While many Cup Series teams ran their throwback paint schemes in the spring race at Darlington Raceway, the Wood Brothers and the Motorcraft/Quick Lane team are sticking with tradition and running theirs on Labor Day weekend in the Cook Out Southern 500 at Darlington.
The special design will recognize the 21st consecutive year of Motorcraft’s sponsorship of the iconic No. 21 Ford and the 20thanniversary of Elliott Sadler’s victory aboard the Motorcraft Ford in the 2001 Food City 500 at Bristol Motor Speedway. That triumph was Sadler’s first at the Cup Series level and it was the first victory for the Motorcraft/Wood Brothers pairing.
In that race, Sadler and the team stretched their last set of tires and tank of fuel to lead the final 70 laps and prevail over a familiar rival, the No. 43 of Petty Enterprises, and their driver John Andretti.
Jon Wood, senior vice-president of Wood Brothers Racing, said he’s especially proud of this year’s plans for the No. 21 Motorcraft/Quick Lane Mustang that Matt DiBenedetto will drive at Darlington.
“We’re really excited for this year’s throwback and have been saving this one,” Wood said. “We knew what we were going to do long before the decision came to change the throwback weekend to the spring race.”
“So despite the Southern 500 not being the ‘official’ throwback weekend, it’s most appropriate for us.”
As with previous throwback-themed cars campaigned by the Wood Brothers and the Motorcraft/Quick Lane team, the latest will be offered in a diecast version.
“Aside from our history in the sport and the history of the Southern 500, we dreamed up this diecast set that we now offer called the Triple Crown Collector’s Set,” Wood said. “We thought it was a neat way to not only commemorate that particular weekend, but to also make a way for our fans to own a piece of our heritage that nobody else could offer.”
And, Wood said, it’s a way to pay tribute to a crew and driver from decades ago while also recognizing a sponsor that has remained with the team in the years since.
“Every one of our past Southern 500 schemes have featured a past era’s driver for our team,” he said
“This year, not only do we get to honor Elliott Sadler’s first Cup Series win, but our 21st season with Motorcraft.
“To bring back the colors of Motorcraft’s first win with the team is an awesome thing to get to do.”
— Wood Brothers Racing —