2011 Daytona 500 Viewer’s Guide

By John Ekdahl

Last year’s Daytona 500 was plagued with track problems that forced the race to be delayed multiple times. It was brutally cold (for Florida) and an overwhelmingly frustrating experience for all the fans in attendance. It was also a major embarrassment to NASCAR in what is the sport’s signature race. Hoping to avoid any similar problems in the future, Daytona International Speedway underwent a massive overhaul to the track before this year’s race. The result has been increased speeds and a smoother, more precise surface. That was all part of the plan. The surprise came during practices when drivers found that drafting in groups of exactly two was allowing them to travel about 10 miles per hour faster than alone or in groups larger than two. They also found that remaining the trailing car in the drafting group for longer than a few laps would overheat the engine (there is a grill allowance for Sunday because of the heat). So, the fastest way around the track is to find a partner and swap places every few laps. It has made for some very exciting racing so far this week and Sunday’s Daytona 500 should be spectacular.

This year’s race also marks the tenth anniversary of Dale Earnhardt’s death on the last lap of the 2001 Daytona 500. Anyone interested in the story of Dale’s death (or racing in general) should check out the Speed Channel’s documentary The Day, which chronicles the entire day’s events with photos, videos and never before seen interviews. It’s fantastic. Fans at the race will be holding up three fingers on the third lap of the race to honor him today.

As usual, there has been a fair amount of drivers changing teams, sponsors and equipment. Below is a cheat sheet of all the drivers in the race, in qualifying order.

Dale Earnhardt, Jr.
Car Number: 88  |  Sponsor: Amp Energy / National Guard  |  Make: Chevrolet
Junior is really looking to bounce back after a disappointing season last year. He started off great by grabbing the pole in qualifying, then promptly wrecked his car in practice. He’ll now have to start at the back.

Jeff Gordon
Car Number: 24  |  Sponsor: Drive to End Hunger  |  Make: Chevrolet
Longtime NASCAR fans might have some initial trouble finding Gordon on the track, as he won’t be in his iconic DuPont rainbow paint scheme.

Kurt Busch
Car Number: 22  |  Sponsor: Shell / Pennzoil  |  Make: Dodge
After driving the Miller Lite #2 for a number of years, Kurt has a new ride.

Jeff Burton
Car Number: 31  |  Sponsor: Caterpillar  |  Make: Chevrolet

Regan Smith
Car Number: 78  |  Sponsor: Furniture Row Companies  |  Make: Chevrolet

Clint Bowyer
Car Number: 33  |  Sponsor: Cheerios / Hamburger Helper  |  Make: Chevrolet
I still miss Clint’s Jack Daniel’s car.

Kevin Harvick
Car Number: 29  |  Sponsor: Budweiser  |  Make: Chevrolet
New sponsor for Harvick. New black color scheme for Budweiser. It’s a little odd to see Bud ditching their traditional red scheme. No offense to Kasey Kahne, but I think Budweiser wanted to move away from the clean-cut golden boy feel and go the blue-collar toughguy route. Harvick is the right fit for that.

Michael Waltrip
Car Number: 15  |  Sponsor: NAPA Auto Parts  |  Make: Toyota
Waltrip will drive his NAPA Camry with a special black paint scheme for the Daytona 500 to honor his friend, Dale Earnhardt.

Matt Kenseth
Car Number: 17  |  Sponsor: Crown Royal Black  |  Make: Ford

Kyle Busch
Car Number: 18  |  Sponsor: M&M’s  |  Make: Toyota

Kasey Kahne
Car Number: 4  |  Sponsor: Red Bull  |  Make: Toyota
Kasey will be driving the #4 Red Bull car this year before he joins up with Hendrick Motorsports in 2012.

Brian Keselowski
Car Number: 92  |  Sponsor: Discount Tire  |  Make: Dodge
Brian picked up a last-minute sponsor for the race yesterday.

Juan Montoya
Car Number: 42  |  Sponsor: Target  |  Make: Chevrolet

Jamie McMurray
Car Number: 1  |  Sponsor: Bass Pro Shops / Tracker  |  Make: Chevrolet

A.J. Allmendinger
Car Number: 43  |  Sponsor: Best Buy  |  Make: Ford

Brad Keselowski
Car Number: 2  |  Sponsor: Miller Lite  |  Make: Dodge
Looks like they added an aluminum Miller Lite pint to last year’s scheme.

Mark Martin
Car Number: 5  |  Sponsor: GoDaddy.com  |  Make: Chevrolet
It would have been nice for Valvoline to sponsor Mark in his last year. Oh well.

Denny Hamlin
Car Number: 11  |  Sponsor: FedEx  |  Make: Toyota
Hamlin has had a comically unlucky week so far.

Paul Menard
Car Number: 27  |  Sponsor: Peak / Menards  |  Make: Chevrolet

Martin Truex, Jr.
Car Number: 56  |  Sponsor: NAPA Auto Parts  |  Make: Toyota

Ryan Newman
Car Number: 39  |  Sponsor: U.S. Army  |  Make: Chevrolet

Carl Edwards
Car Number: 99  |  Sponsor: Aflac  |  Make: Ford

Jimmie Johnson
Car Number: 48  |  Sponsor: Lowe’s / Kobalt Tools  |  Make: Chevrolet
Lowe’s is giving Kobalt Tools a more prominent spot on the car this year. Johnson will be chasing his 6th championship this year.

David Reutimann
Car Number: 00  |  Sponsor: Aaron’s Dream Machine  |  Make: Toyota
After a crash in the Gatorade Duel, Reutimann’s team decided to go with the backup car which will move him to the rear of the starting field.

Tony Stewart
Car Number: 14  |  Sponsor: Office Depot / Mobil 1  |  Make: Chevrolet
Tony won the Saturday race in a photo finish. Mobil 1 was added as an additional sponsor this year.

