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Fans on Reddit Debate the Most Unlucky Drivers in NASCAR History

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Chris Hansen

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Throughout NASCAR’s history, there have been many drivers who just never had the luck to establish impactful careers at the Cup Series level of NASCAR.

Which drivers in NASCAR history have been the most unlucky, according to NASCAR Reddit?

Let’s find out!

Jerry Nadeau

Many NASCAR fans remember Jerry Nadeau’s time at the Cup level, specifically for the organizations he drove for throughout his 177 Cup starts. Nadeau piloted the #25 Hendrick Motorsports Chevy to a win at Atlanta in November 2000 and came so close to winning the following year until an empty fuel tank did him in, handing the victory to Bobby Labonte.

Nadeau was then released from his ride at Hendrick and picked up some races for Petty Enterprises. In June 2002 at the Sonoma road course, he looked prime to steal the win. However, a rear gear break cost him a chance at the win.

His career in NASCAR came to a smashing halt, following a wicked accident at Richmond Raceway, causing Nadeau to never race again in NASCAR competition.

Tuss11agee says that Nadeau scored big getting a ride at Hendrick Motorsports and one bad accident derailed his NASCAR career before it could begin.

Hands0meR0b says he has a diecast of one of Nadeau’s cars and can’t believe how quickly one accident can cause a major downfall to a NASCAR career like Nadeau’s.

Steve Park

Steve Park’s time in the NASCAR Cup Series had its ups and downs from the time he was approached by Dale Earnhardt Sr in 1996 to drive for his organization DEI. Park burst onto the scene winning his first ever Cup race at Watkins Glen in 2000.

One week after his boss tragically lost his life on the final lap of the Daytona 500, Park and the entire DEI organization scored an emotional victory with Park winning at Rockingham, the second race of the 2001 season.

Park missed a handful of races due to injury, and perhaps none more frightening than his crash at Pocono Raceway where his car was sent careening out of control and flipped multiple times, collecting teammate Dale Earnhardt Jr as well.

Park was later released from DEI in a deal that sent him to Richard Childress Racing in exchange for Jeff Green.

FlakyDig8392 thinks Park was just coming into his own with DEI, however, injuries and poor performances led to his release from DEI midway through 2003.

leadfarmer154 remembers watching Park’s crash at Darlington and at that moment feared the worst had happened.

Kasey Kahne

An up-and-coming driver in the Cup Series, Kahne burst onto the scene driving for legendary car owner Ray Evernham starting in 2004.

Kasey finished runner-up 5 times throughout his rookie season and looked poised to break into Victory Lane multiple times.

However, Lady Luck wasn’t on his side as he had crashed at Dover and Charlotte while leading the race, being spun by Tony Stewart at Chicago on a restart among others.

Kasey resurrected his career driving for Hendrick Motorsports from 2012-17, however, health issues forced his Cup career to end in 2018.

kk5fan97 documents just how close Kasey was to winning in his rookie season, along with some of the most notable accidents he was a part of.

ybtlamlliw says that Kasey’s final win total in NASCAR should be at least double what it ended up being at 18 career Cup victories.

Dave Blaney

The father of current Cup Series driver Ryan Blaney, Dave wasn’t the most flashy driver but came close to scoring big wins in NASCAR’s top level.

One of the most remembered finishes in NASCAR history at Darlington in 2003 saw Blaney come just 2 positions shy of winning had it not been for Ricky Craven edging out Kurt Busch in a photo finish for the ages.

Blaney was in the best position possible in the 2012 Daytona 500 when Juan Pablo Montoya’s car slammed into a jet dryer forcing a lengthy red flag for track cleanup.

Sky-Flyer says if Dave Blaney had 2 more laps at Darlington, he would’ve been a Cup Series race winner.

KendallBlakeCruse says that Blaney had a great chance to win the 2012 Daytona 500, had the race ended after the jet dryer accident with Juan Pablo Montoya.

These are only a few of the most unlucky drivers in NASCAR history. What are some others? Join the conversation, and follow The Daily Downforce for more!

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Chris Hansen

Chris Hansen

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