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HOF - Jeff Burton

SoVaNow.com / April 12, 2019

Jeff Burton has been a significant sports figure since his early 1990s in NASCAR, and now the South Boston native has a major presence on NBC sports as part of the wall-to-wall coverage of racing.

But it’s also clear that Burton’s most significant legacy is his long term relationship with Duke University Hospitals. Burton and his wife Kim have emerged as major players in the fund raising efforts to battle cancer. The Burtons have made a heck of a difference in the battle to help sick children battling cancer.

Burton’s story is well known.

A native of South Boston, Burton, a former NASCAR elite driver and current NASCAR analyst for NBC Sports, was elected to the Virginia Sports Hall of Fame last week. One of eight members inducted into the all-sports Hall 2019 class, Burton was the first racer to be tapped since Ray Hendrick’s inclusion with the 2012 class.

Burton is a member of a well-known racing family that has helped put Halifax County on the map., Brother Ward Burton had a stout career, including winning the 2002 Daytona 500. Now, Jeff’s son Harrison is a rising star in NASCAR. Ward’s son Jeb Burton also recently ran very well at Texas and he is seeking to gain more traction in his NASCAR career. They can take inspiration from the remarkable race career path forged by Jeff Burton, with significant backing from his family.

In 1993, Burton made his Winston Cup series debut in New Hampshire, and in 1994 was named NASCAR Winston Cup Rookie of the Year. In 1997, while driving for the Roush Racing team, Burton registered his first Cup series win in the Interstate Batteries 500 at Texas Motor Speedway.

From 1997-2000, Burton never finished lower than fifth in points for a season, and in 2000 registered four victories and finished third overall in points, his best career finish. Burton won the famed Charlotte 600-mile race twice, 1999 and 2001, and won the Southern 500 in 1999. Over 22 seasons in NASCAR, Burton would start 695 races, register 254 top-10 finishes, and visit victory lane 21 times. Burton also racked up 27 victories in NASCAR’s second-tier Xfinity series as well.

Over the course of his career, Burton was known as ‘The Mayor’ of NASCAR, and as one of the most respected drivers for his clean racing, and his advocacy for driver safety. In 2013, as his driving career wound down, Burton, friendly and unassuming, always comfortable with the media, fans and competitors joined the NBC Cup Series broadcast team as a NASCAR analyst, and still serves in the role today.

The Burtons have certainly made their mark on the local Hall. John Burton was inducted in the past and Ward made it to the Hall later. On Saturday night, Jeff joins the family gathering.



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