I’ve been going into various aspects of racing memorabilia, now back to driver suits today! Joe Ruttman raced in various divisions of NASCAR from 1977 to 2007. He had a decent amount of success with wins in the K&N Pro Series West, as well as the Xfinity Series, and ARCA Racing Series. He had a lot of success in the Camping World Truck Series, where he had 13 wins, finished 2nd in the point standings in 1995, and from 1995 to 1998, finished no worse than 4th in the points.
His final season in the Truck Series was 2007, where he drove 4 races for Bobby Hamilton Racing in the #18 and #04 Dodge trucks. For three of those four races, he was sponsored by Fastenal, and wore this driver suit. The Impact! driver suit shows decent use, and is in great condition.The collar has Fastenal logos on either side, and doesn’t have a Velcro-closure on it. There is no tag in the cowl. The right chest has NASCAR CRAFTSMAN TRUCK SERIES, METABO, and INGERSOL RAND logos embroidered into it.The left chest has DODGE MOTORSPORTS, BOSCH, and LENOX logos embroidered into it.The Impact tag is sewn into the area next to the zipper just above the front logo.The front torso has a FASTENAL logo embroidered into it, and has a pair of white and black wrap around stripes embroidered into it.JOE RUTTMAN is embroidered in white on the blue background of the belt.The legs have FASTENAL logos on black stripes with white borders in television position embroidered into them. The cuffs are interesting in that they have elastic straps embroidered into them. The right shoulder has a JONESWAY logo embroidered into the epaulet.The right sleeve has an Impact Z logo, as well as CRAFTSMAN, GEAR WRENCH, IRWIN INDUSTRIAL TOOLS, RUST-OLEUM, and BOBBY HAMILTON MOTORSPORTS logos embroidered into it, there are no logos in television position on the sleeves. The left shoulder has a JONESWAY logo embroidered into the epaulet, identical to the right shoulder.The left sleeve has an Impact Z, NASCAR, NORTON, WILTON, SUNOCO, and FEDERATED AUTO PARTS logos embroidered into it, with no television logos at the end. The back of the suit shows little wear.The back of the neck has no adornment at all.The back torso features the wrap around stripes with a FASTENAL logo embroidered into the blue material.Next week, I’ll discuss a Nationwide Series driver suit.
Toyota Atlantic driver Steve Lorenzen wore this suit from 2000-2001.
By David G. Firestone
I didn’t mean to post the My Thoughts On article on Monday, but I’m glad I did. I need to address the Justin Wilson situation. Sadly, I’m having to do another article about a top level driver death this year. But I’m wondering if something will change for IndyCar design within the next few years.
Just to recap, Justin Wilson was a former Formula 1 and IndyCar driver, who has 7 wins total in Champ Car and IndyCar. He finished 2nd in 2006 and 2007, winning the Greg Moore Legacy Award in both years. He had 16 starts in Formula 1, but only scored on championship point, with no wins or podiums. He was signed to Andretti Autosport for the 2015 Indianapolis 500, and was brought on for the last 5 races of the year.
At the ABC Supply 500 at Pocono on lap 179, Sage Karem spun out, and hit the wall. The nose cone came off the car, and as Wilson drove through the scene, it hit Wilson in the head, and he crashed into the wall. As his car slowed to a stop, he was obviously unconscious, and had to be airlifted from the scene. He never regained consciousness, and died last night.
Obviously this is a tragedy, BUT there might be some good that comes of this. I’m really wondering if canopies will come to IndyCar. I discussed this after the 2014 Grand Prix of Indianapolis, where James Hinchcliffe was hit by a much smaller piece of debris and suffered a concussion. In that article, I discussed how I think IndyCar will get canopies at some point, similar to many NHRA dragsters. Tony Schumacher has stated that he started using a canopy on his dragster because he was scared that he would take a bird to the helmet, and the damage it would cause. Well, the piece that Wilson took was much larger than most birds than Schumacher would encounter.
Above and beyond that, the last two deaths in IndyCar, Dan Wheldon in 2011, and Wilson’s death could have been avoided if canopies had been added. I’m thinking that the canopies will be added starting within the next few years. The purists are going to scream when they are added, but I’d rather not see another driver die like that! This needs to happen soon!
No racing fan wants to see drivers die, that is a fact. But changes need to happen to prevent driver deaths, and this is the change that needs to happen. If the purists want to scream, let them, but I’m sick of seeing driver die! Remember that since 2011, in IndyCar and F1, there were 3 driver deaths that all could have easily been prevented with the addition of canopies, yet nobody wants to accept that they are needed.
I’m pleading with IndyCar, don’t listen to fans who are stuck in the past, do what’s right for your drivers!
By David G. Firestone
As you are all aware by this point, Jared Fogle, who for 15 years was a spokesman for Subway plead guilty to possessing child pornography, and traveling to have sex with a minor last week. His actions were reprehensible to say the least. It should also be noted that Russell Taylor, who was the director of the Jared Foundation, a group devoted to preventing childhood obesity, was arrested and charged with child exploitation, possession of child pornography, and voyeurism. I’m not going to try and defend Jared, because he’s not something that can be defended. Sexual exploitation of children is disgusting.
