Below is a look at some of the top statistical performers at Watkins Glen International in Watkins Glen, New York, going into the Go Bowling at The Glen (3 p.m. ET on USA, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio Channel 90) on Sunday, August 20.
Watkins Glen International Stats & Tidbits
Season Race #: 25 of 36 (08-20-23)
Track Size: 2.45-miles
Track Type: Multi-Elevational Road Course
Number of Turns: 7
Race Length: 90 laps / 220.5 miles
The Purse: $7,154,312
Stage 1 & 2 Lengths: 20 laps (each)
Final Stage Length: 50 laps
QUALIFYING & RACE RECORDS
Track Qualifying Record: Marcos Ambrose, Ford, 129.491 mph, (68.113 secs.), August 9, 2014 (Set in Round 1 of 3)
Track Race Record: Martin Truex Jr., Toyota, 104.132 mph, (02:07:03), August 6, 2017
2022 Pole Winner: Chase Elliott, Chevrolet, 125.147 mph, (70.477 secs.), August 20, 2022
2022 Race Winner: Kyle Larson, Chevrolet, 95.962 mph, (02:17:52), August 21, 2022
After several events were held on the streets of Watkins Glen, a permanent facility was opened in 1956.The first NASCAR Cup Series race at Watkins Glen International was on August 4, 1957 and won by driver/owner Buck Baker with an average speed of 83.064 mph in a 1957 Chevrolet.After a six-year absence, NASCAR returned to Watkins Glen International (The Glen) in 1964 and 1965.Then after a 21-year absence, the NASCAR Cup Series returned to The Glen and has run one race a year there from 1986 to 2019.The 2020 NASCAR Cup Series race at Watkins Glen International was rescheduled to another track due to the COVID-19 pandemic restrictions in New York. The series did not compete at Watkins Glen International in 2020, but the series did return to the track in 2021.The first NASCAR Cup Series race at Watkins Glen was scheduled for 101.2-miles in 1957, the second race was 161.7-miles (1964) and the third race was 151.8-miles (1965). Every race since has been scheduled for 220.5-miles (90 laps).The famous Watkins Glen International road course underwent a repave in 2015.There have been 39 NASCAR Cup Series races held at Watkins Glen International (1957 — Present).
A total of 305 different drivers have competed in at least one NASCAR Cup Series race at Watkins Glen International; 185 have competed in more than one.NASCAR Hall of Famer Jeff Gordon leads the NASCAR Cup Series all-time in starts at Watkins Glen with 24.Kevin Harvick lead all active NASCAR Cup Series drivers in starts at Watkins Glen with 21 starts each.A total of 43 different drivers have made their NASCAR Cup Series career start at Watkins Glen International. The most recent was Spencer Gallagher on August 5, 2018.The best starting position by a driver making his NASCAR Cup Series career debut at Watkins Glen International was second by Boris Said in the August 15, 1999 race; he ultimately finished 42nd in the event.The best finishing position by a driver making his NASCAR Cup Series debut at Watkins Glen International is 13th — it has happened twice — Scott Lagasse Jr. started 28th and finished 13th on August 8, 1993 and Gene Blair started 18th and finished 13th on August 4, 1957. First-Time DriversDate First-Time DriversDate1Kimi Raikkonen8/21/202223Butch Leitzinger8/14/19942Mike Rockenfeller8/21/202224Scott Lagasse8/8/19933RC Enerson8/8/202125Denny Wilson8/9/19924Spencer Gallagher8/5/201826Ed Ferree8/9/19925Gary Klutt8/6/201727Scott Sharp8/9/19926Nelson Piquet Jr8/10/201428Todd Bodine8/9/19927Owen Kelly8/11/201329Dorsey Schroeder8/11/19918Patrick Long8/12/201230Jim Derhaag8/11/19919Andrew Ranger8/15/201131Kim Campbell8/11/199110Andy Lally8/10/200932John