NASCAR Unveils Air Titan 2.0: NASCAR introduced an evolution in innovation - the results of which will continue to elevate a fan's race-viewing experience to an even greater level. The Toyota-hauled next generation of Air Titan, the cutting-edge track-drying technology, made its race weekend debut at Martinsville Speedway today. Air Titan 2.0 is a more compact, more nimble and more environmentally friendly version of its innovative predecessor - one that since its introduction in February 2013 has rescued multiple races, including this year's Daytona 500. Air Titan 2.0 signals a major step forward in NASCAR's innovation cycle. It replaces the bulky support vehicles required by Air Titan 1.0 with a single, self-contained unit that's perched on the bed of a Toyota Tundra. By addressing the size of the power source, NASCAR now has the ability to deploy up to 21 units in Toyota Tundras at larger venues and operate more efficiently on smaller tracks. The Air Titan 2.0 more than triples the blade capacity of the original version and deliver 2.6 times more air volume at a speed of 568 mph, while raising the air temperature by 70 degrees over ambient. With the combination of water removal and accelerated evaporation, the ultimate goal is to reduce track-drying time by 80 percent. Air Titan 2.0 will consume nearly 80 percent less fuel and emit 80 percent less carbon dioxides. Air Titan 2.0 works in conjunction with the Eco-Infused Elgin Track Vacuum/Sweeper and existing jet dryers. In coordination with the roll out of the Air Titan 2.0, Elgin has now become the Official Sweeper of NASCAR Green.(NASCAR)(3-29-2014)
Janssen Pharmaceuticals joins NASCAR as official partner: NASCAR announced that it is teaming up with Janssen Pharmaceuticals, Inc., to help make a difference for racing fans who are at risk for or are living with blood clots. Janssen, the maker of XARELTO (rivaroxaban), an important medicine used to treat and help prevent blood clots, is now the Official Cardiovascular Partner of NASCAR. Blood clots have hit close to home for the NASCAR community. Brian Vickers, full-time driver of the #55 Aaron's Dream Machine Toyota for Michael Waltrip Racing in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, recently overcame his second episode with the condition. Having completed his treatment with XARELTO and being cleared by his physician, Brian is now competing again in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series and is currently 18th in points. 900,000 Americans experience blood clots every year2 that result in nearly 300,000 deaths. According to The National Blood Clot Alliance, many factors can increase a person's risk for developing blood clots, including age; being overweight; having other chronic diseases; immobility; hormones and pregnancy; long air travel; surgery; trauma or injury.(NASCAR)(3-22-2014)
Goodyear named recipient of 2014 "Driving Business Award": For the past 60 years The Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company has been a fixture at the track each race weekend, developing and supplying tires for the most demanding drivers in the world to face the grueling conditions of NASCAR. Goodyear's success in the sport has not been limited to its efforts on the track. [Friday] in a ceremony hosted at the NASCAR Fuel for Business (NFFB) meeting in Las Vegas, NASCAR Chief Operating Officer Brent Dewar officially presented Goodyear with the "Driving Business Award." The annual award is bestowed to the Official NASCAR Partner that demonstrates extraordinary leadership and results through its participation in the NFFB Council. Celebrating its 10th anniversary, the NFFB Council is a business-to-business platform that brings together an exclusive group of more than 50 Official NASCAR Partners to buy and sell products and services. Since its inception in 2004, the quarterly meetings have facilitated more than 1,000 "speed meeting" sessions where Official NASCAR Partners meet and do business with one another. Goodyear has been a proud member of the NFFB Council since 2008, and currently conducts business with nearly half of the companies in the council. As a result, Goodyear has formed a number of key marketing and promotional relationships with Official NASCAR Partners that help drive retail traffic and sales.(NASCAR)(3-8-2013)
NASCAR evaluates sponsorship: NASCAR has transformed its research and insights capabilities, giving the racing-car circuit's commercial partners - like Coca-Cola - a deeper insight into return on investment than ever before. Sean Doherty, NASCAR director/digital and social-media engagement, told an American Marketing Association (AMA) webcast audience: "The Coca-Cola Co. came to us and wanted a brand analysis for each of their drivers. They wanted share for each driver; how each one engaged with fans; and the size of their social footprint. They wanted to be able to activate their brand against a track, a race, or off site as well." Stepping up to that challenge, said Doherty, "We had to transition from a PR department to a fully-integrated marketing communications model. We took a deep dive into the industry's position relative to digital and social media. We researched the way that fans experienced our events. And we looked at the way people consumed other sports and entertainment properties. We searched for growth markets to attract new fans to the sport. And we also took a critical look at our current portfolio of drivers." NASCAR found a partner to give it the tools required to make this transition, as information technology group Hewlett-Packer designed and created the Fan and Media Engagement Center. This research facility features 13 screens of 46 inches in size, as well as three work stations and the analytical tools NASCAR needs to help race-car teams, tracks, sponsors, broadcast partners process more data faster.
The facility provided Coca-Cola with the insight it needed, as well as securing engagement from a group of other Fortune 100 companies, including Sprint, Goodyear Tires, MillerCoors and ExxonMobil.(Warc)(2-11-2014)
Flowmaster Becomes Exclusive Performance Exhaust Of NASCAR: NASCAR announced a new multi-year agreement with Flowmaster designating it as the exclusive NASCAR Performance partner for performance exhaust system components, which include performance mufflers, catalytic converters, headers and installation accessories. Flowmaster will complement their category rights with participation in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Contingency Program. Flowmaster will leverage its new designation for exhaust system components and the power of NASCAR’s intellectual property to activate at various retail and wholesale channels nationwide and at-track through aggressive customer hosting.
NASCAR fans are more likely to be do-it-yourselfers when it comes to automotive maintenance and repairs, including mufflers. According to independent research conducted by Scarborough (USA+ 2013 Release 1) among consumers who have a vehicle, NASCAR fans are approximately 50 percent more likely than non-fans to have had a muffler repair or service in the past year and are approximately 55 percent more likely to have either done the muffler repair or service themselves or have someone else do it for free.
“We’re proud to welcome Flowmaster to the NASCAR family because they exemplify the type of reliability our fans have come to expect from NASCAR Performance partners,” said Norris Scott, NASCAR vice president of partnership marketing. “NASCAR teams and contingency sponsors display a level of synergy and teamwork that is unparalleled and continues to be one of the major reasons companies choose to partner with NASCAR.”
The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Contingency Program strives to build strong relationships with high-quality, performance-driven brands that are leaders in their respective categories and awards money to NASCAR teams after each race and at the end of each season. Flowmaster becomes the third new company this year to join the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Contingency Program, where companies have their sponsor decals on the front fender of competitor race cars.
"I can’t wait until next February when the Flowmaster brand hits the high banks of Daytona International Speedway in NASCAR’s premier series,” said Flowmaster Chief Marketing Officer Nate Shelton. “We have been developing exhaust systems for 30 years and will continue to manufacture best-in-class exhausts and mufflers for NASCAR fans who demand performance from their car or truck.”
