Originally written on Race Review Online  |  Last updated 11/17/14

BRISTOL, TN - AUGUST 21: Michael Waltrip, driver of the #55 NAPA Auto Parts Toyota, leans on his car prior to practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Sharpie 500 at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 21, 2009 in Bristol, Tennessee. (Photo by Geoff Burke/Getty Images for NASCAR)

Michael Waltrip may not be NASCAR's best-known owner driver (that honor goes to three-time champ Tony Stewart). But he still manages to get in the spotlight regularly, thanks to an outgoing personality and a willingness to sacrifice dignity for the worthy cause of making interesting commercials for his sponsors. On Sunday, he will make his second Sprint Cup start of the season at Talladega Superspeedway.

A two-time Daytona 500 champion, Waltrip received help for this weekend's race at Talladega from nine-year-old Emery Beavis of Dyerbury, TN, who designed the No.55 Toyota’s paint scheme. Beavis won the grand-prize in the Aaron’s “2012 Color Your Way to Talladega” contest. She and three guests will attend the Aaron’s Dream Weekend in Talladega to watch Waltrip drive her design in Sunday’s Aaron’s 499 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race.

Sunday marks Waltrip’s 52nd Cup Series start on the 2.66-mile Alabama track. Waltrip finished ninth in last fall’s race at Talladega and owns a win, seven top-five and 15 top-10 finishes in his starts at Talladega Superspeedway. He’s also led 212 laps at the high-banked track. On Monday (April 30), Waltrip celebrated his 49th birthday.

Best Talladega memory: “As a kid, in 1981, I remember going to Talladega sitting in the grandstands watching my brother (Darrell Waltrip) race. On the final lap Darrell came off turn four racing Terry Labonte for the win. Out of nowhere, Ron Bouchard shot past them and won the race right at the finish line. That was probably one of the coolest races I had ever seen, except that my brother didn’t win. Since that moment I always wanted to race at Talladega. I got my chance and in 2003, I came off turn four with the lead and Jeff Gordon tried to pass me. I was able to hold him off for the win. I remember that day in Victory Lane thinking about the race I watched in 1981. It felt great for me to finally do what I watched 22 years earlier.”

On special paint scheme: “I love the paint scheme Emery Beavis colored for me. It’s a happy paint scheme, and I am a happy person so it suits me just fine. When I see that colorful paint scheme it just makes me smile. I think it’s really cool how Aaron’s gets the fans involved and it makes them feel like they are a part of the team. I can’t wait to meet Emery and her family this weekend in Talladega.”

MWR PR

GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Bryant attends Cowboys OTAs despite not signing contract

Are Dwyane Wade and the Heat headed for a split?

Good news for the effort to bring an NHL team to Vegas

Adrian Peterson goes on social media rant regarding contract

Report: John Wall, friends kicked off plane in Las Vegas

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Broncos OT Ryan Clady suffers torn ACL in practice

Report: Buffalo Sabres to hire Dan Bylsma as head coach

Marc Trestman will make Joe Flacco a Pro Bowler

Could Tyrod Taylor be the Buffalo Bills’ savior?

Chicago Bulls fire Tom Thibodeau after five seasons

LeSean McCoy refuses to return Chip Kelly's calls

Dee Gordon thought Marlins’ manager hire was a joke

Which MLB teams are most changed since Opening Day?

Seattle Mariners: Back to .500

JJ Watt doesn't care for chance to be on 'Hard Knocks'

McElwain compliments Muschamp culture at UF, previous staff 'snakebit'

Montreal mayor to meet Manfred in hopes of getting a franchise back

Five things we'd like to see on 'Hard Knocks' with the Texans

Chipper Jones challenged military veteran to fight

President Obama answers NBA questions on Twitter

'Entourage' creator rips Eli Manning for ditching movie

Ronda Rousey upset with Bethe Correia for suicide comments

The Cleveland Cavaliers are top (under)dogs

All Sports News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Are Dwyane Wade and the Heat headed for a split?

Good news for the effort to bring an NHL team to Vegas

JJ Watt doesn't care for chance to be on 'Hard Knocks'

Ryan Clady suffers torn ACL

'Entourage' creator rips Eli Manning

Brandon Marshall, Geno Smith are roommates

The Cavaliers are top (under)dogs

Bryce Harper on his breakout

WATCH: Jon Lester sets MLB hitless record

Six moves that made the Warriors NBA title contenders

USA Soccer, CONCACAF losers in FIFA’s ‘World Cup of fraud’

The 3-point shot has become a divisive metaphor in the NBA

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.