Story By: JOSH HAMILTON / NASCAR – DAYTONA BEACH, FL – NASCAR today announced the 15 nominees for the NASCAR Hall of Fame’s Class of 2023, a group that will comprise the first Hall of Fame ballot in two years following the COVID-19 pandemic.
Matt Kenseth (2003 Cup Series champion) and Tim Brewer (two-time Cup Series champion crew chief) join the Modern Era Ballot for the first time; A.J. Foyt (seven-time Cup winner) is added to the Pioneer Ballot along with Sam Ard, who was a nominee for the Class of 2020. This is the second nomination class under the redesigned format. Ten nominees appear on the Modern Era ballot, five on the Pioneer ballot – designed to honor those whose careers began more than 60 years ago. Two Modern Era candidates and one Pioneer candidate will be elected as the Class of 2023.
Lesa France Kennedy joins the Landmark Award ballot, an award given for outstanding contributions to the sport. Award winners are also eligible for NHOF enshrinement.
The NASCAR Hall of Fame Voting Panel will meet in person to discuss and vote for the Class of 2023 and Landmark Award on Wednesday, May 4. Six new members join the 62-person panel – Mike Burch (Speedway Motorsports), Kelly Crandall (NMPA President), Ryan McGee (ESPN), Bob Pockrass (FOX Sports), Cathy Rice (South Boston Speedway) and Chip Wile (NASCAR). In addition, because there was no Class of 2022, both Chase Elliott and Kyle Larson will participate as one-time voters as NASCAR Cup Series champions. The 63rd vote goes to winners of a NASCAR.com Fan Vote (www.nascar.com/halloffame). The Fan Vote is currently open and will close on April 29.
The Modern Era Ballot and Landmark Award nominees were selected by the Nomination Committee, which consists of representatives from NASCAR and the NASCAR Hall of Fame, track owners from major facilities and historic short tracks. The Honors Committee, largely comprised of all living Hall of Famers, Landmark Award winners and Squier-Hall Award winners, selected the Pioneer Ballot.
Following are the NASCAR Hall of Fame Class of 2023 nominees and Landmark Award nominees:
Modern Era Ballot
- Neil Bonnett, won 18 times in the NASCAR Cup Series including consecutive Coca-Cola 600 victories
- Tim Brewer, two-time NASCAR Cup Series champion crew chief
- Jeff Burton, won 21 times in the NASCAR Cup Series including the Southern 500 and two Coca-Cola 600s
- Carl Edwards, winner of 28 NASCAR Cup Series races and 2007 Xfinity Series champion
- Harry Gant, winner of 18 NASCAR Cup Series races, including two Southern 500 victories
- Harry Hyde, 1970 NASCAR Cup Series championship crew chief
- Matt Kenseth, 2003 NASCAR Cup Series champion and winner of 39 Cup races
- Larry Phillips, first five-time NASCAR weekly series national champion
- Ricky Rudd, won 23 times in NASCAR Cup Series, including the 1997 Brickyard 400
- Kirk Shelmerdine, four-time NASCAR Cup Series champion crew chief
- Sam Ard, NASCAR Xfinity Series pioneer and two-time champion
- AJ Foyt, won seven NASCAR Cup Series races including the 1972 Daytona 500
- Banjo Matthews, built cars that won more than 250 NASCAR Cup Series races and three championships
- Hershel McGriff, 1986 NASCAR West Series champion
- Ralph Moody, two-time NASCAR Cup Series owner champion as mechanical genius of Holman-Moody
- Janet Guthrie, the first female to compete in a NASCAR Cup Series superspeedway race
- Alvin Hawkins, NASCAR’s first flagman; established NASCAR racing at Bowman Gray Stadium with Bill France Sr.
- Mike Helton, named third president of NASCAR in 2000; career included track operator roles at Atlanta Motor Speedway and Talladega Superspeedway
- Lesa France Kennedy, NASCAR Executive Vice Chair and one of the most influential women in sports
- Dr. Joseph Mattioli, founder of Pocono Raceway