auto racing · throwback thursday

Throwback Thursday-Mark Martin-1988

By David G. Firestone

The Ageless Wonder Mark Martin sits next to his brand new Stroh Light Ford Thunderbird in 1988.

The Stroh Light Thunderbird is a very simple, yet very effective design. Dark blue, a really good shade by the way, is used over the whole car. White lettering is very visible on the blue background. The Roush #6 is white with a red border. It is a great scheme, and it looks very good.  Simple is better, when it comes to paint schemes.

I wonder why Martin’s driver suit is a different shade of blue than the car. Neither shade is that bad, but they do clash in the photo. I’m also marveling at the rear spoiler. It looks like a spoiler from a pro stock car in the NHRA. It’s literally horizontal. On a different note, is the lettering on the tires getting bigger? It seems so.

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auto racing · paint scheme tracker

Paint Scheme Tracker-March 30, 2016

By David G. Firestone

CHIP GANASSI RACING TEAM #1

Jamie McMurray #1 Cessna/Beechcraft Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, blue top, reverse wave formation across sides, white bottom, with silver accents. B+

Jamie McMurray #1 Sherwin Williams Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, main design has been moved slightly to the rear. 150’th anniversary logo added to hood.B+

Jamie McMurray #1 McDonald’s Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, red and yellow front with a spike transition to rear. A+

Jamie McMurray #1 McDonalds/Cessna Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, red and blue amalgamation of McDonald’s and Cessna. B-

Jamie McMurray #1 Credit One Chevy SS-New sponsor for 2016, blue, purple and white, with a series of designs across whole car. F

TEAM PENSKE #2

Brad Keselowski #2 Miller Lite Ford FusionSame basic scheme as 2015, but Miller has been removed from hood, similar 2014. A+

Brad Keselowski #2 Alliance Truck Parts Ford FusionNo Change. A+

Brad Keselowski #2 Wurth Ford FusionNo Change. A+

Brad Keselowski #2 Auto Trader Ford FusionNew sponsor for 2016, same as #22 Auto Trader. D-

Brad Keselowski #2 SKF Ford FusionNew scheme for 2016, similar to 2015 scheme, but fits to Penske Template. A+

RICHARD CHILDRESS RACING #3

Austin Dillon #3 Dow Chevy SSSame basic scheme, but the hood logo is slightly larger. B+

Austin Dillon #3 Cheerios Chevy SSNo change. A+

Austin Dillon #3 American Ethanol Chevy SSNo change. A-

Austin Dillon #3 Dow Intellifresh Chevy SSNew sponsor for 2016, same as Dow Energy and Water. B-

Austin Dillon #3 AAA Chevy SSNew sponsor for 2016, similar to Robert Hight’s funny car, but with colors rearranged. D+

STEWART-HAAS RACING #4

Kevin Harvick #4 Busch Chevy SS-New sponsor for 2015, designed around a Busch throwback can. A+

Kevin Harvick #4 Busch Light Chevy SS-New sponsor for 2015, designed around a Busch Light can. A+

Kevin Harvick #4 Jimmy John’s Chevy SSNo change. A+

Kevin Harvick #4 Outback Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, mountain design starts near brake duct, instead of at front of car. B+

Kevin Harvick #4 Ditech Chevy SSNo change. A+

Kevin Harvick #4 Mobil 1 Chevy SS-New scheme for 2016, white background, with the Pegasus wing starting at the side of the front, extending to the door numbers. A+

HENDRICK MOTORSPORTS #5

Kasey Kahne #5 Farmers Insurance Chevy SSNo Change. C+

Kasey Kahne #5 Great Clips Chevy SSNo Change. D+

Kasey Kahne #5 Liftmaster Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, geometrical designs on side changed. C

Kasey Kahne #5 Panasonic Toughbook Chevy SS-New sponsor for 2016, blue fade to black, with a couple of wave stripes, and some fade designs on side. A+

Kasey Kahne #5 Quicken Loans Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, red with hockey stick designs on sides, as well as geometrical designs on front and back. C+

ROUSH-FEWNAY RACING #16

Trevor Bayne #6 Advocare Ford FusionNew scheme for 2016, white with blue line and checkered flag on bottom. A+

TOMMY BALDWIN RACING #7

Alex Bowman #7 Road Rippers Chevy SS-New scheme for 2015, shark motif on front, fades to fire motif and logo on back. F

Regan Smith #7 Golden Corral/Niko Toy State Chevy SS-New scheme for 2016, amalgamation of Golden Corral and Niko Toy State. F

Regan Smith #7 Nikko Street Bratz Chevy SS-New sponsor for 2016, blue and white with a series of designs across sides. F

Regan Smith #7 Chevy SS-Black with white and blue numbers and stripe across bottom. A+

Regan Smith #7 APC Chevy SS-New sponsor for 2016, black with white and blue numbers and stripe across bottom, APC logo on hood. A+

Regan Smith #7 AIPAC Chevy SS-New sponsor for 2016, black with white and blue numbers and stripe across bottom, AIPAC logo on hood. A+

STEWART-HAAS RACING #10

Danica Patrick #10 Nature’s Bakery Chevy SS-New sponsor for 2016, blue with white lettering on sides, white and black stripe across hood and roof. A+

Danica Patrick #10 TaxAct Chevy SS-New sponsor for 2016, white front, red TaxAct X logo, gray back. A+

Danica Patrick #10 Nature’s Pride Pumpkin Spice Chevy SS-New sponsor for 2016, same basic scheme as Nature’s Pride, but with orange and red color scheme, and some slight redesigns on the side. A+

Danica Patrick #10 Mobil 1 Chevy SS-New scheme for 2016, Bass Pro Shops has left, so the Mobil 1 scheme features a white background, with the Pegasus wing starting at the side of the front, extending to the door numbers. A+

Danica Patrick #10 Aspen Dental Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, similar to Clint Bowyer’s template, but with a Post-It esque design. F

JOE GIBBS RACING #11

Denny Hamlin #11 FedEx Express Toyota CamrySlight redesign for 2016, hood logo moved slightly to the right, side stripes wider. A+

Denny Hamlin #11 FedEx Freight Toyota CamrySlight redesign for 2016, hood logo moved slightly to the right, side stripes wider. A+

Denny Hamlin #11 FedEx Ground Toyota CamrySlight redesign for 2016, hood logo moved slightly to the right, side stripes wider. A+

Denny Hamlin #11 FedEx Office Toyota CamrySlight redesign for 2016, hood logo moved slightly to the right, side stripes wider. A+