Alexander8/12/199011Patrick Carpentier8/12/200733Rick Ware8/12/199012Marc Goossens8/13/200634Sarel van der Merwe8/12/199013Jorge Goeters8/14/200535Oma Kimbrough8/13/198914Tony Ave8/15/200436Ted Thomas8/13/198915Paul Menard8/10/200337Chuck Schroedel8/10/198716Joe Varde8/11/200238Patty Moise8/10/198717Anthony Lazzaro8/12/200139Tom Rotsell8/10/198618Boris Said8/15/199940Tommy Riggins8/10/198619David Murry8/15/199941Claude Holliday8/4/195720Ted Christopher8/15/199942Gene Blair8/4/195721Steve Park8/10/199743Walt Mortz8/4/195722Ron Fellows8/13/1995 NASCAR Hall of Famer Ned Jarrett (two starts) leads the NASCAR Cup Series in average starting position at Watkins Glen International with a 2.0.Among drivers with more than 10 starts all-time, NASCAR Hall of Famer Tony Stewart (16 starts) leads the NASCAR Cup Series in average starting position at Watkins Glen with a 5.875.2020 NASCAR Cup Series champion Chase Elliott (six starts) leads the series among active drivers in average starting position at Watkins Glen with a 6.000.
Top 10 in Average Starting Position at Watkins Glen (All-Time & Active)
RankAll-Time DriversAvg StartRacesRankActive DriversAvg StartRaces1Ned Jarrett2.00021Chase Elliott6.00062Tim Richmond2.50022Kyle Larson6.12583Buck Baker5.00023Kyle Busch7.765174Tony Stewart5.875164Tyler Reddick9.00025Chase Elliott6.00065William Byron9.25046Kyle Larson6.12586AJ Allmendinger9.273117Rusty Wallace7.050207Brad Keselowski11.583128Kyle Busch7.765178Denny Hamlin12.875169Jimmie Johnson7.889189Kevin Harvick13.6672110Dale Earnhardt8.2001510Martin Truex Jr13.75016
A total of 22 different NASCAR Cup Series drivers have won at least one pole at Watkins Glen International.Four of the 22 NASCAR Cup Series pole winners at Watkins Glen International are active this weekend.Active WGI Pole Winners (4)PolesSeasonsChase Elliott22022, 2019Kyle Busch22017, 2011Denny Hamlin12018AJ Allmendinger12015NASCAR Hall of Famers Dale Earnhardt (1990, ‘92, ‘96), Mark Martin (1993, ‘94, ‘95) and Jeff Gordon (1998, ‘03, ‘14) lead the NASCAR Cup Series in poles at Watkins Glen with three each.Kyle Busch (2011, 2017) and Chase Elliott (2019, 2022) lead all active NASCAR Cup Series drivers in poles at Watkins Glen International with two poles each.Driver/owner Buck Baker won the inaugural pole at Watkins Glen International in 1957 with a speed of 87.071 mph. He would go on to win the inaugural race from the pole in 1957.Seven drivers have won multiple poles in the NASCAR Cup Series at Watkins Glen International: Dale Earnhardt (1990, 1992, 1996), Jeff Gordon (1998, 2003, 2014), Mark Martin (1993, 1994, 1995), Terry Labonte (1987, 1991), Kyle Buch (2011, 2017), Carl Edwards (2010, 2016) and Chase Elliott (2019, 2022).NASCAR Hall of Famer Mark Martin is the only NASCAR Cup Series driver to post consecutive poles at Watkins Glen (three) — 1993, 1994, and 1995.Youngest Cup Series Watkins Glen pole winner: Chase Elliott (08/4/2019 — 23 years, 8 months, 7 days).Oldest Cup Series Watkins Glen pole winner: Morgan Shepherd (08/13/1989 — 47 years, 10 months, 1 day).New York native Todd Bodine is the only driver in NASCAR Cup Series history to get his first career pole at Watkins Glen International — August 10, 1997.A total of 15 different organizations have won a pole in the NASCAR Cup Series at Watkins Glen International and six of the 15 are active this weekend.Hendrick Motorsports leads the NASCAR Cup Series in poles at Watkins Glen International with eight poles among five drivers — Tim Richmond (1986), Geoff Bodine (1988), Jeff Gordon (1998, 2003, 2014), Jimmie Johnson (2009), Chase Elliott (2019, 2022).