Greg Biffle
Car Number: 16  |  Sponsor: 3M  |  Make: Ford

Brian Vickers
Car Number: 83  |  Sponsor: Red Bull  |  Make: Toyota

Robert Richardson, Jr.
Car Number: 37  |  Sponsor: North Texas Pipe  |  Make: Ford

Bill Elliott
Car Number: 09  |  Sponsor: Phoenix Construction  |  Make: Chevrolet

Robby Gordon
Car Number: 7  |  Sponsor: Speed Energy  |  Make: Dodge

Bobby Labonte
Car Number: 47  |  Sponsor: Kroger / USO  |  Make: Toyota

Trevor Bayne
Car Number: 21  |  Sponsor: Motorcraft / Quick Lane Tire & Auto Center  |  Make: Ford

J.J. Yeley
Car Number: 46  |  Sponsor: Red Line Oil  |  Make: Chevrolet

David Ragan
Car Number: 6  |  Sponsor: UPS  |  Make: Ford
Ragan will be moved to the back of the field after deciding to go with the backup car after a Gatorade Duel crash.

Marcos Ambrose
Car Number: 9  |  Sponsor: Stanley  |  Make: Ford

Steve Wallace
Car Number: 77  |  Sponsor: 5-Hour Energy  |  Make: Toyota

Andy Lally
Car Number: 71  |  Sponsor: Adobe Road Winery  |  Make: Chevrolet

Joey Logano
Car Number: 20  |  Sponsor: The Home Depot  |  Make: Toyota
Joey will drop back a few spots. He’ll be in the backup car after a crash in the Gatorade Duel.

David Gilliland
Car Number: 38  |  Sponsor: Taco Bell  |  Make: Ford

Travis Kvapil
Car Number: 34  |  Sponsor: Long John Silver’s  |  Make: Ford

Joe Nemechek
Car Number: 87  |  Sponsor: AM FM Energy  |  Make: Toyota

Dave Blaney
Car Number: 36  |  Sponsor: Tommy Baldwin Racing  |  Make: Chevrolet

Terry Labonte
Car Number: 32  |  Sponsor: U.S. Chrome  |  Make: Ford

Enjoy the long weekend, everyone. Take a screenshot if you see me at the race. I’ll be the guy in the baseball hat and sunglasses. Coverage begins at noon on Fox and the green flag drops at 1:30pm eastern.

137 comments to 2011 Daytona 500 Viewer’s Guide

  • The Jeff | February 20, 2011 at 8:34 am |

    NASCAR might actually be Uni Watch material if the cars were painted with driver/team custom designs instead of being nothing more than rolling billboards.

    • John Ekdahl | February 20, 2011 at 8:48 am |

      Yeah, it’s not really Uni Watch material. Now if the driver and pit crew all wore uniforms that matched the car or something, then maybe it would be. Alas…

    • johnj | February 20, 2011 at 9:25 am |

      I’d have to agree. If you couple the fact that the paint schemes/fire suits have almost indistinguishable designs (due to ads) and that even the bigger drivers seem to change their scheme on a fairly regular basis and you come up with something thats not exactly a uni-favorite.

      I also feel like theres something upsetting about the fact that when I saw Tony Stewart’s car my first thought was “Wasn’t he in a Home Depot car?” *shutters*

  • tomasher | February 20, 2011 at 8:35 am |

    Excellent! I’m pumped to see the Budweiser Chevrolet in victory lane today!

  • Skott | February 20, 2011 at 8:41 am |

    Speaking of advertising, I read in Sports Illustrated this week that the “total revenues missed out on per year by the big four American sports leagues because they don’t sell ad space on their uniforms” equals $370 million.
    That breaks down to just barely over $3 million per team (122 teams total). I couldn’t believe how low that number is. How could they sacrifice the sanctity of our uniforms for half of Darko’s salary?

    • traxel | February 20, 2011 at 11:12 am |

      “How could they sacrifice the sanctity of our uniforms for half of Darko’s salary?”

      Ha! Good one. Agreed.

    • Coleman | February 21, 2011 at 9:04 am |

      yeah we talked about that a few days ago in the comments and there were some good points made then.

  • JTH | February 20, 2011 at 9:11 am |

    By my count, 17 Chevy, 11 each for Ford & Toyota and 4 Dodge.

    When exactly did Toyota get into NASCAR? If memory serves, they got into the truck series a few years before the cars but it strikes me as odd that they now have as large (or larger, considering that the five cars that failed to qualify were all Toyotas) a presence as Ford.

    IndyCar is all Honda now, right?

    • John Ekdahl | February 20, 2011 at 9:17 am |

      Toyota joined in ’07, I believe. It didn’t start out all that well, but they’ve been pretty strong the last couple years.

      • George | February 20, 2011 at 9:19 am |

        Pretty much coincident with Joe Gibbs Racing switching from Chevy to Toyota.

      • Jory | February 21, 2011 at 12:06 am |

        Toyota joined the NASCAR Truck Series in 2004 and Cup/N’wide in 2007. They didn’t hit their stride until they brought JGR over which, coincidentally, was a factor in Tony Stewart leaving.

        Ford as a whole took a backseat towards racing for the last several years due to a few management changes. Dodge is a whole other mess.

        IndyCar is all Honda… for now. With the new cars coming in 2012 and the announcement that Chevy is getting back into the engine game, it won’t be for long.

    • Terry Proctor | February 20, 2011 at 10:11 am |

      The rice burners have been in NASCAR since 2007. We still don’t know what engine they’re running. Is it a race-tuned truck engine out of a Tundra? Or is it a 350-cid GM block with Toyota components? Whatever it is it should not be allowed to run in NASCAR. FORD uses a race-tuned 351-cid block, Chevy uses the 350-cid block. They’re all bored and stroked to 358-cid, the maximum size for NASCAR.

