1974 Southeastern 500
|Race 5 of 30 in the 1974 NASCAR Winston Cup Series season|
Layout of Bristol Motor Speedway
|Date||March 17, 1974|
|Official name||Southeastern 500|
|Location||Bristol International Speedway, Bristol, Tennessee|
Permanent racing facility|
0.500 mi (0.800 km)
|Distance||500 laps, 250.0 mi (400.0 km)|
|Weather||Cold with temperatures of 55.9 °F (13.3 °C); wind speeds of 18.1 miles per hour (29.1 km/h)|
|Average speed||64.533 miles per hour (103.856 km/h)|
|Most laps led|
|Driver||Cale Yarborough||Howard & Egerton Racing|
|No. 11||Cale Yarborough||Howard & Egerton Racing|
|Television in the United States|
Only manual transmission vehicles were allowed to participate in this race; a policy that NASCAR has retained to the present day.
Bristol Motor Speedway is a NASCAR short track venue located in Bristol, Tennessee. Constructed in 1960, it held its first NASCAR race on July 30, 1961. Despite its short length, Bristol is among the most popular tracks on the NASCAR schedule because of its distinct features, which include extraordinarily steep banking, an all concrete surface, two pit roads, and stadium-like seating. It has also been named one of the loudest NASCAR tracks.
There were 30 American-born drivers on the grid; the distance of the race was 500 laps. Jabe Thomas was credited as the last-place finisher due to problems with his oil pan on lap 63 of the race. The first 50 laps of the race were not scored due to the fuel crisis that took place during this year. Donnie Allison, Cale Yarborough, Bobby Isaac, Benny Parsons, and Bobby Allison would be the respective leaders for certain parts of the race. After three hours and forty-two minutes of racing, Cale Yarborough defeated Bobby Isaac by one lap in front of a live audience of eighteen thousand people. Yarborough would be the only driver on the lead lap by the end of the race. With a strong second-place run with Issac at the wheel, this was the last race for car owner Banjo Matthew and his famous #27 team.
Most of the drivers in the race either used Chevrolet or Ford vehicles for their official racing vehicle; Chevrolet swept the entire top-ten for this race. The total purse of this race was $45,075 ($233,678.29 when adjusted for inflation). Donnie Allison achieved the pole position for this race by driving up to 107.785 miles per hour (173.463 km/h) during solo qualifying runs. Yarborough's average speed for the entire racing event was 64.533 miles per hour (103.856 km/h).
The model years of the vehicles ranged from 1972 to 1974; complying with the homologation policies set forth by NASCAR during this era. Engine issues and accidents were the main reasons for the DNFs found in this racing event. Joe Mihalic would have the best finish of his NASCAR Winston Cup Series career at this race.
|1||88||Donnie Allison||'74 Chevrolet|
|2||12||Bobby Allison||'74 Chevrolet|
|3||11||Cale Yarborough||'74 Chevrolet|
|4||48||James Hylton||'74 Chevrolet|
|5||72||Benny Parson||'74 Chevrolet|
|6||27||Bobby Isaac||'74 Chevrolet|
|7||24||Cecil Gordon||'74 Chevrolet|
|8||02||L.D. Ottinger||'74 Chevrolet|
|9||43||Richard Petty||'74 Dodge|
|10||15||George Follmer||'73 Ford|
|11||7||Dean Dalton||'74 Chevrolet|
|12||60||Joe Mihalic||'74 Chevrolet|
|13||54||Lennie Pond||'74 Chevrolet|
|14||68||Alton Jones||'73 Chevrolet|
|15||30||Walter Ballard||'73 Chevrolet|
|16||96||Richard Childress||'73 Chevrolet|
|17||05||David Sisco||'72 Chevrolet|
|18||90||Richie Panch||'74 Ford|
|19||79||Frank Warren||'74 Dodge|
|20||64||Elmo Langley||'73 Ford|
|21||67||Buddy Arrington||'72 Plymouth|
|22||70||J.D. McDuffie||'72 Chevrolet|
|23||9||Tony Bettenhausen, Jr.||'72 Chevrolet|
|24||8||Ed Negre||'73 Dodge|
|25||75||Bobby Fleming||'72 Chevrolet|
|26||2||Dave Marcis||'73 Dodge|
|27||14||Coo Coo Marlin||'73 Chevrolet|
|28||10||Bill Champion||'72 Ford|
|29||46||Travis Tiller||'73 Dodge|
|30||25||Jabe Thomas||'73 Dodge|
Top 10 finishers
|2||6||27||Bobby Isaac||Chevrolet||$4,030||499||2||+1 lap|
|3||5||72||Benny Parsons||Chevrolet||$4,905||498||6||+2 laps|
|4||2||12||Bobby Allison||Chevrolet||$3,355||497||73||+3 laps|
|5||1||88||Donnie Allison||Chevrolet||$1,980||491||2||+9 laps|
|6||7||24||Cecil Gordon||Chevrolet||$1,080||488||0||+12 laps|
|7||12||60||Joe Mihalic||Chevrolet||$1,010||485||0||+15 laps|
|8||4||48||James Hylton||Chevrolet||$955||471||0||+29 laps|
|9||14||68||Alton Jones||Chevrolet||$845||469||0||+31 laps|
|10||27||14||Coo Coo Marlin||Chevrolet||$605||457||0||+53 laps|
Section reference: 
- Laps 1-50: Not officially scored due to oil crisis.
- Lap 51: Donnie Allison started out with the lead.
- Lap 53: Cale Yarborough took over the lead from Donnie Allison.
- Lap 110: Bobby Isaac took over the lead from Cale Yarborough.
- Lap 112: Benny Parsons took over the lead from Bobby Isaac.
- Lap 118: Bobby Isaac took over the lead from Benny Parson.
- Lap 191: Cale Yarborough took over the lead from Bobby Isaac.
- Finish: Cale Yarborough was officially declared the winner.
- Weather information for the 1974 Southeastern 500 at The Old Farmers' Almanac
- 1974 Southeastern 500 racing information at Racing Reference
- Gragg, Joe (August 25, 2011). "It's Official: Bristol Is The Loudest NASCAR Track". WCYB.com. Retrieved June 3, 2012.[dead link]
- 1974 Southeastern 500 racing information at Fantasy Racing Cheat Sheet
- 1974 Southeastern 500 racing information at Race Database
1974 Carolina 500
| NASCAR Winston Cup Series Season
1974 Atlanta 500