International Motorsports Hall of Fame member won a NASCAR championship and set world land speed records.
He drove the Chevy of another racing great, Smokey Yunick, at the 1963 National 400, which first got him noticed.
He set a NASCAR record by going around the Talladega Superspeedway, in a closed-circuit run, at more than 201 mph, and then drove rocket-powered cars for land speed records.
He was born in a large, working class family, dropping out of school at age six to go work at a sawmill.
He was named alongside Dale Jarrett as one of NASCAR's 50 Greatest Drivers in 1998.