      You know I’ve been a FORD man all of my life. I’ve followed racing for more than 50 years. So let me explain a few things to you about racing. First, if not for the innovations pioneered and invented by people involved with FORD racing NASCAR would still be a bunch of rednecks running their ‘shine cars on Sunday at the county fairgrounds.

      The Wood Brothers, who have run only FORD products since they started in the early 1950s created the modern pit-stop choreography that is now a part of all motor racing.

      The chassis set-up of every NASCAR vehicle running today is based on the modifications that the late Ralph Moody of Holman-Moody made to the 1965 FORD Galaxie that won 48 of 53 NASCAR top-series races that year.

      When “Litle Joe” Weatherly was killed at Riverside after his head struck the retaining wall in an otherwise minor crash Holman helped devise the window netting which keeps a driver’s head inside the cockpit.

      Moody also helped develop the fuel cell following Fireball Roberts’ untimely death in 1964 after his car exploded at Charlotte, NC.

      And following Tiny Lund’s death in 1975 Holman-Moody helped develop drivers’ door bracing as part of the roll cage structure for added safety.

      Bud Moore proved that a FORD 351-cid engine could run at NASCAR speeds in the early 1970s when the horsepower/cubic inch wars were at their zenith. Ol’ Bud took a 351-cid FORD block, put in the allowable heavier rods and piston rings, tuned it and showed up all the brainiacs at Chevy, Mopar and NASCAR. NASCAR finally figured he was right and now the maximum size for an engine is 358-cid.

      And today every vehicle running in NASCAR’s top three series receives its rear power from a FORD 9-inch rear end. Jimmie Johnson, Jeffy-poo Gordon and Little EEEEEEEEE all have FORD rear ends covering their pretty-boy posteriors!

      But are any of these FORD-associated people whose technical advancements have allowed NASCAR to grow into the sport it has become receive any credit? No! All you hear about is Dale Sr., Jimmie Johnson, Junior, Gordon, Harvick ad nauseum.

      And now I see where the government wants to stop the Army from spending money to sponsor a NASCAR team. If that’s the case then why doesn’t Chairman Obama tell the boys at GM and Mopar (that’s Chrysler to you uninformed) that since we, the taxpayers are picking up the tab for these two companies that they stop wasting money that they (and we) don’t have and pull out of NASCAR racing completely.

      FORD could then go head-to-head with Toyota. At least those two own themselves!

      • LI Phil | February 20, 2011 at 10:44 am |


        • George | February 20, 2011 at 11:11 am |

          If Ford drivers like Carl Edwards, Greg Biffle, Matt Kenseth, AJ Allmendinger, Elliott Sadler and (formerly) Kasey Kahne would do a little more winning instead of being moving chicanes evey race, they might get the press that Chevy drivers like Jimmie Johnson get.

          Just saying.

      • Bernard | February 20, 2011 at 1:22 pm |

        Alright, who’s hiding Proctor’s meds?

        • Terry Proctor | February 20, 2011 at 6:24 pm |

          I know just where my meds are, thank you. What a great day as FORD wins their 600th top-series NASCAR race with Trevor Bayne, in his first Daytona 500 at only 20-years old driving the Wood Brothers FORD Fusion to Victory Lane! It’s the Wood Brothers’ fifth Daytona 500 win and their 98th top-series NASCAR victory. And the roster of drivers who have piloted the Number 21 is legendary. Marvin Panch, Tiny Lund, Fred Lorenzen, Cale Yarborough, Buddy Baker, Donnie Allison, Morgan Shepherd, Kyle Petty, Ricky Rudd, Bill Elliot and Michael Waltrip. That’s a pretty impressive list if you know anything about NASCAR history.

          And oh yes, FORD finished 1-2-3 at Daytona this afternoon! Just thought I’d throw that in.

    • union jack | February 21, 2011 at 5:17 am |

      There are no Fords, Chevys, Dodges or Toyotas used in NASCAR. Haven’t been since, what, the 80s?

      Peaked in for a few minutes during Sunday’s race, between hockey games — with 2 by 2 racing, they managed to make the time between crashes even more boring than before.

  • Tom V | February 20, 2011 at 9:17 am |

    It wasn’t brutally cold there last year, it started out about 55 during tailgate time and reached 70 during the race, I was sitting there in a t-shirt for a good portion of the time.

    As for it being frustrating, thats pretty spot on. It was a perfect day for the race, moving the start time to 1:20 meant you could be out of there by 5, home by 6 or 7. Instead the two and a half hour delay meant we didn’t get out of there til about 7 and home after 9. Fans at home didn’t mind, they said it was a nice break, like halftime, but for the people at the race, it sucked.

    Jayski.com also has a pretty good database of the paint schemes.

    • John Ekdahl | February 20, 2011 at 9:43 am |

      It was pretty cold at the end. Maybe brutal was a little bit of an exaggeration.

      • Brian | February 20, 2011 at 9:54 am |

        I don’t know about last year, but last week at the Budweiser shootout, it was brutally cold – cold enough that I shelled out an extra $30 I didn’t plan on spending for a hooded sweatshirt to put over my existing sweatshirt.

        • Tom V | February 20, 2011 at 10:08 am |

          Yeah, its that time of the year in FL when it warms up nicely during the day (hitting 80 today?), but once the sun goes down it gets into the 40s and 50s. Bud Shootout was Saturday night at 8, so yeah, it was chilly. Same thing after the 500 last year, once the sun set it was back into the 50’s I think.

          I’m from the northeast now living in FL, and in the north you dress for the cold weather, here in the winter, when you hear its going to be in the 70’s during the day you just ignore the fact that nightime is 40s. As for the blood thinning, it’s a myth, your blood doesn’t thin, you just get royally pissed off when its not warm!

