Martinsville This Week // Best and Worst Paint Schemes

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Get a good look at these cars now – because we are going short track racing, they’ll be covered in black and white by the end of the race. And solving race relations in the process. (In this economy?) YOU GOTTA!

NASCAR heads East to Martinsville! Where the sun always shines and the weather is a constant 76°! Where you can surf in the morning and ski at night!

Oh wait, sorry – that last bit was the intro for my NASCAR heads West column.

THE BEST OF THE BEST

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Tony Stewart will drive the No. 14 Code 3 Associates/Mobil 1 Chevrolet.

Smoke.

elliotChase Elliott will drive the No. 25 NAPA Auto Parts Chevrolet.

NAPA does know how! Knows how to paint the side and presumably the hood, bumper and rest of their car!

Did you know that if you say “Knows How” three times Michael Keaton Waltrip will show up at your house and help you scare your parents out of your home?

But that’s neither here nor there.

This is a sweet looking ride. Primary colors. Sharp, clean diagonal lines. That could be some abstract representation of fire coming out of the side of the car. Fast and Furious style (opening everywhere this week).

NAPA may not know how to make commercials, depending on who you ask – NOT THIS GUY, but they certainly know how to paint a car.

THE WORST OF THE REST

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Paul Menard will drive the No. 27 Pittsburgh Paints/Menards Chevrolet.

nscs_paul_menard_456x362.png.mainPaul how do you feel about the paint/paint that your car will be wearing this weekend at Martinsville?

Oh yeah, alright man that’s cool you don’t have to yell.

It’s really not that bad. I mean it’s not good but trust me I’ve seen worse. Listen I don’t even why I put it on this list.

Oh wait yeah I do.. Paul PLEEEEASSEEEEEE!!!

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Gray Gaulding will drive the No. 7 Krispy Kreme Toyota.

I hate to do this to Gray because I absolutely love hate Krispy Kreme Donuts.

HONORABLE MENTION

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Justin Boston will drive the No. 54 ZLOOP Toyota.

C’mon man.

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Power Rankings Thus Far // With Help From Heist Films

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So to save you the trouble of reading some guy’s power rankings every week – I’m going to spare you this season, and me. Every two weeks and you get your annual “Power Rankings with A Little Help From Our Friend”s column by me.

Now one of the reasons because I thought it would be a lot harder to come up with themes – boy was I wrong.

After writing half of what I may personally describe as a mind blowing blog post about a fantastic movie and how it tied into this crazy NASCAR season thus far I had a what could only be described as a mind blowing thought.

Travis Kvapil’s car just got stolen. We are going to Las Vegas this week. Ocean’s 11, 12, 13 and 14 (Rumored) – WE HAVE TO DO HEIST MOVIES!

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Don’t worry – this mind blowing column/article/dribble that has already been written will see the light of day, some day, because don’t you worry I don’t always have epiphany’s and stellar ideas. Just ask my girlfriend – amirite?! (See that joke. Oh boy).

So this week I bring you, the best NASCAR drivers this 2015 Sprint Cup season thus far – with a little help from our friends, great American heist movies.

NO. 1 – JOEY LOGANO
1st at Daytona / 4th at Atlanta
–The Usual Suspects

Strausz: “Do you guys know who the fuck I am? Do you know who the fuck I am?”
Hockney: “We do now, jerk-off.”

We knew who Joey was after last year’s Chase. Not we certainly know who this little guy is.

NO. 2 – KEVIN HARVICK
2nd at Daytona / 2nd at Atlanta
–The Town

Doug MacRay: “I need your help. I can’t tell you what it is, you can never ask me about it later, and we’re gonna hurt some people.”
James Coughlin: “…Whose car are we gonna’ take?”

Doesn’t matter where Harv is this year or what car he’s driving, he captured that Championship and doesn’t want to/won’t let go.

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NO. 3 – JIMMIE JOHNSON
5th at Daytona / 1st at Atlanta
–The Town

Claire Keesey: “Did you say your name was Jim or Gem?”
James Coughlin: “Well, huh, it’s kinda both. The teacher’s use to always say, ‘Here take this one. He’s a gem.'”

This was too easy and too good to pass up. But seriously, this guy is a gem isn’t he? Never misses a beat.

