Monday, December 22, 2008

Favorite Petty Enterprises Paint Schemes

After sharing my favorite overall NASCAR paint schemes, I figured I'd might as well craft a list of favorite Petty Enterprises schemes. I'm sure other favorite schemes list will follow (Earnhardt, unique/obscure, frauds, etc.)

But for now, how about a "best of" list from those Level Cross Legends.

#7 - 1970 Plymouth Superbird - A long hood, sleek nose, huge wing in the back, all Petty blue - what's not to like?

#6 - 1979 Kyle Petty #44 Dodge Magnum - Richard bailed on the Magnum in 1978, but PE dusted it off in the off-season. They dressed it in Valvoline colors, and Kyle drove it to a win in the Daytona ARCA 200 - his first win in his first ever race. The sponsor decals aren't that striking, but all that Petty blue on that long hood really looks cool. Not sure I've ever understood the significance of that seagull, dove, pigeon, or whatever fowl that is on the front fender, but its still one of my faves.

#5 - 1982 Kyle Petty STP Pontiac - Richard & Kyle had matching-yet-inverse schemes on the 42 and 43 Pontiacs. But I generally liked the look of the 42 more than the 43.

#4 - 1996 Bobby Hamilton STP-Petty 25th Anniversary Silver Pontiac - Petty Enterprises rolled out a set of "throw back" paint schemes in 1996 to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the relationship between STP and Petty Enterprises. This silver car was run at the Daytona 500 in addition to the other schemes run that year.

#3 - 1978 STP Monte Carlo - As noted above, Richard finally said he'd had enough with the sled of a race car that Dodge had available in 1978. Petty Enterprises dropped Chrysler and switched to General Motors' 1977 Chevrolet Monte Carlo (and Oldsmobile 442) for the remainder of 1978 through 1980.

#2 - 1997 Bobby Hamilton STP Pontiac - Petty Enterprises opted for a pretty radical change to the STP scheme for 1997 with the yellow nose (run infrequently during the year) and the arched lines on the sides. Bobby raced the car to a popular win in the fall Rockingham race.

#1 - 1975 STP Dodge Charger - Petty Enterprises tweaked the STP scheme a bit on the 1974 Dodge Charger body from 1974 through 1977. But that magic mix of STP competition red and Petty blue had the perfect mix in my opinion in 1975. After all, with 13 wins to its credit, the 43 must have been happiest dressed like this.

Honorable mention to Hershel McGriff in the Petty 04 Dodge Charger and Kyle Petty's 1983 7-11 Pontiac.

Richard's 1984 STP Pontiac Grand Prix rated as my #1 overall favorite NASCAR paint scheme. However, Richard raced in 1984-1985 for Curb Racing. So that car lost out on this list due to a technicality. But hey, rules are rules, right?



  1. On pic #6 of KP's Magnum...the bird on the front is a Falcon. I was at Daytona for SpeedWeeks that year and someone from the Petty team (maybe KP) labeled the Magnum as the "Blue Falcon"...........

  2. I had a Dodge Magnum back then. It always drew a crow but it was mechanically a piece of junk.

    Does anyone have a picture of the Richard's #43 from 82. I'm modeling one and can't find a picture to see the paint scheme.

  3. Glad to see the Silver Anniversary STP Pontiac get its due here! That was an awesome and unique car-and I remember how excited I was to get the 1/18 scale version at age 11. Is there any major difference between Kyle's 1982 scheme and Richard's 1983 scheme? Actually, I think the 1984 scheme counts because it's just like the 1992 scheme-which was Petty Enterprises. But if there are unique distinctions, kinna hora. Great recap!