Throwback Weekend is just over two weeks away, and the majority of NASCAR teams have revealed their tribute schemes. Others, however, saw theirs become public through a poll on the Darlington Raceway website.
The Track Too Tough to Tame opened its Throwback Weekend fan vote on April 21 and provided NASCAR fans with the opportunity to vote on their favorites. Among the group of eligible options were previously unannounced schemes for Austin Cindric, Bubba Wallace, and Kurt Busch. The poll revealed that Busch, in particular, will have a McDonald’s scheme honoring Bill Elliott.
The Darlington poll did not reveal every angle of Busch’s stock car, but it appears that 23XI Racing is throwing it back to the 1996 Daytona 500 when Elliott drove the No. 94 Ford and finished eighth overall. Though there are a few differences considering that the Golden Arches are on the door for 2022 while the black section takes up more space on Busch’s stock car.
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Color Swaps Created Some Confusion
While the No. 45 Throwback Weekend scheme had a direct reference point, there are others that created some confusion. The poll revealed that both Cindric and Wallace have tribute schemes, albeit with color swaps.
The No. 23 Toyota Camry TRD will have a MoneyLion scheme with some circular bolts separating the black and the teal. This scheme bears a resemblance to the No. 18 DLP HDTV Toyota Camry that Marc Davis drove for Joe Gibbs Racing during the 2008 Xfinity Series season.
This stock car featured a black rear and a blue front with the same circular bolts separating the colors, so this would be a fitting option. However, Wallace’s Throwback Weekend scheme also bears a resemblance to the No. 76 Chevrolet that he drove earlier in his life.
Cindric’s throwback created some initial confusion as well. The No. 2 features the colors of Menards, but the design bears a resemblance to a stock car that was originally blue and silver. It initially appeared that Cindric is using Throwback Weekend to pay tribute to Rusty Wallace and his 2005 Dodge that featured Miller Lite graphics on the sides and the hood.
However, Cindric later revealed that there was a different scheme that served as the inspiration. He posted a photo of the yellow and red Kodak Film scheme, which featured the same design pattern overall with very different colors.
1 Driver Dropped His Scheme Before the Poll Went Live
While Busch, Cindric, and Wallace all had their schemes leak with the Darlington Raceway poll, another driver made an announcement before it went live. Chase Elliott and NAPA Auto Parts kicked off April 21 by revealing that the No. 9 will pay tribute to a scheme from 1993.
Elliott will head to Darlington Raceway with a yellow and blue scheme with chrome door numbers. This scheme honors Jimmy Means, who used a similar design during the 1993 season. Though the colors are not an exact recreation of the No. 52 that Means drove during his final run in the NASCAR Cup Series.
Neither Means nor Brad Teague, who took over the No. 52 entry in 1994, reached Victory Lane with the bold NAPA Auto Parts scheme. However, Elliott will have an opportunity when he suits up for the Goodyear 400 on May 8 (3:30 p.m. ET, FS1). He will pursue his first win at Darlington Raceway as a Cup Series driver.