When the No. 21 Wood Brothers Racing Ford Mustang heads to Las Vegas Motor Speedway on Sept. 26, it will look very different. Instead of the iconic white, red, and gold paint scheme, the No. 21 will be white with green and black text to highlight the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.
The racing organization issued a press release on Tuesday, Sept. 7, confirming a collaboration with the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. The intention is to raise awareness and create conversations between friends and loved ones about mental health. The Lifeline phone number will be visible on both front fenders while the rest of the sponsor logos will be black and white.
“Our family is proud to support the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline because we feel strongly about the importance of addressing mental health,” said Eddie Wood, co-owner of Wood Brothers Racing, in a press release. “We have a duty to our family, friends and colleagues to ask, ‘how are you doing today?’ Then we have to really listen and respond to the answer.”
Along with the custom paint scheme, Wood Brothers Racing will also release a special-edition diecast. The autographed replica will be available from the Wood Brothers Racing website with 20% of the net proceeds going to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.
“The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline seeks to reach and serve all people in the United States who could be at risk of suicide, and one of the ways the organization does this is by spreading the word about actions we can all take to prevent suicide. The Lifeline and its network of over 180 crisis centers across the country are working to change the conversation from suicide to suicide prevention, and to promote healing, help, and hope.”
Matt DiBenedetto Has a Personal Connection to the Cause
Following the reveal of the new paint scheme, the driver of the No. 21 Ford Mustang provided further information on his personal Instagram account. Matt DiBenedetto talked about the importance of mental health and said that seeking help takes strength.
“This is a cause that is close to my heart and I will be doing a video to follow up on this cause to talk about it more and just the struggles of life,” DiBenedetto wrote on his Instagram. “Tay [Taylor DiBenedetto] has recently had a family member that took her own life, we have had people close to us admit that they have contemplated ending their life and we just want to always push people to know that vulnerability is a good thing. Life on Earth is a constant battle.”
DiBenedetto will showcase this cause when he heads to Las Vegas Motor Speedway for the South Point 400 on Sept. 26. He will fight for the checkered flag while potentially creating important conversations about mental health and helping others with their own struggles.
Wood Brothers Racing Also Teased a Possible Vehicle Reveal Video
The partnership with the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline was the biggest news of the day for the No. 21 team, but it wasn’t the only thing that turned heads. Wood Brothers Racing also teased some upcoming content, likely related to the Next Gen stock car.
The team’s Twitter account posted a photo on Tuesday, Sept. 7, that showed every era of stock car lined up in the parking lot of the Wood Brothers Museum. The original Gen 1 sat on the far left while showcasing the original white and red paint scheme. The current Gen sat on the far right, complete with the red wheels. The rest of Wood Brothers Racing’s history sat in between the two stock cars, primarily showing off the different versions of the iconic color scheme. However, the Gen 3 Ford stood out with its orange and blue CITGO design.
The team explained in the caption that the cars were out in the parking lot for some photos and videos. Wood Brothers Racing did not reveal the full purpose of the content creation project, but it coincides with several other teams posting the first glimpses of their respective Next Gen stock cars.