Our next inductee is Richie Evans.
Richard Ernest Evans was born on July 23, 1941 in Rome, New York. He was known as the “king” of Modified racing. Evans captured nine NASCAR Modified titles in a 13-year span, including eight in a row from 1978-1985. He ran his first oval-track car in 1962. The car was a ’54 Ford Hobby Stock named after John F. Kennedy’s torpedo boat in WWII. With Evans induction, he becomes the first non-Cup Series driver inducted into the Hall of Fame.
Evans ranked No. 1 in the 2003 voting of the “NASCAR All-Time Modified Top 10 Drivers,” and he was named one of NASCAR’s “50 Greatest Drivers” in 1998.
Evans was killed in a crash at Martinsville Speedway while practicing for the Winn-Dixie 500 on October 24, 1985. He left behind six children.
Evan’s signature orange Modified paint scheme was replicated on a NASCAR Busch Series car in 2003 by Martin Truex, Jr in his first year on the series driving for Dale Earnhardt, Jr. at Chance 2 Motorsports. Steve Park also ran a tribute paint scheme for Tommy Baldwin Racing’s #36 entry at the 2010 Coke Zero 400 at Daytona International Speedway. Park would finish the race in 13th. Both Martin Truex, Jr and Steve Park are natives to the New Jersey area.
Come back tomorrow for our last profile, driver/owner Glen Wood.