Darlington Throwback Weekend by the numbers
By @nascarcasm | Thursday, May 5, 2022
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@nascarcasm did a deep, deep dive into all the throwback schemes that have been run during NASCAR’s annual Throwback Weekend at Darlington Raceway across all three series. Here are some of the more interesting data points to date.
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In a development that probably surprises no one, our research shows Dale Earnhardt has been honored the most, with 18 throwback schemes since the start of the event.
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If you needed any more evidence Mark Martin is one of the most widely respected drivers in NASCAR history, here you go. Our research shows he has been honored 14 times – about as many times as he has retired.
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That honor appears to go to Darrell Waltrip, who has been honored 13 times. Boogity on, my friend.
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Quite often, actually. By our count, it has happened 18 times. We’ve had a number of second-generation drivers who have paid homage to their dads at Darlington – Chase Elliott, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Ryan Blaney, John Hunter Nemechek, Harrison Burton, Cole Whitt, Stefan Parsons, Corey LaJoie, Jeffrey Earnhardt, David Ragan, Colby Howard and Jeb Burton.
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That would be Jeffrey Earnhardt and Dale Earnhardt. It appears Jeffrey ran a paint scheme honoring his late grandfather five times between the Cup and Xfinity Series.
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Janet Guthrie (left) was the throwback of choice for Brandon Brown in 2020, Chris Buescher honored Patty Moise (right) in 2017, and Josh Williams featured a scheme in 2020 that paid tribute to driver and team owner Megan Gosselin (not pictured). Justin Allgaier’s 2017 throwback scheme also paid homage to a decades-old Late Model scheme run by Kelley Earnhardt Miller, Kerry Earnhardt and Dale Earnhardt Jr.
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YES. By our research, that has happened, but only once. In 2019, Joey Logano threw it back to the scheme Kevin Harvick ran at his 2007 Daytona 500 victory. If you’ll recall, these two had a very quotable scuffle at Pocono Raceway in 2010. Logano should run a throwback scheme for every driver with whom he has had a run-in. He’d have to race until he’s 84 years old, but still.
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Are you kidding? All the time. By our count, it has happened 19 times. Drivers love throwing back to a paint scheme from earlier in their careers. Some, like Matt Kenseth and Jimmie Johnson, have done it more than once. Who doesn’t love looking at themselves when they were younger?
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Many drivers have run schemes that paid homage to more than one driver, but the most ever on a single scheme is five. Jeremy Clements ran this scheme in 2020 honoring several South Carolina-born NASCAR champions – Buck Baker, David Pearson, Cale Yarborough, Sam Ard and Larry Pearson. I think Clements can legally run in the carpool lane with that scheme.
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If you add up all throwback schemes that have honored Dale Earnhardt, Dale Earnhardt Jr., and Dale Jarrett, by our count, 32 times so far. NASCAR has more beloved legends named Dale per capita than any other sport.