Denny Hamlin #11 SportClips Toyota CamryNo Change. C-

GERMAIN RACING #13

Casey Mears #13 Geico Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, much more subdued version of the 2015 scheme. A+

Casey Mears #13 Geico Millitary Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, black with camo motif across car. F

STEWART-HAAS RACING #14

Tony Stewart #14 Mobil 1 Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, the Mobil 1 scheme features a white background, with the Pegasus wing starting at the side of the front, extending to the door numbers. A+

Tony Stewart #14 Code 3 Associates/Mobil 1 Chevy SSSlight redesign, removal of Bass Pro Shops logo, cleaner rear end of the car. A+

Tony Stewart #14 Rush Truck Stops/Mobil 1 Chevy SSSlight redesign, removal of Bass Pro Shops logo, cleaner rear end of the car. A+

Tony Stewart #14 Bass Pro Shops Chevy SSNo Change. C+

Brian Vickers #14 Janssen Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, simple curve replaces the wave pattern from 2015. A+

HSCOTT MOTORSPORTS #15

Clint Bowyer #15 Five-Hour Energy Chevy SSNew scheme for 2015, the front stripe has been moved up to the top of the side, and the roof matches with the design. A+

Clint Bowyer #15 Peak Chevy SSNew scheme for 2015, Blue with white geometrical designs on side. A+

Clint Bowyer #15 Visine Chevy SS-New sponsor for 2016, same as 5-Hour Energy, but with black, white, and blue color scheme. B+

Clint Bowyer #15 Aaron’s Chevy SSNo Change. A+

ROUSH-FEWNAY RACING #16

Greg Bffle #16 Cheez-its Ford FusionNew scheme for 2015, stripe has been extended down tot he bottom of the car, some slight rearangment of the crackers on the side of the car. A+

Greg Biffle #16 KFC Nashville Hot Ford FusionNew sponsor for 2016, all red with fire designs on quarter panel, and KFC stripes on roof. A+

Greg Biffle #16 Kleen Performance Products Ford FusionNo Change. B+

Greg Biffle #16 Roush Performance Ford FusionNew scheme for 2016, black with red and white check pattern design on side. A+

ROUSH-FEWNAY RACING #17

Ricky Stenhouse Jr. #17 Fastenal Ford FusionNo Change. A

Ricky Stenhouse Jr. #17 Ford Eco-Boost Ford FusionNew scheme for 2016, much simpler design, with red added on top. B+

Ricky Stenhouse Jr. #17 Sunny D Ford Fusion-New sponsor for 2016, orange front, rainbow sunburst pattern across sides, blue hood, roof, and decklid. F

JOE GIBBS RACING #18

Kyle Busch #18 Interstate Batteries Chevy SSSlight redesign for 2015, stripes are wider, black stripe on bottom gone. F

Kyle Busch #18 Skittles Toyota CamryNo Change. A+

Kyle Busch #18 M&M’s Toyota CamryNew scheme for 2016, similar to 2014 scheme, but with vintage characters to celebrate M&M’s 75th anniversary. A+

Kyle Busch #18 M&M’s Throwback Toyota Camry-New scheme for 2016, vintage look with vintage characters, yellow, with brown letters. A+

JOE GIBBS RACING #19

Carl Edwards #19 Stanley Toyota CamryNo Change. B+

Carl Edwards #19 Stanley Toyota CamrySlight redesign for 2016, logos are bigger, outlines are bolder. A

Carl Edwards #19 Subway Toyota CamryNew scheme for 2016, green replaces black, box motif replaces stripe motif. B+

JOE GIBBS RACING #20

Matt Kenseth #20 Dollar General Toytota CamrySlight redesign for 2016, black stripe across bottom now gone. A+

Matt Kenseth #20 DeWalt USA Toyota CamryNo Change. A+

Matt Kenseth #20 DeWalt Toyota CamryNo Change. A+

WOOD BROTHERS RACING #21

Ryan Blaney #21 Motorcraft Ford FusionNo Change. A+

TEAM PENSKE #22

Joey Logano #22 Shell/Pennzoil Ford FusionNo change D

Joey Logano #22 AAA Ford FusionNo Change. D

Joey Logano #22 Auto Trader Ford FusionNo Change. D-

Joey Logano #22 AAA of Southern California Ford FusionNo Change. D

Joey Logano #22 Pennzoil Ford FusionNew scheme for 2016, all yellow, with some lighter yellow geometrical designs across car. A+

BK RACING #23

David Ragan #23 Dr. Pepper Toyota CamryNew scheme for 2016, white hood, different designs on sides. B+

HENDRICK MOTORSPORTS #24

Chase Elliott #24 NAPA Chevy SS-New sponsor for 2015, blue with white stripes across side which start at brake duct. A+

Chase Elliott #24 3M Chevy SSNew scheme for 2015, black and white replaces silver, extra geometrical designs on sides. B+

Chase Elliott #24 Kelly Blue Book Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, same basic color scheme but gold has been removed. Scheme has been redesigned into a more haphazardly designed stripe pattern. C+

Chase Elliot #24 Sun Energy Chevy SS-New sponsor for 2016, black background with solar flare inspired design fades to blue towards wheel well, and finishes with red gradient on back. F

BK RACING #26

Robert Richardson #26 Stalk It Toyota Camry-New sponsor for 2016, black with large blue and white stripe across sides, and Stalk It logos on hood and sides. A+

RICHARD CHILDRESS RACING #27

Paul Menard #27 Menard’s/Moen Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, black front, extending into Menard’s template, yellow rear. B-

Paul Menard #27 Menard’s/Peak Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, redesigned to match Clint Bowyer’s Peak Chevy. A+

Paul Menard #27 Valvoline/Menard’s Chevy SS-New sponsor for 2016, follows new Menard’s template, white Valvoline front, yellow Menard’s rear. F

Paul Menard #27 Menard’s/Dutch Boy Chevy SS-New sponsor for 2016, Menard’s template, with peeling blue and white paint design. F

Paul Menard #27 Richmond/Menard’s Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, same basic color scheme with new Menard’s template. A+

Paul Menard #27 Menard’s/FVP Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, New Menard’s template with FVP colors. A+

THE MOTORSPORTS GROUP #30

Josh Wise #30 Toyota Camry-Plain white with blue, black, and white numbers. A+

Josh Wise #30 Toyota Camry-Plain black with blue, black, and white numbers. A+

RICHARD CHILDRESS RACING #31

Ryan Newman #31 Cat Chevy SSSlight redesign for 2016, yellow stripes are narrower, and hood logo is slightly larger. A+