I am however, going to defend Subway in this situation. Subway employed him as a spokesman, and was not aware of what he was doing in his off duty hours. Whenever something like this happens, people who have agendas against the company will place blame on the company. Do you really think that Subway supported him traveling to have sex with a minor? Do you really think Subway supported him downloading child porn? Subway couldn’t have had less to do with this situation!
The idea of blaming a whole company because one or two people involved with the company is a perv, or a criminal, to me, is idiotic. Another example is when Kmart inked a deal with Martha Stewart in 2001. Kmart agreed to start selling Martha Stewart’s merchandise, and things were going well, until she went to prison in 2003 for insider trading. Kmart immediately felt the need to apologize and defend themselves, despite the fact that they couldn’t have had less to do with the Stewart case.
People with agendas like to use controversies to prove their point, even if the agenda couldn’t have less to do with the company, and I get so tired of hearing this nonsense. Again, what Jared did was horrific, and disgusting, but Subway isn’t a part of this! He did this on his own time, and didn’t involve the company, so please stop making the company look like they supported him from day one in downloading porn, and traveling to have sex with a child.
By David G. Firestone
We have our first 2016 paint scheme, and I will grade it as normal. I know that the scheme might change.
Danica Patrick #10 Nature’s Bakery Chevy SS-New sponsor for 2016, and for the first new scheme, it looks much better than anything I have seen on Danica’s car thus far. However, since this may not be the final scheme for 2016, I will take it with a grain of salt. I will give in an A+.\
Now on to the 2015 schemes…
Brad Keselowski #2 Miller Lite/Luke Bryan Ford Fusion-Same as Miller Lite, but with Luke Bryan on the hood, I’ll give it an A+.
Alex Bowman #7 APC Chevy SS-The scheme looks decent, but if the black were replaced by white, it would look better. The APC color scheme would look better with a white background. Still, it’s a decent scheme, but it has a B- look to it.
Sam Hornish Jr. #9 Transportation Impact Ford Fusion-Transportation Impact’s attempt to use the Petty C around the numbers as part of the design scheme look awful, and the whole scheme is much awkward. If that lightning bolt was removed, it would be an A scheme, but because of the bad design, it earns a C-.
Sam Hornish Jr. #9 Blue Emu Ford Fusion-Another attempt to use the Petty C in the scheme, but this works much better. It’s much smoother, and it works. Sadly, the front nose design looks odd, and the red C near the door number doesn’t fit with the whole scheme. I’ll give it a B+.
Ricky Stenhouse Jr. #17 Cargil David Pearson Throwback Ford Fusion– A very accurate throwback from David Pearson’s Holman-Moody days. Bonus point to Cargil for adding the vintage lettering on the sides. You can’t give this scheme anything lower than an A+.
Jeb Burton #26 Rocky Ridge Toyota Camry–
Leave it to BK Racing to completely miss the point of the THROWBACK RACE at Darlington! I got it wrong, this was run at Bristol. The color scheme is good, but it can’t save this scheme, which shouldn’t be running at a throwback race. I give it an F.
Paul Menard #27 Menard’s/Knauf Chevy SS-Some templates don’t work with certain color schemes, and this is a perfect example. The sky blue/neon yellow color scheme is awful, and the design is keeping it afloat. I give it a D-
Josh Wise #32 Tom Siple Foundation Ford Fusion-The Tom Siple Foundation was created in 2008 after Tom Siple died of cancer. The foundation exists to give terminally ill and severely disabled individuals a chance to hunt before their time comes. It’s a great charity, and they have a great paint scheme, earning an A+.
Travis Kvapil #33 Chevy SS-Great color scheme with a smooth design will always earn an A+.
Brett Moffitt #34 No Escape Ford Fusion-If the lettering and door numbers weren’t so bright I would be able to give it a better grade, but I can’t give this anything better than a C-.
Cole Whitt #35 Dockside Logistics Chevy SS-Same as #34 Dockside scheme, same A+ grade.
David Gilliland #38 Cash Crash Ford Fusion-The Front Row template can work very well with the right color scheme, but this isn’t the right color scheme. The green is too bright, the red clashes with it, and the hood design is awful. I’ll be kind and give it a C+.
Landon Cassill #40 Hillman Automotive Chevy SS–Great color scheme with a smooth design will always earn an A+.
Kyle Larson #42 Clorox Chevy SS-Same scheme as last year, same D-grade.
Kyle Larson #42 Target/Cartwheel Chevy SS-Not only is this a great design and color scheme, I would love to see it reversed and made the primary scheme. An A+ scheme for sure.
Kyle Larson #42 Mello Yello Chevy SS-I love a good, accurate throwback, and this is a perfect example of one. It looks just as good now as it did then, I give it an A+.
Aric Almirola #43 Armour Ford Fusion– The yellow roof numbers have been going on too long, they look awful, and it takes an A+ down to an A-.
