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First look: Kyle Busch's new Daytona 500 paint scheme

Kyle Busch’s candy car is getting a makeover for a handful of races in the 2019 season, starting with the Daytona 500, the NASCAR Cup Series’ season-opener on Feb. 17 at Daytona International Speedway.

Busch’s No. 18 Toyota is sponsored by Mars, so M&M’s and Skittles — now synonymous with Busch’s name in the sport — are often major features of its brightly colored paint schemes, leading to the car’s nickname. For this year’s Daytona 500, M&M’s will be on the car, but the paint scheme has a lot more actual chocolate than colors on it for the brand’s new chocolate bar, in addition to the popular red and yellow candy characters.

Here’s the first look at the M&M’s Chocolate Bar paint scheme for Busch’s No. 18 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota for the 2019 Daytona 500, which he called a “Chocolate Bar hot rod.”

Courtesy of M&M’s

Courtesy of M&M’s

The chocolate bar paint scheme will also be on Busch’s car this season for the Pennzoil 400 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, the STP 500 at Martinsville Speedway and the GEICO 500 at Talladega Superspeedway.

Busch is coming off one of the most dominant season’s of his 15-year career racing in the NASCAR Cup Series. He tied Kevin Harvick with a series-leading eight wins in 2018, but even as the drivers to beat all season, they both — along with Martin Truex Jr. — lost the championship to Joey Logano in November.

The 2015 Cup Series champion is still looking for his first Daytona 500 win.

His best finish in the iconic race was third in 2016 behind Denny Hamlin and Truex, respectively. Of Busch’s 51 Cup Series checkered flags, only one has been at Daytona International Speedway, and it was the midseason Coke Zero 400 in 2008.

In the way too early odds for the 2019 Daytona 500, Busch was at 14-to-1, tied with his older brother, Kurt Busch, Truex, Ryan Blaney and Ricky Stenhouse Jr. Brad Keselowski was the favorite at 8-to-1, but on the chaotic 2.5-mile race track, truly anyone could win.

Busch’s No. 18 Toyota is getting a makeover for a handful of races this NASCAR season, including the Daytona 500.

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