Flowmaster is constantly developing the highest quality exhaust products at its state-of-the-art Research and Development Center in Santa Rosa, Calif., through innovation and decades of manufacturing experience. All Flowmaster mufflers and exhaust systems are developed and manufactured in the USA.(NASCAR)(12-14-2013)
Nationwide will not renew Series sponsorship UPDATE: Nationwide Insurance will exit its title sponsorship of NASCAR's secondary series following the '14 season, but the company plans to increase its spending in the sport by sponsoring a Sprint Cup team, buying media, cutting track deals and maintaining its position as NASCAR's official insurer. Nationwide is in the sixth year of a seven-year series title sponsorship. The title rights and media package cost approximately $8M a year. Nationwide CMO Matt Jauchius said the deal, which was signed in '07, had helped the company expand its business and earn the respect and trust of avid NASCAR fans. By increasing its sponsorship in the Sprint Cup, where it currently sponsors Roush Fenway Racing driver Ricky Stenhouse Jr., and continuing to endorse and feature Danica Patrick and Dale Earnhardt Jr. in advertising during Cup races, he hopes the company can expand brand awareness with casual NASCAR fans. Jauchius said, "Being a series sponsor was the right thing at that particular time but we see Sundays (for Cup races) as the next step. You'll see us lean into this even more at the Cup level. ... I will spend more money in 2014 and 2015 (in NASCAR) by shifting assets around a bit." NASCAR plans to begin searching for a new title sponsor immediately. That effort will be led by Chief Sales Officer Jim O'Connell.(Sports Business Journal)(9-18-2013)
UPDATE: NASCAR and Nationwide Insurance have finalized a new agreement to extend Nationwide's position as the official auto, home, life and business insurance partner of NASCAR through 2017. As part of the new contract, Nationwide Insurance also will become the presenting sponsor of the Betty Jane France Humanitarian Award. The insurer, in its sixth year of a seven-year agreement as title sponsor of the NASCAR Nationwide Series, will pivot from its series entitlement sponsorship and focus its NASCAR marketing programs on the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series beginning in 2015.
"As a series entitlement sponsor and savvy marketer, Nationwide Insurance has been an ideal partner to our sport and we're proud to have them continue to be part of our family of Official NASCAR Partners," said Steve Phelps, NASCAR chief marketing officer. "The company has been highly successful in using our sport as a platform to enhance its brand and drive its business and has stated publicly how much value they glean as a series sponsor. The fact that Nationwide will continue its investment across our sport – in a variety of ways and for many years to come – is encouraging and speaks to the power of NASCAR as a marketing platform."
The insurer began its 15-year motorsports history as a hospitality sponsor with targeted race tracks and progressed to the Official Insurance Partner of NASCAR and the title sponsor for the U.S.'s No. 2 motorsports series. Nationwide Insurance will look to build a more consistent presence in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series enabling its message to reach an even larger NASCAR audience.
"The NASCAR Nationwide Series is a great proving ground not only for drivers and crew members, but for sponsors too," said Nationwide chief marketing officer, Matt Jauchius. "We're proud of the success Nationwide Insurance has attained through our relationships with NASCAR and the Nationwide Series. It's a natural evolution for Nationwide Insurance to move our marketing investment to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series and we'll continue to put tremendous effort behind all of our NASCAR marketing platforms in the years to come."
Nationwide Insurance also will sponsor the Betty Jane France Humanitarian Award. The NASCAR Foundation presents the award to a NASCAR fan who embodies the ideals of charity and community that Mrs. France has championed throughout her life. Nominees for the award honor the spirit of NASCAR, demonstrating goodwill and generosity in the interest of helping children in need. One winner receives a $100,000 donation to direct to the children's charity of their choice along with a NASCAR experience of a lifetime. The top three remaining finalists receive $25,000 to direct to their children's charity of choice.
"We approached NASCAR about sponsoring the Betty Jane France Humanitarian Award because it embodies the spirit and culture of giving that Nationwide Insurance values," added Jauchius. "The Nationwide Children's Hospital 200 race is a good example of the collaboration among sponsors, teams and the NASCAR Foundation pulling together to shine the national spotlight on a deserving organization. We look forward to working with Betty Jane and the Foundation to highlight other unique charitable efforts that NASCAR fans support all across the country."
"Nationwide Insurance is a long-standing partner to NASCAR, and more importantly a strong advocate for children, and we are excited to welcome them as presenting sponsor of the Betty Jane France Humanitarian Award," said Betty Jane France, NASCAR Foundation Chairwoman. "At The NASCAR Foundation, we seek to align ourselves with brands and organizations that share our same mission of enhancing the lives of children in this country. For these reasons, Nationwide Insurance is a perfect fit to help us present this special award."(NASCAR)(9-18-2013)
NASCAR Green Summit held in Chicago: An assortment of global influencers, accomplished dignitaries and high-profile executives headlined the 2013 NASCAR Green Summit Delivered by UPS in Chicago. Commemorating five years of innovative changes to the sport's environmental footprint, the event examined the substantive initiatives that have helped make NASCAR the sports sustainability leader. Founded on NASCAR Chairman & CEO Brian France's vision, NASCAR Green has grown exponentially into one of the most powerful environmental awareness platforms in the country. NASCAR owns the largest recycling, tree planting and renewable energy programs in all of sports. It also put nearly five million competition miles on Sunoco Green E15, a biofuel blended with 15 percent American-made ethanol made from American-grown corn. The 2013 NASCAR Green Summit delivered by UPS recognized a number of Official NASCAR Partners that continue to push the bar in driving sustainable behavior. The program included executives from some of the world's most influential brands, such as Coca-Cola, Ford Motor Company, Eaton, General Motors, Liberty Tire, Safety-Kleen, Sprint, Sunoco, Toyota and presenting partner UPS.
NASCAR formally announced it will enter into strategic collaborations with the Department of Energy (DOE) and the NRDC. NASCAR and the DOE will collaborate on advancing the adoption of clean energy technologies. NASCAR and the NRDC will collaborate on several initiatives in the areas of energy usage, waste management and food consumption.
Additionally at the summit, NASCAR honored a number of sanctioned tracks for their dedication to making a positive impact on the environment. Auto Club Speedway, Darlington Raceway, Daytona International Speedway, Kansas Speedway, Las Vegas Motor Speedway, Michigan International Speedway, Pocono Raceway, Richmond International Raceway, Sonoma Raceway and Watkins Glen International all received special awards.(NASCAR)(9-12-2013)
Sherwin-Williams becomes official sponsor of NASCAR: NASCAR and Sherwin-Williams announced a multi-year partnership designating the nation's largest specialty retailer of paint and painting supplies as the "Official Paint of NASCAR." Sherwin-Williams, a FORTUNE 500 company, will leverage its new designation for architectural paint and the power of NASCAR's intellectual property to activate at its more than 3,500 stores nationwide and ignite the passion of its customers – many of whom are fiercely brand-loyal fans of the sport
In addition to signing on as an Official NASCAR Partner, Sherwin-Williams also becomes a Contingency Sponsor in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, NASCAR Touring & Weekly Series and GRAND-AM Road Racing. The NASCAR and GRAND-AM contingency programs foster strong relationships between competitors and the high-quality, performance-driven brands that are part of the program, by providing prize money for each race and at the end of each racing season. Competitors become eligible for the money by displaying partner decals on their race vehicles. As part of the contingency program, Sherwin-Williams will be title sponsor of the Fastest Lap Award in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.(NASCAR)(5-13-2013)
Prevost becomes official NASCAR partner: NASCAR and Prevost announced a new multi-year partnership that designates the leading manufacturer of premium touring and conversion coaches, as the Official Luxury Motorcoach of NASCAR. Prevost assembles motorhomes for a number of NASCAR team owners and drivers who make the race track their home for more than 30 race weekends a year. Prevost, along with its converter partners, manufactures innovative motorhomes that stand up to the demand of a 10-month-long NASCAR schedule. A fixture at the track each weekend, Prevost motorcoaches are utilized across the driver and team owner lots, sponsor hospitality compounds, manufacturer engineering stations, and fan camping areas. NASCAR will utilize Prevost motorcoaches this year for at-track hospitality through the NASCAR Fuel for Hospitality program, which is specifically designed for Official NASCAR Partners to provide employees and customers with a VIP race-day experience at the track. In addition, Prevost will also be joining the NASCAR Fuel for Business Council to buy and sell directly with top Fortune 500 companies.(NASCAR)(3-12-2013)
Patrick, Stenhouse Jr. Headline Sunoco Rookie of the Year Award Battle: As teams make final preparations to start the 2013 race season, NASCAR announced today the lineup of 2013 Contingency Program sponsors for all three national series. Not since 2006, when Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup regulars Denny Hamlin, Clint Bowyer and Martin Truex Jr. battled for the Sunoco Rookie of the Year Award, has there been this much attention focused on the rookie title. Ricky Stenhouse Jr., Timmy Hill and Danica Patrick, all eligible for 2013 Sunoco Rookie of the Year honors, enter this season with high expectations. Stenhouse, the two-time NASCAR Nationwide Series champion, and Hill won the Sunoco Rookie of the Year Award in the NASCAR Nationwide Series in 2010 and 2011, respectively. Patrick finished the 2012 NASCAR Nationwide Series 10th in points. “This year’s Sunoco Rookie class is going to be truly exciting to watch,” said Andrew Kabakoff, Sunoco Brand Manager. “We are proud to support NASCAR’s rising stars and wish them the best of luck as we look forward to a very exciting season of racing."
