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HISTORY: NASCAR K&N PRO SERIES WEST

 

The NASCAR K&N Pro Series, which includes the East and the West, is the top step in NASCAR’s developmental ladder before drivers progress to the three national series. The series introduces NASCAR fans to the next generation of stars, and the diverse mix of short tracks, road courses, and national series speedways appeals to a broad range of motorsports fans. With identical series racing throughout the country, the K&N Pro Series provides an opportunity for young drivers to gain valuable experience and exposure to highly competitive racing.

Since 2007, NASCAR K&N Pro Series drivers have made a significant impact at the national level, including Joey Logano, was crowned the 2018 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series champion. Logano’s racing roots come from the K&N Pro Series, where he won the East title in his Rookie of the Year season. Kevin Harvick, the 2014 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series champion and 2007 Daytona 500 winner, won the West championship in 1998.

The NASCAR K&N Pro Series West traces its lineage back to the Pacific Coast Late Models in 1954 and the NASCAR Winston West Series. Nine races were on the schedule in 1954, with the first event being held on the half-mile Oakland Speedway, where Dick Rathmann came through the field to win the opener. Prior to the 2018 stop at the Dirt Track at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, the most recent dirt track event was in 1979.

Bill France Jr Hershel Mcgriff And Richard Petty 700
The NASCAR K&N Pro Series West history is tightly interwoven with that of the current Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series. Here, Hershel McGriff, center, chats with NASCAR Hall of Fame members Bill France Jr., left, and Richard Petty, right. (File photo)

The names of many talented drivers have been associated with the West Coast division through its history. Names like Jack McCoy, Ray Elder and Hershel McGriff top many of the series record books, including Elder’s series leading six career championships. Elder’s team also made a significant mark in the racing world by becoming the only West Coast team to win a Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series event at the time.

In recent season’s, Eric Holmes won three championships (2006, ’08 & ’10) and Greg Pursley claimed the championship in 2011 and 2014. Todd Gilliland became the youngest champion in series history at 16-years-old in 2016, the first of his two straight championship runs. In 2018, Hailie Deegan scored her first career victory at Meridian Speedway, marking the first time a female carried the checkered flag in K&N Pro Series West history.

NASCAR K&N PRO SERIES WEST FIRSTS

 

First Race: Oakland Stadium, Oakland, California, March 1954

First Race Winner: Dick Rathman

First Pole Winner: Hershel McGriff

First Champion: Lloyd Dane(1954)

First Sunoco Rookie of the Year: Dick Kranzler (1971)


YEAR-BY-YEAR: K&N Pro Series West Results & Point Standings


Nknp West History Schmitt Mcgriff 1986
Bill Schmitt (73) leads Hershel McGriff in a 1986 West race. (NASCAR Archives)

K&N PRO SERIES WEST STATS & RECORDS

 

Number of Series Races: 959 (Beginning of 2019)

Most Career Starts: 

Most Career Wins:


FULL LIST: K&N Pro Series West All-Time Wins Leaders


Most Races Won in a Season: 

Most Career Poles:


FULL LIST: K&N Pro Series West All-Time Poles Leaders


Most Poles Won in a Season:

Most Consecutive Races Won:

Nknp West History Eric Holmes 2014 Champ
Eric Holmes celebrated his 2010 NASCAR K&N; Pro Series West championship in Phoenix with 1954 West champion Lloyd Dane. (Getty Images for NASCAR)

Most Top Five Finishes in a Season:

Most Laps Led in a Season:

Drivers To Win a Race in Both K&N East & West:

Youngest Driver To Win A Race:

Highest Race Finish by a Female: Hailie Deegan (1st, Idaho’s Meridian Speedway, 2018)

Highest Points Finish by a Female: Hailie Deegan (5th in 2018)

