MRN Flashback: 1995 Goody's 500
By: MRN Staff on August 21, 2013 | 3:38 P.M. EST
Fans who were at Bristol Motor Speedway on Aug. 26, 1995, didn’t have to wait until after the race for a fireworks display. They got one on the last lap of the Goody’s 500, courtesy of Terry Labonte and Dale Earnhardt. (Photo: ISC Archives)
Fans in attendance at Bristol Motor Speedway on Aug. 26, 1995, didn’t have to wait until after the race for a fireworks display.
They got one on the last lap of the Goody’s 500.
Race leader Terry Labonte got a bump from Dale Earnhardt that sent the No. 5 Kellogg’s Chevrolet careening off the outside wall in a shower of sparks that lit up the night in “Thunder Valley.” Despite the contact, Labonte slid across the finish line first and nursed his battered racecar into Victory Lane to celebrate his third victory of the season.
Earnhardt followed him to the checkered flag and took second place with Dale Jarrett, Darrell Waltrip and pole sitter Mark Martin completing the top five. Those four combined to lead 239 of the 500 laps.
Labonte led only 69 laps, but they were the ones that counted most – at the end of the night. He patiently stalked the race leaders throughout the event and finally measured Jarrett down the stretch to take his first – and only – lead.
Labonte’s margin of victory over Earnhardt was just a tenth of a second. The race featured 16 lead changes among 10 drivers. There were 15 cautions for 106 laps. Robert Pressley was the highest-finishing rookie, in 24th.
Jeff Gordon placed sixth and went to win the Cup Series championship that season by just 34 points over Earnhardt. Labonte was sixth in the final standings and would win his second NASCAR title the following year.
Visit MotorRacingNetwork.com on Thursday at 12:30 p.m. (ET) to hear the complete broadcast of the 1995 Goody’s 500 from Bristol, Tenn., anchored by Barney Hall and Eli Gold. Motor Racing Network – “The Voice of NASCAR” – will feature a classic race broadcast each week on “Throwback Thursday” throughout the 2013 season at MotorRacingNetwork.com.