Cale Yarborough became the sport's first driver to win three consecutive series titles.
Before Jimmie Johnson's amazing run of five consecutive championships, Cale Yarborough was the only driver to ever win at least three titles in a row. He accomplished that feat from 1976 through 1978.
Yarborough competed in 234 events during the 1970s. He was victorious 52 times and earned 168 top-10s. Only 17 of his top-10s failed to end in a fifth-place finish or better.
While Yarborough is clearly one of the greatest drivers of the '70s, as well as of all time, he is arguably most remembered for his role in the 1979 Daytona 500.
Racing for the win with Donnie Allison, the two drivers crashed on the final lap. When the drivers emerged from their cars they attempted to sort out the details of what happened. Donnie's brother Bobby then pulled into the infield, got out of his car and the Allison brothers began a brawl with Yarborough.
This was the first 500-mile race broadcast live on national television.
For the second time in as many decades, David Pearson is one of the sport's top drivers, but not its best.
Competing in nearly half as many events as he did in the '60s, Pearson nearly matched his win total from a decade prior. He earned 47 wins in just 186 starts and a total of 126 top-10s. Remarkably, 118 of his 126 top-10s ended inside the top five.
Pearson's best points finish during the decade was only a third-place effort posted in 1974. This stat may be a little deceiving, however. He never competed in more than 22 events in a season during the '70s.
Other Honorable Mentions
Bobby Allison and Benny Parsons