NSCS: Jimmie Johnson to Sport 1979 Lowe’s Throwback Scheme at Darlington Raceway

Jacob Seelman Cup, Featured, NASCAR, Southeast 0 Comments

CONCORD, N.C. — Jimmie Johnson will sport a special Lowe’s throwback paint scheme when the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series hits the track on Sept. 4 for the Bojangles’ Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway.

Unveiled by crew chief Chad Knaus at the No. 48 team’s shop, the car will pay homage to the yellow-and-blue No. 2 car owned by Rod Osterlund during his first stint of team ownership in 1979.

Dale Earnhardt was scheduled to drive the car at Talladega Superspeedway, a race where the car was slated to carry Lowe’s sponsorship, but suffered a broken collarbone before the race and was declared unfit to drive.

Enter three-time Cup champion David Pearson, who finished second in that event for Lowe’s before going sub for Earnhardt in three additional events at Michigan, Bristol, and Darlington.

Pearson ultimately won the Southern 500 at Darlington in the same scheme — albeit without Lowe’s on the hood in that particular race — for one of his 10 wins at ‘The Track Too Tough To Tame’.

“We all know how great David Pearson was at Darlington and how many races he had won there, so we thought that this would be an amazing tie-in back to the Darlington, vintage-style racing,” Knaus said. “This one is really unique and it’s a lot of fun. It goes back years and years and years to a driver in David who was always considered one of everybody’s favorites.”

In 47 starts at Darlington, Pearson had 10 wins, 24 top-fives, 30 top-10s and 12 poles, with an average finish of 12.0 and 2,116 laps led around the 1.366-mile, egg-shaped facility.

Knaus added that Pearson’s success — especially the 1979 Southern 500 win with the special scheme — serves as a good omen for this year’s throwback version, since Johnson is a three-time Darlington winner in his Cup career, including the 2012 Southern 500 for Hendrick Motorsports’ 200th Sprint Cup victory.

“Let’s just say, our hopes are high,” he smiled.

 

About the Writer

jacobseelmanJacob Seelman is the Managing Editor of Race Chaser Online and creator of the Motorsports Madness radio show, airing at 7 p.m. Eastern every Monday on the Performance Motorsports Network.

Seelman grew up in the sport, watching his grandparents co-own the RaDiUs Motorsports NASCAR Cup Series team in the 1990s.

The 22-year-old is currently studying Broadcast Journalism at Winthrop University in Rock Hill, S.C., and is also serving as the full-time tour announcer for the Must See Racing Sprint Car Series.

Email Jacob at: speed77radio@gmail.com

Follow on Twitter: @Speed77Radio or @JacobSeelman77

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