Active NASCAR Cup Series Organizations with Poles at Watkins Glen
RankOrganizationsPoles1Hendrick Motorsports82RFK Racing43Richard Childress Racing34Joe Gibbs Racing45Team Penske26JTG Daugherty Racing1Seven different manufacturers have won at least one NASCAR Cup Series pole at Watkins Glen; led by Chevrolet with 16 poles, followed by Ford (8), Toyota (four), Dodge, Mercury, Oldsmobile and Pontiac (one each).
A total of 24 different NASCAR Cup Series drivers have won at Watkins Glen International.Eight of the 24 NASCAR Cup Series winners at Watkins Glen International are active this weekend.Active WGI Race Winners (8)WinsSeasonsKyle Larson22022, 2021Chase Elliott22019, 2018Kyle Busch22013, 2008Martin Truex Jr12017Denny Hamlin12016Joey Logano12015AJ Allmendinger12014Kevin Harvick12006NASCAR Hall of Famer Tony Stewart leads the NASCAR Cup Series in wins at Watkins Glen International with five victories (2002, ‘04, ‘05, ‘07 and ‘09).Kyle Larson (2021, 2022), Chase Elliott (2018, ‘19) and Kyle Busch (2008, ‘13) lead all active NASCAR Cup Series drivers in wins at Watkins Glen International with two victories each.A total of six NASCAR Cup Series drivers have posted consecutive wins at Watkins Glen International, led by NASCAR Hall of Famers Jeff Gordon (1997, ‘98, ‘99) and Mark Martin (1993, ‘94, ‘95) with three consecutive wins each.Hendrick Motorsports‘ drivers Kyle Larson (2021, 2022) and Chase Elliott (2018, 2019) are only active driver to accomplish the feat (2018, ‘19).Consecutive WGI Race WinnersSeasonsJeff Gordon1997, 1998, 1999Mark Martin1993, 1994, 1995Kyle Larson2021, 2022Chase Elliott2018, 2019Marcos Ambrose2011, 2012Tony Stewart2004, 2005Youngest Cup Series Watkins Glen winner: Chase Elliott (08/05/2018 — 22 years, 8 months, 8 days).Oldest Cup Series Watkins Glen winner: Geoff Bodine (08/11/1996 — 47 years, 3 months, 24 days).Four NASCAR Cup Series drivers have posted their first career win at Watkins Glen International:First-Time Winners at WGIStarting Pos.Crew ChiefDateSteve Park18Paul AndrewsSunday, August 13, 2000Marcos Ambrose3Todd ParrottMonday, August 15, 2011AJ Allmendinger6Brian BurnsSunday, August 10, 2014Chase Elliott3Alan GustafsonSunday, August 5, 2018Three NASCAR Cup Series drivers have won at Watkins Glen International in their first appearance at the track.Winners in First AppearanceSeasonBuck Baker1957Billy Wade1964Tim Richmond1986A total of 13 different starting positions have led to victories in the NASCAR Cup Series at Watkins Glen International.The pole or first starting position is the most proficient starting position in the field, producing more winners (10) than any other starting position at Watkins Glen International in the NASCAR Cup Series.Of the 39 NASCAR Cup Series races at Watkins Glen, 10 have been won from the pole or first starting position (25.6%); the most recent driver to accomplish the feat was Chase Elliott in 2019.Six different NASCAR Cup Series drivers have won from the pole or first starting position at Watkins Glen — Mark Martin (1993, ‘94, ‘95), Chase Elliott (2019), Jeff Gordon (1998), Tim Richmond (1988), Billy Wade (1964), Buck Baker (1957).
