Chip Ganassi Racing (CGR) revealed yesterday the throwback paint scheme on the No. 42 Credit One Bank Chevrolet SS, driven by Kyle Larson, for the Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway. The paint scheme will honor current CGR co-owner Felix Sabates. Credit One Bank will turn back the clock to 1995, and feature a scheme that was raced by Kyle Petty while driving at SABCO Racing for Sabates. The original design has been updated to include the Credit One Bank logo on the hood and quarter panel, but otherwise remains intact from when Petty was behind the wheel.
- One of a Kind: Felix Sabates has been a fixture in NASCAR since he became a team owner in the late-1980’s after acquiring a research and development team from Hendrick Motorsports. The Cuban-born Sabates immigrated to the US at the age of 15, and held jobs at a furniture factory in Lexington, N.C. and City Chevrolet before working to import Nintendo and Teddy Ruxpin into American homes. Before partnering with Chip Ganassi in 2001, SABCO Racing fielded teams in NASCAR from 1989 – 2000. In addition to Petty, Sabates also raced with Kenny Wallace, Wally Dallenbach, Jr., Joe Nemechek, Sterling Marlin and Kenny Irwin, to name a few. SABCO netted seven wins at the Cup level, with 33 top-five finishes and 15 pole awards.
- Second Helping: In a first for CGR, short vignettes featuring Felix Sabates and Kyle Petty will be produced and posted to the team’s social media platforms during breaks in the action from the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series (MENCS) race at Darlington Raceway, giving fans a second-screen option during commercial breaks. The videos will give fans an unique look into the No. 42 team as it was during the days of SABCO Racing as Sabates and Petty sit down and share stories from the good ‘ole days.
- Yikes, Stripes!: While the red and white stripes around the wall at Darlington exude a feeling of nostalgia, the stripes that usually have everyone talking are those often accidentally added on the right side of the car by drivers who misjudge the dissimilar turns at the egg-shaped track. While admittedly the recipient of several stripes in his first attempt at the “Lady in Black” in 2013 in the NASCAR XFINITY Series, Larson has a fairly solid body of work in the MENCS. In three starts, Larson has three top-10 finishes and led 45 laps en route to a third-place finish in last year’s Southern 500.
- Petty Parody Part Two: If you’re keeping score at home, this will mark the second time that Larson drives a paint scheme originally piloted by Petty. In the first throwback weekend at Darlington in 2015, Larson drove Petty’s No. 42 Mello Yello paint scheme that was raced in the early 1990’s and made famous in the movie “Days of Thunder.” Larson’s throwback paint scheme in 2015 was picked by the fans as the best of the weekend.
- Chip Ganassi, Owner, Chip Ganassi Racing: “It’s great to have a chance to honor my friend, Felix Sabates at this year’s Darlington race. He has been a great partner over the years and was a huge help when I first came into NASCAR. We’ve shared many exciting races and events, and we’re hoping for more good things to come, especially in Darlington with our partner Credit One Bank.”
- Felix Sabates, Co-Owner, Chip Ganassi Racing: “I have loved every minute of being a part of NASCAR, and have enjoyed the opportunity I’ve had to be a team owner with some great drivers. Kyle Petty is like family to me, and to be able to again see one of our cars from the SABCO Racing days out on track is pretty special. It’s great to have one of our newer partners in Credit One Bank honoring the past while we work to make a mark this season and beyond.”
- Laura Faulkner, Vice President Marketing Communications, Credit One Bank: “We are thrilled to be included in this year’s throwback paint scheme. The design itself is an homage to the past, but with our logo incorporated into the layout, it’s also a celebration of our present partnership, an exceptional season together, and an even brighter future as Kyle Larson continues to excel in the No. 42 Credit One Bank Chevrolet SS.”
- Kyle Larson, Driver No. 42 Credit One Bank Chevrolet SS: “I’m really glad Credit One Bank got on board with a throwback car this season. This car is another really neat looking design from the SABCO days, and I’m excited to get on track with it at Darlington. Felix is a fun and colorful guy, and that’s definitely shown in the paint schemes he put on track in the 90’s. He’s been a great guy to race for, and I’m glad we can highlight his contribution to NASCAR and our team with the car.”
TIL NEXT TIME, I AM STILL WORKING ON MY REDNECK!