1994 Slick 50 500

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1994 Slick 50 500
Race details[1]
Race 30 of 31 in the 1994 NASCAR Winston Cup Series season
Layout of Phoenix International Raceway
Layout of Phoenix International Raceway
Date October 30, 1994 (1994-October-30)
Official name Slick 50 500
Location Phoenix International Raceway, Avondale, Arizona
Course Permanent racing facility
1.000 mi (1.609 km)
Distance 312 laps, 312 mi (502 km)
Weather Hot with temperatures of 88 °F (31 °C); wind speeds of 6 miles per hour (9.7 km/h)
Average speed 107.463 miles per hour (172.945 km/h)
Pole position
Driver Morgan-McClure Motorsports
Most laps led
Driver Terry Labonte Hendrick Motorsports
Laps 112
No. 5 Terry Labonte Hendrick Motorsports
Television in the United States
Network TNN
Announcers Mike Joy
Buddy Baker
Dick Berggren

The 1994 Slick 50 500 was a NASCAR Winston Cup Series racing event that took place on October 30, 1994, at Phoenix International Raceway in Phoenix, Arizona. This race would be the final race in 1994 that Chevrolet would win; with the Chevrolet Lumina representing their manufacturing brand in the top-level professional stock car series at that time.

The pace car in this race was a Chevrolet Camaro Z28.

Never again would the aluminium chassis of the Chevrolet Lumina win another race in the NASCAR Cup Series;[2] the Chevrolet Monte Carlo would take over in 1995 and would race until the beginning of the 2008 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season. With the winner's average speed being slightly below 108 miles per hour (174 km/h), stock car manufacturers realized that aluminium no longer made the fastest vehicles and started to research for lighter materials to use for the exterior of the NASCAR vehicles. In today's NASCAR, a simple steel tube frame with safety roll cage (serving as a space frame chassis) is used for the racing vehicles. A 24-gauge sheet metal body covers the body for safety reasons.[3]

Race report[edit]

A lineup of 43 drivers made the starting grid for this 312-lap racing event; John Andretti finished in last-place due to a crash on lap 31. The yellow flag didn't come until lap 34 and lasted until lap 41. About 9% of the race was run under a caution flag while the green flag was maintained for an average of 57 laps.[4] Individual winnings for each driver ranged from the winner's share of $67,885 ($114,752.17 when considering inflation) to the last-place finisher's share of $6,825 ($11,536.92 when considering inflation). The total prize purse for this racing event was $690,315 ($1,166,902.03 when considering inflation).[5]

Eleven drivers failed to qualify for this event; including Jeff Purvis. There were four caution flags for this event; most of them were caused by in-race accidents.[4] Sterling Marlin, Ricky Rudd, Jeff Gordon and Ron Hornaday, Jr. would dominate the race during the first 100 laps while Terry Labonte and Marlin would dominate the final 100 laps of this event.[4] Terry Labonte would eventually defeat Mark Martin by slightly more than three seconds after two hours and fifty-four minutes of racing. All 43 of the drivers were born in the United States of America. Sterling Marlin claims his first pole in over a year, and his only one of the 1994 NASCAR Winston Cup Series season.[4] Jeff Gordon was in the spotlight for the 1994 NASCAR Cup Series season with a pre-season engagement to his now ex-wife Brooke and 13 finishes in the "top ten" prior to this event. His fourth-place finish would add another "top ten" finish to Jeff Gordon's NASCAR racing résumé.[6]

Rick Carelli would be the highest-finishing driver not to finish the race while Michael Waltrip would be the lowest-finishing driver to finish the race. Most of the drivers in this event would either be driving Ford or Chevrolet vehicles during the race.[4]

Dale Earnhardt would eventually go on to clinch the NASCAR Winston Cup Championship by more than 440 points after this event; although his day ended on lap 91 with engine problems.[4] Earnhardt stated in the mid-race interview that they were had an "experimental" engine since they already wrapped up the title. The experiment was obviously a failure.


