CONCORD, N.C. — official team release — RFR photo —
Ricky Stenhouse Jr. knew exactly what iconic No. 17 car he wanted to race in this year’s Southern 500 Throwback Weekend at Darlington Raceway. It had to be the orange and white No. 17 that Darrell Waltrip drove to his first win in 1975.
“Darrell Waltrip is one of the icons in our sport and has helped build NASCAR into the sport it is today,” said Stenhouse. “It is a huge honor to be able to run the 1975 throwback paint scheme of Darrell’s at Darlington. Darrell’s last win was at Darlington so only seems fitting that we get his throwback paint scheme in victory lane on Labor Day weekend and have Darrell celebrate with us.”
Waltrip was 28 years old when he put the field two laps down in his orange and blue No. 17 on his way to victory lane at Nashville Speedway. He would go on to win a total of 84 Sprint Cup Series races and three Championships throughout a career that spanned three decades.
“It’s an honor to have this car run in the Southern 500,” said Waltrip. “I got my first win at Nashville with that paint scheme but I got my last win in Darlington so it will be a special race weekend for me. I missed the throwback weekend in Darlington last year and regretted it. You can bet I won’t miss this one and I’ll be rooting for the 17!”
Ricky’s primary sponsor, Fastenal, was quickly on board with the plan to honor the three-time champion and NASCAR icon.
“When Ricky first suggested the throwback paint scheme, we were excited to support his idea,” said Dan Florness, Fastenal CEO. “NASCAR fans of all ages know Darrell Waltrip, and what better way to honor that legacy than with a tribute to his first win. We’re proud to have the Fastenal logo on the hood.”
Darlington Raceway’s award-winning throwback event celebrates the history and heritage of NASCAR racing at one of the sport’s most iconic tracks. The campaign focuses on specific eras plus the historic moments and drivers that made impacts at the track Too Tough to Tame. The Tradition Continues throwback celebration will take place on Labor Day weekend as the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Bojangles’ Southern 500® is set for Sunday, Sept. 4, 2016.
CREDIT: Roush Fenway Racing