What's in a number? Tony Stewart's #14
July 23, 2009
Tony Stewart Takes Number Of His Idol A.J. Foyt To Brickyard This Week
(NOTE: This is the continuation of an occasional series of 2009 “NASCAR Family Tree” releases highlighting some of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series’ most renowned car numbers and their performance heritage. This installment takes a look at the No. 14.
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (July 22, 2009) – The No. 14 is a contender again at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, and everywhere else for that matter.
Tony Stewart is the driver and he’s also the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series points leader this week, coming into Sunday’s Allstate 400 at the Brickyard. Stewart is amid a stunning debut as a driver-owner, in the No. 14 Old Spice/Office Depot Chevrolet. Stewart secured the No. 14 in honor of his childhood idol, Indy-car legend and former Daytona 500 champion A.J. Foyt.
Which would make a Stewart victory this weekend especially memorable. Foyt is synonymous with the Brickyard, having won the Indianapolis 500 a record four times. Two of Foyt’s 500 wins came in an open-wheel machine adorned with the No. 14.
Foyt also drove the No. 14 in NASCAR Sprint Cup competition – albeit without a victory in 42 starts between 1983-92, as his storied career wound down. Stewart has returned the number to a NASCAR Victory Lane three times, winning the NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race, the Pocono 500 and the Coke Zero 400.
The No. 14 has a classic lineage that covers 860 races and 28 victories in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, featuring some of NASCAR’s brightest stars.
Long before Foyt there was a Flock, as in Fonty Flock, with 103 starts and 14 victories between 1951-55 in the 14. Hershel McGriff made 21 starts in 1954, winning four times. Jim Paschal had 76 starts and seven wins between 1961-71. Curtis Turner, LeeRoy Yarbrough and Bobby Allison all made starts as well in the No. 14.
Coo Coo Marlin holds the record for starts in the No. 14, a total of 129 between 1972-80. Unfortunately, none of those starts resulted in a victory. His son Sterling tacked on 62 more starts between 1976-81 and 2006-07, also going winless.