Ryan Newman #31 Granger Chevy SSNo change. B +

Ryan Newman #31 Wix Filters Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, one large multi-colored stripe replaces the multi-stripe on the sides, design extends to hood. F

GO FAS RACING #32

Jeffery Earnhardt #32 Can-Am/Kappa Ford Fusion-New sponsor for 2016, black, green, and yellow, with a series of geometrical designs across whole car. F

Jeffery Earnhardt #32 Keen Parts/Corvette Parts Ford FusionNew sponsor for 2016, black, white, and yellow, with a series of geometrical designs across whole car. F

Bobby Labonte #32 C&J Energy Services Ford FusionNo Change. F

Joey Gase #32 JT Concrete Inc Ford Fusion-New sponsor for 2016, white with blue and white lettering. A+

FRONT ROW MOTORSPORTS #34

Chris Buescher #34 Love’s Truck Stops Ford FusionNew scheme for 2016, Front Row Template has been reversed, red replaces back as secondary color. A+

Chris Buescher #34 Dockside Logistics Ford FusionNew scheme for 2016, all white with Dockside Logistics logos on sides and hood. A+

Chris Buescher #34 CSX Play it Safe Ford FusionNo Change. A+

FRONT ROW MOTORSPORTS #35

David Gilliland #35 Ford Fusion-White with black and red letters. A+

FRONT ROW MOTORSPORTS #38

Landon Cassill #38 Florida Lottery Ford FusionNo Change. C+

Landon Cassill #38 FR8 Auctions Ford FusionNo Change. A+

Landon Cassill #38 MDS Ford FusionNew scheme for 2016, all white with MDS logos on sides and hood. A+

Landon Cassill #38 Snap Fitnaess Ford FusionNew scheme for 2015, all red with Snap Fitness logos on sides and hood. A+

HILLMAN RACING #40

Reed Sorenson #40 CRC Brakleen Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, black replaces red as primary color. D-

STEWART-HAAS RACING #41

Kurt Busch #41 Monster Energy Chevy SS-New sponsor for 2016, black with yellow and white numbers and lettering. A+

Kurt Busch #41 Haas Automation Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, red front, fades to black rear end. A+

Kurt Busch #41 Haas Automation/Monster Energy Chevy SS-New scheme for 2016, red front, fades to black rear end. A+

Kurt Busch #41 Monster Energy/Haas Automation Chevy SS-New scheme for 2016, same as Monster Energy, but with Haas on rear. A+

CHIP GANASSI RACING TEAM #42

Kyle Larson #42 Target Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, vertical fade from red to white replaces side fade from 2015. A+

RICHARD PETTY MOTORSPORTS #43

Aric Almirola #43 Smithfield Ford FusionSlight redesign for 2016, roof numbers turn from yellow to red. B+

Aric Almiroa #43 U.S. Air Force Ford FusionNew scheme for 2016, same basic scheme, but with more lightning. A+

Aric Almirola #43 STP Ford FusionNew scheme for 2014, STP colors with stripes that correspond to the door logos. B-

RICHARD PETTY MOTORSPORTS #44

Brian Scott #44 Twisted Tea Ford FusionAside from the number change, no significant changes for 2016. A

Brian Scott #44 Albertsons’s Ford Fusion-New sponsor for 2016, all blue with white hood. A+

Brian Scott #44 Vonn’s Ford Fusion-New sponsor for 2016, same as Albertson’s, but with Vonn’s on the hood.. A+

HSCOTT MOTORSPORTS #46

Michael Annett #46 Pilot/Flying J Chevy SSNo Change. A+

Michael Annett #46 Pilot/Flying J Chevy SS-New scheme for 2016, all red with white front. A+

JTG DAUGHERTY RACING #47

AJ Allmendinger #47 Kroger/Stoffer’s/Lean Cuisine Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, same as Kroger/Scott, minus the stars. A+

AJ Allmendinger #47 Kroger/Scott Chevy SS-New scheme for 2016, same as Kroger/Scott, minus the stars. A+

AJ Allmendinger #47 Food For Less Chevy SSNo Change. A+

AJ Allmendinger #47 Louisiana Hot Sauce Chevy SS-New sponsor for 2016, dark red, with flames on sides. A+

HENDRICK MOTORSPORTS #48

Jimmie Johnson #48 Lowe’s Chevy SSSlight redesign for 2016, stripes are narrower, and hood logo is slightly forward. C-

Jimmie Johnson #48 Lowe’s/Kobalt Chevy SSSlight redesign for 2016, stripes are narrower, and hood logo is slightly forward. C-

Jimmie Johnson #48 Lowe’s Pro ServicesSlight redesign for 2016, stripes are narrower, and hood logo is slightly forward. C-

Jimmie Johnson #48 Lowe’s/Superman Chevy SS-New scheme for 2016, designed to look like Superman’s suit. A+

Jimmie Johnson Lowe’s Red Vest Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, Jimmie Johnson Foundation logo replaces the Lowe’s Template. D-

CIRCLE SPORT/LEAVINE FAMILY RACING #59

Michael McDowell #59 Thrivent Financial Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, same as #95, with door numbers reversed. B+

FURNITURE ROW RACING #78

Marin Truex Jr. #78 Furniture Row Toyota CamryOther than the switch from Chevy to Toyota, there are no major changes. A+

Martin Truex Jr. #78 Auto Owner’s Insurance Chevy SS-New sponsor for 2016, vertical fade from bottom to top, light blue fades up to dark blue. A+

Martin Truex Jr. #78 Bass Pro Shops Chevy SS-New sponsor for 2016, orange with trace amounts of black and camo. F

BK RACING #83

Michael Waltrip #83 Maxwell House Toyota CamryNo Change. A+

Matt DiBendetto #83 Sewanee University Toyota Camry-New sponsor for 2016, blue with white and gold logos on quarter panels, gold stripe on bottom, blue designs on side. B+

Matt DiBenedetto #83 Cosmo Motors Toyota CamryNew scheme for 2016, all black with Cosmo Motors logos on sides and hood. A+

Matt DiBenedetto #83 Schluter Systems Toyota Camry-New sponsor for 2016, cream top, with stripes, and a waffle design on the bottom. D-

Matt DiBenedetto #83 Cosmo Motors Toyota CamryNo Change. C-

HENDRICK MOTORSPORTS #88

Dale Earnhardt Jr. #88 TaxSlayer Chevy SS-New sponsor for 2016, red top and front, white bottom and back, gold designs separate the two. A+

Dale Earnhardt Jr. #88 Nationwide Chevy SSNew scheme for 2015, reminiscent of old Mountain Dew/Amp Energy scheme. A+