NO. 4 – DALE EARNHARDT JR.
3rd at Daytona / 3rd at Atlanta
–The Usual Suspects

McManus: “There’s nothing that can’t be done.”

Fenster: “Can you hear me in the back? Hello?”

Sure has been running pretty far up front this year – new crew chief and all. Don’t see him slowing down anytime soon.

NO. 5 – JEFF GORDON
33rd at Daytona / 41st at Atlanta
–Reservoir Dogs

Mr. Pink: “I don’t wanna kill anybody. But if I gotta get out that door, and you’re standing in my way, one way or the other, you’re gettin’ outta my way.”

33rd and 41st is not good, clearly. But it won’t last long, and if it does – this guy is going to see red. What are you going to do, fire him?

NO. 6 – MATT KENSETH
35th at Daytona // 5th at Atlanta
–The Town

Doug MacRay: “No matter how much you change, you still have to pay the price for the things you’ve done. So I got a long road. But I know I’ll see you again – this side or the other.”

He will see that Championship again. But maybe not this year..

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NO. 7 – MARTIN TRUEX JR.

8th at Daytona // 6th at Atlanta
–Inside Man

Madeliene White: “Well detective, there are matters at stake here that are a little bit above your pay grade. No offense.”
Keith Frazier: “Well, why don’t you just tell the mayor to raise my pay grade to the proper level, and problem solved.”

Pretty sure I predicted this before the season started. He’s too good to be tamed, even if it is in inferior equipment.

NO. 8 – DENNY HAMLIN
4th at Daytona // 38th at Atlanta
–Ocean’s 11

Turk Malloy: “I’m gonna get out of the car and drop you like third period French.”

Be careful Danica. Joey. Whomever it may be. There’s a handful of guys this year that seem on edge – Denny may be one of em.

NO. 9 – KASEY KAHNE
9th at Daytona // 14th at Atlanta
–Inside Man

Madeliene White: “The sooner you STOP being my problem and START being my solution the better off you’ll be.”

There’s no way that this is an actual quote from Rick Hendrick to Kasey right? He’s quietly having a good year.

NO. 10 – ARIC ALMIROLA
15th at Daytona // 11th at Atlanta
–Italian Job

Steve: “You blew the best thing you had going for you. You blew the element of surprise.”

Aric made the Chase last year. And he’s off to a hell of a start this year. No one will be surprised to see him race up front.

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NO. 11 – BRAD KESELOWSKI
41st at Daytona // 9th at Atlanta
–Italian Job

Steve: “Still don’t trust me?”
Stella: “I trust everyone. It’s the devil inside them I don’t trust.”

Wonder who (nobody) how there (everywhere) will take any crap (bumper cars) from Brad this year. HE HAS A LOT OF FRIENDS. (No he doesn’t).

NO. 12 – CLINT BOWYER
7th at Daytona // 24th at Atlanta
–The Town

James Coughlin: “If we get jammed up, we’re holding court on the street.”

I just feel like Clint drives around thinking this the whole damn time he’s driving. Or wish.

NO. 13 – RYAN NEWMAN
38th at Daytona // 10th at Atlanta
–Reservoir Dogs

Joe: “Let’s go to work.”

Ryan Newman is to NASCAR what Bill Belichek is to interviews – strictly business. Both, are good at their business.

NO. 14 – CARL EDWARDS
23rd at Daytona // 12th at Atlanta
–Ocean’s 11

Danny: “Thirteen million and you drive this piece of shit cross country to pick me up?
Rusty: Blew it all on the suit.”

Rightfully so, it’s been a transition to his new team. Hope the hype wasn’t the suit, in this, unreal, completely random scenario.

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NO. 15 – REGAN SMITH
16th at Daytona // 17th at Atlanta
NO. 16 – DAVID RAGAN
17th at Daytona // 18th at Atlanta
–Reservoir Dogs

Mr. Blonde: “Was that as good for you as it was for me?”

For stepping into two completely different, new cars for the Busch brothers just days before the start of the season – they should be completely ecstatic with their first two weeks.

Can’t wait to see how the rest of the season pans out for these two.

Atlanta This Week // Best and Worst Paint Schemes

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ATL! The dirty south. Daytona is in the books and the season is rolling right along and if you thought things were weird last year – you better be ready to get more weird, part two this 2015.