Grid[4] No. Driver Manufacturer Owner
1 4 Sterling Marlin Chevrolet Larry McClure
2 2 Rusty Wallace Ford Roger Penske
3 11 Bill Elliott Ford Junior Johnson
4 10 Ricky Rudd Ford Ricky Rudd
5 18 Dale Jarrett Chevrolet Joe Gibbs
6 6 Mark Martin Ford Jack Roush
7 25 Ken Schrader Chevrolet Rick Hendrick
8 3 Dale Earnhardt Chevrolet Richard Childress
9 26 Brett Bodine Ford Kenny Bernstein
10 15 Lake Speed Ford Bud Moore

Finishing order[edit]

Section reference: [4]


Section reference: [4]

  • Start: Sterling Marlin had the pole position as the green flag was waved to officially begin the event
  • Lap 7: Ricky Rudd took over the lead from Sterling Marlin
  • Lap 34: Caution was given out due to a crash involving John Andretti and Jimmy Spencer, ended on lap 41
  • Lap 51: Caution was given out due to Greg Sacks' accident, ended on lap 59
  • Lap 67: Loy Allen, Jr.'s transmission suddenly stopped working properly
  • Lap 82: Jeff Gordon took over the lead from Ricky Rudd
  • Lap 83: Ricky Rudd took over the lead from Jeff Gordon
  • Lap 91: Dale Earnhardt's engine suddenly stopped working properly
  • Lap 96: Caution due Brett Bodine and Harry Gant spinning out on turn three, ended on lap 99
  • Lap 97: Ron Hornaday, Jr. took over the lead from Ricky Rudd; Dick Trickle's engine suddenly stopped working properly
  • Lap 98: Ricky Rudd took over the lead from Ron Hornaday, Jr.
  • Lap 108: Mark Martin took over the lead from Ricky Rudd
  • Lap 118: Caution due to an accident involving Jimmy Spencer and two other drivers, ended on lap 123
  • Lap 144: Rich Bickle's engine suddenly stopped working properly
  • Lap 192: Terry Labonte took over the lead from Mark Martin
  • Lap 200: Bill Elliott took over the lead from Terry Labonte
  • Lap 202: Bobby Labonte took over the lead from Bill Elliott
  • Lap 204: Dale Jarrett took over the lead from Bobby Labonte
  • Lap 208: Terry Labonte took over the lead from Dale Jarrett
  • Lap 275: The clutch on Bill Elliot's vehicle suddenly stopped working properly
  • Lap 283: Sterling Marlin took over the lead from Terry Labonte
  • Lap 284: Terry Labonte took over the lead from Sterling Marlin
  • Lap 297: Rick Carelli's engine suddenly stopped working properly
  • Finish: Terry Labonte was officially declared the winner of the event

Retirements from NASCAR[edit]

Rick Carelli and Mike Chase would end their respective NASCAR Cup Series careers after this event.[7]

Standings after the race[edit]

Pos Driver Points[4] Differential
1 1rightarrow.png Dale Earnhardt 4519 0
2 1rightarrow.png Rusty Wallace 4140 -379
3 1rightarrow.png Mark Martin 4065 -454
4 1rightarrow.png Ken Schrader 3930 -589
5 1rightarrow.png Ricky Rudd 3929 -590
6 1rightarrow.png Morgan Shepherd 3879 -640
7 1rightarrow.png Terry Labonte 3734 -785
8 Increase Jeff Gordon 3658 -861
9 Increase Darrell Waltrip 3588 -931
10 Decrease Bill Elliott 3568 -951


  1. ^ Weather information for the 1994 Slick 50 500 at the Old Farmers' Almanac
  2. ^ Track profile about Phoenix International Raceway at Athlon Sports
  3. ^ NASCAR.com "Waltrip race team finds important asset in partner" 2/15/08
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h i j 1994 Slick 50 500 racing information at Racing Reference
  5. ^ 1994 Slick 50 500 racing information at Fantasy Racing Cheat Sheet
  6. ^ 1994 statistics for Jeff Gordon at Jeff Gordon Online
  7. ^ 1994 Slick 50 500 racing information at Race Database
Preceded by
1994 AC-Delco 500
NASCAR Winston Cup Series Season
Succeeded by
1994 Hooters 500