The Next Gen era brought about numerous scheme changes as the numbers moved forward and new companies dipped into NASCAR. There were several standout looks, but a pair of throwbacks topped the list.
Trackhouse Racing turned heads during the trip to Darlington Raceway. They took on the Goodyear 400 — NASCAR’s throwback race — while running a pair of Earnhardt tribute schemes created in collaboration with Coca-Cola.
Ross Chastain drove the black No. 1 Chevrolet Camaro that featured the Coca-Cola Polar Bear scheme that Dale Earnhardt Jr. used during an exhibition race at Japan’s Twin Ring Motegi in 1998. Daniel Suarez drove the red No. 99 Coca-Cola Chevrolet Camaro with the same scheme that Dale Earnhardt Sr. used during the trip to Japan.
Trackhouse Racing understood the assignment. Throwback Weekend’s purpose is to honor the drivers that helped make NASCAR great while showcasing updated versions of their iconic schemes. Bringing the Earnhardt tributes to Darlington Raceway certainly achieved this goal and added some flair to a special weekend in South Carolina.
Making updated versions of these schemes was not a simple task for Trackhouse Racing. The polar bear artwork wasn’t readily available, so the team had to put in countless hours recreating it. Though the efforts paid off.
Dale Jr. Had a Strong Reaction After Seeing the Schemes
The general public saw the Earnhardt tribute schemes for the first time when the team tweeted out an announcement video on May 3. Dale Jr., however, received a sneak peek when Trackhouse Racing owner Justin Marks made an appearance on “The Dale Jr. Download” podcast.
Marks explained during his podcast appearance that it is very important for his team to be “stewards of the sport.” He added that there was a unique opportunity to run special schemes on both of his cars during the trip to Darlington Raceway. Marks then revealed the tribute schemes, which created a strong reaction.
“Oh my gosh,” Dale Jr. said after watching the reveal video. “The 1 car almost takes my breath because it’s the car. When you do throwbacks — we were talking earlier — it’s really unique. It’s almost like an eclipse when you can do the sponsor, the colors, and the number and the right font, and everything. That’s the car. That is the car.”
Trackhouse Racing Had Multiple Strong Schemes
Trackhouse Racing made waves during its first season as a two-car operation. Both of its drivers reached the playoffs after combining for three wins, and Chastain finished second in the championship standings.
The organization also brought in multiple new sponsors, which led to some unique schemes. This includes UFC President Dana White’s Howler Head Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey, which sponsored Chastain during the Busch Light Clash at the LA Memorial Coliseum.
The list also includes the dual GoPro schemes that Chastain and Suarez ran during the 2022 Cup Series season and the American flag-inspired Jockey schemes that made their debut on both cars.
Another honorable mention is the scheme that Chastain brought to Auto Club Speedway in February. Trackhouse Racing partnered with Eva Longoria and used the No. 1 Chevrolet Camaro to showcase Casa Del Sol Tequila. The all-black scheme was more subtle with its grey and white logos, but it received air time after Chastain hit the wall during practice.