Definitely my favorite looking car of the year thus far won’t be racing this weekend. Thanks to those ATLiens who STOLE Travis Kvapil’s #44 Chevy right out of the back of Team XTreme’s hauler just outside of Atlanta Motorspeedway this weekend. Wait, what? Yes. That happened.

Luckily Mr. Kvapil’s car has been found, but not in time to make qualifying, so he won’t be competing. But don’t you worry – Will Smith and Jeff Goldblum have been called in to make sure no more cars will be “stolen” this weekend.

As always, we pick our favorite drivers like girls pick which team is going to win the NCAA tournament. Jersey colors. But because these guys and Danica don’t really wear jerseys, we pick em by their cars. And we get pretty amped up when the paint schemes come out. Because I like NASCAR. And I like Design. So when the two come together.. “Oh word?”

So if you can’t win, you might as well look good!

THE BEST OF THE BEST


originalKyle Larson will drive the No. 42 Energizer Chevrolet.

I don’t know what it is about the No. 42 Energizer, but it gets me, what’s the word I am looking for.. Energized? Simple and sleek. Very nice of Energizer (The NEW Energizer Eco Advanced) to allow Kyle’s other sponsor to be a key component but not be to overwhelming with what can only be described as the “logo repeat all over” method at the bottom of the car. Love Kyle. Love the energy. Love the car.

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Jeff Gordon will drive the No. 24 3M Chevrolet.

I don’t know what has gotten into me, but every since Jeff Gordon has announced this “lame duck(?)” or “fame duck” season – I’ve been getting all sentimental towards the guy. I use to despise Jeff Gordon and the Rainbow Warriors. No body is going over the top this year design wise, but hey it’s still early.

This is a very nice and clean looking car. Love the lines and colors compliment each other perfectly. It says I’m sophisticated, but I’m here to party.

JeffGordon2012Dupont---Fantasy.jpg.w300h197Listen Jeff, I don’t know what you did to get me to put you on the best list here. But if I don’t see at least one old school, Dupont style, Rainbow Warrior car this year with you rocking I don’t care if it is a fake mustache – you won’t see yourself back on this list. At least a T-Rex man! C’mon the people are yearning for it.

THE WORST OF THE WORST

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Joe Nemechek will drive the No. 34 CSX-Play It Safe Ford.

Design wise. This isn’t terrible. Listen guys if you want to come help me teach my Van Gogh for kids class we can do primary colors all day long. But this isn’t about design. This is about making a statement.

“Play It Safe”? Play it freaking safe? Is that the message you want to give to your opponents as you hear some character actor who’s show on Fox will be cancelled in three weeks say fire up those engines? NO. Not at all. Not even if there is a fire!

Play it freaking safe – give me a break. Listen this may be too soon coming off Kyle Busch’s terrible crash/injury and last year Atlanta’s cat/squirrel incident. But play it freaking safe is not the message I want to send. Let’s at least bump it up to “Play It As If It’s a Long Yellow Light”. Live on the edge ladies and germs.

HONORABLE MENTION

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Matt Kenseth will drive the No. 20 Resers Toyota.

I’m torn here. Not Rip. I’m torn because last we I was clamoring for a giant drumstick on the side of the KFC car. And I was bewildered by the larger than life tarantula from Home Alone on the side of Biff’s car.

This week I get a giant bowl of Potato Salad? Excuse me. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for a good bowl of tater salad, and I’m also a superstitious guy – I’ll wear flip flops in the snow to try and bring summer faster. I just don’t know anymore.

A great attempt at a great car. Just hoping next week we don’t see a five foot tall tampon on the side of the No. 1 Tampax car. And if we do, you can call me Rip Torn.

Daytona 500 This Week // Best and Worst Paint Schemes

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It’s the Daytona 500 baby! Time to let it shine! It’s like the first dance of the year. Your bring out your new suit, shine those shoes all pretty and let everyone know – you are here, and you mean business. It’s the 500, which means only one Hendrick car can win. So if you can’t win, you might as well look good!