Dale Earnhardt Jr. #88 Axalta Chevy SS-New sponsor for 2016, red top, fade to yellow bottom, across whole car. A+

Dale Earnhardt Jr. #88 Nationwide/Batman Chevy SS-New scheme for 2016, designed to look like Batman’s armor. A+

BK RACING #93

Matt DiBenedetto #93 Dustless Blasting Toyota CamryNo Change. B

CIRCLE SPORT/LEAVINE FAMILY RACING #95

Ty Dillon #95 Cheerios Chevy SSNew sponsor and manufacturer for 2016 for Leavine Family Racing, after having merged with Circle Sport, and aligned with RCR. Aside from the new number, and a larger Kroger’s logo, no change. A+

Michael McDowell #95 Thrivent Financial Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, looks similar in design to the 2014, with a black, red, and white color scheme. B+

Michael McDowell #95 K-Love Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, simpler template. A+

Michael McDowell #95 Monte Carlo Casino Chevy SS-New Scheme for 2016, same as WRL Contractors from 2014. A+

PREMIUM MOTORSPORTS #98

Cole Whitt #98 Premium Motorsports RTIC Coolers Toyota Camry-New sponsor for 2016, black with RTIC Coolers logo on sides and hood. A+

Cole Whitt #98 Tweaker Energy Chevy SSNo Change. A+

Cole Whitt #98 Speed Stick Chevy SSNo Change. A+

Cole Whitt #98 Rinnai Ford FusionNew scheme for 2016, all black with Rinnai logos on sides and hood. A+

auto racing · my thoughts on

My Thoughts on Easter, Stories, and Losing a Friend

By David G. Firestone

I’ve been thinking about a few things this week. Being Jewish on Easter is really, REALLY boring. There is nothing to do for the whole day. I decided to adjust a few of the display cases in The Hauler, while Spring Training Baseball played in the background. As I moved these objects, I began to think about the objects stories. I love learning the stories of the objects in my collection.

Every object we encounter has a story. I wonder about the whole story for every object. How did this object get to my collection? Who handled this object besides me? I love learning the backstory of the objects in my collection. The more I learn, the more interesting the item is. I find that learning the stories are fun.

Much less interesting is the fact that I had to cut someone out of my life this week. This wasn’t an easy thing to do, but it had to happen. I don’t talk about people behind their backs, and I don’t backstab people…unless I’m playing Spy in Team Fortress 2. If I have a problem, I let it simmer, and if I feel I need to confront someone, I do it to their face. It really bugs me when someone has a problem with me, but doesn’t have the backbone to call me out.

I found out that someone I know was going behind my back, bad mouthing me for no real reason. This individual could have confronted me face to face, but couldn’t. I’ve known this person for many years, and have never had a problem with him, but apparently, he felt the need to blast me over something I thought we had resolved. I want to tell the whole story, but I don’t want to identify him, so I’ll start from the beginning.

We had been discussing something that he took very seriously, and while we had differing opinions of some parts of the subject, it was a civil discussion. While we were in this discussion, I apparently said something that he really disagreed with, and was factually incorrect. He contacted me concerning this, and we discussed it, and I thought we had worked things out. He didn’t seem mad, and I thought we had worked this out.

Last week, I learned he had been badmouthing me and badmouthing The Driver Suit Blog concerning this debate. The things that were said cut really deep, and I was really hurt by what I heard. I really did like him, and I never meant to hurt his feelings. I try my best to work through this kind of thing, but a lot of the stuff he said was so hurtful, and so cheap, I couldn’t forgive him, and I doubt we will ever be in the same room ever again.

One thing I try not to do is carry a grudge. I don’t know how it took me so long to realize that carrying a grudge does no good for anyone. It doesn’t do me any good, and doesn’t do the person I’m mad at any good. You would be amazed how good it feels to drop the anger you carry around with. But the level of stuff he said about me, and the way he said it really gave me no choice.

If you have a problem with me, get in touch and we’ll talk. I’m honest to my faults, and if I hurt you, I didn’t really mean to. I just wish the above story didn’t have to happen.

auto racing · friday feature

When is a Paint Scheme Not a Paint Scheme?

buecherwrap-1By David G. Firestone

Although the commonly used term is “paint scheme,” paint rarely, if ever is used on the sides of cars. What is used is vinyl wrap. The schemes are printed on vinyl, and then applied to the car. This saves time, and weight. It also makes the complex schemes of today possible. Here is video of Kyle Busch’s 2013 M&M’s Toyota Camry having the wrap applied…

There are a number of places that will supply wraps, the biggest, and most well known is Pro Cal Professional Decals. Located in Concord, North Carolina, Pro Cal supplies vinyl wraps to many teams, including Roush Fewnay Racing, Hendrick Motorsports, Chip Ganassi, Richard Petty Motorsports, Stewart-Haas Racing, Richard Childress Racing, Kalitta Motorsports, and KB Racing Technologies. Pro Cal also does commercial vehicle wraps and signage.

I was able to get my hands on one example of a vinyl wrap, this Chris Buescher side from the 2014 Buckle Up 200 Pres. by Click It or Ticket at Dover on Saturday, May 31, 2014. Buescher raced the #60 Ford Eco-Boost Ford Mustang to an 8th place finish. This is a spare vinyl side from the car he raced that day.buecherwrap-1 buecherwrap-2I’m not sure why this wasn’t used, I’m thinking that the black that has rubbed on the side was why Roush Fenway rejected it. The wrap itself is huge, over 10 feet long, and about 4 feet high. It has 3M adhesive on the back to attach it to the car. It has additional decals for the door numbers, posts, and front of the car. buecherwrap-3 buecherwrap-4 buecherwrap-5 buecherwrap-6 buecherwrap-7 buecherwrap-8There are also decals to add some of the stripes. It also comes with a squeegee made by Lidco Products, a Saint Paul, Minnesota based squeegee company.buecherwrap-9 buecherwrap-10While the majority of NASCAR uses vinyl decals, we still call them paint schemes. The term “vinyl scheme” doesn’t sound as good. No matter what technologies we use to design a car, we will call them a paint scheme.

Next week I’m going to examine an odd racing suit.

auto racing · throwback thursday

Throwback Thursday-Ken Schrader-1987

By David G. Firestone

Ken Schrader takes his 1987 Red Baron Ford Thunderbird out for a Sunday Drive.

