As car numbers go in the NASCAR Premier Series, the No. 27 has had a pretty good run, ranking 19th in terms of race victories among all numbers.
Three NASCAR Hall of Fame members enjoyed great success with the No. 27, led by Rusty Wallace, who won the 1989 Winston Cup championship in the Raymond Beadle-owned No. 27 Pontiac. Wallace won six races in his title season and, all told, won 18 of his 55 career victories with the No. 27.
Junior Johnson, who was in the inaugural NASCAR Hall of Fame class, won 13 races in the No. 27. Johnson's most famous victory with that number came in the second running of the Daytona 500, way back in 1960.
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Johnson is credited as being the first driver to figure out the physics of the high-speed draft -- that two cars running together are faster than a single car running alone.
The 1960 Daytona 500 featured a 68-car field and a 37-car crash, probably the biggest "Big One" of all time.
Cale Yarborough, another NASCAR Hall member, won five times in the No. 27.
Tim Richmond, one of NASCAR's most remarkable talents, won twice driving the No. 27 for Beadle, the first time at Pocono Raceway in 1983, and the second the next year at the long-defunct North Wilkesboro Speedway.
And just to make it interesting, there are three drivers who won their only NASCAR Premier Series race or races in the No. 27. First up was the obscure Jimmy Florian, who in 1950 won at Canfield (Ohio) Speedway, a half-mile dirt track. It was Florian's only victory in 26 career starts.
Jimmy Spencer a/k/a, "Mr. Excitement," won just twice in 478 career starts, both times in the summer of 1994, once at Daytona International Speedway and the other time at Talladega Superspeedway. Both times, Spencer was driving the Junior Johnson-owned, McDonald's-sponsored No. 27 Ford Thunderbird. It has been widely speculated over the years -- but never proven -- that Spencer's cars had been massaged far outside the limits of the NASCAR rule book.
Last but not least, one of the most emotional victories in the No. 27 came in 2011, when Paul Menard outran Jeff Gordon in the closing laps to win the Brickyard 400. For 30 years, Menard's father John had tried and failed to win the Indianapolis 500, and Paul's upset victory ended that streak of family futility.
The No. 27 by the numbers:
Wins by driver: Rusty Wallace, 18; Junior Johnson, 13; Benny Parsons, 5; Donnie Allison, 5; Cale Yarborough, 5; Tim Richmond, 2; Jimmy Spencer, 2; Paul Menard, 1; Jimmy Florian, 1.
Top 5s: 225
Top 10s: 392
Average finish: 17.34
Average start: 14.30
Laps led: 15,142
All stats provided by driveraverages.com