The eNASCAR PEAK Antifreeze iRacing Series playoffs are here, and so is the one track that always brings out the best looking cars of the year: Darlington Raceway.

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The track “Too Tough To Tame” has always produced some of the most exciting racing in NASCAR, from the fabled “Darlington stripe” to a series of close finishes over the years. But with the return of the Southern 500 to Labor Day weekend a few years ago, Darlington weekend has also become a celebration of all things classic NASCAR, featuring the return of legendary paint schemes and iconic figures in the sport.

Tonight’s eNASCAR PEAK Antifreeze iRacing Series action from Darlington will be no exception, as some of the top drivers in the series throw back to paint schemes from the past 30 years. Here’s a rundown of some of the different classic paint schemes that you’ll see on track tonight:

No.

Driver

Team

Throwback

6 Zack Novak Roush Fenway Racing Mark Martin’s 1993 Valvoline car
7 Ryan Lowe Independent Alan Kulwicki’s 1992 Hooters car
14 Casey Kirwan Clint Bowyer Racing Kyle Petty’s 1989 PEAK car
15 Michael Guariglia Jim Beaver eSports Dale Earnhardt’s 1982 Wrangler car
18 Bobby Zalenski Joe Gibbs Racing Coy Gibbs’ 2001 MBNA truck
20 Jake Nichols Joe Gibbs Racing JD Gibbs’ 1999 MBNA car
28 Garrett Lowe Renegades Davey Allison’s 1988 Havoline car
30 Blake Reynolds Team Dillon eSports Jeff Green’s 2001 AOL car
31 Logan Kress Independent Mike Dillon’s 2001 Rockwell Automation car
33 Ben Nelson Team Dillon eSports Joe Nemechek’s 2000 Oakwood Homes car
42 Dylan Duval Independent Juan Montoya’s 2007 Havoline/Telcel car
46 Jimmy Mullis Richmond Raceway eSports Ken Schrader’s 2000s Federated Auto Parts truck
47 Nick Ottinger JTG Daugherty Racing Ron Bouchard’s 1984 Majik Market car
51 Eric J. Smith Jim Beaver eSports Jim Beaver’s 2013 Trophy Truck
77 Ashton Crowder Burton Kligerman eSports Parker Kligerman’s 2013 North American Power car
80 Brandon Kettelle Independent Derrike Cope’s 1995 Mane n’ Tail car
83 Adam Benefiel Independent Lake Speed’s 1988 Wynn’s car
88 Brad Davies JR Motorsports Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s 2008 Delphi car
90 Malik Ray Richmond Raceway eSports Jeff Fuller’s 1997 Sunoco car
99 Logan Clampitt Burton Kligerman eSports Jeff Burton’s 2000 Exide car

But the retro flavor to tonight’s race is far from the only compelling storyline playing out. As the first of four playoff races, Darlington is the closest we’ve seen to a level playing field atop the championship table since the season began at Daytona in February. The top eight drivers have all seen their points reset to 2,000, plus three bonus points per victory. Here’s a look at who made the cut, led by regular season champion Blake Reynolds of Team Dillon eSports, and who will fight for the four championship-eligible spots at Homestead-Miami Speedway in October:

No.

Driver

Team

Throwback

T1 Ryan Luza Flipsid3 Tactics 2009; 3 wins, 7 top 5s, 329 laps led
T1 Zack Novak Roush Fenway Racing 2009; 3 wins, 5 top 5s, 233 laps led
3 Keegan Leahy G2 Esports 2006; 2 wins, 8 top 5s, 308 laps led
T4 Bobby Zalenski Joe Gibbs Racing 2003; 1 win, 5 top 5s, 131 laps led
T4 Garrett Lowe Renegades 2003; 1 win, 5 top 5s, 10 laps led
T4 Jimmy Mullis Richmond Raceway eSports 2003; 1 win, 3 top 5s, 42 laps led
T7 Blake Reynolds Team Dillon eSports 2000; 6 top 5s, 4 laps led
T7 Michael Conti JR Motorsports 2000; 3 top 5s, 69 laps led

Tonight’s eNASCAR PEAK Antifreeze iRacing Series event from Darlington Raceway kicks off at 9PM ET on the iRacing eSports Network on Facebook, Twitch, and YouTube. Following Darlington, the series resumes its playoffs at Indianapolis Motor Speedway on September 10.

Driver Profile: Blake Reynolds

He’s still looking for victory lane, but Team Dillon eSports’ Blake Reynolds was the top point scorer in the 2019 eNASCAR PEAK Antifreeze iRacing Series regular season through sheer consistency. Drafted after the season opener when 2018 Daytona 500 winner Austin Dillon entered the series, Reynolds scored a runner-up finish at Richmond to kick off a streak of seven consecutive top 10 finishes.

Now in his third year in the series, Reynolds finished 21st in points in 2017 and 25th last year. He earned his way into the field for 2019 by winning the 2018 NASCAR iRacing Pro Series championship over the winter, scoring five top-fives in seven events and finishing 45 points ahead of runners-up Cody Byus and Ashton Crowder.

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