48 Throwback
Jimmie Johnson's Darlington throwback scheme will honor Richard Petty and Dale Earnhardt. Image from Hendrick Motorsports.

Jimmie Johnson’s Darlington throwback honoring Richard Petty and Dale Earnhardt

Jimmie Johnson will honor two of NASCAR’s biggest legends for the start of the playoff season at Darlington Raceway on Sept. 6.

Johnson’s No. 48 Ally Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 1LE will be decked out in a unique champions scheme that pays homage to both Dale Earnhardt and Richard Petty. Johnson, Earnhardt and Petty are the only three Cup Series drivers in history to have won seven championships.

The font and top of Johnson’s Chevrolet will be the same font and colors as Petty’s No. 43, while the font and color scheme on the sides pays homage to the No. 3 script from Earnhardt’s car.

Johnson also will have a special 777 badge that represents the three seven-time champions.

Johnson sought the approval and advice from Dale Earnhardt Jr. over the tribute scheme to his father. The younger Earnhardt loved the idea and praised it on Tuesday’s episode of “The Dale Jr. Download,” noting how Johnson easily could have run his own throwback scheme from one of his previous championship Chevys. He added that Johnson is the type of person to honor the other two seven-time champions.

“This is next level what you are doing this year,” Earnhardt said. “I don’t know why it’s not been done before, but I think it may make people really reconsider how they approach the throwback weekend. I may be overstating it because Dad is involved but it’s not been done quite like this. You are going to honor both Richard Petty and my father with your paint scheme.”

— Hendrick Motorsports —