NASCAR Cup Series Wins by Starting Positions at Watkins Glen International
Starting PositionWinsWinning %Starting PositionWinsWinning %11025.64%1112.56%237.69%1212.56%3820.51%13410.26%425.13%1412.56%537.69%1612.56%637.69%1812.56%712.56%StatsWinning %WinsWinning from the First Starting Position:25.64%10Winning from the Front Row:33.33%13Winning from a Top-Five Starting Position:66.67%26Winning from a Top-10 Starting Position:76.92%30Winning After Starting Outside the Top 20:0.00%0None of the NASCAR Cup Series races at Watkins Glen have been won from a starting position outside the top 20.The deepest in the field that a NASCAR Cup Series race winner has started at Watkins Glen is 18th, by Steve Park in 2000.Martin Truex Jr. (2017) competed at Watkins Glen 11 times before winning; the longest span of any the eight active series winners.Michael McDowell leads the series among active drivers with the most NASCAR Cup Series starts at Watkins Glen without visiting Victory Lane at 13 starts; followed by Brad Keselowski with 12.A total of 18 different organizations have won in the NASCAR Cup Series at Watkins Glen International and eight are active this weekend.Active Winning Organizations (8)WinsHendrick Motorsports10Joe Gibbs Racing7RFK Racing3Richard Childress Racing2JTG Daugherty Racing1Team Penske1Stewart-Haas Racing1Wood Brothers Racing1Hendrick Motorsports leads the NASCAR Cup Series in wins at Watkins Glen International with 10 victories – Jeff Gordon (four: 1997, 1998, 1999, 2001), Chase Elliott (two: 2018, 2019), Kyle Larson (two: 2021, 2022), Ricky Rudd (1990), and Tim Richmond (1986).Six different manufacturers have won in the NASCAR Cup Series at Watkins Glen; led by Chevrolet with 21 victories; followed by Ford with eight, Pontiac and Toyota with four each and Buick and Mercury each have one.
ADDITIONAL FINISHING POSITIONS
A total of 28 different drivers have finished runner-up in the NASCAR Cup Series at Watkins Glen, seven of the 28 are active this weekendBrad Keselowski and Mark Martin lead the NASCAR Cup Series in runner-up finishes at Watkins Glen with three second-place finishes each.
Top Five in Runner-Up Finishes at Watkins Glen (All-Time & Active)
RankAll-Time DriversRunner-UpsRankActive DriverRunner-Up1Brad Keselowski31Brad Keselowski3Mark Martin32Martin Truex Jr23Geoff Bodine23AJ Allmendinger1Marcos Ambrose2Chase Elliott1Martin Truex Jr2Denny Hamlin1Ron Fellows2Joey Logano1Terry Labonte2Kyle Busch1Tony Stewart2Wally Dallenbach Jr2
A total of 78 different NASCAR Cup Series drivers have finished inside the top-five at Watkins Glen.NASCAR Hall of Famer Mark Martin leads the NASCAR Cup Series in top-five finishes at Watkins Glen with 12.Kyle Busch and Martin Truex Jr. leads all active drivers in top-five finishes at Watkins Glen with seven each.
Top Five in Top-Five Finishes at Watkins Glen (All-Time & Active)
RankAll-Time DriversTop FivesRankActive DriversTop Fives1Mark Martin121Kyle Busch72Ricky Rudd8 Martin Truex Jr7Tony Stewart83Denny Hamlin54Kyle Busch74AJ Allmendinger4Martin Truex Jr7 Brad Keselowski4Robby Gordon7 Chase Elliott4Rusty Wallace7 Joey Logano4
A total of 121 different drivers have finished in the top-10 in the NASCAR Cup Series at Watkins Glen.Mark Martin leads the series in top-10 finishes at Watkins Glen with 16 top 10s.Kyle Busch (second all-time) leads all active drivers in top-10 finishes with 13 top 10s.