  • George | February 20, 2011 at 9:18 am |

    “Longtime NASCAR fans might have some initial trouble finding Gordon on the track, as he won’t be in his iconic DuPont rainbow paint scheme.”

    He hasn’t used the rainbow paint scheme for the last 10 years, since he switched to the flames scheme in 2001.

    • John Ekdahl | February 20, 2011 at 9:38 am |

      Rainbow flames.

      • George | February 20, 2011 at 9:48 am |

        Sort of. The flames themselves were red, although they did have rainbow outlines, which were nearly impossible to see when the car was in motion. Which it was 99% of the time. Much easier to see when the car was in the garage.


  • Damon | February 20, 2011 at 9:18 am |

    No mention of Calgary debuting those beautiful throwbacks with tan breezers for the Heritage Classic today? Or anything else, for that matter.

    • Rob S | February 20, 2011 at 10:59 am |

      I prefer the classic-styled thirds that the alumni wore yesterday anyway over the Flames’ fauxbacks. Who knows, though, seeing them in action tonight might change my mind.

      Then again, seeing the Pens’ WC jerseys in action didn’t change my mind about them – I still think those are lousy uniforms.

    • mike 2 | February 20, 2011 at 11:16 am |

      I added a couple comments below.

  • johnj | February 20, 2011 at 9:27 am |

    The checker socks made an appearance again last night… I’m assuming they should be taken with the same grain of salt as the super-tight jerseys

  • Tom V | February 20, 2011 at 9:30 am |

    As for Harvicks black Budwiser car, Waltrip is running a black scheme today for Dale Sr, I wonder if Harvick who took over Dales ride is doing the black thing for the same reason. He’ll have the black car 20 races this season.

  • Jon | February 20, 2011 at 9:33 am |

    THANKS for this handy guide. I was going crazy trying to find photos of the cars in the race to show my son. All the usual suspects (Nascar.com. espn etc) provided me mugshots of the drivers on overdesigned busy web pages.

  • George | February 20, 2011 at 9:36 am |

    Nice to see Andy Lally, a Long Island kid, in the 500.

    I have a question, maybe Ek can answer it: all the current drivers who have won championships have the championship patch/embroidery on the firesuit. So going back for the last decade or so, that would be Bobby Labonte, Jeff Gordon, Tony Stewart, Matt Kenseth, Kurt Busch, and Jimmie Johnson. They all have it on their firesuits.

    Bill Elliot (1988) is still active, and Terry Labonte (1984, 1996) runs a few races every now and then. Do they have it on their firesuits? Since the 2 of them are usually running back in the pack, no one bothers to take their pictures so I haven’t found a picture of either one for the last 2 years to verify.

    • Brian | February 20, 2011 at 9:49 am |

      I did see that Bobby Labonte, who has worn the championship patch in recent years, did not have it on his firesuit in the official NASCAR photoshoot. To my knowledge, Gordon, Stewart, Kenseth, Busch and Johnson all have it. I haven’t seen a picture of either Terry Labonte or Bill Elliott, but seeing as Elliott has a habit of wearing old firesuits unless he decides to drive a particularly large amount of races with one team (he only drives part time now), he probably doesn’t have the patch, as I don’t recall ever seeing him with it.

      • George | February 20, 2011 at 9:56 am |

        Bobby Labonte definitely had it last year.


        I’m with you on Elliott. I’m guessing Bobby’s older bro Terry probably does the same thing as Elliott.

        • Jory | February 21, 2011 at 12:07 am |

          I vaguely remember an explanation from a few years ago that it’s only for Champions within the last ten years.

          For instance, Gordon can have all of his listed because his last championship was in ’01. No idea if that is still accurate though.

  • Bill | February 20, 2011 at 9:43 am |

    I’ve read that Kevin Harvick for years wouldn’t allow any all black paint schemes on his car because he wanted to build his own legacy, and he had yet to come to grips with his place in nascar history. Now after ten years he is using the black Bud scheme to not only honour the great Dale Earnhardt, but he is embracing who he is, and who he replaced. It’s basically closure for a man who had to step into the most iconic ride in Nascar only one week after the worst tragedy in Nascar history. (Their words not mine, the lives of Adam Petty, and anyone else lost on track are just as valuable in my eyes.)

    • Brian | February 20, 2011 at 9:52 am |

      From everything I read (and I’m an avid Kevin Harvick fan, even wore black to church this morning), the switch from red to black was all Budweiser’s decision. I’ve never seen any word from Kevin himself about not wanting to drive an all black car, and I would be hesitant to infer that considering when he was still sponsored by Goodwrench, his cars became increasingly more black as the years went on.

  • johnj | February 20, 2011 at 9:49 am |

    Call me logo-creep-paranoid but doesn’t anybody else find it disturbing that the NBA had to affix a sprite logo on the car Blake Griffen jumped over?

    …also, they must have already decided on Blake being a finalist considering they were already well prepared with a logo emblazoned car

    don’t worry guys, im already affixing my tin foil cap too

  • Mike N. | February 20, 2011 at 10:05 am |

    Here’s the paint scheme, fresh off the wire, for Dave Blaney’s #36 car sponsored by Golden Corral…


    • EMD | February 20, 2011 at 4:51 pm |

      Kids might eat free. He’s running 7th. He’s from Hartford, Ohio. I grew up in Sharon, Pennsylvania.

  • John Ekdahl | February 20, 2011 at 10:09 am |

    Off to the race. Thanks for the comments.

  • Brian | February 20, 2011 at 10:12 am |

    One might also want to point out a small controversy over a paint scheme. Michael Waltrip, as mentioned above, was supposed to drive a paint scheme that matched his car from 2001, when he won the Daytona 500 and his boss and friend, Dale Earnhardt, died. (http://www.nasfans.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/01/michael-waltrip.jpg)

    But instead of designing the scheme to match perfectly, the sides were painted black instead of the familiar NAPA blue, as a tribute to Earnhardt. Besides that, everything was designed to match, including the number style.

