Bill Elliott: Welcome to NASCAR's 800 Club

Mike DiMauro@miked31784Senior Writer IMay 21, 2009

ATLANTA - MARCH 06: Bill Elliott, driver of the #21 Motorcraft Ford, looks on during qualifying for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Kobalt Tools 500 at the Atlanta Motor Speedway on March 6, 2009 in Hampton, Georgia.  (Photo by Geoff Burke/Getty Images for NASCAR)

When the 2009 Coca-Cola 600 begins, there will be one driver in the field that will be making a special milestone that only six others have made in their NASCAR careers. A whopping 800 Sprint Cup starts!

Dawsonville, Ga. native Bill Elliott will become the seventh driver to make his 800th start in the history of NASCAR on Sunday.

This season, Elliott has qualified for every race he started. Even though he will have to qualify with the "go or go home" cars, he will make the field for Sunday's race thanks to his 1988 series championship, which automatically gives the recent champion outside the top 35 in owners points to have a starting spot in the field.

In case you were wondering, here are the other drivers who've made at least 800 starts in their respective careers:

Richard Petty: 1184

Ricky Rudd: 906

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Dave Marcis: 883

Terry Labonte: 862

Kyle Petty: 829

Darrell Waltrip: 809