Either way, once again – we pick our favorite drivers like girls pick which team is going to win the NCAA tournament. Jersey colors. But because these guys and Danica don’t really wear jerseys, we pick em by their cars. And we get pretty amped up when the paint schemes come out. Because I like NASCAR. And I like Design. So when the two come together.. “Oh word?”

THE BEST(?) OF THE BEST

 

original-3Justin Marks will drive the No. 29 American Born Moonshine Toyota.

This bad boy won’t catch your eye as it slides around the track at 200mph on Sunday. But once it hits the wall, gets up on the hauler and taken back to the garage – once that happens and you get a nice good look at it. You’ll know why  it’s the best. For starters, there weren’t a lot great cars to pick from. It’s kind of like picking the best show on NBC, hard to do. But it gets that top spot for me for one simple word on the side, “Moonshine”.

This car is the connection between the 2015 technology soaked NASCAR that is today back to the old school. Back to the roots of NASCAR. If you have a minute, read this great article on the lore that birthed NASCAR.

If you only have a second, I’ll tell you right now – NASCAR started by those good ol’ boys bootlegging that sweet, sweet nectar of the south called moonshine, running from the law, driving it like they stole it.

Enough of a reason for me to give it the best dressed award for this weekend at Daytona.

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AJ Allmendinger will drive the No. 47 Kroger/USO Chevrolet.

America. Honoring Our Heroes. Take note teams/drivers/designers of NASCAR paint schemes. It doesn’t take much to please this broadcaster – America.

There’s an awful lack of creativity this weekend for the first race of 2015, but if you ask any great designer what to do when you are struggling for a spark of creativity – throw an American flag on that piece!

AJ and team, you are the “Community” of the NBC lineup, coming in second to “Parks and Recreation” but only because you were going up against a bunch of shows like “The Michael J. Fox Show”.

At least nothing bad ever happened to “Community”.

 

THE BEST OF THE WORST

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David Ragan will drive the No. 34 Kentucky Fried Chicken Ford.

How is the Colonel’s huge face not on here?! KFC, you’ve got to have some creativity here. You have assed an American flag, which would have easily won you the week as we all know my love for America and should know about my love for KFC’s Loaded Potato Bowl.

I know I can’t see the hood of this car, but if there isn’t at least a drumstick on there, you are setting your selves up for a long year of scrutiny and have lost one young, cheap, chicken loving customer.

HONORABLE MENTION

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Greg Biffle will drive the No. 16 Ortho Ford.

Biff. To be honest with you (not quoting Charles Barkley here) – I had a hard time deciphering if you should be the best, or the worst painted car of the weekend. There’s a lack of American spirit which left you off the best list, but you put in about 110% more effort than the KFC car so you can’t be the worst.

I like the effort. I love the effort. I am not scared of bugs but may be after Sunday. You’ve set back the woman demographic NASCAR as longed to gain but if I ever see a 200lb tarantula in my apartment I will know who to call – after the Ghostbusters.

BUG B GON!

About to.. lose a REAL bet to a FAKE person!

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Way back in the dog days of April, nearly 2 months ago but really closer to 1 and a half month ago I went out on a limb – ehh? – and said that Jimmie Johnson would not win before or during the Coca Cola 600.

Well ladies and gentlemen today is arguable the greatest day of the year. With 1100 miles in racing, and way more ego points on the line, like double 1100 and times a bunch more. I’m starting to get nervous.

It’s not the talk of the NASCAR town, but it is definitely one of the main story lines this year – that is the fact that Jimmie Johnson, Mr. 6 Time, Mr. Unstoppable – has been more stoppable than un and has yet to cross the finish line first in a single race so far in 2014.

Will it be tonight? I sure hope not! You see, if we hop back in to the way back machine, I said Jimmie Johnson wouldn’t win before OR during the 600. Not just before! Idiot! And you see, I kinda (not really at all) made a REAL bet with a FAKE (I’m sure it’s not a bot) person on Twitter.

Not that any of you care.. But I do! You see, I would feel really cool if I was correct on something like this! It would make me like a NASCAR expert or something! I would join the ranks of like the great Nascar James or Sir Sprint Cupps!

We all know Jimmie will win eventually. He will more than likely win in bunches! But please Jimmie, don’t win tonight – I don’t want to lose my REAL bet to this FAKE person I’ve never met!