The Coors Light Pole Award is another key contingency partner that will undoubtedly receive a lot of attention this season. Danica Patrick’s pole victory in Daytona placed the award in the spotlight this week, as did the season-opening Sprint Unlimited, where the field was set by 2012 Coors Light Pole winners and past champions of the event. The Coors Light Pole Award is presented to the fastest eligible qualifier in each NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race.
Duralast, the ‘Official Brakes of NASCAR,’ has become the newest addition to the stable of companies that participate in the NASCAR Contingency Program with the creation of the “Brake in the Race Award” across both the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series and NASCAR Nationwide Series. The weekly award will be given to the highest eligible driver in the running order at the time of the first caution of each race. The year-end award winner will be the driver who wins the “Brake in the Race Award” the most times during the course of the season. In the event of a tie, the final series point standings shall serve as the tiebreaker.
“We are proud of the strong lineup of NASCAR Contingency Program sponsors across our three national series this year, and are enthused by the excitement surrounding the intense competition for the Sunoco Rookie of the Year Award,” said Norris Scott, NASCAR vice president, Partnership Marketing. “NASCAR contingency sponsors and teams display a level of collaboration and teamwork that is unmatched in sports and continues to be one of the major reasons companies choose to partner with NASCAR.”
The NASCAR Contingency Program strives to build strong relationships with high quality, performance driven brands that are leaders in their respective categories, and award money to NASCAR teams via per race and year-end awards. Competitors become eligible for prize money by displaying sponsor decals on the front fender of their race cars and trucks. In some instances, use of a sponsor product is also required.(NASCAR)(2-23-2013)
FDP Becomes Newest Official Partner of NASCAR: NASCAR and FDP Friction Science, a leading manufacturer and supplier of brake pads, announced today a new agreement that designates the Duralast brand as the ‘Official Brakes of NASCAR.’ With more than 50 years of brake technology and friction development experience, FDP manufactures Duralast Brakes which are sold exclusively at AutoZone. Duralast will also participate in the NASCAR contingency program, with the creation of the “Brake in the Race Award” across both the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series and NASCAR Nationwide Series. The weekly award will be given to the highest eligible driver in the running order at the time of the first caution of each race. The year-end award winner will be the driver who wins the “Brake in the Race Award” the most times during the course of the season. In the event of a tie, the final series point standings shall serve as a tiebreaker.(NASCAR)(2-21-2013)
Mobil 1 extends contract with NASCAR: Mobil 1 will remain the "Official Motor Oil of NASCAR" through 2017 under a contract extension with parent company ExxonMobil. Mobil 1 is entering its 11th year as an official NASCAR partner. It will now be a contingency partner across all NASCAR national and touring series, the presenting sponsor of the Mobil 1 Driver of the Race Award, and the presenting sponsor of the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series.(Associated Press)(1-21-2013)
NASCAR & Featherlite Trailers Announce 6-year Extension: NASCAR and Featherlite Trailers announced that the Iowa-based company has agreed to extend its long-term partnership with NASCAR. The six-year extension ensures that Featherlite Trailers will be the Official Trailer of NASCAR through 2018. Entering its 13th year as an Official Partner, Featherlite Trailers built its first race car transporter for owner Richard Childress 20 years ago, dating its relationship with the sport back to 1993.
Featherlite Trailers plays a vital role in facilitating high-quality NASCAR race events each weekend. Ninety percent of NASCAR Sprint Cup Series and NASCAR Nationwide Series teams rely on Featherlite transporters to move vital race equipment to every event. Additionally, approximately 10 transporters manufactured by Featherlite Trailers serve as official office and meeting spaces for NASCAR race officials and personnel each weekend across the country. “Featherlite Trailers is pleased to extend our partnership with NASCAR,” said Terry Carlson, chief executive officer of Universal Trailer Holding Corp. “As a long-time NASCAR partner, Featherlite is committed to the sport and its fans, as well as providing world-class support and services to NASCAR and its race teams.”
In the second half of the 2012 NASCAR season, Featherlite Trailers introduced its newly redesigned custom “T1” NASCAR support and media trailer. The transporter, featuring larger and more efficient work spaces, is utilized by NASCAR broadcast partners at the track each weekend. “The return of Featherlite Trailers benefits our entire industry, including our tracks, drivers, teams and partners,” said Jim O’Connell, NASCAR chief sales officer. “The extension of this 20-year relationship ensures that our sport will continue to have the most technologically advanced race transporters and meeting spaces, critical to facilitating high quality race events each weekend.”
Featherlite Trailers is a leading designer and manufacturer of aluminum trailers, including specialized 53-foot race car transporters and highly customized specialty trailers for virtually every business purpose. The company also manufactures car, recreation, utility, horse and livestock trailers. Featherlite is part of Universal Trailer Corporation’s family of brands.(NASCAR)(1-14-2013)
Sponsor exposure values rise 7% in Cup over 2011: The total exposure value for all TV-visible sponsor brands in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in 2012 totaled over $1.2 billion across the 10-month season. Though the total number of logo detections, length of time on-screen and viewership were down slightly, media exposure values still saw gains based on higher cost of media and longer exposure during higher-rated races such as this year's extended Daytona 500. Demonstrating the importance of exposure during the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup, champion Brad Keselowski's primary sponsor Miller Lite received 55% of its exposures in the 10-race Chase alone, and nearly 20% of that exposure came from the final race. (Repucom)(12-6-2012)
Green Earth Technologies joins NASCAR as Official Green Partner: In a joint announcement, Florida-based Green Earth Technologies (GET) joined the stable of Official NASCAR Green Partners. GET's G-CLEAN pressure washers and environment-safe cleaning products and degreasers for concrete, home siding and outdoor mold and mildew stain removal, will offer NASCAR fans a green alternative to use on their homes. GET's presence in the sport will expand across NASCAR Home Tracks, including participation in the NASCAR Home Tracks Contingency program. GET's G-CLEAN logo will be featured on-track with a decal on each entry in the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series, NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour, NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour and NASCAR K&N Pro Series. Additionally, Green Earth Technologies signage will be prominently featured at Home Track racetracks across the country.(NASCAR)(10-31-2012)
New Holland becomes official agricultural equipment Of NASCAR: In a joint announcement at the NASCAR Fuel for Business Council meeting in Chicago, New Holland became the Official Agricultural Equipment of NASCAR. New Holland, the latest NASCAR Official Partner, has served the needs of farmers and ranchers across North America for more than 110 years, and its equipment plays a critical role in the production of ethanol. In 2011, NASCAR announced a switch in its three national series to Sunoco Green E15, a 15-percent ethanol blend fuel made with corn grown in the United States. The low-carbon fuel emits 20% less greenhouse emissions than unleaded gasoline. New Holland manufactures a wide range of equipment essential for the crop production and harvesting of corn used to produce the biofuel. Growth Energy, a leading ethanol advocacy organization, and the National Corn Growers Association created the American Ethanol partnership with NASCAR to push for broad acceptance of a renewable domestic fuel for American motorists. New Holland will work to support this partnership throughout the remainder of the 2012 NASCAR season to support the farmers who play a vital role in the ethanol industry.(NASCAR)(9-15-2012)
One In Five Fortune 500 Companies Invest In NASCAR: More Fortune 500 companies are involved in NASCAR than in 2008, according to a recent review of brands currently using the sport to drive business. The analysis looked at companies that either sponsor NASCAR teams, tracks, the sanctioning body, or are media partners. The number of current Fortune 500 companies invested in NASCAR (114) remains higher than any other sport. In 2012 alone, more than 24 brands entered the sport, including a handful of Fortune 500 companies. Although being a Fortune 500 company is the gold standard of success for publicly-traded companies in the United States, there are several global corporations currently involved in NASCAR that were not included in the review because they do not meet Fortune's domestic criteria. To be eligible for the Fortune 500, a company must be based in the U.S. and be publicly traded. The companies in consideration actively utilize NASCAR as marketing vehicle through a team, track or NASCAR official sponsorship, licensing agreement and/or a media partnership.(NASCAR)(7-18-2012)
NASCAR partners to help with 'NASCAR Unites - An American Salute' in support of military: In what is one of the most patriotic weekends of the year, NASCAR will celebrate the culmination of 'NASCAR Unites - An American Salute,' during Independence Day weekend festivities for the Coke Zero 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Daytona International Speedway (DIS). The race will serve as a rallying point for many NASCAR Official Partners and Licensees to express their gratitude for active American servicemen and women, veterans and their families. Several activities are planned to help honor and recognize these heroes and the sacrifices they have made through their service to our country.