    However, after showing up with that car before last weekend’s Bud Shootout, Teresa Earnhardt, Dale’s widow and owner of Dale Earnhardt, Inc., the team Waltrip used to drive for, objected and forced Waltrip to alter the number style slightly, but enough that it’s noticeable. She also forced the removal of one of the three yellow stripes (a DEI car staple).

  • George | February 20, 2011 at 10:44 am |

    My graphics-heavy comment is waiting moderation, but basically the gist of it was: originally the DEI cars had 4 stripes going around the bottom of the car. The team’s logo was a coat-of-arms at that point. Then after Earnhardt’s death they switched to the “Dale holding his arms up with the E behind him” logo, at which point the stripes on the cars were formed from an “E”.

    So… your last sentence, about “the three stripes eventually forming into an E [being] a sort of backwards progression” is spot-on.

    The Adidas comment is funny, because as you know, Dale Jr. does have an Adidas sponsorship.

    • LI Phil | February 20, 2011 at 10:50 am |

      My graphics-heavy comment is waiting moderation


      see above…been freed now

      • George | February 20, 2011 at 10:57 am |

        Thank you sir.

  • SWW | February 20, 2011 at 11:03 am |

    A few quick notes to help:

    #88: no longer wearing an adidas suit (first time since he joined Hendrick Motorsports)

    #24: hasn’t run the rainbow scheme since 2000; first time in Gordon’s Cup career that he isn’t primarily sponsored by DuPont

    #92: here’s a photo of the completed new ‘paint’ scheme (almost all vinyl these days) – http://i551.photobucket.com/albums/ii445/SPuckett36/180478_1736299819929_1611623398_1650184_993694_n.jpg

    #5: this isn’t Mark’s last season, just his last with Hendrick Motorsports; he hasn’t been sponsored by Valvoline since 2000

    #11: is the first Air Jordan branded NASCAR athlete, with logos displayed prominently on the upper chest of his suit

    #27: changed from Richard Petty Motorsports to Richard Childress Racing in the offseason

    #48: Kobalt has always sponsored a small percentage of Johnson’s races

    #14: not only was Mobil 1 added as a new sponsor this year, but it replaced Old Spice, which departed this season; this is Tony’s 3rd season owning his own team, prior to which he had driven the #20 Home Depot car for (Coach) Joe Gibbs and Joe Gibbs Racing

    #83: Vickers returns to the driver’s seat this year after being forced to sit out the majority of last year with blood clots and a hole in his heart

    #09: picked up a 3-race sponsorship – http://hostingbytes.us/images/2/4250362.jpg

    #7: last year had some controversy over the shape of the S logo for his new Speed Energy drink (was sued by Specialized Bikes, and Robby lost)

    #21: scheme is a throwback to the scheme that was driven by David Pearson in the 70s

    #71: picked up a sponsor for the 500 – http://hostingbytes.us/images/2/9224334.jpg

    #36: picked up a sponsor for the 500 – http://i289.photobucket.com/albums/ll235/racemaxx24/wqoar.jpg

    As far as the questions about the championship patched on driver’s suits, neither Bill Elliott (1988) or Terry Labonte (1984 and 1996) have the championship embroidery. All other active champions do for this season.

    The E stripe scheme mentioned by Tom V wasn’t introduced until 2003. Prior to that, it was similar to this across all Dale Earnhardt Inc cars – http://www.nasfans.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/01/michael-waltrip.jpg. Theresa Earnhardt also made Waltrip change the shape of the 15s on both of the vehicles he ran with that number this weekend (Cup and Truck Series), as she still holds the trademark on that particular stylized 15.

    • Jory | February 21, 2011 at 12:09 am |

      Nice job clarifying things

  • mikey | February 20, 2011 at 11:14 am |

    Drivers guide for Daytona 500.

    Left turn, Left turn, Left turn, Left turn, Left turn, Left turn, Left turn, Left turn, Left turn, Crash, Left turn, Left turn, Left turn, Left turn, Left turn,Left turn, Left turn, Left turn, Left turn, Crash, Left turn, Left turn, Left turn, Left turn, Left turn, Left turn, Left turn, Left turn, Left turn, Crash, Left turn, Left turn, Left turn, Left turn, Left turn, Left turn, Left turn, Left turn, Race Over.

    • Tom V | February 20, 2011 at 11:33 am |

      At least you didn’t say they were driving around in circles, as today’s race is run on a tri-oval.

  • mike 2 | February 20, 2011 at 11:25 am |

    Heritage Classic today.

    I’ve seen the new Flames jerseys in every store in town. I haven’t seen anyone wearing one – not down the street, not at games, not anywhere. My take right now is that they’re a complete bust with the fans. I hear them compared most often to “McDonalds”. Maybe they’ll look good on the ice, with the pants and socks.

    Its frakking cold out there right now. -21 celcius, or about -6 fahrenheit. Its supposed to be warmer later today but right now its pretty cold to be outside.

    I had tickets, about halfway up in the temporary stands in the north end zone, and gave them to somebody in my office. I’m happy to watch at home.

    • LI Phil | February 20, 2011 at 11:29 am |

      sweet…i did not realize this game is actually being shown on american tv (versus) this afternoon

      if im by a tv that gets versus (ie, my own and not the one in pop’s nursing home/rehab), i will definitely watch…may even DVR it just to be safe

      • Tom V | February 20, 2011 at 11:32 am |

        Kudos to the powers that be to schedule this after (not during) the Daytona 500. (Although it is in the west and thereby 3 hours behind anyhow.) Although I am guessing I might be one of the few folks around who switch to a hockey game after NASCAR.