Red, white, and black is a good color scheme. The door numbers would work much better rounded than square. The Red Baron logo curving over the wheel well looks really good. The white under the door numbers looks decent, though the black stripe behind the door number really isn’t needed. The white hood and roof look decent, but would look a lot better with the red, rather than the white.

auto racing · paint scheme tracker

Paint Scheme Tracker-March 23, 2016

By David G. Firestone

CHIP GANASSI RACING TEAM #1

Jamie McMurray #1 Cessna/Beechcraft Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, blue top, reverse wave formation across sides, white bottom, with silver accents. B+

Jamie McMurray #1 Sherwin Williams Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, main design has been moved slightly to the rear. 150’th anniversary logo added to hood.B+

Jamie McMurray #1 McDonald’s Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, red and yellow front with a spike transition to rear. A+

Jamie McMurray #1 McDonalds/Cessna Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, red and blue amalgamation of McDonald’s and Cessna. B-

Jamie McMurray #1 Credit One Chevy SS-New sponsor for 2016, blue, purple and white, with a series of designs across whole car. F

TEAM PENSKE #2

Brad Keselowski #2 Miller Lite Ford FusionSame basic scheme as 2015, but Miller has been removed from hood, similar 2014. A+

Brad Keselowski #2 Alliance Truck Parts Ford FusionNo Change. A+

Brad Keselowski #2 Wurth Ford FusionNo Change. A+

Brad Keselowski #2 Auto Trader Ford FusionNew sponsor for 2016, same as #22 Auto Trader. D-

Brad Keselowski #2 SKF Ford FusionNew scheme for 2016, similar to 2015 scheme, but fits to Penske Template. A+

RICHARD CHILDRESS RACING #3

Austin Dillon #3 Dow Chevy SSSame basic scheme, but the hood logo is slightly larger. B+

Austin Dillon #3 Cheerios Chevy SSNo change. A+

Austin Dillon #3 American Ethanol Chevy SSNo change. A-

Austin Dillon #3 Dow Intellifresh Chevy SSNew sponsor for 2016, same as Dow Energy and Water. B-

Austin Dillon #3 AAA Chevy SSNew sponsor for 2016, similar to Robert Hight’s funny car, but with colors rearranged. D+

STEWART-HAAS RACING #4

Kevin Harvick #4 Busch Chevy SS-New sponsor for 2015, designed around a Busch throwback can. A+

Kevin Harvick #4 Busch Light Chevy SS-New sponsor for 2015, designed around a Busch Light can. A+

Kevin Harvick #4 Jimmy John’s Chevy SSNo change. A+

Kevin Harvick #4 Outback Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, mountain design starts near brake duct, instead of at front of car. B+

Kevin Harvick #4 Ditech Chevy SSNo change. A+

Kevin Harvick #4 Mobil 1 Chevy SS-New scheme for 2016, white background, with the Pegasus wing starting at the side of the front, extending to the door numbers. A+

HENDRICK MOTORSPORTS #5

Kasey Kahne #5 Farmers Insurance Chevy SSNo Change. C+

Kasey Kahne #5 Great Clips Chevy SSNo Change. D+

Kasey Kahne #5 Liftmaster Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, geometrical designs on side changed. C

Kasey Kahne #5 Panasonic Toughbook Chevy SS-New sponsor for 2016, blue fade to black, with a couple of wave stripes, and some fade designs on side. A+

Kasey Kahne #5 Quicken Loans Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, red with hockey stick designs on sides, as well as geometrical designs on front and back. C+

ROUSH-FEWNAY RACING #16

Trevor Bayne #6 Advocare Ford FusionNew scheme for 2016, white with blue line and checkered flag on bottom. A+

TOMMY BALDWIN RACING #7

Alex Bowman #7 Road Rippers Chevy SS-New scheme for 2015, shark motif on front, fades to fire motif and logo on back. F

Regan Smith #7 Golden Corral/Niko Toy State Chevy SS-New scheme for 2016, amalgamation of Golden Corral and Niko Toy State. F

Regan Smith #7 Nikko Street Bratz Chevy SS-New sponsor for 2016, blue and white with a series of designs across sides. F

Regan Smith #7 Chevy SS-Black with white and blue numbers and stripe across bottom. A+

Regan Smith #7 APC Chevy SS-Black with white and blue numbers and stripe across bottom, APC logo on hood. A+

STEWART-HAAS RACING #10

Danica Patrick #10 Nature’s Bakery Chevy SS-New sponsor for 2016, blue with white lettering on sides, white and black stripe across hood and roof. A+

Danica Patrick #10 TaxAct Chevy SS-New sponsor for 2016, white front, red TaxAct X logo, gray back. A+

Danica Patrick #10 Nature’s Pride Pumpkin Spice Chevy SS-New sponsor for 2016, same basic scheme as Nature’s Pride, but with orange and red color scheme, and some slight redesigns on the side. A+

Danica Patrick #10 Mobil 1 Chevy SS-New scheme for 2016, Bass Pro Shops has left, so the Mobil 1 scheme features a white background, with the Pegasus wing starting at the side of the front, extending to the door numbers. A+

Danica Patrick #10 Aspen Dental Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, similar to Clint Bowyer’s template, but with a Post-It esque design. F

JOE GIBBS RACING #11

Denny Hamlin #11 FedEx Express Toyota CamrySlight redesign for 2016, hood logo moved slightly to the right, side stripes wider. A+

Denny Hamlin #11 FedEx Freight Toyota CamrySlight redesign for 2016, hood logo moved slightly to the right, side stripes wider. A+

Denny Hamlin #11 FedEx Ground Toyota CamrySlight redesign for 2016, hood logo moved slightly to the right, side stripes wider. A+

Denny Hamlin #11 FedEx Office Toyota CamrySlight redesign for 2016, hood logo moved slightly to the right, side stripes wider. A+

Denny Hamlin #11 SportClips Toyota Camry-No Change. C-

GERMAIN RACING #13

Casey Mears #13 Geico Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, much more subdued version of the 2015 scheme. A+

Casey Mears #13 Geico Millitary Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, black with camo motif across car. F

STEWART-HAAS RACING #14

Tony Stewart #14 Mobil 1 Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, the Mobil 1 scheme features a white background, with the Pegasus wing starting at the side of the front, extending to the door numbers. A+

Tony Stewart #14 Code 3 Associates/Mobil 1 Chevy SSSlight redesign, removal of Bass Pro Shops logo, cleaner rear end of the car. A+

Tony Stewart #14 Rush Truck Stops/Mobil 1 Chevy SSSlight redesign, removal of Bass Pro Shops logo, cleaner rear end of the car. A+

Tony Stewart #14 Bass Pro Shops Chevy SSNo Change. C+

Brian Vickers #14 Janssen Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, simple curve replaces the wave pattern from 2015. A+

