This weekend at Darlington (S.C.) Raceway, the cars on track will display an eclectic collection of throwback paint schemes, paying homage to the days and drivers of old. SPEED SPORT writers scrounged Twitter to find some of the best designs from some NASCAR notables.
Iconic Wins & Moments
Chase Briscoe is tipping his hat to Stewart-Haas Racing team owner Tony Stewart with a flaming-hot paint scheme on his No. 14 car, honoring Stewart’s Turkey Night Grand Prix triumph in 2000.
Christopher Bell will be busy throwing it back to Matt Kenseth with his design on the No. 20 Joe Gibbs Racing entry. The yellow-and-black paint scheme, adorned with the DEWALT logo, pays tribute to the Hall of Fame driver and his 2003 NASCAR Cup Series championship.
#TeamDEWALT is kicking it back to 20 years ago in honor of Hall of Famer Matt Kenseth and his 2003 @NASCAR Cup Championship. @CBellRacing will run this memorable scheme at Darlington for #NASCARThrowback. pic.twitter.com/t9xW0LJaKZ— Joe Gibbs Racing (@JoeGibbsRacing) May 2, 2023
Meanwhile, it’s a victory-themed weekend for SHR, as Aric Almirola’s No. 10 Ford will feature the paint scheme from Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s 2001 win at Daytona Int’l Speedway in his No. 8 entry.
Defending Cup Series champion Joey Logano will run a red, white and blue paint scheme on his No. 22 Ford Mustang, which is taken from 1973 when Team Penske captured its first NASCAR win with Mark Donohue.
Rick Ware Racing will commemorate Ryan Newman’s part-time return to the Cup Series with a throwback scheme taken from Newman’s first trip to victory lane, which came at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in 2002.
To commemorate the return of @RyanJNewman to @nascar Cup Series competition, and Throwback Weekend at @TooToughToTame, RWR is recognizing his first of 18 trips to Victory Lane. Taking place during Newman’s 2002 Rookie of the Year campaign, the win was September 15 at @NHMS, and… pic.twitter.com/L4LDS6z8PR— Rick Ware Racing (@RickWareRacing) May 9, 2023
Does this one count as a throwback? Richard Childress Racing and Kyle Busch have decided to run the Lucas Oil-sponsored paint scheme that was featured on the No. 8 Chevrolet when Busch collected his first win with the team — on Feb. 26, 2023.
In Honor Of Dad
Ryan Preece is one of a few drivers honoring their “first heroes” — their fathers. His cool blue-and-white design on the No. 14 SHR entry pays homage to his dad’s No. 4 late model paint scheme.
Team Penske’s Ryan Blaney joins Preece in this category, as the No. 12 is also honoring his dad, Dave Blaney — a 95-time World of Outlaws winner and 1995 WoO champion.
A personal paint scheme will also adorn Chase Elliott’s No. 9 Hendrick Motorsports entry, as the Chevrolet driver honors his father, Ray Evernham, with a red-and-white wrap on his typically blue, white and yellow colored Cup car.
"This one means a lot."- Chase Elliott's Darlington throwback is a tribute to his dad's Ray Evernham days. pic.twitter.com/YNT5WY1aw3— FOX: NASCAR (@NASCARONFOX) May 5, 2023
Cole Custer is taking is back to his childhood with his design for the No. 00 Ford Mustang in the NASCAR Xfinity Series. Custer is honoring Jason Leffler’s Xfinity Series scheme from 2004.
Lost Art, Legends & More
Kevin Harvick is displaying the design that “almost was” in 2001, which he planned for his Cup Series debut.
Ty Gibbs will feature the paint scheme Bobby Labonte ran on his No. 18 entry during the 1996 DieHard 500 at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway, which was originally meant to honor Joe Gibbs’ induction into the NFL Hall of Fame.
‼️ THROWBACK ‼️— Joe Gibbs Racing (@JoeGibbsRacing) May 4, 2023
Next weekend @shrinershosp and @TyGibbs are throwing it back to the one-off scheme Bobby Labonte ran in celebration of Coach Gibbs’ induction into the NFL Hall of Fame. Who remembers the track and year?
Learn more about how you can help Shriner’s Children’s… pic.twitter.com/VR7DDqJ9Xl
Riley Herbst will honor action sports star Ken Block, who recently passed, on his No. 98 Stewart-Haas Racing entry. The design is based on Block’s iconic Gymkhana 3 scheme.
Hendrick Motorsports driver Alex Bowman will continue his trend of paying tribute to the people who have aided his Cup Series campaign. The No. 48 Chevrolet will honor the past driving days of his current spotter, Kevin Hamlin.
Alex Bowman's Darlington scheme is a tribute to spotter Kevin Hamlin's 2007 Busch Series car. pic.twitter.com/KhbbZMsfWT— FOX: NASCAR (@NASCARONFOX) May 3, 2023
Ross Chastain’s No. 1 Trackhouse Racing brown, white and yellow paint scheme will pay homage to Dale Jarrett’s No. 88 livery and their shared partner — UPS.