NASCAR 2024 Hall of Fame Inductees Revealed

NASCAR has three new members of its 2024 Hall of Fame, together with a Landmark Award winner. Revealing its 14th class since the Hall’s inception in 2010, NASCAR announced the addition of seven-time Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson, his Hendrick Motorsports crew chief for those titles, Chad Knaus and Donnie Allison, a prominent member of the Alabama Gang. Janet Guthrie was named recipient of the Landmark Award for Outstanding Contributions to NASCAR, currently celebrating its 75th year of operation.

There were 10 nominees on the Modern Era ballot, which was selected by NASCAR’s traditional nominating committee. The same panel selected five Landmark Award nominees, while the Pioneer ballot, which included five nominees whose career began in 1964 or earlier, was selected by the Honors Committee. Starting with the Class of 2021, each Hall of Fame class features two inductees from the Modern Era and one from the Pioneer ballot.

Representatives from NASCAR, the NASCAR Hall of Fame, major facilities’ track owners and historic short tracks, media members, manufacturer representatives, competitors (drivers, owners, crew chiefs), recognized industry leaders and a nationwide fan vote conducted on NASCAR.com determined the Class of 2024. Reigning Cup Series champion Joey Logano also cast votes.

In all, 57 votes were cast, with two additional Voting Panel members recused from voting as potential nominees for induction (Jeff Burton and Ricky Rudd).

Jimmie Johnson received 93 percent of the Modern Era ballot votes, while Chad Knaus earned 81 percent. Harry Gant finished third, followed by Ricky Rudd and Carl Edwards. Donnie Allison received 53 percent of the Pioneer ballot votes; Banjo Matthews was runner-up on that ballot. Results of the fan vote echoed the Voting Panel’s choices.

There were ten nominees on the Modern Era ballot, including Neil Bonnett, Tim Brewer, Jeff Burton, Carl Edwards, Harry Gant, Harry Hyde, Jimmie Johnson, Chad Knaus, Larry Phillips and Ricky Rudd. Pioneer Ballot nominees were Donnie Allison, Sam Ard, A.J. Foyt, Banjo Matthews and Ralph Moody. Landmark Award nominees were Janet Guthrie, Alvin Hawkins, Lesa France Kennedy, Dr. Joseph Mattioli and [Coach] Les Richter.

Johnson’s seven championship NASCAR Cup Series titles tie him with the King, Richard Petty and the Intimidator, Dale Earnhardt, for the most in series history, while his five consecutive championships are a NASCAR record. He has 83 wins at 20 different circuits. Johnson is currently the co-owner of Legacy Motor Club; he was named one of NASCAR’s 75 Greatest Drivers during this 75th anniversary season.

Chad Knaus learned to lead in racing activities early, when he helped his father to multiple track titles as a teen. He started at Hendrick Motorsports as an assistant in the body shop and apprenticed under Hall of Fame Ray Evernham as part of the “Rainbow Warriors” that prepped cars for Jeff Gordon. In 2002, he was paired with rookie Jimmie Johnson on a fourth Hendrick team and the pair went on to win seven championships and 81 race victories together. Knaus is currently vice president of competition for Hendrick Motorsports.

Donnie Allison has been an ambassador for the sport for more than 50 years. While he never planned to race, he started competing in modifieds and worked his way to the Cup Series. The “Alabama Gang” member, brother to fellow Hall of Famer Bobby Allison, Donny was the 1967 Cup Series Rookie of the Year; he partnered with famed mechanic Banjo Matthews, where he had his biggest successes, winning three races for Matthews in 1970. Still, he might be best known for his 1979 Daytona 500 fight on the main straight with Cale Yarborough. The brawl took place during the first nationally-televised NASCAR race and the resulting publicity was instrumental to NASCAR’s growth.

From her successful career as an aerospace engineer in the early 1960s, Janet Guthrie became a full-time racer in 1972 and was the first woman to compete in a NASCAR premier series (aka Cup Series) superspeedway race when she earned a 15th place result in the 1976 World 600. In 1977, she raced in both the Daytona 500 and Indianapolis 500, the first female to participate as a driver in both races.Her helmet and fire suit are on display at the Smithsonian Institution.

The Class of 2024 Induction Ceremony is set for Friday, January 19, 2024, at the NASCAR Hall of Fame and Charlotte Convention Center in Charlotte, North Carolina. Tickets are available on NASCARHsll.com.

By Anne Proffit

About Anne Proffit 1268 Articles
Anne Proffit traces her love of racing - in particular drag racing - to her childhood days in Philadelphia, where Atco Dragway, Englishtown and Maple Grove Raceway were destinations just made for her. As a diversion, she was the first editor of IMSA’s Arrow newsletter, and now writes about and photographs sports cars, Indy cars, Formula 1, MotoGP, NASCAR, Formula Drift, Red Bull Global Rallycross - in addition to her first love of NHRA drag racing. A specialty is a particular admiration for the people that build and tune drag racing engines.

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