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NASCAR Cup: Glen Wood passes away

Photo courtesy of Wood Brothers Racing

By AMANDA VINCENT

Glen Wood, NASCAR Hall of Fame member and founder of Wood Brothers Racing, passed away at the age of 93 on Jan. 18, 2019, the Wood family announced via Wood Brothers Racing’s various social media channels Friday morning.

“It’s with profound sadness that we mourn the passing of team founder and family patriarch Glen Wood this morning,” Wood Brothers Racing (@WoodBrothers21) tweeted. “We want to thank family, friends, our small-town Virginia community of Patrick County, as well as everyone in the NASCAR community for their unwavering support.”

Wood founded Wood Brothers Racing with brothers Leonard and Delano Wood in 1950, and between 1953 and 1964, Glen Wood was a driver of the team’s iconic No. 21 Ford. In 62-career starts in the series now known as the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series, Wood won four times, all of those wins coming at Bowman Gray Stadium in Winston-Salem, N.C.

After his retirement from driving, Wood remained active with the race team, taking on an administrative leadership role for nearly 30 years. He and brother Leonard Wood are considered pioneers of the modern-day pit stop as a result of innovations that weren’t limited to NASCAR competition. As a matter-of-fact, a Wood Brothers Racing pit crew helped Jim Clark win the 1965 Indianapolis 500.

“It’s a sad day for all of us involved in the Ford racing program,” Ford Performance Motorsports Global Director Mark Rushbrook said. “Glen Wood isn’t just a pioneer in the sport of NASCAR because of his team’s winning legacy. His vision and determination to help take Wood Brothers Racing from a small, family effort out of Virginia to one of the most storied teams in the sport’s history is an American success story. They did it with grit and innovation and hard work, and they changed the sport for the better along the way. And the fact they have never wavered from their loyalty to Ford Motor Company throughout their 69-year history means the world to all of us at Ford.”

Wood Brothers Racing, NASCAR’s oldest team, continues to field its No. 21 Ford in Cup Series competition. The team has 99 premier-series wins, the most recent coming at Pocono Raceway in Long Pond, Pa., with Ryan Blaney as driver.

Wood was inducted into the NASCAR Hall of Fame as part of its third class in 2012, a year before his brother Leonard Wood was inducted.

“First and foremost, on behalf of everyone at the NASCAR Hall of Fame, we offer our most sincere condolences to Ms. Bernece, Eddie and Carol, Len and Nancy, Kim and Terry, and the entire Wood family,” a statement from NASCAR Hall of Fame Executive Director Winston Kelley read.
“There are so many words that describe Glen Wood – pioneer, legend, competitor, dedicated, committed, resilient, humble, authentic and many more. On the track, the team Glen Wood founded in 1950 has amassed 99 premier series victories including exceptional success at some of NASCAR’s marquee races such as five Daytona 500s, four Coca-Cola 600s and four Southern 500s. Glen was an accomplished driver in his own right winning four times in NASCAR’s premier series, five in NASCAR’s convertible division and numerous other Sportsman and Modified division races before hanging up his helmet to focus his considerable talents on the ownership and innovation side of Wood Brothers Racing. Glen reached the ultimate pinnacle of his NASCAR career by being recognized for his incredible accomplishments and contributions to NASCAR by being inducted into the third class of the NASCAR Hall of Fame in 2012. The legendary drivers who have driven for Wood Brothers Racing literally reads as a ‘who’s who’ of NASCAR including fellow NASCAR Hall of Famers David Pearson (2011), Junior Johnson (2010), Cale Yarborough (2012), Dale Jarrett (2014), Bill Elliott (2015), Curtis Turner (2017), Joe Weatherly (2015), Fred Lorenzen (2015), Hall of Fame nominees Ricky Rudd and Buddy Baker along with legendary drivers A. J. Foyt and Dan Gurney, to name a few.

“In addition to their on-track success, Wood Brothers Racing is recognized for revolutionizing the pit stops and dropping the time teams spent on pit road by as much as 50 percent. Wood Brothers Racing was recently recognized by the Guinness Book of World Records as the longest active NASCAR team, now at 69 years and counting.

“With all that success, perhaps what Glen will most be remembered for is his grace, humility and character. The word that best describes Glen to me is gentleman. I’ve often said if you looked up the term ‘Southern Gentleman’ in the dictionary, you would see a picture of Glen Wood and likely all of the Wood Brothers. While we have lost one of NASCAR’s true pioneers, icons and legends, Glen’s legacy and memory will continue through Wood Brothers Racing and will be forever remembered, preserved, celebrated and cherished here at the NASCAR Hall of Fame, at the Wood Brothers Museum in Stuart, Va., and in our hearts and minds.”

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Posted by on January 18, 2019. Filed under Breaking News,Featured,Monster Energy NASCAR Cup,NASCAR. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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