Buddy Arrington, a longtime independent racer who competed in the NASCAR Cup Series throughout the 1960s, 70s and 80s, has died at the age of 84.
A native of Southern Virginia and one of NASCAR’s last true independents who both owned and drove his cars, Arrington became famous for his extreme loyalty to Mopar cars and engines, as well as his very recognizable red and blue No. 67. Making his debut in 1963, Arrington raced throughout the next 25 years on a limited budget and with a volunteer crew, financing his racing career through various occupations: Arrington worked as a tobacco farmer, as a used car salesman and even had a stint as a moonshiner.
Arrington made a total of 560 Cup Series starts without a single victory, the second-most of any winless driver behind J.D. McDuffie (653), one of Arrington’s contemporaries and a fellow independent racer. The closest Arrington ever came to winning was the 1979 Winston 500 at Talladega, where he led two laps early and was in position to win late when a pit crew error on his final stop cost him a chance at victory. Arrington finished third, tying his career-best finish first set at Nashville in 1965.
— CBS Sports —
One of the sports true independents. Buddy was always fun to watch. Like all the independents of his era you had to admire the effort and resourcefulness it took to compete. https://t.co/daV4UQTAPW
— Dale Earnhardt Jr. (@DaleJr) August 3, 2022
Farewell, Buddy Arrington. He was the first driver I ever met and interviewed. We remained friends for over four decades. Godspeed, No. 67. #nascar
— Steve Waid (@stevewaid) August 3, 2022