. Arguably the biggest achievement of the Pennsylvania driver’s career was winning for owner Cale Yarborough at the 1997 Pepsi 400, his first of two wins in the Cup Series.

8. Joey Logano: Entering NASCAR as one of its most heralded young guns, Connecticut’s Logano has won nine Sprint Cup Series races in his seven-year career, including this year’s Daytona 500. Logano also became the 26th driver to win a race in each of NASCAR’s three national series.

7. Randy LaJoie: Another driver who calls Connecticut home, LaJoie got hiss tart in what was known as the North Series. LaJoie worked his way up the proverbial ladder and won 15 races in the current NASCAR Xfinity Series, as well as two championships in 1996 and 1997.

6. Todd Bodine: The younger brother of Geoff and Brett, Todd made his name in the lower two of NASCAR’s national touring series. Bodine won 15 races in the current Xfinity Series, 22 in the Truck Series. Bodine was also the Truck Champion in 2006 and 2010.

5. Al Holbert: Holbert, who is a Pennsylvania native, was one of the most successful sports car drivers of his era. Holbert captured five IMSA GT titles and won the 24 Hours of Le Mans three times before his untimely death from a plane crash in 1988.

4. Geoff Bodine: The eldest of New York’s Bodine Brothers, Bodine won 18 Cup Series races, including the 1986 Daytona 500. Bodine now has made his name building bobsleds after his racing career.

3. Shirley Muldowney: Originally from Vermont, Muldowney began drag racing in 1958. Nearly a quarter-century later, she had three NHRA Top Fuel Championships. Muldowney helped pave the way for several women in the series and to this day is regarded as one of the sport’s legends.

2. Richie Evans: Although New York’s Evans did not reach success at the pinnacle of motorsport, his time in the modified series is as legendary as anyone’s in racing. Evans won nine consecutive championships before his death in a crash at Martinsville in 1985.

1. Michael Andretti: Although his dad Mario does boast the most impressive racing career in the family, Michael boasts 42 career IndyCar wins and was the 1991 series champion. Michael now is an IndyCar team owner and race promoter.


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