The legendary Marvin Panch began his racing career as a car owner, and when one week his driver did not show up, Panch got behind the wheel himself and finished an impressive third in the race.
Panch’s first East Coast race was at Darlington Raceway, in the year 1953, and attained his first win in the year 1956, at Montgomery Speedway, from the pole position. The 1957 season was by far his most successful, where he won six races and also accumulated 27 top-10 finishes on the way, from 42 starts.
A three year slump due to lack of sponsorship was made up for when Panch won an impressive victory at the 1961 Daytona 500, driving for legendary NASCAR mechanic, Smokey Yunick. During his career Panch drove for many popular car owners, right from the Wood Brothers, with whom he clinched eight of his total 17 career wins, and a further 30 top-3 finishes, in 69 races, and also Petty Enterprises.
The immensely talented driver competed with both Lee and Richard Petty, in the 50s and the 60s. To honor his achievements he was inducted into the Stock Car Hall of Fame, of National Motorsports Press Association, in 1987 at Darlington Raceway.