July 2: “The King,” NASCAR champ Richard Petty was born on this date in 1937

GE Anderson
Editorial Director, Yahoo! Autos

Seventy-six years ago today, Richard Lee Petty (picture above with his father Lee) was born in Level Cross, N.C. Long before LeBron James was a twinkle in his mother's eye, Petty was widely and affectionately known as "The King." Among Petty's numerous achievements, he won the Daytona 500 a record seven times among his record 200 NASCAR victories; he won the NASCAR cup championship a record seven times (tied with Dale Earnhardt); and he has been inducted into multiple motorsports halls of fame. Perhaps most notable of all, according to Wikipedia:

"Throughout Petty's career, but especially during his prime, Petty was known to stand for hours — backed against a fence, signing autographs to everyone who asked."

Hats off to the King, indeed.