FORT WORTH, Texas – Daring to bare in a skimpy Princess Leia costume might have been a “risqué” decision for his annual Halloween party, but Ryan Blaney needed a partner just as bold.
“I couldn’t find anyone to be Jabba (The Hut) with me,” Blaney said Friday at Texas Motor Speedway. “A lot of people didn’t know what I was. They were like, “What are you?’ I was like, ‘Watch the movie, man.’”
This is where it might have helped to have Jabba alongside as context for the costume’s origins in a “Return of the Jedi” scene that is set in Jabba’s lair. Leia, who spends much of the “Star Wars” saga clad in regal white or uniform, is wearing a metal-plated bikini and is attached to Jabba by a chain.
“I just thought it was a funny costume,” Blaney said. “Halloween you can dress as whoever you want and it was my house so I figured I could do whatever I wanted. I am a big Star Wars fan. I saw (the costume) online and thought it was funny.
“I have gotten mixed reviews about it. At the end of the day I don’t really care. I thought it was funny at the time. … Maybe next year I will step it up. I thought that was a pretty risque outfit. Luckily, it wasn’t too cold.”
A photo of Blaney’s costume that went viral on NASCAR Twitter also introduced the world to a massive Darth Vader tattoo on Blaney’s right thigh. The Team Penske driver has gotten a couple of Star Wars-themed tattoos the past two years (most recently in January).
“A lot of people thought they were fake,” he said. “I wanted to be able to tell people they were fake, and they wash off, but they don’t, no matter how hard you scrub.
“I have been a fan of tattoos for a long time, and I have a handful now and am working on my leg there. I have a couple Star Wars ones on my leg. They stop at my knee right now. I have a ‘Mother’ tattoo on my knee. It is something I have always enjoyed.”