CONCORD, N.C. -- Saturday night, Jeff Gordon's iconic rainbow paint scheme returns to the No. 24 Axalta Chevrolet SS.
"Honestly it's just the development from nothing," Ray Evernham said of his fondest memory of the paint scheme. "We all had very little experience -- me, Jeff, most of the people on that team -- and then growing into a team that won three championships and kind of dominated the mid-'90s there. When you look back on that, you just think, 'Man, how did you do that?'"
To Evernham's point, from Gordon's very first start in 1992 through the 2000 season, the rainbow paint scheme compiled some impressive numbers.
The car made 52 trips to Victory Lane, earning at least one win at 17 different tracks. In it, Gordon amassed 129 top-five finishes, 166 top-10s, 33 pole positions and 10,708 laps led. Not to mention a rookie of the year trophy, an All-Star Race victory and three NASCAR Cup Series championships.
"I think people, when they look at that car and look back at the races that it won -- Daytona a couple times, Indy the inaugural year, at Darlington for a million bucks and all those things -- it was just such a very unique paint scheme for its time," Evernham said. "It's one of those cars I think that'll continue to be recognized in racing history."
History is a big part of the reason Evernham is so thrilled to see the paint scheme make its return under the lights at Bristol Motor Speedway this weekend.
"I think it's really cool, because it's such a big part of Jeff's history and Hendrick Motorsports history," he said. "Plus, the fans seemed to really want it and enjoy it. It was something for its time that was really different, so I think seeing it again and Jeff having a chance to drive it again is really cool not just for me but I think for all of the other people that were on that team in the early '90s -- some of those guys are still there today.
"So it's certainly got a special place in my heart."
Now that the #Rainbow24 is back for one more run, what does the former crew chief think of the 2015 version of the scheme?
"I think they did a good job bringing back that version of the paint," he smiled, "but I'd like to see it on a '95 Monte Carlo myself."