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90-year-old former Cup driver to make start in NASCAR K&N Series

Hershel McGriff made his most recent K&N Series start at Sonoma in 2012 at the age of 84. (Getty)

There will be a 90-year-old driver competing in a NASCAR-sanctioned race on May 5.

Bill McAnally Racing announced this week that former Cup Series driver Hershel McGriff would pilot one of the team’s cars in a K&N Pro Series West race on May 5 at Tucson Speedway. The K&N East and West Series are the Single-A version of NASCAR if the Cup Series is Major League Baseball in this example and the Xfinity Series is the Triple-A series and the Camping World Truck Series is the Double-A series.

“Who would turn down a free ride in a K&N car built by Bill McAnally Racing?” McGriff said in a team statement. “Bill said to pick out a track anywhere on the West Coast that has a K&N race and that’s where we’ll race,” McGriff explained. “Tucson’s my home. So, we decided on Tucson, although I haven’t run here that much. It’s going to be fun. I hope I do well, for his sake. I think I can.”

McGriff is a current nominee for the NASCAR Hall of Fame. He won four Cup Series races in 24 starts in the 1954 season. He made his final Cup start in 1993 at the age of 65.

Most of his NASCAR success has come in the West Series. He’s won 34 races at the level and last made a start in the series in 2012 at 84. McGriff first met NASCAR founder Bill France Sr. when they competed in a race together in 1950. McGriff ran his first NASCAR race later that season at the age of 22 and finished ninth. That was three spots behind Lee Petty, the father of seven-time Cup Series champion Richard Petty.

The oldest driver regularly competing at NASCAR’s top levels is 76-year-old Morgan Shepherd, who fields his own backmarker team in the Xfinity Series. Shepherd, who won four Cup Series races from 1981-1993, became the oldest driver to start a Cup Series race when he made a start at New Hampshire in 2014 when he was 72. Former NASCAR driver and current ARCA owner James Hylton ran a full ARCA Series season at 78 in 2013 before retiring.

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Nick Bromberg is a writer for Yahoo Sports.

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