      • mike 2 | February 20, 2011 at 12:14 pm |

        I didn’t realize it would be on the air in the US. Cool.

        We’re 2 hours behind NY time, game time is supposed to be 4 but I’m sure puck drop will be some time after that.

        Sunset isn’t until about 6 p.m. and its a typical Calgary winter day out there, crystal clear and sunny. The game is going to look a bit different than the prior games, which (to my recollection) were mostly played in overcast. The team having the north goal (the Habs in the first and third periods) may have the sun in their eyes.

        Speaking of eyes, here’s the closest thing I can find to Uni-news about the game: Carey Price of the Habs is going to be wearing an unbelievably creepy Jacques Plante tribute mask.


        • Tom V | February 20, 2011 at 12:24 pm |

          Outdoor games usually switch sides halfway through the third period, right? 30 minutes at each end versus 40/20 to try to make it even.

        • mike 2 | February 20, 2011 at 1:20 pm |

          I heard yesterday that they might switch sides halfway through the third if either team is at a disadvantage.

      • Rob S | February 20, 2011 at 3:02 pm |

        One nice thing about being in a border city is having the option to watch it on CBC.

    • SRP91 | February 21, 2011 at 1:43 am |

      Every Flames home game there are lots of the Heritage Classic jerseys in the crowd. And today was no different, there were plenty of them being worn.

      Well I agree it’s certainly nowhere near the success that the Black C jersey was when it was released in 03-04, but I don’t think it can be described as a marketing miss.

  • Tom V | February 20, 2011 at 11:28 am |

    From a purely aesthetic standpoint, I always like the number treatment on the 42. Every other number either has a drop shadow or outlining or some other treatment, not the 42. Just a number on the background. It is this way with the target scheme and similar with the Texaco scheme, albeit different colors. I forget who drove the 42 before JPM but the treatment was the same.

    Also this years 42 scheme for the 500 is about as mono color as you can get, almost mirrors the red wings red and white only scheme. Red background, white numbers and main sponsor logos. I love the way non-sponsered cars look as well as low budget schemes like Brian Kesolowski’s.

  • George | February 20, 2011 at 11:35 am |

    “I forget who drove the 42 before JPM but the treatment was the same.”

    Jamie McMurray and then Casey Mears very briefly.

  • Ricko | February 20, 2011 at 11:36 am |

    If someone wants to try for a screen grab of the HUGE smiley decal on the BACK of Ken Stabler’s helmet, the “Top 10 Lefty Quarterbacks” is on the NFL Network today at 2 pm EST.


  • TommyD | February 20, 2011 at 11:59 am |

    ewww, auto racing. see you monday

    • LI Phil | February 20, 2011 at 12:05 pm |

      don’t let the door…

    • mike 2 | February 20, 2011 at 12:19 pm |

      I’ll admit, I’m not a fan of auto racing. I’m not entirely sure what the difference between F1, Cart and Nascar is. Most of what I do know comes from watching Cars with my kids.

      So days like today, instead of bitching that the content isn’t to my liking, I take the opportunity to learn something new.

      Thanks for a great post today John – I learned a bunch of new stuff.

      • Ricko | February 20, 2011 at 12:23 pm |

        Yeah, I mean, we had a day on the racing silks for the Kenutcky Derby, didn’t we.


      • Jim Vilk | February 20, 2011 at 2:39 pm |

        Yeah, I’m not a Nascar fan either, but it’s fun to look at all the different cars. Now if you have Sheriff Roscoe P. Coletrane chasing these guys while jumping over dirt ramps, then I’d be a fan…

        Is this a Pro Combat car?

        You’d think the Target car http://farm6.static.flickr.com/5017/5460049975_34c28291c2.jpg would have the logo on the backside, huh?

        Why are there two Red Bull cars?

        Love the Long Johns, Taco Bell and Cheerios cars, but why isn’t there a car from Domino’s Pizza? They should make replicas for the delivery drivers.

        • Mike Miller | February 20, 2011 at 8:43 pm |

          The 4 and 83 Red Bull cars are teammates, the team is called Red Bull Racing. At least they’ve taken to painting the two cars different colors to make it easier to tell apart.

          My favorite part of the Red Bull cars is that the rear wheels have red rims that blend into the Red Bull logo instead of the standard black that 90 percent of the teams use.

          The 34 & 38 teams (Long John Silver’s and Taco Bell) are also teammates, and each car is sponsored by Yum! Brands and will rotate the various brands on the car through the year (KFC, A&W, Pizza Hut)

        • Jim Vilk | February 20, 2011 at 10:39 pm |


        • Jory | February 20, 2011 at 11:58 pm |

          #39 is not a procombat car, it has had camo as a part of the scheme since the sponsorship transferred over to the SHR camp three years ago.

          Target elects to have it’s suppliers logos on its car as well. That’s why there are so many secondary logos and why they don’t have their logo on the back. Their business is based upon selling those products so it does make sense.

          The scheme of the Red Bull cars is actually very similar to the schemes for all Red Bull race cars across the world.

          As for the 34, 37 and 38 teams, they are not actually sponsored by Yum! Brands. The owner of the team, Bob Jenkins, owns several franchises and puts their logos on the car as a thank you. He receives some sort of discounts from them, nothing substantial, but they in no way give the team money. Also, KFC and Pizza Hut are never run (he does not own any of those) and the A&W car has been run only once I do believe.

        • Jim Vilk | February 21, 2011 at 12:54 pm |

          The Pro Combat and Target questions were tongue-in-cheek. Saying the Target logo should be on the backside (as well as the front) was meant as a way of telling the other drivers, “I intend to be in the front, so here’s your target.”

          Actually was curious about the Red Bull cars, though. Glad you guys could enlighten me.

