Date of birth: 1/9/1959
Hometown: Batesville, Ark.
Current residence: Daytona Beach, Fla.
Children: Son Matt
One of NASCAR’s most decorated drivers, Mark Martin brings an impressive resume to his new team. In his first year with Hendrick
Motorsports, Martin will drive the No. 5 Kellogg’s/CARQUEST Chevrolet in pursuit of his first NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship. He will
join forces with crew chief Alan Gustafson and the No. 5 team, which qualified for the “Chase for the Sprint Cup” in 2006 and 2007. Martin, joined
with Hendrick Motorsports and the Kellogg’s/CARQUEST team, has a newfound desire and enthusiasm to return to the Chase and battle for the
DIRT TO PAVEMENT TO ASA
Martin began his racing career at the age of 15 in his home state of Arkansas. Competing on dirt tracks, he won in only his third start and that
same year – 1974 – won the Arkansas State Championship. In 1976, Martin left his dirt days behind and moved to pavement racetracks.
In 1977, Martin started competing in the American Speed Association (ASA). He earned rookie of the year honors that year and went on to win
the championship the following three seasons.
INTRODUCTION TO NASCAR
The 1981 racing season saw Martin move into NASCAR’s elite series, and make five Sprint Cup Series starts in which he earned two pole
positions and two top-10 finishes. The following year, in his first full-time schedule, he recorded eight top-10 finishes. Unable to continue funding
his own team, Martin was forced to auction off his equipment and race for a variety of owners before returning to ASA competition from 1984-
1986. He won his fourth ASA championship in 1986.
The thrill of NASCAR called again in 1987, and Martin agreed to drive a full Nationwide Series schedule. He earned three victories that season,
which piqued the interest of car owner Jack Roush. In 1988, Martin and Roush joined forces, forging a working relationship that lasted 19 years.
During his time with Roush, Martin recorded 35 victories and won at all but six tracks on the Sprint Cup circuit. He earned 230 top-five finishes
and 560 top-10s, earning a top-10 finish in nearly 50 percent of his starts. He also started from the pole 39 times.
Martin finished second in the Sprint Cup Series standings four times, missing his first championship in 1990 by a mere 26 points. He has
finished 12th or better in 17 of 20 full Cup seasons.
While making a name for himself in Cup competition, Martin was setting records in the Nationwide Series. Though he’s recorded just one full
season of Nationwide competition – 1987 – Martin holds the record for most wins (48) and most poles (30). In 2006, motorsports media
acknowledged his accomplishments by naming him the greatest Nationwide Series driver of all-time.
Following the 2006 season, Martin committed only to a part-time Sprint Cup schedule. He was ready to spend more time at home in Daytona
Beach, Fla., with his wife Arlene and son Matt. In the two years that followed, Martin competed in 48 Sprint Cup Series races, earning seven top-
five finishes and 19 top-10s. He also became a mentor for rookie drivers. In 2007, Martin made his first Nationwide start for Hendrick
Motorsports, driving the No. 5 Chevrolet led by crew chief Alan Gustafson. Martin finished second in that race at Darlington (S.C.) Raceway,
further impressing Rick Hendrick. Martin went on to earn his first win for Hendrick, driving the No. 5 JR Motorsports Nationwide entry at Las
Vegas Motor Speedway in 2008.
AN OFFER HE COULDN'T REFUSE
Hendrick’s admiration grew for Martin’s on-track skills as well as the NASCAR veteran’s ability to motivate and inspire his crew members.
Martin’s talent was one that Hendrick Motorsports was not ready to let pass by. In July 2008, Martin announced that he would return to full-time
Sprint Cup competition and drive the No. 5 Kellogg’s/CARQUEST Chevrolet. He joins Jeff Gordon, Jimmie Johnson and Dale Earnhardt, Jr. in the
Hendrick Motorsports stable.
OFF THE TRACK
A healthy lifestyle advocate, Martin spends much of his free time on his extensive physical fitness regimen. He is a licensed pilot, flying to and
from racetracks around the country, and a successful businessman. In addition to other interests, he owns a pair of Arkansas automobile
dealerships, located in Melbourne and his hometown of Batesville.
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