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Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Derrike Cope #37 Poison Ford

    Hello again diecast fans, and welcome back to the NASCAR Racing Champions diecast blog~ Today's post is one I'm pretty excited about, because it features one of my favorite all time drivers (Derrike Cope), as well as one of my favorite 80's bands (Poison)~ I've always wanted to do a custom of this car, but didn't know how to write the blog for it, since it only ran in one race during the 2002 season~ Since then, I've figured out ways to work around that, so I figured now is as good a time as ever for this post~

    When I was a little kid, my cassette player was always blasting Poison~  The "Look What the Cat Dragged In", "Open Up and Say... Ahh!", or "Flesh & Blood" albums were my favorites~ All three albums rock out, and I suggest you give them a listen if you never have, or haven't in a while~ They still hold up to this day as classic albums~ Now that you've got some good background music to listen to, let's dig into Derrike Cope's lone race in the #37 Poison Ford~

                                  Custom Derrike Cope #37 Poison Racing Champions Card~
Derrike Cope #37 Poison Racing Champions 1/64 NASCAR diecast blog Pocono 2002 Bret Michaels

     Following the 1999 season, when he made 15 Cup races, and failed to qualify for another 15, the 1990 Daytona 500 winner was having a hard time finding sponsorship, or even a team to drive for~ He didn't even have a ride to start the 2002 Cup season, but was contacted by Ed Campbell to drive his #57 CLR Ford in the UAW-Daimler Chrysler 400 @ Las Vegas~ Derrike failed to make the race, and was let go from his driving duties with the team~

    He next tried to make the field in the Coca-Cola 600 @ Charlotte, but again failed to qualify in his self-owned #37 Sound Moves/Ozzfest Ford~ Cope was back to try again the following week in the MBNA Platinum 400 @ Dover, but he again failed to make the race, again driving the #37 Sound Moves/Ozzfest Ford~

                                      Bret Michaels poses in front of the #37 Poison Ford~
Derrike Cope #37 Poison Racing Champions 1/64 NASCAR diecast blog Pocono 2002 Bret Michaels

     Cope's first race he actually made came in the Sirius Satellite Radio 400 @ Michigan~ This time, he was driving Warren Johnson's #37 Ford, sponsored by the country music band "Alabama"~ Cope's car was ill all week long, and he qualified 42nd in the 43 car field~ Dale Jarrett won the pole in his #88 UPS Ford, and he also led a race high 70 laps, while finishing in 2nd place~

    The race was eventually won by Matt Kenseth, in his #17 DeWalt Power Tools Ford~ Although Cope was able to finish the race,  his car just wasn't up to speed like it needed to be, and he finished in 38th place, six laps down~ The next race on the schedule was the Pennsylvania 500 @ Pocono, and this is the race Cope ran the Poison car in~

                                              Cope on track in the #37 Poison Ford~
Derrike Cope #37 Poison Racing Champions 1/64 NASCAR diecast blog Pocono 2002 Bret Michaels

     Poison was about to release their 6th studio album in 2002, and decided to use some marketing money to get the word out~ They contacted Cope, who gladly put their logos all over his car, and man was this car a beauty!~ Cope enjoyed getting a little extra attention, with lead singer Bret Michaels at the track for added publicity, it must have felt like winning the Daytona 500 all over again.. or at least Dover~ :P

    Derrike was eager to show his stuff out on the track, but his qualifying effort was pretty poor, and he would start the race from the 41st spot~ The race ended up being red flagged due to rain 150 laps in, and didn't end until 8:00 PM, when it was called due to darkness~ Cope lasted until lap 154, when his engine blew up~ He would finish the race in 35th place~ Bret Michaels cried, and threw his Poison water bottle at Dr. Jerry Punch (not really), and Poison never sponsored another car again (really)~

    The race was won by Bill Elliott, who also started on the pole for the last time in his decorated NASCAR career~ It was called with 25 laps remaining, and Sterling Marlin probably should have won, but I'm glad he didn't~ I didn't really like him, and I was happy for Elliott, who was always a fan favorite~ All in all, the race lasted dang near eight hours, in one of the most boring races I can recall, besides Bill winning the thing~ 

