Hendrick Motorsports driver Chase Elliott has been inspired by father Bill Elliott for his entire life. It should come as no surprise, then, that one of his father’s paint schemes influenced the No. 9 team’s Darlington throwback paint scheme this yar.
Elliott unveiled the sleek blue-and-white NAPA Chevrolet on Wednesday morning, showing off an old-school look that honors Bill Elliott’s 1981 Mell-Gear car.
The announcement came four days before Father’s Day, fitting as this scheme has three generations of Elliott involved.
Bill Elliott’s final season racing for his father, George Elliott, came in the blue No. 9 Mell-Gear Ford Thunderbird. Bill Elliott drove in 13 premier series races in 1981, recording seven top-10 finishes. His first-ever Cup Series Busch Pole Award also came in 1981 — at Darlington Raceway.
This season marks Year Five of Darlington’s award-winning throwback weekend program. This year’s Bojangles’ Southern 500 (Sept. 1, NBCSN, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio) will also be the 70th iteration of the crown jewel race.