Hamlin Will Honor NASCAR's All-Time Winner, Ray Hendrick at 2017 Darlington Southern 500

Dave Fulton
@dave-fulton
08/15/17 03:27:20PM
9,070 posts

Thanks to Chase Whitaker for the heads-up.

Denny Hamlin's Darlington Southern 500 throwback scheme for 2017 honors the late Ray Hendrick, the absolute all-time winningest driver in NASCAR history. Hendrick, a Richmond, Virginia native won many of his biggest races driving NASCAR Modifieds and Late Model Sportsman cars in the 60s and 70s carrying the famed "Flying 11" trademark of car owner Jack Tant. Those cars were built in Tant's Littleton, NC shop with power by Tant and chassis by Clayton Mitchell. Hendrick passed of cancer in Richmond in 1990 at age 60. Although he beat NASCAR Hall of Fame members Jack Ingram, Richie Evans and Jerry Cook in nearly every heads up confrontation, NASCAR's all-time winningest driver still is not in it's Hall, although he was elected many years ago to the National Motorsports Press Association Hall of Fame and the International Motorsports Hall of Fame. Hendrick and his Flying 11 won a record 20 times at Martinsville. Richard Petty ranks second behind Hendrick in Martinsville wins. Way to go Denny and Coach Joe. I would have expected Rick Hendrick (who crewed as a teenager on the Flying 11) to do the scheme, but even Denny's number matches. Hats off to Ray Hendrick. Glad Tim Leeming will be at Darlington to see the Flying 11!!!

raythrowback.jpg

ray11.jpg

ray1.png




--
"Any Day is Good for Stock Car Racing"
Bobby Williamson
@bobby-williamson
08/16/17 10:17:01PM
907 posts

Dave, I agree, great choice for a retro-scheme.  I've read several of Denny's account of this story, and surprising, guess I'm showing my age, Denny admitted he didn't really know of or ever had the chance to see  "Mr Modified" in action...he was simply too young.  Denny's memory was based on Ray's son, Roy

Dennis  Garrett
@dennis-garrett
08/16/17 10:53:01PM
514 posts

Who has the famed "Flying 11" trademark rights?

1. Rick Hendrick, the present owner of the famed "Flying 11"  modified coupe?

2. Jack Tant, original engine builder, car owner/Clayton Mitchell, classis builder of the famed "Flying 11"  modified/sportsman race cars?

3. Roy Hendrick, son of Ray Hendrick, the driver of famed "Flying 11"  modified/sportsman race cars?  

During 90s, Roy Hendrick was using the famed "Flying 11" trademark to sell Ray Hendrick/Roy Hendrick collector diecast / collector cards?

Dennis Garrett

Richmond,VA.

Dave Fulton
@dave-fulton
08/17/17 09:08:25AM
9,070 posts

So right, Bobby. Unlike me, Denny never saw "Mr. Modified" in action.




--
"Any Day is Good for Stock Car Racing"
Reezee
@reezee
08/18/17 12:24:35AM
7 posts

The retro vibe looks interesting.

Dave Fulton
@dave-fulton
08/22/17 06:52:18PM
9,070 posts

Randy Hallman story - "Return of the Flying 11"

http://racingvirginia.com/news/2017/8/20/randy-hallman-hallman-the-return-of-the-flying-eleven.aspx




--
"Any Day is Good for Stock Car Racing"
Bobby Williamson
@bobby-williamson
08/22/17 09:39:50PM
907 posts

When I was a kid, I built a replica of the 'Flying 11' from bits and pieces of a '37 Chevrolet plastic model kit. It was not a tribute kit, those would be decades in the future, but I made it anyway, painted it, made the "11" and the wings as accurate as I could.  If I'm anything, I am a "coupe-man"  have loved them for over 50 years.  If there's a more complete, more perfect, more racier-looking race car, I a'int ever seen it.  How I hated NASCAR's abandonment of them for the late-model modified.  I am well aware of the official "the old bodies are getting scarce"  rationale, but it was never quite the same for me.  Personally, I think the Frances always felt there was a magical element to "late models".....the success of the "strictly stock" series certainly did nothing to disprove that theory, and optimism was high the same would be true for the modifieds.  Maybe it has.  Maybe it depends on one's definition of "success"..and maybe I'm being petty, and selfish, as much as I like the flying 11 tribute..........it belongs on an American car.  It was made famous by a '37 Chevy coupe, one that was driven to perfection, and was essentially unbeatable. It was home-made genius, and natural talent on an extraordinary level. To see a Toyota so emblazoned, just don't 'fit', at least for me.  But I'm old school.

