KANNAPOLIS, N.C. – Danica Patrick and Stewart-Haas Racing will honor 2018 NASCAR Hall of Fame inductee Robert Yates with a throwback paint scheme honoring Yates’ 1999 NASCAR premier series championship on the No. 10 Ford at Darlington Raceway on Sept. 3.
After working in the sport for more than two decades, Yates launched Robert Yates Racing in the late 1980s. In 1996, RYR expanded to a two-car operation, fielding the No. 88 Quality Care/Ford Credit Ford with Dale Jarrett.
The decision by Yates to add a second car to the stable resulted in Jarrett winning the 1999 title, in a paint scheme that Patrick’s No. 10 Ford Credit Ford will emulate at Darlington.
“The throwback race at Darlington is such a cool event,” said Patrick, who has competed in five Southern 500s. “The track has done such a great job of getting the teams and drivers involved. I’m excited to run a true throwback scheme this year. It’s great that we’re able to honor Robert Yates and all he’s done for our sport.”
In addition to the championship Jarrett earned in 1999, Yates amassed an impressive 57 wins as a car owner, including three in the Daytona 500.
“The No. 88 Quality Care/Ford Credit Ford was definitely a memorable program for our team,” Yates said. “We won the Daytona 500 in Dale’s very first race in that scheme in 1996 and went on to win many more races and the championship in 1999.”
“It was incredibly gratifying to have Ford as my sponsor and manufacturer, especially when we beat the competition. Getting to see this scheme run again will bring back many great memories. I can’t thank everyone at Stewart-Haas Racing enough for honoring me and everyone that was on the team during those years.”
Ford Motor Credit Company is the financial services arm of Ford Motor Company. The brand was first seen on a NASCAR entry in 1994, when it sponsored Elton Sawyer in what is now the NASCAR XFINITY Series.
Jarrett ran the No. 88 Quality Care/Ford Credit Ford paint scheme from 1996 through 2000, earning 20 wins, nine poles and leading more than 5,000 laps.
That tally includes two wins at Darlington, back-to-back in the TranSouth Financial 400 in 1997 and 1998.
“We are very proud of our part in the heritage of NASCAR, and particularly the success of Robert Yates Racing,” said Dale Jones, Ford Credit executive vice president of the Americas. “The Ford Credit throwback paint scheme brings back great memories of victory at the racetrack. We are thrilled that Danica will be in the driver’s seat representing that history.”
As the series returns to Darlington for the 68th Southern 500, the chance to honor Yates will be a special one for crew chief Billy Scott, who broke into the premier series by working for Yates.
“It’s really an honor to race a paint scheme that has so much history,” Scott said. “Robert Yates Racing gave me my first job in the NASCAR Cup Series, so to take our No. 10 Ford Fusion to Darlington in tribute of Robert and all that he’s accomplished makes me extremely proud.”
CREDIT: Stewart Haas Racing