Top Five in Top-10 Finishes at Watkins Glen (All-Time & Active)
RankAll-Time DriversTop 10sRankActive DriversTop 10s1Mark Martin161Kyle Busch132Kyle Busch132Kevin Harvick113Kevin Harvick113Martin Truex Jr10Tony Stewart114Denny Hamlin85Kurt Busch105AJ Allmendinger7Martin Truex Jr10 Ricky Rudd10 Rusty Wallace10
Buck Baker leads the NASCAR Cup Series in average finishing position at Watkins Glen with a 2.500 in two starts.Chase Elliott leads all active NASCAR Cup Series drivers in average finishing position at Watkins Glen with a 5.667 in six starts.
Top 10 in Average Finishing Position at Watkins Glen (All-Time & Active)
RankAll-Time DriversAvg FinishRacesRankActive DriversAvg FinishRaces1Buck Baker2.50021Chase Elliott5.66762Tiny Lund4.00022Christopher Bell7.50023Walt Hansgen4.50023Tyler Reddick8.50024Ned Jarrett5.00024AJ Allmendinger9.182115Tim Richmond5.50025Kyle Busch10.471176Chase Elliott5.66766Kyle Larson10.50087Scott Pruett5.80057Martin Truex Jr10.938168Marcos Ambrose6.14378Erik Jones11.20059Christopher Bell7.50029Kevin Harvick12.6672110Buddy Baker8.000210Austin Cindric13.0001
A total of 97 different NASCAR Cup Series drivers have led at least one lap at Watkins Glen International.NASCAR Hall of Famer Jeff Gordon leads the NASCAR Cup Series in laps led at Watkins Glen with 262 laps led in 24 starts.Kyle Busch leads the NASCAR Cup Series in laps led at Watkins Glen among active drivers with 247 in 17 starts.The most laps led by the race winner in a single NASCAR Cup Series race at Watkins Glen International was 83 laps by Tony Stewart on August 14, 2005 — the race was scheduled for 90 laps but went to overtime and finished at 92 laps — Stewart led 90.2% of the event. He started from the pole position.The most laps led by a driver that did not win in a single NASCAR Cup Series race at Watkins Glen International was 54 laps led by NASCAR Hall of Famer Dale Earnhardt on August 11, 1996 — he ultimately finished sixth in the event after starting from the pole.The fewest laps led by the race winner in a single NASCAR Cup Series race at Watkins Glen International was 1 lap (the final lap) by Joey Logano on August 9, 2015 — the race was scheduled for 90 laps. Logano started from the 16th position.
Top 10 All-Time Lap Leaders at Watkins Glen International
RankAll-Time DriversLedCompleted% LedRankActive DriversLedCompleted% Led1Jeff Gordon262207513%1Kyle Busch247151216%2Kyle Busch247151216%2Chase Elliott17054031%3Tony Stewart225141016%3Brad Keselowski123107411%4Mark Martin206194111%4Martin Truex Jr6914425%5Chase Elliott17054031%5Kevin Harvick6618594%6Rusty Wallace14016179%6AJ Allmendinger589926%7Dale Earnhardt134131010%7Kyle Larson387195%8Brad Keselowski123107411%8Joey Logano3510623%9Marcos Ambrose11762619%9Denny Hamlin1813621%10Geoff Bodine10112798%10Daniel Suarez144503%
TRACK / EVENT SPECIFIC STATS
Margin of Victory:
Since the advent of electronic scoring (in 1993) the closest margin of victory (MOV) in the NASCAR Cup Series at Watkins Glen International was the 2001 race won by Jeff Gordon over Jeff Burton with a margin of victory of 0.172 second.The 2018 NASCAR Cup Series race was largest margin of victory in track history with Chase Elliott beating Martin Truex Jr. to the finish line by 7.560 seconds.