HSCOTT MOTORSPORTS #15

Clint Bowyer #15 Five-Hour Energy Chevy SSNew scheme for 2015, the front stripe has been moved up to the top of the side, and the roof matches with the design. A+

Clint Bowyer #15 Peak Chevy SSNew scheme for 2015, Blue with white geometrical designs on side. A+

Clint Bowyer #15 Visine Chevy SS-New sponsor for 2016, same as 5-Hour Energy, but with black, white, and blue color scheme. B+

Clint Bowyer #15 Aaron’s Chevy SSNo Change. A+

ROUSH-FEWNAY RACING #16

Greg Bffle #16 Cheez-its Ford FusionNew scheme for 2015, stripe has been extended down tot he bottom of the car, some slight rearangment of the crackers on the side of the car. A+

Greg Biffle #16 KFC Nashville Hot Ford FusionNew sponsor for 2016, all red with fire designs on quarter panel, and KFC stripes on roof. A+

Greg Biffle #16 Kleen Performance Products Ford FusionNo Change. B+

Greg Biffle #16 Roush Performance Ford FusionNew scheme for 2016, black with red and white check pattern design on side. A+

ROUSH-FEWNAY RACING #17

Ricky Stenhouse Jr. #17 Fastenal Ford FusionNo Change. A

Ricky Stenhouse Jr. #17 Ford Eco-Boost Ford FusionNew scheme for 2016, much simpler design, with red added on top. B+

Ricky Stenhouse Jr. #17 Sunny D Ford Fusion-New sponsor for 2016, orange front, rainbow sunburst pattern across sides, blue hood, roof, and decklid. F

JOE GIBBS RACING #18

Kyle Busch #18 Interstate Batteries Chevy SSSlight redesign for 2015, stripes are wider, black stripe on bottom gone. F

Kyle Busch #18 Skittles Toyota CamryNo Change. A+

Kyle Busch #18 M&M’s Toyota CamryNew scheme for 2016, similar to 2014 scheme, but with vintage characters to celebrate M&M’s 75th anniversary. A+

Kyle Busch #18 M&M’s Throwback Toyota Camry-New scheme for 2016, vintage look with vintage characters, yellow, with brown letters. A+

JOE GIBBS RACING #19

Carl Edwards #19 Stanley Toyota CamryNo Change. B+

Carl Edwards #19 Stanley Toyota CamrySlight redesign for 2016, logos are bigger, outlines are bolder. A

Carl Edwards #19 Subway Toyota CamryNew scheme for 2016, green replaces black, box motif replaces stripe motif. B+

JOE GIBBS RACING #20

Matt Kenseth #20 Dollar General Toytota CamrySlight redesign for 2016, black stripe across bottom now gone. A+

Matt Kenseth #20 DeWalt USA Toyota CamryNo Change. A+

Matt Kenseth #20 DeWalt Toyota CamryNo Change. A+

WOOD BROTHERS RACING #21

Ryan Blaney #21 Motorcraft Ford FusionNo Change. A+

TEAM PENSKE #22

Joey Logano #22 Shell/Pennzoil Ford FusionNo change D

Joey Logano #22 AAA Ford FusionNo Change. D

Joey Logano #22 Auto Trader Ford FusionNo Change. D-

Joey Logano #22 AAA of Southern California Ford FusionNo Change. D

Joey Logano #22 Pennzoil Ford FusionNew scheme for 2016, all yellow, with some lighter yellow geometrical designs across car. A+

BK RACING #23

David Ragan #23 Dr. Pepper Toyota CamryNew scheme for 2016, white hood, different designs on sides. B+

HENDRICK MOTORSPORTS #24

Chase Elliott #24 NAPA Chevy SS-New sponsor for 2015, blue with white stripes across side which start at brake duct. A+

Chase Elliott #24 3M Chevy SSNew scheme for 2015, black and white replaces silver, extra geometrical designs on sides. B+

Chase Elliott #24 Kelly Blue Book Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, same basic color scheme but gold has been removed. Scheme has been redesigned into a more haphazardly designed stripe pattern. C+

BK RACING #26

Robert Richardson #26 Stalk It Toyota Camry-New sponsor for 2016, black with large blue and white stripe across sides, and Stalk It logos on hood and sides. A+

RICHARD CHILDRESS RACING #27

Paul Menard #27 Menard’s/Moen Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, black front, extending into Menard’s template, yellow rear. B-

Paul Menard #27 Menard’s/Peak Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, redesigned to match Clint Bowyer’s Peak Chevy. A+

Paul Menard #27 Valvoline/Menard’s Chevy SS-New sponsor for 2016, follows new Menard’s template, white Valvoline front, yellow Menard’s rear. F

Paul Menard #27 Menard’s/Dutch Boy Chevy SS-New sponsor for 2016, Menard’s template, with peeling blue and white paint design. F

Paul Menard #27 Richmond/Menard’s Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, same basic color scheme with new Menard’s template. A+

Paul Menard #27 Menard’s/FVP Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, New Menard’s template with FVP colors. A+

THE MOTORSPORTS GROUP #30

Josh Wise #30 Toyota Camry-Plain white with blue, black, and white numbers. A+

RICHARD CHILDRESS RACING #31

Ryan Newman #31 Cat Chevy SSSlight redesign for 2016, yellow stripes are narrower, and hood logo is slightly larger. A+

Ryan Newman #31 Granger Chevy SSNo change. B +

Ryan Newman #31 Wix Filters Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, one large multi-colored stripe replaces the multi-stripe on the sides, design extends to hood. F

GO FAS RACING #32

Jeffery Earnhardt #32 Can-Am/Kappa Ford Fusion-New sponsor for 2016, black, green, and yellow, with a series of geometrical designs across whole car. F

Jeffery Earnhardt #32 Keen Parts/Corvette Parts Ford FusionNew sponsor for 2016, black, white, and yellow, with a series of geometrical designs across whole car. F

Bobby Labonte #32 C&J Energy Services Ford FusionNo Change. F

Joey Gase #32 JT Concrete Inc Ford Fusion-New sponsor for 2016, white with blue and white lettering. A+

FRONT ROW MOTORSPORTS #34

Chris Buescher #34 Love’s Truck Stops Ford FusionNew scheme for 2016, Front Row Template has been reversed, red replaces back as secondary color. A+

Chris Buescher #34 Dockside Logistics Ford FusionNew scheme for 2016, all white with Dockside Logistics logos on sides and hood. A+