Headlining the activities will be Goodyear, which will launch its "Goodyear Gives Back" program benefiting Support Our Troops. Goodyear is running special "Support Our Troops" tires in both the NASCAR Nationwide Series and NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races this weekend to honor our Armed Forces. With the help of the entire NASCAR family via volunteer service, auction items, and items for care packages, Goodyear has contributed nearly $400,000 in charitable support since 2010 to help military members and their families through the Support Our Troops organization. Fans can learn more and get involved in the "Goodyear Gives Back" program by visiting www.goodyear.com/givesback.
As part of this year's program, 5,000 care packages will be shipped to U.S. troops serving overseas. The packages will be assembled by approximately 100 volunteers on July 5th at DIS. UPS employees will be among the volunteers assembling the care packages, which will be transported to UPS's sorting facility in Atlanta for additional processing. From there, UPS will coordinate the delivery of the cargo to troops stationed at Bagram Air Force Base in Afghanistan.
The NASCAR Foundation is also partnering with Goodyear to host a nine-week auction featuring items such as autographed Support Our Troops race-used Goodyear tires, fan VIP experiences, and assorted racing memorabilia.
In addition, it's the fourth-straight year that Daytona International Speedway will honor Medal of Honor recipients, a program that was first started by Bill France Sr. back in the 1970s. All four Medal of Honor recipients will be recognized during a special salute over various activities during the weekend. The Medal of Honor recipients, all from the Vietnam War, to be honored are Michael Fitzmaurice, Specialist Fourth Class, U.S. Army; Jack Jacobs, Captain, U.S. Army; Robert Patterson, Staff Sergeant, U.S. Army; James Taylor, Captain, U.S. Army.(NASCAR)(7-4-2012)
Office Depot wins NASCAR "Driving Business Award": Office Depot, Inc., a leading global provider of office supplies and services that helps customers save time, is the recipient of the 2011 NASCAR Driving Business Award, presented annually to the Official Partner that demonstrates extraordinary leadership and results through their participation in the NASCAR Fuel for Business (NFFB) Council. The NFFB Council is a program that brings together an exclusive group of more than 50 Official NASCAR Partners to get more out of their sponsorship, specifically getting partners together four times a year to buy and sell products and services. This environment offers the unique opportunity for many Fortune 500 companies to bypass the time and layers of corporate coordination that may exist and construct customized deals to help address specific business needs. Through the NFFB Council, Office Depot secured new business accounts with Chevrolet, Ford, the National Corn Growers Association, Getty Images, and NASCAR RV Resorts, to name a few, helping the company drive business year after year. During the past seven seasons, Office Depot also used its status as an Official NASCAR Partner to activate its highly acclaimed "Official Small Business of NASCAR, Courtesy of Office Depot" promotion. In 2010 and 2011, Office Depot teamed up with fellow NFFB Council member and business partner, 3M Corporation, on the promotion.(NASCAR)(3-10-2012)
2012 NASCAR Contingency Program announced: As teams make final preparations to start the 2012 race season, the National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR) announced the lineup of 2012 NASCAR Contingency Program sponsors for all three national series.
The NASCAR Contingency Program is administered by the Charlotte, N.C. based NASCAR Automotive Group. The program strives to build strong relationships with high quality, performance driven brands that are leaders in their respective categories, and award money to NASCAR teams via per race and year-end awards. Competitors become eligible for prize money by displaying sponsor decals on the front fender of their race cars and trucks. In some instances, use of a sponsor's product is also required.
Three new special awards highlight the 2012 contingency program award lineup.
This season, longtime NASCAR Official Partner and Roush Fenway Racing primary sponsor 3M will present the 3M Lap Leader Award in the NASCAR Sprint Cup and NASCAR Nationwide Series. The award will go to the eligible driver who leads the most laps in each race throughout the season.
USG Corp., the Official Building Product Supplier of NASCAR, will present the USG "Improving the Finish" Award to the eligible NSCS driver who improves the most positions from starting position to finishing position in each NSCS race event.
Freescale, the Official Automotive Semiconductor of NASCAR, is not only helping to usher in electronic fuel injection to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, but also will present a new contingency special award to NSCS competitors. The Freescale "Wide Open" Award will be given to the eligible NSCS driver that is the most aggressive during the final 20% of the race, measured by having the throttle "wide open" the greatest amount of time, and finishing in the top five.(NASCAR)(2-21-2012)
Creative Recycling Systems Joins NASCAR as Official Green Partner: NASCAR announced that Florida-based Creative Recycling Systems, Inc. (CRS), a leader in the processing of end-of-life electronics, has joined the stable of Official NASCAR Green Partners. CRS supplies small, mid-size and Fortune 100 companies, government agencies, non-profit organizations, educational institutions and concerned citizens with the best solutions for electronics reuse and recycling. By providing electronic asset disposition management, data security services and by utilizing state-of-the-art processing and separation technology, CRS prevents millions of pounds of electronics from entering the world's landfills each year. Since its 2008 launch, NASCAR Green has focused on three key areas: waste, emissions and power. Aside from a host of new partners joining the effort with substantive programming, many track and team operators have launched their own programs in areas such as recycling, advancing land and energy conservation, and adopting alternative energy sources.(NASCAR/Creative Recycling)(2-21-2012)
NASCAR and MillerCoors extend partnership: NASCAR, MillerCoors and Penske Racing jointly announced multi-year partnership extensions for the brewer's two biggest brands. For MillerCoors, the deals with the sanctioning body and one of the sport's most respected teams solidify its status among the most committed sponsors in NASCAR. In addition, MillerCoors has alliances with seven tracks that host NASCAR races. Coors Light is extending its sponsorship as the Official Beer of NASCAR.
MillerCoors Chief Marketing Officer Andy England said the renewals point to the value of NASCAR as a powerful way to connect with legal-drinking-age consumers. "We don't make investment decisions like this without having a great sense of exactly what the alliance will deliver for our brands," England said. "That's why I'm so excited about our continued partnerships with NASCAR and with Penske Racing. NASCAR fans are among the most passionate and loyal fans in all of sports, and they love nothing more than getting together with friends to watch the race while enjoying a cold, refreshing Coors Light or a great tasting, never watered down Miller Lite. Our distributors and retailers know that, which is why they're so supportive of our leadership in the sport."
The Coors Light partnership with NASCAR includes the Coors Light Pole Award for the NASCAR Sprint Cup, NASCAR Nationwide and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, which rewards the driver with the fastest qualifying time each week. It also includes the exclusive right to use NASCAR marks on retail point-of-sale and merchandising materials, in advertising and digital marketing, and through other marketing tools.
