Totalled cars rarely have any value, although that is not the case when it comes to the Pontiac Grand Prix totaled by Richard Petty during the 1988 Daytona 500, which recently sold at auction by Wham Auctions on behalf of the estate of Cotton Owens, another NASCAR Hall of Famer, known as the “King of the Modified” for his success in modified stock cars in the 1950s.
Considered to be one of the most horrific accidents in NASCAR history, Petty flipped his 1988 Pontiac Grand Prix 8 times on lap106 during the February 14th race at the Daytona International Speedway after being tagged from behind by Phil Bodine, and then was hit by driver Brett Bodine. A.J. Foyt, Eddie Bierschwale, and Alan Kulwicki were also involved in the wreck. Luckily all the drivers, including Petty, were able to walk away from it.
The race was eventually won by Bobby Allison, who not only beat his son, Davey, to the finish, but became the oldest man, at 50, to ever win the Daytona 500. Fortunately, all of the drivers (including Petty) walked away. The race was also memorable for the finish, wherein Bobby Allison beat his son, Davey, to the finish line. At 50, Bobby Allison became the oldest winner of the Daytona 500 (as of 2014).
Despite it’s historical and sentimental value, Don Owens said that he had not choice but to auction the car off.
“I have two children, and my sister has two children, and it would be very difficult to divide everything up into four parts for them to inherit. In addition, the property taxes and the fact that when things sit around for a long period of time things tend to happen to them – it’s not something that we wanted to do, but we’re kind of forced into having to do it,” he lamented.
Other items, including tools and parts used by Cotton Owens as well as a 1964 Grand National-winning race car, complete with its original Hemi motor, will go up for sale on December 6th. Owens passed away at the age of 88 in 2012.