In a move that stunned the Nascar world, Richard Petty made his triumphant—and surprising—return to the Nascar Sprint Cup Series as a driver today, stepping back into the iconic 43 car for today’s Ford EcoBoost 400.
“Listen—when Jeff Gordon started the Winston Cup deal back in ’92, I knew the sport was in a good spot”, the 78-year-old legend said upon appearing in his STP firesuit. “Now that he’s hanging it up after a great career, it’s time for me to take the wheel again.”
|"Gotta make sure Kyle stays away"|
Petty pointed out that his return also takes care of sponsorship concerns for the 2016 season.
“Thankfully we signed the lifetime deal with STP back in the 70’s”, Petty explained. “Andy (Granatelli, longtime STP executive) knew that we’d have staying power when we did that deal. And now we’re ready to go back, full-time, and dominate like we used to.”
When reminded that Petty went winless in his final years, Petty explained that technical innovations would make driving a breeze.
“Listen—all I ever heard was how many races guys like me, (David) Pearson, and the Flock Brothers could’ve won in these cars today. Besides, we got a financing deal with the Medallion folks now—much better than having to rely on Maurice (Petty)’s ‘legal’ engines.”
While most of the field was simply surprised at Petty’s return, Aric Almirola, the usual driver of the 43 car, was bit more complex.
“They told me I’d be in the 9 car next year, and that’s a pretty low bar to clear”, Almirola said. “Besides, it’s not like its the first time someone took me out of the car.”
Well, another season is almost in the books—but at Spade Racing Studios, we’re not taking time off! Next week we’ll start our tribute to Spade Racing’s 100th anniversary with notable articles from the past 100 years. Before you know it, Daytona will be here, and we’ll all be back to complaining about the season being too long.