MERIDIAN ID - SEPTEMBER 29: The NASCAR K&N Series West NAPA Auto Parts Idaho 208 at Meridian Speedway on September 29, 2018 in Meridian, Idaho. (Photo by Loren Orr/Getty Images for NASCAR)
Hailie Deegan celebrates becoming the first female to win a NASCAR K&N Pro Series event at Meridian Speedway in 2018. (Loren Orr/Getty Images for NASCAR)

Smallest Margin in Championship Standings:

Closest Finishes in History:

Most Lead Changes in a Single Race:

UNKNOWN — 1977: Bill Schmitt of Redding, CA, is presented his trophy in honor of winning the NASCAR Winston West Series championship. (Photo by ISC Images & Archives via Getty Images)
Bill Schmitt is presented his trophy in honor of winning the NASCAR Winston West Series championship in 1977. (ISC Images & Archives via Getty Images)

Most Cautions in a Single Race:

Largest Numbers of Cars To Start A Race:

Worst Starting Position For A Winner:

Car Owners To Win More Than One Title:

  • Carl Dane/Lloyd Dane (1954, 1956, 1957)
  • Vel Miletich (1958, 1960)
  • Frank Galpin (1961-1964)
  • Bill Clinton (1967, 1968)
  • Fred Elder (1969-1972 & 1974-1975)
  • Gerald Craker (1976 & 1978)
  • Bill Schmitt (1977 & 1990)
  • Robert Beadle (1980 & 1981)
  • Lois Williams (1983-1985)
  • Wayne Spears (1991, 1992 & 1998)
  • Bill McAnally (1999-2001, 2008, 2010, 2015-2016)
  • Mike Duncan (2004 & 2005)
  • Bob Bruncati (2009, 2013, 2018)
  • Gene Price (2011, 2012 & 2014)
13 Bill And Brendan Gaughan1
Bill McAnally (right) celebrates one of seven championships as a car owner in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West.

QUALIFYING RECORDS — 2019 TRACKS

 

Dirt Track at Las Vegas Motor Speedway (Las Vegas, Nev.)

1-lap qualifying record: 84.392 mph, 21.329 seconds (Hailie Deegan, September 2018)

Irwindale Speedway (Irwindale, Calif)

1-lap qualifying record: 100.722 mph, 17.871 seconds (Butch Gilliland, June 1999)

Tucson Speedway (Tucson, Ariz.)

1-lap qualifying record: 88.328 mph (Butch Gilliland, June 1996)

Colorado National Speedway (Erie, Colo.)

1-lap qualifying record: 81.863 mph, 16.491 seconds (Dylan Kwasniewski, August 2011)

1-lap qualifying record: 135.484 mph, 23.250 seconds (Kyle Busch, May 2009)

Evergreen Speedway (Monroe, Wash.)

1-lap qualifying record: 101.862 mph, 22.831 seconds (Greg Pursley, July 2011)

Gateway Motorsports Park (Madison, Ill.)

1-lap qualifying record: 109.047 mph (Spencer Davis, August 2018)

1-lap qualifying record: 69.140 mph, 13.017 seconds (Noah Gragson, September 2015)

All American Speedway (Roseville, Calif)

1-lap qualifying record: 89.383 mph, 13.412 seconds (Michael Self, October 2017)

Kern County Raceway Park (Bakersfield, Calif.)

1-lap qualifying record: 100.514 mph, 17.908 seconds (Gray Gaulding, October 2013)

ISM Raceway (Avondale, Ariz.)

1-lap qualifying record: 133.949 mph, 26.876 seconds (Clint Bowyer, February 2011)

ROSEBURG, OR - JUNE 30: Derek Kraus #16 leads the pack around the turn on his way to winning the Clint Newell Toyota 150 presnted by NAPA Auto Parts for the NASCAR K&N West Series at the Douglas County Speedway on June 30th in Roseburg, Oregon. (Photo by Steve Dykes/Getty Images) | Getty Images
The NASCAR K&N Pro Series West competes across the West Coast of the United States, but also comes together with the K&N Pro Series East for combination races. (Steve Dykes/NASCAR via Getty Images)