Richmond International Raceway is bringing back a racing classic. Red stripes will return to the track walls of America's Premier Short Track. This will be the first time since February 1988 that fans and drivers will race along red stripes on Richmond's track wall.
In February 1988, the Pontiac Excitement 400 at Richmond was the second race on the NASCAR Winston Cup Series schedule. At the time, Richmond was only a ½ mile race track with metal guardrails striped in red. Fans witnessed drivers like Dale Earnhardt, Sr., Richard Petty, Bill Elliott, and race winner Neil Bonnett battle for the win. Fans packed the grandstands full to see the last race on this track configuration. Immediately following the race, Richard Petty jumped on a bulldozer and began the process to convert Richmond into the modern day ¾-mile D-shaped oval.
Flash forward to 2017. The TOYOTA OWNERS 400 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Richmond is now at the end of April, and will once again feature the red racing stripes on the wall. Fans will fill the grandstands to see a new breed of drivers take to the track with names like Denny Hamlin, Kyle Busch, Brad Keselowski, and Jimmie Johnson. Fans will still see Earnhardt and Elliott, but just another generation.
"I've always been fascinated by the historical racing images of the red and white on the wall at Richmond. Our long-time fans have often shared their fond memories of the red stripes, so it is a great day when we can reconnect with our history on the track." said Richmond President Dennis Bickmeier. "The red stripes unite our past with our future. We hope fans will have an awe-inspiring moment as they walk into the track for our Toyota race weekend."
The return of red stripes to Richmond is provided in partnership with Sherwin-Williams, the official paint of NASCAR, and its Richmond-based stores. Sherwin-Williams is the nation's largest retailer of paint and paint supplies.
The red stripes will make their debut when NASCAR racing returns to the Capital of the Commonwealth on April 28, 29 and 30. The action starts with Pole Day on April 28, followed by the ToyotaCare 250 NASCAR XFINITY Series Dash4Cash race on Saturday, April 29 at 1 p.m. Kids 12 and younger are free in general admission seating areas for all NASCAR XFINITY Series races. Richmond's spring weekend concludes with the fan-friendly Track Takeover driven by AAA from 10 a.m. to noon followed by NASCAR's best in the TOYOTA OWNERS 400 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at 2 p.m. on Sunday, April 30.
Richmond's fall race weekend, presented by Who's Your Driver, will crown the inaugural Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series regular season champion over Fan Appreciation Weekend on September 8-9. Witness history in the Federated Auto Parts 400 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race on Saturday, September 9 as a regular season champion will be crowned. On Friday, September 8, the rising stars of tomorrow will compete in the Virginia529 College Savings 250 NASCAR XFINITY Series race.
Tickets are on sale now. Visit rir.com or call 866-455-7223 to purchase.
-- Richmond International Raceway --