Coors Light brings special insight to race fans through its Miss Coors Light program, which began at the start of the 2010 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup and continued throughout the 2011 season. Miss Coors Light, who will be back in 2012, presents the Coors Light Pole Award to the winning driver, makes appearances during race week at local bars and provides her perspective on NASCAR activities via the Miss Coors Light Facebook page.
"The return of MillerCoors to NASCAR not only ensures that the company will bring back compelling activation that continues to engage and excite our fans, but it also benefits our ecosystem as a whole, which is comprised of tracks, drivers and teams," said Steve Phelps, NASCAR chief marketing officer. "As a sanctioning body, NASCAR is proud to have Coors Light as part of our stable of Official Partners for whom we create exclusive assets and platforms to drive their respective businesses. NASCAR is the sport that works for business, and we're pleased to see it working so well for MillerCoors."(NASCAR)(1-26-2012)
NASCAR Extends Partnership With Federal-Mogul: NASCAR announced that it has renewed its partnership agreement with Federal-Mogul Corporation, extending Federal-Mogul's market-leading MOOG brand of automotive steering and suspension components as an exclusive NASCAR Performance partner. This multi-year agreement will continue to provide Federal-Mogul's MOOG product and marketing team with a platform to enhance and differentiate its products and drive sales. The NASCAR Performance brand marks and intellectual property will appear on MOOG packaging as well as within the brand's product literature, advertising and promotional programs, and at industry events. The agreement continues the MOOG brand's high-profile involvement as a NASCAR Contingency Program sponsor in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, NASCAR Nationwide Series, NASCAR Camping World Truck Series and NASCAR K&N Pro Series. Federal-Mogul and the MOOG brand also sponsor the prestigious weekly and annual MOOG "Problem Solver" awards for NASCAR Sprint Cup Series crew chiefs.(NASCAR)(1-19-2012)
NASCAR Names National Series Prize Money & Decal Program Sponsors For 2011 Season: As teams make final preparations to start the 2011 race season, the National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR) announced the lineup of 2011 NASCAR Prize Money & Decal Program sponsors for all three national series. The NASCAR Prize Money & Decal Program, commonly referred to as the Contingency Program, is administered by the Charlotte, N.C.-based NASCAR Automotive Group. The program strives to build strong relationships with high-quality, performance-driven brands that are leaders in their respective categories, and award money to NASCAR teams via per-race and year-end awards. Competitors become eligible for prize money by displaying sponsor decals on the front fender of their race cars and trucks. In some instances, use of a sponsor’s product is also required.
Among the new partners for this program are Growth Energy/American Ethanol, Exide Batteries and Sunoco, who takes over the Rookie of the Year program in all three national series.
"We are thrilled to sponsor NASCAR's Rookie of the Year program,” said Bob Owens, Sunoco's senior vice president of marketing. “It supports rising young talent, promotes the future of a great sport, and makes for exciting racing as drivers compete for the title."
“We are very pleased to have a strong lineup of NASCAR Prize Money & Decal Program sponsors in the national series this year including new partners Growth Energy/American Ethanol, Exide and Sunoco,” said Todd Armstrong, managing director, NASCAR Automotive Group. “This program provides strong visibility in our sport and these companies provide valuable dollars to our teams and, in many cases, valuable products and services through their contingency relationships.”
Below is the 2011 national series sponsor lineup and special awards:
· 3M - NSCS, NNS
· ARP Fasteners - NNS
· Auto Meter Gauges - NSCS, NNS, NCWTS
· Competition Cams - NSCS, NNS, NCWTS
· Coors Light - NSCS*, NNS*, (Keystone Light - NCWTS*)
o Pole Award
· Craftsman - NSCS, NNS, NCWTS
· DIRECTV - NSCS*
o Crew Chief of the Race/Year
· Edelbrock Intake Manifolds - NSCS, NNS, NCWTS
· Exide - NCWTS*
o Start Positive, Stay Positive Award
· Featherlite - NNS*, NCWTS*
o Most Improved Driver Award
· Goodyear Gatorback Belts & Hoses - NSCS*
o Fastest Lap Award
· Goodyear Tires - NSCS*, NNS*, NCWTS*
o Awarded to Series Champions
· Growth Energy/American Ethanol - NSCS*, NNS*, NCWTS*
o Green Flag Restart Award (NSCS)
o Awarded to Series Champions (NNS, NCWTS)
· Holley Carburetors - NSCS, NNS, NCWTS
· JE Pistons - NNS, NCWTS
· JEGS - NSCS, NNS
· K&N Filters - NSCS, NNS, NCWTS
· Lincoln Electric - NSCS, NCWTS
· MAHLE Clevite - NSCS*, NNS*, NCWTS*
o Engine Builder of the Race/Year Award
· Mechanix Wear - NSCS*, NNS, NCWTS
o Mechanix Wear Most Valuable Pit Crew (Quarterly/Year-End)
· Mobil 1 - NSCS*, NNS*, NCWTS*
o Driver of the Race/Year
· MOOG Chassis Parts - NSCS*, NNS, NCWTS
o Problem Solver of the Race/Year
· MSD Ignition - NNS, NCWTS
· O’Reilly Auto Parts - NSCS*, NCWTS*
o Position Improvement Award
· Simpson Firesuits - NNS,NCWTS
· Sunoco - NSCS*, NNS*, NCWTS*
o Diamond Performance
o Rookie of the Year
· USG - NSCS
*Indicates Special Award sponsor with a year-end bonus.(NASCAR)
MAHLE Clevite to Present Engine Builder Award In Pre-Race: MAHLE Clevite Inc. will show its appreciation to our country's military by having 11 Marines as the company's guests this weekend for the Toyota/Save Mart 350 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Infineon Raceway in Sonoma, CA. The Marines from the 23rd Marine Regiment are based out of nearby San Bruno, CA. They will be treated to a "behind the scenes" tour of the pits and garage area on race day, meet with various NASCAR personalities, and will be in Victory Lane at the race's conclusion for photographs with the winning driver and team.
Two of the Marines - Major Nathan Fenell from Colorado and Master Sergeant Shawn Stringham from Wyoming - will have a special duty during driver introductions, and will present the $5,000 check for the MAHLE Engine Builder of the Race to #11-Denny Hamlin who will accept on behalf of the Joe Gibbs Racing Engine Shop.
