1979 Daytona ARCA 200 (lost footage of ARCA Racing Series race; 1979)

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Program for the race.

Status: Lost

The 1979 Daytona ARCA 200 was the second race of the 1979 ARCA Racing Series. Occurring on 11th February at the Daytona International Speedway, the race would ultimately be won by Kyle Petty in a Dodge, in his debut stock car racing start.

Background[edit | edit source]

The 1979 Daytona ARCA 200 was the 16th running of the event, with the annual race with the annual event typically lasting 200 miles.[1] The only 1979 ARCA Racing Series race to occur at Daytona International Speedway,[2] it has ties to the modern Lucas Oil Complete Engine Treatment 200.[3]

Prior to the race, qualifying commenced with John Rezek winning the pole position in a Chevrolet with a speed of 191.416 mph.[1] Directly behind him was Dodge's Kyle Petty, who was making his stock car racing debut at the event.[4][1] He would be driving a Dodge Magnums that his father Richard contended with in the Winston Cup Series. Marvin Smith in a Chevrolet qualified third out of 33 competitors.[1]

The Race[edit | edit source]

With the starting order decided, the 1979 Daytona ARCA 200 commenced on 11th February.[1] Petty shot into the lead on the first lap, holding it for 18 laps until Chevrolet's Alan Sheppard took over, leading four laps.[1] On lap 15, a multicar crash occurred when Chevrolet's Bobby Fisher spun on the backstretch and was hit by Smith and Buick's Bobby Davis, with Chevrolet's Mike Riley also being involved.[5][1] With the cars spinning out of control, Buick's Bobby Jacks rear-ended Davis, causing the former's car to roll over.[5][1] Ultimately, all drivers escaped injury.[5]

Rezek passed Sheppard for the first position on lap 23, defending it for 12 laps before losing it to Petty.[1] The race became an open competition during its middle stages, with Petty, Rezek, and the Chevrolet of Phil Finney being the main contenders for the win.[1] On lap 72, Petty passed Finney for the lead, before dropping it to Rezek on lap 77.[1] Ultimately, Petty regained it a lap later, and defended it from Rezek, crossing the line half a second ahead.[1] He therefore claimed victory and $4,150 in prize money, with Rezek finishing second, and Finney taking third.[1][4] Later that year, Petty would attempt to qualify for 1979 Winston Cup Series races, eventually making his debut at the 1979 Talladega 500.[4][6]

Availability[edit | edit source]

While it was claimed by Bench-Racing that the 1979 Daytona ARCA 200 went untelevised, it was confirmed by nascarman that a CBS broadcast of the event occurred on 28th April 1979.[7] This broadcast has yet to resurface,[7] although photos of the event remain publicly available.

Gallery[edit | edit source]

Images[edit | edit source]

Video[edit | edit source]

Top 10 LOST NASCAR TV Broadcasts detailing the CBS broadcast of the race (1:43-2:03).

See Also[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]