Chris Buescher #34 CSX Play it Safe Ford FusionNo Change. A+

FRONT ROW MOTORSPORTS #35

David Gilliland #35 Ford Fusion-White with black and red letters. A+

FRONT ROW MOTORSPORTS #38

Landon Cassill #38 Florida Lottery Ford FusionNo Change. C+

Landon Cassill #38 FR8 Auctions Ford FusionNo Change. A+

Landon Cassill #38 MDS Ford FusionNew scheme for 2016, all white with MDS logos on sides and hood. A+

Landon Cassill #38 Snap Fitnaess Ford FusionNew scheme for 2015, all red with Snap Fitness logos on sides and hood. A+

HILLMAN RACING #40

Reed Sorenson #40 CRC Brakleen Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, black replaces red as primary color. D-

STEWART-HAAS RACING #41

Kurt Busch #41 Monster Energy Chevy SS-New sponsor for 2016, black with yellow and white numbers and lettering. A+

Kurt Busch #41 Haas Automation Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, red front, fades to black rear end. A+

Kurt Busch #41 Haas Automation/Monster Energy Chevy SS-New scheme for 2016, red front, fades to black rear end. A+

Kurt Busch #41 Monster Energy/Haas Automation Chevy SS-New scheme for 2016, same as Monster Energy, but with Haas on rear. A+

CHIP GANASSI RACING TEAM #42

Kyle Larson #42 Target Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, vertical fade from red to white replaces side fade from 2015. A+

RICHARD PETTY MOTORSPORTS #43

Aric Almirola #43 Smithfield Ford FusionSlight redesign for 2016, roof numbers turn from yellow to red. B+

Aric Almiroa #43 U.S. Air Force Ford FusionNew scheme for 2016, same basic scheme, but with more lightning. A+

Aric Almirola #43 STP Ford FusionNew scheme for 2014, STP colors with stripes that correspond to the door logos. B-

RICHARD PETTY MOTORSPORTS #44

Brian Scott #44 Twisted Tea Ford FusionAside from the number change, no significant changes for 2016. A

Brian Scott #44 Albertsons’s Ford Fusion-New sponsor for 2016, all blue with white hood. A+

HSCOTT MOTORSPORTS #46

Michael Annett #46 Pilot/Flying J Chevy SSNo Change. A+

Michael Annett #46 Pilot/Flying J Chevy SS-New scheme for 2016, all red with white front. A+

JTG DAUGHERTY RACING #47

AJ Allmendinger #47 Kroger/Stoffer’s/Lean Cuisine Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, same as Kroger/Scott, minus the stars. A+

AJ Allmendinger #47 Kroger/Scott Chevy SS-New scheme for 2016, same as Kroger/Scott, minus the stars. A+

AJ Allmendinger #47 Food For Less Chevy SSNo Change. A+

HENDRICK MOTORSPORTS #48

Jimmie Johnson #48 Lowe’s Chevy SSSlight redesign for 2016, stripes are narrower, and hood logo is slightly forward. C-

Jimmie Johnson #48 Lowe’s/Kobalt Chevy SSSlight redesign for 2016, stripes are narrower, and hood logo is slightly forward. C-

Jimmie Johnson #48 Lowe’s Pro ServicesSlight redesign for 2016, stripes are narrower, and hood logo is slightly forward. C-

Jimmie Johnson #48 Lowe’s/Superman Chevy SS-New scheme for 2016, designed to look like Superman’s suit. A+

Jimmie Johnson Lowe’s Red Vest Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, Jimmie Johnson Foundation logo replaces the Lowe’s Template. D-

CIRCLE SPORT/LEAVINE FAMILY RACING #59

Michael McDowell #59 Thrivent Financial Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, same as #95, with door numbers reversed. B+

FURNITURE ROW RACING #78

Marin Truex Jr. #78 Furniture Row Toyota CamryOther than the switch from Chevy to Toyota, there are no major changes. A+

Martin Truex Jr. #78 Auto Owner’s Insurance Chevy SS-New sponsor for 2016, vertical fade from bottom to top, light blue fades up to dark blue. A+

Martin Truex Jr. #78 Bass Pro Shops Chevy SS-New sponsor for 2016, orange with trace amounts of black and camo. F

BK RACING #83

Michael Waltrip #83 Maxwell House Toyota CamryNo Change. A+

Matt DiBendetto #83 Sewanee University Toyota Camry-New sponsor for 2016, blue with white and gold logos on quarter panels, gold stripe on bottom, blue designs on side. B+

Matt DiBenedetto #83 Cosmo Motors Toyota CamryNew scheme for 2016, all black with Cosmo Motors logos on sides and hood. A+

Matt DiBenedetto #83 Schluter Systems Toyota Camry-New sponsor for 2016, cream top, with stripes, and a waffle design on the bottom. D-

Matt DiBenedetto #83 Cosmo Motors Toyota CamryNo Change. C-

HENDRICK MOTORSPORTS #88

Dale Earnhardt Jr. #88 TaxSlayer Chevy SS-New sponsor for 2016, red top and front, white bottom and back, gold designs separate the two. A+

Dale Earnhardt Jr. #88 Nationwide Chevy SSNew scheme for 2015, reminiscent of old Mountain Dew/Amp Energy scheme. A+

Dale Earnhardt Jr. #88 Axalta Chevy SS-New sponsor for 2016, red top, fade to yellow bottom, across whole car. A+

Dale Earnhardt Jr. #88 Nationwide/Batman Chevy SS-New scheme for 2016, designed to look like Batman’s armor. A+

BK RACING #93

Matt DiBenedetto #93 Dustless Blasting Toyota CamryNo Change. B

CIRCLE SPORT/LEAVINE FAMILY RACING #95

Ty Dillon #95 Cheerios Chevy SSNew sponsor and manufacturer for 2016 for Leavine Family Racing, after having merged with Circle Sport, and aligned with RCR. Aside from the new number, and a larger Kroger’s logo, no change. A+

Michael McDowell #95 Thrivent Financial Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, looks similar in design to the 2014, with a black, red, and white color scheme. B+

Michael McDowell #95 K-Love Chevy SSNew scheme for 2016, simpler template. A+

Michael McDowell #95 Monte Carlo Casino Chevy SS-New Scheme for 2016, same as WRL Contractors from 2014. A+

PREMIUM MOTORSPORTS #98

Cole Whitt #98 Premium Motorsports RTIC Coolers Toyota Camry-New sponsor for 2016, black with RTIC Coolers logo on sides and hood. A+

Cole Whitt #98 Tweaker Energy Chevy SSNo Change. A+

Cole Whitt #98 Speed Stick Chevy SSNo Change. A+

Cole Whitt #98 Rinnai Ford FusionNew scheme for 2016, all black with Rinnai logos on sides and hood. A+

auto racing · my thoughts on

My Thoughts On The 2016 Racing Season

By David G. Firestone

I’ve been holding back a bit with this post for a number of reasons. I wasn’t feeling too good last Monday, so I didn’t get around to it until this week. I also waited until the beginning of the F1 and IndyCar seasons as well. Not that all of that is out of the way, I’d like to share some thoughts about the 2016 racing season so far.