MAHLE Clevite is a longtime NASCAR Partner and sponsors the MAHLE Clevite Engine Builder of the Year Award, which hands out $100,000 at season's end. As part of the program, a weekly check of $5,000 is given away in pre-race ceremonies at each Sprint Cup Series race. Joining Fenell and Stringham are: Chief Hospital Corpsmen Kevin Avila (California) and Raul Valdez (California); Sergeants Harry Taylay (Missouri), Misael Garcia (California), Victor Perez (California), Timothy Hallisy (California), Jonathan Morris (Oregon), Robert Burke (Delaware); and Corporal Rory Roberts (California). MAHLE Clevite's dedication to the military parallels Infineon Raceway, which has programs "Tickets For Troops" and the "Sonoma Salutes Our Troops," both putting the Armed Forces front-and-center at all of its motorsports events.(MAHLE PR)(6-25-2011)
Sprint intends to continues title sponsorship: Dan Hesse, chief executive officer of Sprint Nextel, said his company is in talks with NASCAR to extend its title sponsorship of the Sprint Cup series. "Our intention is to continue the sponsorship with NASCAR," Hesse told The Star before Sunday's STP 400 at Kansas Speedway. Sprint is in the eighth year of a 10-year, $750 million sponsorship that goes through the 2013 season. Besides the title sponsorship of the series, Sprint lends its name to the Sprint All-Star Race in Charlotte, N.C., and supports NASCAR in other ways, such as delivering 15 to 20 cell phone towers to each race as well as The Sprint Experience, a mobile, interactive display at each track.(Kansas City Star)(6-6-2011)
Safety-Kleen Renews Partnership With NASCAR: NASCAR announced that it has reached a multi-year agreement to renew its relationship with Safety-Kleen as an official partner of the sport. Safety-Kleen, a NASCAR official partner since 2004, provides on-site trackside support with its NASCAR performance cleaning products and through its oil recycling and re-refining services to more than 200 NASCAR-sanctioned races a year, ensuring that all cleaning solvents, oil, fluids and lubricants used in NASCAR racing are recaptured and re-used. Safety-Kleen is also an "Official Partner of NASCAR Green," a category of sponsors that contribute in a substantial and measurable way to the sport's goals around environmental conservation and serve as a green demonstration platform while creating jobs.(NASCAR)(2-24-2011)
Walmart and NASCAR Team Up: Walmart and NASCAR, announced a new relationship designed to give Walmart customers and race fans new NASCAR branded merchandise and special savings on race tickets available on Walmart.com/NASCAR for select races. The new retail program, branded "Race Time", is the largest retail promotion in NASCAR's history and launches in 1,500 Walmart stores just in time for the start of the season with the 53rd running of the Daytona 500. This new relationship will begin with select NASCAR and NASCAR team licensed merchandise in Walmart stores and grow in the future to include more merchandise and various sponsor products. Participating Walmart stores will offer exciting merchandise such as T-shirts, racing flags, and tailgating food and beverages with even more selection of merchandise on Walmart.com/NASCAR. In addition, Walmart customers and NASCAR fans can save money by purchasing a discount ticket package available exclusively through Walmart.com/NASCAR for select NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races. Ticket packages include four race tickets, four hot dogs, four beverages and one race program for just $99, a savings of approximately $100.(NASCAR)(2-19-2011)
National Corn Growers Association Becomes Official Partner Of NASCAR: As the 2011 NASCAR season launches with a new, greener fuel, the nation’s corn growers are joining forces with NASCAR to promote the use of corn-based American Ethanol. As an Official Partner of NASCAR, the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) will leverage their relationship to authentically spread the message to NASCAR fans around the role American Farmers play in the development of American Ethanol. As the 2011 NASCAR season launches with a new, greener fuel, the nation’s corn growers are joining forces with NASCAR to promote the use of corn-based American Ethanol. As an Official Partner of NASCAR, the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) will leverage their relationship to authentically spread the message to NASCAR fans around the role American Farmers play in the development of American Ethanol. In December 2010, NASCAR unveiled its landmark partnership with American Ethanol just weeks after announcing a 2011 switch in its three major national series to Sunoco Green E15, a new 15-percent ethanol blend fuel made with corn grown in the United States. Growth Energy, a leading ethanol advocacy organization, created the American Ethanol partnership to push for broad acceptance of a renewable domestic fuel for all American motorists.(NASCAR)(2-4-2011)
Growth Energy Becomes Official Partner of NASCAR: In preparation for the 2011 season and as part of its long-term commitment to “going green,” the NASCAR announced a major long-term partnership with American Ethanol led by ethanol advocacy group Growth Energy. Growth Energy, a coalition of U.S. ethanol supporters including farmers and members of the ethanol supply chain, becomes an official partner of NASCAR, using the sport to bring its message of American ethanol to millions of race fans. American Ethanol will support drivers, teams and tracks with marketing, promotional activities, advertising and a season-long weekly contingency award in 2011. NASCAR made the American Ethanol partnership announcement just weeks after announcing a switch in its major national series to Sunoco Green E15, a new 15-percent ethanol blend fuel made with corn grown in the United States. Financial terms of the six-year agreement were not disclosed. Led by Growth Energy, nearly 100 different entities – from individual ethanol plants to the National Corn Growers Association to biotech companies – are rallying around NASCAR to communicate their ethanol message. See full PR on my NASCAR News page.(12-3-20100)
NASCAR sponsorship revenue increasing in 2011: NASCAR has finalized eight of 12 renewals and added two new partners, a combination that increases its total annual sponsorship revenue by 10 percent in 2011. The sanctioning body has renewed two-thirds of the sponsorship deals due to elapse this year, signing renewals with Toyota, GM, Dodge, Unilever and DirecTV. Three other extensions are agreed to and currently being finalized, said Jim O'Connell, NASCAR vice president of corporate marketing. Tylenol, Tissot and Nicorette all declined to extend their agreements, and the sanctioning body is still negotiating with insurer Aflac, which has one year left on its sponsorship of Roush Fenway's #99 Sprint Cup car driven by Carl Edwards. The sanctioning body added partnerships with Drive 4COPD, a national public health campaign, and Growth Energy, an American ethanol interest group. NASCAR's marketing partnerships generally range from $2 million to $10 million a year. NASCAR has three key renewals due in 2011 with Mars, Bank of America and UPS. It already has begun negotiations with those partners and is looking to add new partnerships in the timekeeper, consumer electronics and salted snacks categories. It plans to be more aggressive in seeking additional green partnerships, too.(Sporting News)(12-8-2010)
Growth Energy close to a deal with NASCAR? NASCAR is poised to sign its first new high-profile sponsorship in 20 months and take a significant step forward in the green initiative it began two years ago by aligning with an ethanol lobby group known as Growth Energy [growthenergy.org]. The deal, which sources said is close to completion, would make Growth Energy an official marketing partner. If completed, the deal also would usher new money into NASCAR at a time when the series and its teams have been challenged by cuts to corporate sponsorship budgets. Sunoco will remain the official fuel of NASCAR. Sunoco raised some concerns about the Growth Energy deal that are being worked through, according to sources. Growth Energy is expected to use a NASCAR partnership primarily to promote the American ethanol industry. It’s unclear whether Growth Energy members would provide ethanol to Sunoco. Sunoco has its own ethanol production plant in upstate New York. Terms of the proposed agreement with Growth Energy were not available. The ethanol partnership would be tied to NASCAR’s reported plan to convert to 15% ethanol-blended fuel in 2011. Fox Sports reported in May that Hendrick Motorsports was already testing the fuel. NASCAR spokesman Andrew Giangola confirmed the series is evaluating alternative fuels with its fuel partner, Sunoco, but declined to comment on a potential partnership with Growth Energy. “We haven’t specified a time frame in transitioning to a next-generation fuel, nor do we speculate or comment on potential new partners,” Giangola said. Growth Energy declined to comment. Growth Energy is a two-year-old advocacy organization that represents more than 65 ethanol production plants across the United States. It promotes ethanol as a renewable fuel that can effectively reduce greenhouse gas emissions and the nation’s dependence on foreign oil. Shifting to an ethanol blend could present some challenges for teams and tracks. Ethanol can’t travel in pipelines along with gasoline because it picks up excess water. Therefore, it has to be transported in trucks. The IndyCar Series switched to 100% ethanol fuel in 2005, and ethanol fuel trucks come to every race to provide the fuel. Next season, its fuel will be provided by Unica, the Brazilian sugarcane industry association, and Sunoco.(SportsBusiness Journal/Sporting News)(10-5-2010)
3M Renews Official Sponsorship With NASCAR: 3M, a diversified technology company serving customers with innovative products and services and a long-time partner of NASCAR, have announced the renewal of the company’s official sponsorship with the sport. The agreement extends the relationship an additional five years beginning in 2011 and expands the categories for which 3M holds exclusive NASCAR marketing rights. 3M brands involved include Post-it, Filtrete, Scotch branded products and others. For nearly 10 years, numerous 3M products associated with automotive, industrial, professional and home use applications, have secured exclusive category status with NASCAR taking advantage of NASCAR’s mark and promotional and marketing programs. The 3M products associated with this agreement include automotive refinish supplies, abrasives, tapes, adhesives and sealants, protectants, paint spray products, furnace filters, reflective and graphic films, wire connectors, cable ties, wire markers, hearing products, Post-it products, cloth products, respirators, automotive cleaning products, medical bandages and label products. Numerous 3M products are integrated into today’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series car including attachment tapes, Bondo body filler, adhesives and sealants, as well as abrasives and the Accuspray paint systems used in the construction of the car. 3M’s association with motorsports spans decades and has taken many forms over the years. In addition to holding multiple NASCAR officially-licensed product categories, 3M is a long-time sponsor of NASCAR racing as primary sponsor for Roush Fenway Racing’s #16 3M Ford Fusion driven by Greg Biffle in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.
