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Michael McDowell to pay tribute to Alan Kulwicki with Southern 500 paint scheme


Throwback paint scheme Michael McDowell will race in the 2017 Southern 500. The paint scheme pays tribute to the paint scheme Alan Kulwicki raced as a rookie in 1986.

Michael McDowell and Leavine Family Racing will honor 1992 Cup champion Alan Kulwicki with their paint scheme for the Sept. 3 Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway.

Kulwicki, who died in a 1993 plane crash, worked out of the shop Leavine Family Racing operates. McDowell will drive a car that commemorates Kulwicki’s 1986 rookie season.

Kulwicki served as team owner, driver, crew chief and chief mechanic that season and went on to win Rookie of the Year honors.

“At LFR, we look to bring the same relentless underdog mentality Alan had to the track each week,” said LFR team owner Bob Leavine in a statement. “We can’t wait to honor Alan by bringing our WRL Chevrolet to Darlington in September.”

Alan Kulwicki 1986 Rookie season

The car Alan Kulwicki drove in 1986.

Said McDowell in a statement: “The history that our shop contains is indescribable. I am really looking forward to honoring Alan, and I hope I can do my own ‘Polish’ victory lap at Darlington in his memory!”

McDowell enters this weekend’s race at Watkins Glen 25th in the points. He has four top-20 finishes in the last six races.

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