3 Coca-Cola 600, May 1999. Follow- ing in the tire tracks of Robby Gordon
and John Andretti, Stewart became just
the third driver to pull off the rare Indianapolis 500/Coca-Cola 600 double. Stewart
finished ninth, four laps down, at Indianapolis Motor Speedway before jetting to
Charlotte Motor Speedway for NASCAR’s
longest race later that evening.
Remarkably, Stewart finished fourth
in the Coca-Cola 600 but paid the price
physically when he collapsed moments
after the race and had to be treated for
dehydration at the infield care center.
That Stewart – a Sprint Cup Series
rookie – finished fourth in his first
attempt at NASCAR’s longest race was
impressive, but the fact he raced the
Indy 500 beforehand made his Charlotte
performance downright remarkable.
2 Brickyard 400, August 2005. After years of frustration in multiple genres
of racing at Indianapolis Motor Speedway,
the legendary 2.5-mile venue where he
dreamed as a kid of racing and winning,
Stewart scored a fairytale victory on a day
when his No. 20 Joe Gibbs Racing Chevrolet started 22nd and led 44 of 160 laps.
Stewart’s good friend Kasey Kahne held
the top spot on a restart with 10 laps to
go, but Stewart roared underneath on the
inside of Turn 2 and never looked back
as he became the first Indiana native to
prevail at the fabled track since Wilbur
Shaw did so in the 1940 Indianapolis 500.
“It’s definitely the greatest day of my
life,” a jubilant Stewart said after taking
the checkered flag.
1 Homestead, November 2011. Stewart capped what remains easily
the most remarkable championship run in
the history of the Chase for the NASCAR
Sprint Cup by winning the season finale
over title foe Carl Edwards, who finished
a close second and earned the same number of points as Stewart for the season
but lost the title to Stewart on the basis of
a tiebreaker – most wins.
Stewart drove from the back of the
field to the front twice during the race
at Homestead, passing a whopping 118
cars. The victory in the season finale was
Stewart’s fifth in 10 Chase races after
the Stewart-Haas Racing co-owner/driver
failed to record a single win in the 26-race
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