Dave Fulton
@dave-fulton
08/22/17 11:13:45PM
9,070 posts

I understand the Toyota relcutance Bobby. Just last night I saw an ad for the Great American  somethng presented by Mtsubishi. My first thought was those were the folks who built the Jap Zeroes that attacked Pearl Harbor. But I must admit that I flew to the first New York NASCAR banquet in 1981 from Greensboro in one of Wrangler's two Mitsubishi aircraft that we called the rice rockets. The loss of the coupes was devastating to the  southern NASCAR modifed scene. Soon every southern NASCAR track except Bowman Gray dumped the modifieds. That really killed me since my Richmond hometown was such a hotbed of modified racing with 2-time National Modified Champion, Eddie Crouse, the  4-H Boys, Bill Dennis, Al Grinnan, Lennie Pond and numerous other modified stars who all switched to Late Model Sportsman as rammed down their throats by NASCAR.

Just his week I heard Kyle Petty say he drove a Prius. A far cry from his old Plymouth Road Runner.  I'd rather see the Flying 11 on Hamlin's Toyota than not see it at all. Rick Hendrick coulda/shoulda done it on a Chevy long ago.




--
"Any Day is Good for Stock Car Racing"

updated by @dave-fulton: 08/23/17 09:56:15AM
Dennis  Garrett
@dennis-garrett
08/23/17 06:54:45AM
514 posts

Copy of RacingVirginia.com race article:


HALLMAN: THE RETURN OF THE FLYING ELEVEN


August 20, 2017 /

"The Flying Eleven."
 
It's a phrase I heard soon after I had settled into the motorsports beat at The Richmond News Leader back in 1972.
 
That was the number – and the way it was displayed – on cars driven by Richmond's Ray Hendrick. If I wasn't already familiar with the Flying 11, I was told, I soon would be.
 
And so it was. Again and again I saw Hendrick in victory lane – in that red car with its sides festooned by a number 11 in a circle trailed by fiery wings.
 
Ray had already earned the sobriquet "Mr. Modified" for his decades of winning races – hundreds of them – in that NASCAR division.
 
Most of the times I saw him race he was driving a Late Model Sportsman. After a while on the beat, I reckoned a good case could be made to call him "Mr. Late Model Sportsman" as well. He was as good a stock car racer as anybody I would ever see.
 
A likeable guy, Ray was modest for such an accomplished driver. If you had a question he gave you a straight answer. And his sense of humor came through.
 
NASCAR Cup driver Denny Hamlin, who grew up in Chesterfield County and began his racing career on some of the same tracks where Ray Hendrick once ruled, chose the Flying 11 as his Throwback paint scheme for Darlington Raceway's Bojangles' Southern 500 on Labor Day weekend.
 
Darlington has made its Throwback theme an annual happening. This year, it's the 1980s. Nearly the whole field will sport paint schemes that evoke those years.
 
As it happens, Hamlin developed his initial awe of the Flying 11 when those cars were driven by Ray's son, Roy Hendrick. More about the younger Hendrick later. Let's look at Ray's phenomenal record.
 
Ray won an estimated 700-plus races in his career. Perhaps the hardest-to-beat combination in all those years was Hendrick at the wheel of a Flying 11 built by Clayton Mitchell and powered by an engine from Jack Tant's shop.

Ray Hendrick is in the International Motorsports Hall of Fame, the National Motorsports Press Association Hall of Fame and the Virginia Sports Hall of Fame. He was named one of NASCAR's 50 greatest drivers in the organization's first 50 years.
 
He won at all kinds of tracks – from the ultra-fast 2.66-mile high-banked Talladega Superspeedway in Alabama to the flat quarter-mile dirt (and later 1/3-mile paved) Dogtrack Speedway in Moyock, N.C.
 
Ray won an all-time record 20 races at the Martinsville Speedway half mile between 1963 and 1975. Next on that track's list: Richard Petty with 15 wins.
 