      • Jory | February 20, 2011 at 11:54 pm |

        There is a massive, MASSIVE difference between NASCAR, F1, Indycar (CART hasn’t existed for many years). The technology alone behind a F1 car is truly amazing.

        I’d be more than willing to point you towards some info about the differences if you’d like.

        • Jory | February 21, 2011 at 12:13 am |

          Actually here’s a link to McLaren F1’s new car for the upcoming 2011 season. And this is restrained design too


  • Ricko | February 20, 2011 at 12:23 pm |



  • Steve | February 20, 2011 at 12:59 pm |

    I wonder why NBC is using the Caps’ old logo on their scorecard graphic?

    • Gusto44 | February 20, 2011 at 2:30 pm |

      Just as bad is a local Michigan TV station which still uses the 1993-2001 Penguins flying penguin logo. Carelessness.

  • The Hemogoblin | February 20, 2011 at 1:18 pm |


    I really like this post, and I always feel like motorsports don’t get enough play around here. Now, to watch the race without stirring my hung-over roommate too much.

  • mike 2 | February 20, 2011 at 1:28 pm |

    Worth mentioning – I see there’s a new sponsor for one of the top banner ads that I haven’t seen before – Gravity Defyer Shoes.


    That is, um, quite an interesting logo.

  • =bg= | February 20, 2011 at 1:40 pm |

    There is a particular time of the year when I basically curl up into a ball and hide.

    All you see is car racing, golf, college basketball, hockey, bowling, and (shudder) worst of all…….figure skating.

    No MLB. No NFL. Not even, horror of horrors, the Pro Bowl.

    That time is now.

    Opening Day is over a month away. I may not make it.

    • mmwatkin | February 20, 2011 at 4:02 pm |

      Amen. I have the 500 on in the background while I get stuff done around the house. Just moved to FL so I feel it is my duty to at least pay attention to it.

      I just can’t stand the redneck accents on the FOX commentary.

      • JTH | February 20, 2011 at 4:28 pm |

        Redneck accents?

        • mmwatkin | February 20, 2011 at 4:46 pm |

          Waltrip drives me nuts.

    • traxel | February 20, 2011 at 4:42 pm |

      Nothing says “for the love of the game” more than collective bargaining and arbitration.

  • interlockingtc | February 20, 2011 at 3:08 pm |

    Corporate advertising run amok.

    • EMD | February 21, 2011 at 8:09 pm |

      To be fair, it costs an extreme amount of money to race at the NASCAR level.

      And, Mizuno can put their name on a glove, which is (somewhat) visible on the field of play. You can’t see a Crane Cam on the car, so the name goes on the outside.

  • EMD | February 20, 2011 at 5:23 pm |

    NASCAR has throwbacks, too.

    That’s David Pearson to Cale Yarborough to Neil Bonnett to today’s Trevor Bayne car paint scheme. It’s one of my favorites – very simple and elegant. The gold side number and the red roof.

    • EMD | February 20, 2011 at 5:31 pm |

      And Bayne wins in the throwback.

  • EMD | February 20, 2011 at 5:26 pm |

    One of my all time favorite paint schemes, Mario Andretti’s 1967 Ford.

  • Ricko | February 20, 2011 at 5:30 pm |

    This may not mean much to most here, but Ollie Matson has died.

    He was something for the Chicago Cardinals in the early to mid ’50s. And the Rams did trade 11 players to get him, though he never again came close to being the player he’d been in Chicago.


  • pru | February 20, 2011 at 5:57 pm |

    First chance to post this: Both Northern Iowa and George Mason had the swoosh but neither had the NCAA logo patch last night.


  • pru | February 20, 2011 at 5:59 pm |

    First chance to post this: Both George Mason and Northern Iowa had Nike logos on their jerseys last night, but neither had the NCAA patch of approval.


  • Le Heritage Classic | February 20, 2011 at 6:20 pm |

    Les pantalons des Flames de Calgary fière allure!

  • Holmesey | February 20, 2011 at 6:34 pm |
  • DJ | February 20, 2011 at 6:35 pm |

    The Flames original design, but with these slightly richer crimson and gold colors, would look pretty good. They probably wouldn’t do it — it’d smack too much of Edmonton’s midnight blue and copper.

    (I do like the copper in Edmonton’s color set, if only for the color of the oil drop in the logo)

  • LI Phil | February 20, 2011 at 6:56 pm |

    the flames look outstanding

    …except for the breezers

    sorry lads, authenticity aside, the tan doesn’t work…not sure what would, actually, other than more crimson…otherwise…

    damn fine game, awesome venue…so much better than the WC

    • Gusto44 | February 20, 2011 at 8:29 pm |

      The success of this game and the WC proves beyond a doubt football stadiums can pull off outdoor hockey.

  • LI Phil | February 20, 2011 at 7:17 pm |

    missed this, but apparently paul brandt sang O Canada at the heritage classic…check out the music note on his flames sweater

    • Patrick_in_MI | February 20, 2011 at 7:50 pm |

      Hasn’t he done that before? I thought that was noted (ha!) on here in the past. Looked for more pix via GIS but no luck.

      • Mike 2 | February 20, 2011 at 8:07 pm |

        It was noted for a couple other singers (heather liscano) but not Brandt.

        • JTH | February 21, 2011 at 7:37 am |

          Au contraire

          (I don’t even know if that translates to what I think it does in English, but whatever.)

  • Patrick_in_MI | February 20, 2011 at 7:33 pm |

    Not a fan of auto racing at all but isn’t this BFBS? As noted by Ek, Bud ditches it’s traditional red scheme

    Paul’s fave car? hehe http://farm6.static.flickr.com/5217/5460633552_35c249afd6.jpg

    And Paul Menard sponsored by…Menard’s? Talk about a meta! I also find it somewhat disturbing that they allow beer/booze to be car sponsors but they got rid of the Winston Cup name a few years ago. I wonder how many people die from smoking and driving?

