NASCAR Hall of Famer Jack Ingram dies at age 84

0 Comments

The NASCAR Hall of Fame confirmed Friday that Class of 2014 inductee and Xfinity Series standard-bearer Jack Ingram has passed away at age 84.

Ingram won Xfinity Series championships in 1982 and 1985. He also won three titles (1972-1974) and 286 races in its predecessor division, the Late Model Sportsman series.

His 31 wins in the Xfinity Series were a series record until 1997, when Mark Martin surpassed him. He was named one of NASCAR’s 50 Greatest Drivers during the sport’s 50th anniversary season in 1998.

“Known unilaterally as “The Iron Man” for his relentless, hard driving style to win, along with the incredible schedule he kept crisscrossing the country racing wherever there was a checkered flag to be captured, Ingram owned, built and worked on the cars himself and although his talent could have allowed him to compete in the premier series of NASCAR, he chose to stay in the series he knew and loved best,” NASCAR Hall of Fame executive director Winston Kelley said in a statement.

“His two NASCAR Busch Series championships both came after the age of 45 – in 1982 and 1985, further solidifying this Iron Man’s legacy as a tenacious competitor and future Hall of Famer.”

All but two of Ingram’s 31 Xfinity Series wins came on short tracks. He earned eight victories at Hickory (N.C.) Motor Speedway, his most at a single track.

He also earned five wins apiece at South Boston (Va.) Speedway and Orange County (N.C.) Speedway, plus four more at Langley (Va.) Speedway.

Ingram completed his Xfinity Series career in 1991 with 122 top-five and 164 top-10 finishes in just 275 starts.

Along with his two series titles, he was the 1983 and 1984 series runner-up. From 1982-89, he finished within the top five in series points in seven of eight seasons, with a 10th-place finish in 1988 being the outlier.

Here is Kelley and the Hall of Fame’s full statement:

“First and foremost on behalf of the NASCAR Hall of Fame team, I want to offer our most sincere condolences to Jack’s wife Aline and the entire Ingram family on the passing of Jack Ingram.

“Jack’s contributions, accomplishments and tenacity in NASCAR are legendary. A dominant short track racer and five-time series champion are among the reasons this 2014 NASCAR Hall of Fame Inductee was the first inductee whose career was predominately in what is now NASCAR’s Xfinity Series. He literally stockpiled wins by the bucket with a record 31 wins in the NASCAR Busch (now Xfinity) Series, a record that stood until 1997 as well as 286 wins in the predecessor division, the NASCAR Late Model Sportsman Division, along with 12 track championships.

“Known unilaterally as “The Iron Man” for his relentless, hard driving style to win, along with the incredible schedule he kept crisscrossing the country racing wherever there was a checkered flag to be captured, Ingram owned, built and worked on the cars himself and although his talent could have allowed him to compete in the premier series of NASCAR, he chose to stay in the series he knew and loved best. His two NASCAR Busch Series championships both came after the age of 45 – in 1982 and 1985, further solidifying this Iron Man’s legacy as a tenacious competitor and future Hall of Famer.

“Jack was among the Hall of Fame’s staunchest supporters, actively participating in literally every event he was asked to from groundbreaking and grand opening of the NASCAR Hall of Fame, to voting days and induction ceremonies prior to and after his induction, as well as the annual Darlington Raceway “Throwback” weekend events with fellow Hall of Famers.

“NASCAR has lost a true racer’s racer and the NASCAR Hall of Fame team and I have lost a dedicated supporter and cherished friend. Jack’s legacy and incredible accomplishments and contributions in NASCAR will live in our minds, our hearts and our archives at the NASCAR Hall of Fame forever.”

Jack Ingram
Jack Ingram was inducted to the NASCAR Hall of Fame in 2014. Photo by Rainier Ehrhardt/NASCAR via Getty Images