By David G. Firestone
Kasey Kahne #5 Great Clips Strong Against Cancer Chevy SS-I’m looking at this scheme, and asking myself “Why does this scheme have a snake/leopard motif?” Seriously, the hood and roof designs have nothing to do with the rest of the deisgn. It just looks awful, and I’ll give it a D-
Kasey Kahne #5 Great Clips/Shark Week Chevy SS-This is a great scheme. The teal water with shark motif works quite well, and the overall design is great too. I can’t give it anything less than an A+
The following three grades are going to fall into a new protocol change effective immediately. When there are multiple schemes that fans can vote for, I will grade all of them individually, and the scheme that wins will be the one used in the final grade of the season.
Denny Hamlin #11 FedEx Cares Choice 1 Toyota Camry-I like the overall design, except for the white on the hood. If the white were replaced by blue, it would be a much better scheme. But it’s not horrible, so I give it a B+.
Denny Hamlin #11 FedEx Cares Choice 2 Toyota Camry-While the color scheme is good, the door design needs work, since it looks too much like a Petty car design, and the star motif is awful. The only thing giving this scheme a passing grade is the good color scheme. D-
Denny Hamlin #11 FedEx Cares Choice 3 Toyota Camry-With this scheme, not even a great color scheme can save it from an F. The wave design is giving me motion sickness.
Kyle Busch #18 Interstate Batteries Dale Jarrett Throwback Toyota Camry-Nothing will earn an A+ grade quicker than a great throwback, and this is a great throwback!
Carl Edwards #19 Arris Surfboard Toyota Camry-Much simpler design for Arris, and the color scheme is great too. I give it an A+.
Paul Menard #27 Menard’s/Knauf Chevy SS-The new template is an improvement on the design, but in a D- to D sense. If you have to have black lines separating colors, that may be a hint that you are using too many light colors. The blue is awful, and doesn’t work well with the yellow at all.
Ryan Newman #31 Granger/Caterpillar Chevy SS-Good look, with a great color scheme, nothing wrong here. A+
Jeffery Earnhardt #32 NC Lottery Ford Fusion-Black is always a good look for race cars, and this is no example. Great look. A+
AJ Allmendinger #47 Unwharrie Bank Chevy SS-Green and red are acceptable at Christmas time, but not on the side of a race car. The design itself isn’t bad, but it could be better. The scheme is mediocre at best, so I’ll give it a C+.
AJ Allmendinger #47 Harris Teeter Chevy SS-Same basic scheme as Kroger’s, same A+ grade.
Reed Sorenson #55 World Record Striper Company Chevy SS-It’s a bold look, but the river water-esque fade and the giant bass works quite well, and it has a unique look. It earns an A+.
Kyle Busch #75 M&M’s Throwback Toyota Camry-The vintage look is a great idea, and the anniversary number is good too. It earns an A+.
Cole Whitt #98 Vydrox Plus Chevy SS-Same scheme as last year, same A grade.