    • EMD | February 20, 2011 at 7:50 pm |

      It’s to ‘honor’ Dale Earnhardt, who featured black paint jobs on his later cars. Earnhardt died a decade ago in the Daytona 500.

    • Mike Miller | February 20, 2011 at 8:52 pm |

      Paul Menard’s sponsorship is purely based on his family/dad owning the company (which is a Midwestern Lowe’s/Home Depot if you didn’t know). Enabled him to get more chances than the usual young driver would get. But Paul is turning into a decent driver now.

      • EMD | February 21, 2011 at 8:07 pm |

        Menard’s is awesome. You can get decent deals on power tools and beef jerky!

    • Jory | February 20, 2011 at 11:52 pm |

      They didn’t get rid of the Winston sponsorship, Winston was more or less forced out due to tobacco legislation.

  • Oakville Endive | February 20, 2011 at 7:52 pm |

    I’m OK wth the Flames l tan pants – they’re closer to white than brown. If they decided to go with black pants , would that have been wprst? I agree it would be interesting to see red pants – does this Flame jersey become their new altenative – it’s by far the most interesting thing they’ve worn other than their original set.

  • Damon | February 20, 2011 at 7:59 pm |

    I am such a fan of their breezers. Never thought they would look good until I saw the entire set-up, but after seeing them yesterday and today they look awesome. I think the tan is very uniquie. Only works with that dark wine colored sweater and socks.

  • LI Phil | February 20, 2011 at 8:52 pm |

    are any of the NBA ballers wearing the skintight tops? i mean…they all look tight, but it looks like they went with the normal top

    • Johnny O | February 20, 2011 at 9:31 pm |

      I’m in the same boat as you Phil. I can’t really tell.

    • MPowers1634 | February 20, 2011 at 9:49 pm |


      Not that I doubted myself, but if we were being scored on shoe predictions we would have scored about a 95…Griffin broke out Hyperdunk 2011’s which screwed everything up except that they’re awesome.

      Check out some pics:

      • MPowers1634 | February 20, 2011 at 9:53 pm |

        Gasol is even wearing two tone-HD 2010s.

        Pierces Legends are very cool too!

  • wollen1 | February 20, 2011 at 9:05 pm |

    The fauxbacks worn by the Flames may be the fauxbackiest unis in history, but f___ it, they still look pretty cool.

    • concealed78 | February 21, 2011 at 9:41 am |

      I like how there’s no BFBS on them. It really shows you how a look can look really bold & timeless if you distribute the colors in a good way, as opposed to stupid random shapes, cutouts and piping.

  • Chris | February 20, 2011 at 9:26 pm |

    Adidas tonight is really making me wonder why everyone complains about Nike nonstop. I don’t know just cause Nike is the top dog on the block I guess

    • johnj | February 20, 2011 at 11:02 pm |

      I’ve thought the same thing for a while… Now I understand the swoosh creep can be annoying but the 3 stripes is far far worse in my opinion. I just don’t get why we don’t her more complaining about it…

      Those warm-up may be the ugliest uni related…. thing…. I’ve seen in years

      • Simply Moono | February 21, 2011 at 1:41 am |

        THIS is EXACTLY what I’ve been saying for a long time now: Nike=Good (or at least decent), Adidas=Bad.

  • MPowers1634 | February 20, 2011 at 10:00 pm |

    BTW, Johnny and Phil…GREAT job on the post today!

    • LI Phil | February 20, 2011 at 10:30 pm |


      i had nothing to do with today’s post (other than moderating comments) — this one is all ek

      big shout to Johnny Ekdahl for a great one

  • Jory | February 20, 2011 at 11:51 pm |

    Too bad I didn’t know this sort of thing would be posted here. I have GBs of photos and detailed info of the new Cup schemes

  • union jack | February 21, 2011 at 5:19 am |

    Given the typical NASCAR fan, figured the 3-fingers was a new form of White Power salute.

    • LI Phil | February 21, 2011 at 6:44 am |

      or some kind of bush tribute

      • StLMarty | February 21, 2011 at 9:00 am |

        Same thing.

        • Jim Vilk | February 21, 2011 at 12:55 pm |

          No it isn’t.

        • EMD | February 21, 2011 at 8:05 pm |

          Where’s the smackdown that usually occurs after comments like this?

        • Jim Vilk | February 21, 2011 at 9:16 pm |

          That’s the beauty of posting a day late. We both got our shots in and it’s done.

  • traxel | February 21, 2011 at 8:34 am |

    Phil, back to earth here. LOVED the breezers of Calgary. Matched the numbers and names and looked SHARP! And outdoor games….awesome. Gotta go some time. Maybe a Deep Freeze is in order?

  • Kyle Allebach | February 21, 2011 at 10:20 am |

    I was interested in the three fingers thing…since my friends family personally knew Dale Earnhardt.

  • Marc from Brooklyn | February 21, 2011 at 11:22 am |

    Thanks for the post. Re: NASCAR “uniforms,” I had been meaning to send this in to Paul, but this is probably a better forum.

    NASCAR is using the term “Uniform Collection” to market certain team merchandise this year including diecast cars. Most of the items in the collection seem to be replicas of or inspired by the caps and firesuits–the “uniforms”–that the drivers and crew wear. When the driver, the crew, and guests in the pit box are all wearing matching firesuits, caps, and helmets, it’s a uniform. As far as I can tell, this use of the word “uniform” is new for them and does not appear on the drivers’ merchandise pages even when referring to items in the “Uniform Collection.”

    It’s interesting as NASCAR’s acknowledgment of that the teams have uniforms just like the stick and ball team sports, and they may as well use that to sell merchandise.