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Brothers Have Been Competing Against Each Other in NASCAR for Decades

By admin | February 3, 2013

 By Richard Allen

One of the biggest stories coming into this year’s Super Bowl was the fact that the two opposing teams were coached by brothers. Jim Harbaugh’s San Francisco 49ers would face John Harbaugh’s Baltimore Ravens in a match-up that would pit siblings against each other in the big game for the first time in NFL history.

In NASCAR, the idea of brothers competing against each other is as old as the sport itself.

“The Flying Flocks”

Tim, Bob and Fonty Flock began racing in NASCAR during the sport’s earliest days. Often, the names of “The Flying Flocks” come up among those of original pioneers in discussions of racing history.

Each of the three achieved success in stock cars. But Tim, who scored 39 victories and two championships, was most notable. He had a knack for entertainment which he demonstrated by having a pet monkey named “Jocko Flocko” ride along with him for a few races. However, he also had a knack for angering NASCAR boss Bill France. As a matter of fact, he was banned by the sanctioning body for life in 1961 after attempting to start a drivers union.

Bob only raced for portions of seven years but scored four wins during his time in NASCAR. He began his career of hard driving as a moonshine runnerfor Atlanta’s Peachtree Williams but soon found his way to race tracks around the South. While he had relatively few victories in the sport’s top division, he scored over 200 modified wins before retiring from racing after suffering a broken back in a crash.

Fonty won 19 times between 1949 and 1957. He also started out as a moonshiner then found his way to race tracks as a result of the fast driving techniques learned while evading capture. He announced his retirement from racing in a hospital bed after a severe crash in Darlington in 1957.

Following the legacy of the Flock brothers were two of the core members of the “Alabama Gang”. Bobby and Donnie Allison tore up NASCAR tracks throughout the 1960s, ’70s and into the ’80s.

Donnie and Bobby Allison pictured with fellow “Alabama Gang” member Red Farmer

Bobby amassed a total of 85 wins over the course of his NASCAR career. He also earned what was then called the Winston Cup(Sprint Cup) championship in 1983. In recognition of his achievements, he was inducted into the NASCAR Hall of Fame in 2011.

Bobby was known as one of the sport’s true innovators as he was constantly coming up with new ways to make his cars go faster so that he could compete with more heavily financed drivers and teams. But much like Tim Flock, he also had a way of ruffling the feathers of the powerful France family. He too played an instrumental role in a movement to form a drivers union in 1969. But like the earlier attempt, the union failed to have any real staying power.

Bobby’s career was ended when he suffered serious injuries in a crash at Pocono in 1988.

Donnie Allison may not have enjoyed as much success as his brother but he is noted for being a major player in one of NASCAR’s truly defining moments. As he and Cale Yarborough raced down the back stretch on the last lap of the 1979 Daytona 500they crashed in the first race ever carried live and flag-to-flag by a national television network. The result was a win by Richard Petty and a fist fight between Yarborough and both Allison brothers. But more importantly, another result was that NASCAR became a household word in the mainstream of American sports.

Donnie won a total of ten NASCAR races over the course of a career that spanned from 1966 to 1988.

Kyle and Kurt Busch

In modern times, NASCAR still has competing brothers. 2004 Sprint Cup champion Kurt Busch and his brother Kyle are among the sport’s most talented drivers. And like the previously mentioned siblings, they are not afraid to stir the pot as well. Both are proven winners, and at their relatively young ages, they promise to remain a major part of the sport for years to come.

Also, up-and-coming brothers Austin and Ty Dillon are likely to bring their talents to the top division of racing under the guidance of their famous grandfather, Richard Childress, and their racing father Mike Dillon.

Austin and Ty Dillon

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7 Responses to “Brothers Have Been Competing Against Each Other in NASCAR for Decades”

  1. Tony Geinzer Says:
    February 4th, 2013 at 6:03 am

    I like the fact,Rich that you tend to take a different tune to NASCAR and Auto Racing than the traditional Sports Media or Motorsports Media.

  2. Ken Says:
    February 4th, 2013 at 7:42 am

    I know you wrote about brothers, Rich, but didn’t the Flocks have a sister who raced with them? If I remember, her name was Ethel. Her maiden name was Flock, and her married name was Mobley.

  3. Russ Says:
    February 4th, 2013 at 9:52 am

    The one thing that MAY have changed to some degree is money and access.
    Both, more than talent, are required these days to open the door. You will no longer hear of the guy who gets a entry level job and moves on to success either as a driver or in management. Unless of course there is a family connection.
    Is that for the better or worse? Who knows, time will tell.

  4. Richard Allen Says:
    February 4th, 2013 at 10:22 am

    Yes, Ethel Flock Mobley raced a few times before retiring for family reasons.

  5. Diane m Eaton Says:
    February 4th, 2013 at 12:36 pm

    Sorry, but didn’t you leave out a couple brothers who both happen to be Champions. Terry and Bobby LABONTE from Corpus Christi, TX. They at least deserve a mention.

  6. Offkilter Says:
    February 4th, 2013 at 7:11 pm

    Diane in eaton… Yep. Champions and class acts. The busch’s should observe and take notes.

  7. RacingFan Says:
    February 5th, 2013 at 12:54 am

    And several other notables, including the Burtons, the Yarboroughs, the Waltrips …