                                                Derrike on pit road in the #37 Poison Ford~
Derrike Cope #37 Poison Racing Champions 1/64 NASCAR diecast blog Pocono 2002 Bret Michaels

   The Copester then started driving for Beth Ann Morgenthau, in the #49 Dodge~ In his first race with the team, Cope crashed out in the Pepsi 400 @ Michigan, finishing in 37th~ He then drove the #49 Billy Ray Cyrus Dodge (for real) in the Sharpie 500 @ Bristol~ I lol'd the entire race watching Cope turn laps with Billy Ray Dorkus on the hood of his car, well.. not really the entire race, as Cope would crash out, and finish 41st, after only running 162 laps~

    He then drove the #49 BAM (Beth Ann Morgenthau) Racing Dodge in the next two races, with a best finish of 37th in the NAPA 500 @ Atlanta~ In the season finale Ford 400 @ Homestead, Cope drove the #49 Miccosukee Indian Gaming Resorts Dodge~ He started dead last in the 43 car field, and finished a season high (for real) 34th place~ Cope finished 53rd in the final points standings~

                                                     The Hollyweird album by Poison~
Derrike Cope #37 Poison Racing Champions 1/64 NASCAR diecast blog Pocono 2002 Bret Michaels

    Although they're considered an "80's band", the Hollyweird album was quite an enjoyment back in 2002~ It was the first album featuring the original line-up since "Flesh & Blood" (1990)~ The album sold 11,000 copies in its first week, and debuted at number 103 on the Billboard 200 chart, and number 8 on the Independent Albums chart~

    The album combines their classic old style with a fresh, new feel that go together nicely~ They also do a pretty cool cover of "Squeeze Box" by The Who~ I never was much of a fan of The Who, because Pete Townsend is a douche tunnel, but I do like "Squeeze Box"~ If you've listened to Poison before, but never listened to Hollyweird, check it out here~ If you like their old stuff, you'll enjoy this~ Stinky ol' Bret Michaels just does solo tours now, so a Poison show is out of the question for now, but if Guns n' Roses can get back together, these guys can do it too~ :)

                                                       Derrike Cope #37 Poison Ford~
Derrike Cope #37 Poison Racing Champions 1/64 NASCAR diecast blog Pocono 2002 Bret Michaels
                                                               Click pics to enlarge~
Derrike Cope #37 Poison Racing Champions 1/64 NASCAR diecast blog Pocono 2002 Bret Michaels

    I was very pleased with the outcome of this one~ I've gotta quit being so lazy with the first picture though~ That's starting to get on my nerves.. it just takes a long time, so I get lazy and just warp it on there in Photoshop~ lol~ One of these winter days coming up, I'll fix them all.. but I'm not worried about it currently~ This just has to be the coolest Derrike Cope car in the history of ever!~ I love that color of green, and when it's paired with purple and black, it's super amazing!~

   This car was easier to make than I had first thought it would be, so don't get discouraged if you're trying to make Photoshop customs of your own, just because it looks like it would be hard to do~ Sometimes, I'll start on a car that I think will be easy, and I'll end up spending 4 or 5 hours tinkering around on the two pictures, that is, if I do them both the right way~ I have often time spent over eight hours on a single blog post~ If it's a rare driver, or a one off car, it's hard to track down information and pictures, then I have to edit all of them~ It's hard work, but the finished product is worth it~

    I don't know how much longer Derrike Cope will continue racing, but I hope he is like Morgan Shepherd and races till he's nearing 80~ He's one of the only racers still out there from my childhood, and I enjoy seeing him out on the track, regardless of what position he finishes~ I get sad when he doesn't make the race, and I always look forward to seeing him in the next one~ Thank you all for stopping by the blog again~ If you liked this post, check out my other post on Derrike here~ Below are some videos ranging throughout Cope's Cup career, as there is no videos of his Poison car~ Please share this post on Twitter, Facebook, or any other form of social media~ :)

                                                          Top 10 Derrike Cope crashes~

                                               Derrike Cope on the pole?~ (ends up 5th)

                                                            Both of Cope's Cup wins~

                                        Derrike's car explodes to death~ 2016 Watkins Glen~

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