For decades, wherever and whenever he raced, Ray had to be counted among the favorites. There was hardly a major Modified or Late Model Sportsman race he hadn't won at one time or another. "He won at Trenton and Langhorne and tracks all up and down the East Coast," his son recalled.
 
Ray Hendrick died of complications from cancer in 1990. He was 61. By then, Roy Hendrick had already done his father proud.
 
Roy, who owns and operates a pair of muffler and automotive shops in the Richmond area, steered that winged number to seven track championships and more than 150 wins.
 
In 1983 he made a three-track Late Model Stock Car championship sweep at Southside Speedway, South Boston Speedway and Orange County Speedway in Rougemont, N.C.
 
It was Roy who first wowed Denny Hamlin in the Flying 11 when Hamlin went to watch races on Friday nights at Southside Speedway in the 1980s.
 
"Back then, it was Roy Hendrick, Ray's son, who was dominating races at Southside Speedway," Hamlin said in a NASCAR.com video. Hamlin learned later that Roy's father was the famous Mr. Modified.
 
He did research on Ray Hendrick, and when it came time to decide on a Throwback paint scheme, Hamlin "got to thinking that, hey, I'm a short-track guy myself. So, why not throw it back to someone that I idolized, his son, Roy Hendrick, and bring back the Flying 11."
 
Hamlin's effort got an assist from rival Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series car owner, Rick Hendrick (no relation). Ray was one of his boyhood racing idols. Rick's father had been a pit crew member for Ray, and Rick had actually worked on Ray's cars for Tant and Mitchell.

Rick Hendrick is building a replica of the Flying 11 Modified coupe to bring to Darlington.
 
Roy Hendrick – who plans to be at Darlington for the race with several family members – said Hamlin did far more than just tell his paint-shop crew to take care of things. Rather, Hamlin took a personal interest in the look of his throwback car, Roy said, "making sure it's exactly right,"
 
In images released by Hamlin's team, sponsor Sports Clips gets its name on the hood and quarterpanels. The sides are dominated by the Flying 11 – the font of the number against the bright red, the mixed red-yellow-orange of the wings and the five swooping wingtips.
 
"I mean, it looks just like the car I grew up watching in the '80s and '90s," Hamlin said. "I think it was great that Sports Clips has allowed me to help out with the design process.
 
"Getting every detail is what's important," he told NASCAR.com, "all the way to making sure your fire suit looks the same to what the throwback scheme was. That was important."
 
Ray Hendrick ran at Darlington in the 1956 Southern 500. Engine failure left him with a finish of 52nd in a 70-car field. That was the first of a handful of Cup Series Hendrick entered.
 
Hamlin likes Darlington. He has started 11 races there and has a win and three second-place finishes. Only twice has he finished out of the top ten.
 
He wants to see the Flying 11 in victory lane. "That's really where it needs to be," he said.
 
If he wins, Hamlin's celebration might include the newest member of his family. On Aug. 15, Hamlin and his longtime girlfriend, Jordan Fish, welcomed into the world their second child, Molly Gold Hamlin. Molly Gold has an older sister, four-year-old Taylor.
 
Randy Hallman brings his more than 45 years of sports writing experience to RacingVirginia.com. Hallman retired from the Richmond Times-Dispatch in February, 2016, but continues to write a weekly NASCAR column for the paper. He began his journalism career in 1972 at the Richmond News Leader, then joined the Richmond Times-Dispatch when the two papers merged in 1992. He has also authored or contributed to several books on NASCAR. Randy's weekly Racing Virginia column appears on Sundays.

Dennis Garrett

Richmond,Va. USA

Dennis  Garrett
@dennis-garrett
08/27/17 11:25:20AM
514 posts

Where's the orginial Flying 11 Modified coupe?

There's got to be at least 10 full size replicas of the Flying 11 Modified coupe.

In above Randy Hallman article mention that Rick Hendrick is building a replica of the Flying 11 Modified coupe to bring to Darlington.

Roy Hendrick built an replica of the Flying 11 Modified coupe.

How about getting together all of the full size replicas of the Flying 11 Modified coupe for the up coming Darlington throwback week.

Dennis Garrett

Richmond,Va. USA