3M continues to support NASCAR as a Prize Money & Decal Program (contingency) sponsor in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, NASCAR Nationwide Series, NASCAR Whelen All-American Series, and NASCAR Canadian Tire Series, with prize money provided to eligible teams.(NASCAR)(9-10-2010)
Tylenol leaving NASCAR: Tylenol, which has drastically cut its marketing and advertising in the wake of three product recalls in the last six months, will not renew its official partnership with NASCAR. The sport’s official pain reliever since the start of the 2007 season, Tylenol’s current deal with NASCAR runs through the 2010 season. But its parent company, McNeil Consumer Healthcare, has already notified NASCAR that it won’t continue its official partnership, a spokesman for the company said. NASCAR had no comment on Tylenol’s exit. With the official partnership, track and driver deals, Tylenol’s total spend was in the $5 million to $6 million range annually, industry insiders said. The brand has not activated this year against its Team Tylenol campaign, which started in 2005 to coincide with the launch of its rapid-release gels.(SceneDaily/SportsBusiness Journal)(6-8-2010)
NASCAR Sponsors Join Forces To Ramp Up Largest Recycling Program In Professional Sports: As the world prepares for the 40th anniversary of Earth Day on April 22, NASCAR announced an expansion to its event recycling program, which began one year ago in collaboration with Coca-Cola Recycling, and is already the largest in sports. The NASCAR industry, which recycled more than 80 tons and 2.5 million containers in the 2009 season through working with Coca-Cola Recycling, will expand bottle and can recycling from the grandstands, concourse, suites and garage to the campgrounds, while also including cardboard and ink cartridge recycling. With Office Depot, Coors Light and UPS joining NASCAR’s recycling program and working with Coca-Cola Recycling, it is anticipated approximately 100 tons of material (including over three million containers) from NASCAR race tracks will be diverted from landfills and recycled next year.
Office Depot is underwriting the overall program at the sport's Earth Day celebration at Texas Motor Speedway, and piloting an ink and toner cartridge recycling program at track for the first time. Recycling bins for cartridges will be located at the #14 Office Depot/Old Spice merchandise haulers in the fan Midway area at Texas Motor Speedway, as well as in the infield media center. Through the Office Depot ink and toner recycling program, more than 40 million ink and toner cartridges have been returned since the program began in 1993.
At Texas Motor Speedway, Office Depot will serve as the lead partner on overall race weekend green efforts focused on recycling in collaboration with Coca-Cola Recycling and neutralizing carbon emissions. Office Depot will match the tree donation by NASCAR in the NASCAR Green Clean Air initiative, which plants 10 trees for every green flag that drops in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race in the local area to neutralize the carbon produced by the event’s on-track action. Additionally, Office Depot, along with Coca-Cola Recycling, will have co-branding on all NASCAR recycling elements at the track in Texas, including special locations for ink cartridge recycling. The Office Depot show car program in the local area will also promote recycling to fans, including race ticket giveaways providing an incentive for fans to “grow greener.”
Coors Light will be working with Coca-Cola Recycling to begin piloting a recycling program in the campgrounds that in 2010 will launch at Chicagoland Speedway. Campgrounds recycling, a critical component for the sport’s waste reduction-efforts since approximately one third of recyclable material at the track comes from the campgrounds, is planned to eventually expand to the entire circuit. Coca-Cola, the official soft drink of NASCAR, will continue to facilitate all at-track recycling through collaboration of its Coca-Cola Recycling division with Office Depot, Coors Light on campgrounds recycling, and UPS for cardboard recycling.
UPS will be piloting a new at-track cardboard recycling initiative in 2010. Track-wide cardboard recycling, including the merchandise row and food service areas that are contributing the majority of waste cardboard sent from the track to landfills, will begin as a pilot at five NASCAR Sprint Cup Series tracks this season. Nearly 50% of recyclable material at track is composed of cardboard and paper, with the majority of cardboard from merchandise row, as well as the hospitality village, suites and garage areas.(NASCAR)(4-17-2010)
Most Brands Ever Appear During the 2010 Daytona 500 Telecast: The 2010 Daytona 500 will long be remembered for two lengthy pothole repairs, which extended the live Fox broadcast to seven hours and also enabled 348 sponsoring brands—the most ever monitored during a Daytona 500 telecast—to obtain valuable television exposure. According to research conducted by Joyce Julius & Associates, Inc. — which has monitored every NASCAR race telecast since the mid-1980s — this year’s number of brands marked a 16% increase in sponsors compared to the 300 appearing during the 2009 race telecast. The additional broadcast time created by the two track repair delays was filled by several driver interviews. These lengthy interview segments saw 175 different brands appear on the drivers’ uniforms, compared to 149 brands in 2009. Overall, total on-screen time for all sponsors was up 55% compared to the 2009 broadcast (17:19:40 to 11:12:28), while verbal sponsor mentions rose a whopping 64% (386 to 236). When comparing the in-broadcast visual and verbal exposure to the estimated cost of a national commercial during the Daytona 500 telecast, and then applying Joyce Julius Recognition Grading—which takes into account such factors as size and placement of the image on screen, as well as brand “clutter”—the sponsors combined for $319 million of Recognition Grade exposure value. More info and stats at joycejulius.com.(Joyce Julius & Associates)(3-9-2010)
Daytona 500 Delays added Sponsorship Exposure: The one benefit of two lengthy track repair delays during last week's Daytona 500 was the unique opportunity for Fox to conduct interviews with an unprecedented 27 of the 43 drivers, and 10 crew chiefs.
According to research conducted by Joyce Julius & Associates, Inc. — which has monitored every NASCAR race telecast since the mid-1980s — by the time Fox signed off Sunday night from Daytona, a total of 46 separate driver interviews had been conducted, lasting a cumulative 46 minutes, 48 seconds (46:48).
Never far from the attention of the Fox crew, Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s three interview segments ran for a total of 4:53 to lead all drivers. As a result, Earnhardt's primary sponsor AMP Energy accumulated the most verbal mentions during the telecast with 10. When comparing the verbal exposure to the cost of a 30-second commercial during the Great American Race, AMP Energy collected nearly $1.7 million of exposure value. Earnhardt's sponsor was also mentioned on four occasions during MRN's national radio broadcast of the Daytona 500, good for another $26,000 of exposure value.
Budweiser mentions in association with its sponsorship of Kasey Kahne and UPS mentions regarding David Ragan were next in line among the leaders, as each brand was mentioned five times throughout the live Fox coverage. Budweiser picked up three more references during MRN's broadcast, bringing about a total of $853,000, while UPS obtained a half-dozen radio mentions for a total of $873,000 of media exposure.
Also prospering from the extended interviews and chatty drivers were the participating car makers. Ford failed to win the race, but certainly ruled the television and radio airwaves, as the brand was mentioned a combined 105 times, earning $8.5 million of comparable exposure value. Race-winning Chevrolet racked up 81 mentions ($4.2 million), followed by Toyota (49/$3.5 million) and Dodge (14/$1.2 million).
