The former Daytona 500 champion and famous NASCAR Premier Cup driver tragically passed away on Tuesday, March 21st and has left the entire community in mourning.
At the age of 74, racing legend Pete Hamilton passed away leaving behind a legacy of incredible racing achievements and his mark on the NASCAR community. Hamilton's cause of death has not been released yet.
As news spread of his passing, various drivers, teams, and officials spoke out about the loss of a man as legendary as Hamilton.
Dale Earnhardt Jr. took to Twitter to express his condolences and grief with a short but heartfelt statement.
Rest In Peace Legend. https://t.co/1QLRc6j0vB— Dale Earnhardt Jr. (@DaleJr) March 22, 2017
Fellow champion of the Daytona 500, Darrell Waltrip, also spoke out about his time racing alongside Hamilton, and what kind of a person he was to be around.
I raced with Pete Hamilton in the Grand American series and a few late model races, he was a great guy and terrific race car driver, RIP— Darrell Waltrip (@AllWaltrip) March 22, 2017
Even Hamilton's former racing team, Richard Petty Motorsports and the Petty family offered their condolences for the passing of a legend.
"Pete was as fast as anyone on the superspeedways in 1970," Maurice Petty writes in a Twitter photo statement. "We had support from Plymouth to run two Superbirds, and they connected us with Pete Hamilton. He was a good match for us, and we won three races together. I enjoyed being around him and will miss him."
We are very saddened to hear of the passing of Pete Hamilton and send prayers to his family. pic.twitter.com/cqIIuVy9Mn— RPMotorsports (@RPMotorsports) March 22, 2017
Richard Petty also expressed his loss and prayers for the family via Twitter, saying, "It was great to have Pete as part of the team. He was a great teammate. We send our prayers to his family."
Hamilton started nearly 65 races in the NASCAR Premier Series (Now called Monster Energy Cup Series) from 1968 through 1973 and took home the top spot repeatedly at some of the most famous tracks like Talladega and Daytona.
We are deeply saddened to hear of his passing and our thoughts and prayers go out to the Hamilton family during this difficult time.
Watch the video below of Hamilton's incredible run during the 1970 Daytona 500.
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