Jimmie Johnson #48 Lowe’s Throwback Chevy SS-If the cream was replaced by white, I would give it an A+ but because is isn’t it takes it down to a B-.
David Ragan #55 Aaron’s Ken Ragan Throwback Toyota Camry–New scheme for 2015, throwback to David’s father Ken’s 1990’s car. -This is a scheme that throws back to Ken Ragan’s old scheme. I love a good, accurate throwback, and this is a perfect example of one. It looks just as good now as it did then, I give it an A+.
Reed Sorenson #62 Chevy SS–Great color scheme with a smooth design will always earn an A+.
Matt DiBenedetto #83 Cosmo Motors Toyota Camry-The only good thing I can say about this scheme is that it has a decent color scheme. C-
Timmy Hill #98 Ford Fusion-Great color scheme with a smooth design will always earn an A+.
I prefer driver suits, but I look for other forms of racing memorabilia as well. Every once in a while, I will come across something that I’ve never seen before. In this case, I came across a pair of lead crystal wine glasses from the Rolex 24.
Most racing fans only think of wine when it is being sprayed around in victory lane, or being given out as a trophy. However, wine is becoming ever more present at auto racing events for fan consumption, as it has in all other sports. Most NASCAR fans, myself included, stick to beer or soda, but in NASCAR and many other racing events, Formula 1 for example, fans will sip wine while watching the action. Every so often, a vineyard will sponsor a car, usually at Sonoma.
Further proof that wine is becoming a standard in auto racing is that Mario Andretti, Richard Childress, Jeff Gordon, Kevin Buckler, and Randy Lewis all own wineries or vineyards. Benny Parsons owned one before he passed away. Many other athletes own them as well, including Wayne Gretzky, Valeri Bure, Mike Ditka, Peggy Fleming, Dan Marino, Joe Montana, Mickey Morandini, and Charles Woodson. In addition to his successful iced tea/lemonade drink, Arnold Palmer has his own line of wines. Wine really is mainstream, and is popular in auto racing.
Most tracks will sell event branded pint glasses, but I came across these wine glasses from The 2015 Rolex 24 at Daytona. These lead crystal glasses are about nine inches tall, and have the Rolex 24 logo printed on the side with some very nice etchings on the Rolex logo. These are high quality wine glasses. Lead crystal is used on wine glasses because of the strength, clarity, ease of etching, and, interestingly, the tone made during a toast.
Ok, now with that out of the way, next week, we go back to what I love…Driver Suits!
Phil LePan’s collection of Indy 500 memorabilia from the 1995 event will be featured this week.
2015 THROWBACK SCHEMES
TEAM PENSKE #2
Brad Keselowski #2 Miller Lite 1998 Throwback Ford Fusion–Based on the 1998 Rusty Wallace scheme, but with some subtle differences. Different logo on hood and sides, and a layers stripe on the stripes. A+
Brad Keselowski #2 Miller Lite 2007 Gold Throwback Ford Fusion–Based loosely on the 2007 gold scheme raced at the Sprint Unlimited and All-Star Race, new hood logo and designs, door and hood numbers covered by blue. B-
ROUSH-FENWAY RACING #17
WOOD BROTHERS RACING #21
HENDRICK MOTORSPORTS #24
GO FAS RACING #32
CHIP GANASSI RACING TEAM #42
RICHARD PETTY MOTORSPORTS #43
MICHAEL WALTRIP RACING #55
RICHARD CHILDRESS RACING #3
Austin Dillon #3 American Ethanol Throwback Chevy SS-New scheme for 2015. throwback design based on a Richard Childress scheme from the 1970’s and 1980’s. Red top and bottom, white stripes on roof and sides. B-
STEWART-HAAS RACING #4
Kevin Harvick #4 Budweiser Throwback Chevy SS-New scheme for 2015, yellow with red and black stripes on bottom, sublimated yellow stripes on side. A
JOE GIBBS RACING #11
Denny Hamlin #11 Sport Clips Throwback Toyota Camry-New scheme for 2015, white top and hood, black stripe across sides, vintage number design, and red bottom. C
STEWART-HAAS RACING #14
Tony Stewart #14 Bass Pro Shop Throwback/Mobil 1 Chevy SS-New scheme for 2015, silver on top, red stripes across car, bottom is black, vintage Bass Pro Shops log on hood. C+
HENDRICK MOTORSPORTS #25
RICHARD CHILDRESS RACING #31
Ryan Newman #31 Caterpillar Throwback Chevy SS-New scheme for 2015, Yellow with black stripes up the center and vintage logos. A+
NON THROWBACK SCHEMES FOR DARLINGTON
Danica Patrick #10 GoDaddy Black Chevy SS-New scheme for 2015, reversal of the current scheme with black on top, green on bottom. C+
Ryan Blaney #21 Snap On Throwback Ford Fusion-New scheme for 2015, same as Snap On, but photos of Snap On distributors replace white. B-
Jeb Burton #26 Rocky Ridge Toyota Camry-New sponsor for 2015, black, with red and gray curve designs on sides. F