Top Five Closest Margins of Victory in the NASCAR Cup Series at Watkins Glen:
RankMargin of VictoryDateWinnerRunner-Up10.172Sunday, August 12, 2001Jeff GordonJeff Burton20.384Sunday, August 13, 2000Steve ParkMark Martin30.414Sunday, August 6, 2017Martin Truex Jr.Matt Kenseth40.440Sunday, August 11, 1996Geoff BodineTerry Labonte50.486Sunday, August 11, 2013Brad KeselowskiKyle Busch
There have been two NASCAR Cup Series races resulting with NASCAR Overtime at Watkins Glen:DateScheduled LapsActual LapsOvertime LapsWinnersMonday, August 15, 201190922Marcos AmbroseSunday, August 14, 200590922Tony Stewart
Postponement / Delays / Cancellations:
Only one of the 39 NASCAR Cup Series races at Watkins Glen International has been shortened due to weather conditions – the 1992 race — only 51 of the scheduled 90 laps were completed. The race was won by Kyle Petty driving a Pontiac for car owner Felix Sabates. Petty led 19 of 51 laps.The August 14, 2011 race was the only NASCAR Cup Series race at Watkins Glen that has been postponed to another date due to weather (August 15, 2011).The 2020 Watkins Glen NASCAR Cup Series race was rescheduled to another track due to New York state‘s pandemic restrictions at the time.Qualifying has been cancelled due to weather conditions in the NASCAR Cup Series at Watkins Glen International six times: 1965, 2000, 2004, 2005, 2007 and 2008.Qualifying was cancelled in 2021 due to COVID-19 pandemic restrictions. The starting lineups were set by Metric Qualifying.
Danica Patrick and Patty Moise are the only two female NASCAR Cup Series drivers to compete at Watkins Glen International.DriverStarting PositionFinishing PositionDateDanica Patrick25228/6/2017Danica Patrick31218/7/2016Danica Patrick22178/9/2015Danica Patrick43218/10/2014Danica Patrick35208/11/2013Averages31.220.2 DriverStarting PositionFinishing PositionDatePatty Moise33308/14/1988Patty Moise30338/10/1987Averages31.531.5
NASCAR IN NEW YORK
There has been a total of 111 NASCAR national series races among 15 different tracks held in the state of New York.The first NASCAR Cup Series race held in the state of New York was at Hamburg Speedway in Hamburg, New York on September 18, 1949. The race was won by Jack White. Hamburg Speedway is a half-mile dirt track.
NASCAR Tracks in New York
Track NameCityCupXfinityTruckCombinedFirst YearWatkins Glen InternationalWatkins Glen39286731957Monroe County FairgroundsRochester80081950Islip SpeedwayIslip60061964Bridgehampton Race CircuitBridgehampton40041958Fonda SpeedwayFonda40041955New York State FairgroundsSyracuse30031955Albany Saratoga SpeedwayMalta20021970Altamont-Schenectady FairgroundsAltamont20021951Hamburg SpeedwayHamburg20021949Vernon FairgroundsVernon20021950Airborne SpeedwayPlattsburgh10011955Buffalo Civic StadiumBuffalo10011958Montgomery Air BaseMontgomery10011960State Line SpeedwayBusti10011958Wine Creek Race TrackOwego10011952Totals77286111
NEW YORK IN NASCAR
A total of 195 different drivers in NASCAR national series history have their home state recorded as New York.15 of the 195 have posted at least one victory in NASCAR‘s national series.Only two of the New York natives have won at Watkins Glen International in the NASCAR Cup Series — Geoff Bodine (1996) and Steve Park (2000).Drivers From New YorkCupXfinityTruckCombinedGeoff Bodine186024Jim Reed7007Al Keller2002Steve Park2316Brett Bodine1506Jim Hurtubise1001Lloyd Moore1001Bill Rexford1001Greg Sacks1102Regan Smith1607Jack White1001Todd Bodine0152237Mike McLaughlin0606Christian Eckes0033Donny Lia0011Totals364227105
— NASCAR —