Starting with IndyCar:

*I was glad to see the Grand Prix of Louisiana dropped from the schedule. The 2015 event was not fun to watch, because the weather was so bad. I didn’t think the track was so bad, but the rain, and the “timed race” nonsense didn’t help.

*As with other racing series, driver and team changes have taken place off-season, so the first race or two is difficult to follow from this perspective. Since I’m not as big of an IndyCar fan as much as NASCAR or the NHRA, this can get quite confusing.

*This is something I will discuss in a little bit, but I think it’s valid for IndyCar too. NASCAR President Brian France has stated that there may be a fourth manufacturer in NASCAR in the forseeable future. I’m wondering if we might see another one in IndyCar as well. With Toyota’s recent auto racing success, could we see them back in IndyCar? I hope so! A third manufacturer would kick development and competition up a notch, and would make the sport even more existing.

Moving on to F1:

*The new Haas F1 team had a decent showing from Romain Grosjean, scoring points in his first race for the new Haas F1 team. Teammate Esteban Gutiérrez walked away from a horrific crash that I thought ended with a serious injury when I saw the remains of the car. It’s an impressive thing for the brand new team.

*A couple of designs for driver protection were discussed for dealing with the issue of head safety, after the 2014 Japanese Grand Prix. One such example is the “halo design.” It seems like an odd idea, and the fact that there is something clearly obstructing the drivers vision is an issue. I think that Terry McMillian has the right idea.

*How many different tire compounds does one race need? Three, at least according to Pirelli. Also, a new tire compund, “Ultra-soft,” that brings the total number of tire compounds to 8, 5 dry and 2 wet. I think that F1 and Pirelli might be overthinking this a bit…

*I’m really wondering why NBC isn’t as aggressive at promoting F1 as they do NASCAR. Granted, the United States is not an F1 country, but there is a fanbase, and the fanbase is growing. I’d really like to see NBC step up their game for 2016. Granted, they have the Rio Olympics to worry about, so F1 gets a back seat for now.

Moving on to NASCAR:

*The major question on the table this season is who will be the series sponsor next year. I was fully convinced that by the end of 2015, a deal would have been announced. However, although NASCAR has stated that a couple of deals may be on the table, nothing definitive has been announced. I’m wondering how much longer it’s going to take.

*Jeff Gordon is settling into his new role as announcer quite well. Granted, Gordon has lots of practice, what with acting and voice acting, but he seems to be adapting very well.

*I mentioned above that there has been renewed interest in adding a fourth manufacturer to the Sprint Cup series. Toyota has been aggressive with marketing, and they had a banner year in NASCAR and the NHRA, and this has renewed interest from those outside. The problem is that any new manufacturer has to have a good team willing to make the change, and I don’t see this happening. If anything, the new manufacturer will get several minor teams, many not running the full season. Will it happen? I don’t know…

*After leaving the track without talking to the media, Kyle Busch finds himself in some trouble with NASCAR. I think he made the right decision. My mouth has gotten me in a lot of trouble over the years when I’m in a bad mood, and Kyle didn’t want to make a bad situation worse. I’d like to see a rule setup where a driver can take some time to collect their thoughts before being hounded by the media.

*The Batman Vs. Superman advertising during the Auto Club 400 was pretty damn annoying!

*I hate the useless stats that NASCAR is forcing down our throats. I get the important stats, but some of the stuff they come up with is amazing. Apparently, Martin Truex Jr. lost well over 100 positions last year on pit road.

*Based on what I saw on Sunday, I’m thinking either NASCAR needs a new tire compound for Fontata, or it may be time for a repave.

*I’m wondering why it took so long for someone to sponsor the spotter stand. Visine finally took the lead, and sponsored the spotter stand. I will say that I do like the idea of having one of the spotters wear a camera. That was pretty cool.

*Why have there been so many tire failures over the last few weeks? Am I the only one who seems concerned that almost all of the cautions over the last few weeks have been because of tire failures.

And now the NHRA

*Is it too soon for Don Schumacher to be worried about the state of his program? Based on what I’ve seen so far, something is wrong with the program. They came up empty the last few weeks, including having all of his cars bow out by the second round at the CARQUEST Auto Parts NHRA Arizona Nationals in Phoenix. Granted Antron Brown won the season opener, and Ron Capps came up just short of winning at Gainesville, but they aren’t where they need to be.

*Tony Pedregon is settling into his new role as announcer quite well. He needed work when he started at the season opener, and he is getting better as time is progressing.

*I’m wondering if Pro Stock Motorcycle will race for the whole season in the near future. Granted, many of the teams don’t have the sponsorship dollars that the four-wheel teams do, but still, it would be fun to see the teams run the whole season.

*FOX is proving that they are willing to promote the NHRA, and so far, are doing much better than ESPN. I really hope that at some point, IndyCar will leave ABC and join Fox.

Those are my thoughts, and before I leave this My Thoughts On, I want to say Happy Easter to those who celebrate!

auto racing · paint scheme grades

Paint Scheme Grades-March 19, 2016

By David G. Firestone

Denny Hamlin #11 SportClips Toyota CamrySame scheme as last year, same C- grade.

Brian Vickers #14 Janssen Chevy SS-I didn’t think this scheme could get any better…but it has! A+

Paul Menard #27 Menard’s/FVP Chevy SS-Another instance of the Menard’s template working very well with a color scheme. A+

Ryan Newman #31 Wix Filters Chevy SS–I didn’t think this scheme could get any worse…but it has! F

Joey Gase #32 JT Concrete Inc Ford Fusion-Great color scheme, and a great design scheme will always earn an A+.

Aric Almirola #43 STP Ford Fusion– A downgrade from last year’s great throwback scheme, the pointless door design becomes part of the paint scheme. I don’t think it looks great, but it isn’t awful. B-

AJ Allmendinger #47 Food For Less Chevy SS-Same scheme as last year,A+ same grade.

Matt DiBenedetto #83 Cosmo Motors Toyota Camry-Same scheme as last year, same C- grade.

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