Most Mentioned on Fox
Daytona 500, 178
Daytona Int. Spdwy.,38
Sprint Cup, 25
NASCAR on Fox, 24
Kevin Harvick 138
Clint Bowyer 82
Greg Biffle 66
D. Earnhardt, Jr. 66
Kesey Kahne 61
(Joyce Julius & Associates)(2-20-2010)
Ask.com leaves NASCAR: This time a year ago, Ask.com was preparing to make the splash of the season at Daytona. It had a custom-made motor coach, pretty girls dressed in red and white to act as Ask Ambassadors throughout the speedway, and up to 30 new 15-second ad spots. The eager search engine had seemingly thought of everything for its first year of an official partnership with NASCAR and a team sponsorship at Hall of Fame Racing. But as the industry rolls into Daytona this week for the start of the 2010 season, the major question will be: What happened to Ask.com? Despite trumpeting successful results from its sponsorships and advertising in NASCAR last year, the Barry Diller-owned company opted not to return this year, allowing its NASCAR partnership and team deal to expire after one year. A change in leadership -- CEO Jim Safka did the NASCAR deals last year but was replaced by president Doug Leeds in October -- led to changes in marketing. Ask.com spent about $15 million on its NASCAR sponsorships and activation last year, industry insiders said. Its official deal with NASCAR was in the low seven figures, while the team sponsorship cost Ask.com $4 million. The majority of NASCAR sponsors whose deals were up last year renewed, including Dodge, Unilever, DuPont, DirecTV, Kraft, and Procter & Gamble brands Gillette, Old Spice and Prilosec OTC. NASCAR also added Screenvision and Drive4COPD as new partners, with Screenvision being the official cinema ad agency and Drive4COPD, a group that drives awareness and screening for lung disease, serving as the official health initiative. Among the sponsors that didn't renew for this year: P&G brand Duracell, Best Western, Yardman/Cub Cadet, and Kellogg's, along with Ask.(Sporting News/NASCAR.com)(2-8-2010)
List of NASCAR Official Sponsors 2010
Aflac -- Official Supplemental Insurance
Bank of America -- Official Bank
Camping World -- Official Outdoor and RV Retail Partner
Canteen Vending Services -- Official Partner
Chevrolet -- An Official Passenger Car
Cintas -- The Preferred Uniform Supplier
Coca-Cola -- Official Non-Alcoholic Beverage, Official Soft Drink, Official Sport Drink, Official Energy Drink
Coors Light -- Official Beer
Craftsman Tools -- Official Tools
Daytona USA -- Official Attraction
Diageo -- Proud Sponsor
DIRECTV -- Official Partner
Dodge -- An Official Passenger Car
DuPont -- Official Auto Finish
Exide -- Official Auto Batteries
Featherlite Coach -- Official Luxury Coach
Featherlite Trailers -- Official Trailer
Ford Trucks -- Official Truck
Freightliner Trucks -- Official Big Rig, Official Hauler
Gillette -- Official Shaving Product
Goodyear -- Official Tire
Head & Shoulders -- Official Partner
Mars Snackfood & Petfood US -- Official Chocolate; Official Chocolate Bar; Official Cheese Filled Snacks; Official Petfood
Mobil 1 -- Official Motor Oil
Nabisco (Kraft) -- Official Cookies and Crackers
Nationwide -- Official Auto, Home and Life Insurance
NicoDerm -- Proud Sponsor
Office Depot -- Official Office Supply/Products Provider
Old Spice -- Official Antiperspirant, Deodorant & Bodywash
O'Reilly's -- Official Auto Parts Store
Prilosec OTC -- Official Heartburn Remedy
Raybestos -- Official Brakes
Safety-Kleen -- Official Supplier
Screenvision -- Official Cinema Media Partner
SIRIUS XM Radio -- Official Satellite Radio Partner
Sprint -- Official Series Sponsor
Sunoco -- Official Fuel and Official Convenience Store
3M -- Official Partner
Tissot -- Official Timekeeper and Official Watch
Tylenol -- Official Pain Reliever
Toyota -- An Official Passenger Car
Unilever -- Official Partner
UPS -- Official Delivery Service
USG -- Official Partner
Visa -- Official Card
Wix Filters -- Official Filters
Whelen Engineering Inc. -- NASCAR Whelen All-American Series
AUTOMOTIVE AFTERMARKET COMPANIES
BWD / Standard
New Pig Wipes
NASCAR Technical Institute
Safelite Auto Glass
Sprint -- Official Series Sponsor, Sprint Cup Series
Nationwide -- Official Series Sponsor, Nationwide Series
Camping World -- Official Series Sponsor, Camping World Truck Series
K&N Engineering Inc. - Official Series Sponsor, K&N Pro Series East, K&N Pro Series West
Whelen -- Official Series Sponsor, Whelen Modified Tour, Whelen Southern Modified Tour and Whelen All-American Series
Canadian Tire -- Official Series Sponsor, Canadian Tires Series
List of NASCAR Official Sponsors from NASCAR.com
Coca-Cola honored with NASCAR Marketing Achievement Award: Coca-Cola, a long-time NASCAR partner with the most integrated involvement in all levels of the sport, was honored with the 2009 NASCAR Marketing Achievement Award today at the NASCAR NMPA Myers Brothers Awards here as part of NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Champion's Week. In addition to its position as the official non-alcoholic beverage of NASCAR, Coca-Cola has relationships with 15 race tracks and 12 drivers through the Coca-Cola Racing Family. A full portfolio of its brands support NASCAR: Coca-Cola, Coke Zero, NOS, Powerade, and Vitamin Water. Coke is also title sponsor to two NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races, the Coca-Cola 600 at Lowe's Motor Speedway and the Coke Zero 400 at Daytona International Speedway. In 2009, Coca-Cola ran 130 unique NASCAR-themed marketing programs across the country, including seven major custom retail promotions, and a ticket package benefitting fans attending the Coca-Cola 600 in May. Coke's Golden Can promotion included three-million NASCAR-themed cases. NASCAR was also promoted on 53 million "50th anniversary" celebration cans. Earlier this year, Coke was an anchor partner in a regional promotion for official NASCAR partners in 124 Brookshire's stores that included a special fan ticket offer at Texas Motor Speedway, driving significant sales increases for Coke Zero. Sharing a commitment to the environment and the communities the sport visits, Coke partnered with NASCAR on an enhanced at-track recycling program in 2009. More than 70+ tons of waste and 2.5 million containers were recycled at NASCAR Sprint Cup Series tracks in the 2009 season, making NASCAR the largest recycler in sports.(NASCAR)(12-4-2009)
Mobil 1 and Toyota UPDATE: not quite sure what this is all about, have heard nor seen anything but......Mobil 1 Racing and Toyota Racing Development (TRD) U.S.A to make announcement about 2010 NASCAR season Friday at Phoenix International Raceway, scheduled to be attending the announcement are Brian Vickers, driver of the #83 Red Bull Toyota; Michael Waltrip, owner of Michael Waltrip Racing and driver of the #55 NAPA Toyota; Lee White, President and General Manager, TRD; Harold Shablom, Global Motorsport Manager, ExxonMobil Lubricants & Specialties.(PR)(11-13-2009)
UPDATE: ExxonMobil and Toyota Racing Development (TRD) unveiled a new technological partnership in which ExxonMobil will provide its Mobil 1 racing oil technology and products to TRD- supported NASCAR teams. Kicking off at the start of the 2010 NASCAR season, TRD-supplied NASCAR engines will be filled with specially modified motor oil based on the same technology available to consumers in Mobil 1 Racing oils, which were unveiled in April. The TRD-specific motor oils will deliver outstanding power via unique low-friction synthetic lubricant technology combined with boosted levels of anti-wear additives to protect and extend the life of engine hardware. Formally announced before the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Checker O'Reilly Auto Parts 500 at Phoenix International Raceway, the collaboration will pair Mobil 1, the “Official Motor Oil of NASCAR,” with one of NASCAR’s top engine manufacturers. With this new partnership, ExxonMobil’s racing oil technology will now provide performance and protection for the TRD-supported Red Bull Racing and Michael Waltrip Racing NASCAR teams.(Toyota PR)(11-14-2009)
3M extends partnership with NASCAR: 3M and NASCAR announced an agreement for 3M to expand the categories for which it holds exclusive NASCAR marketing rights to include bandages, first aid supplies, braces, supports and hot & cold therapy products. For nearly 10 years numerous 3M products associated with automotive, industrial, professional and home use applications have been designated as exclusive NASCAR licensed products with the rights to use NASCAR-themed marketing elements in advertising and promotional materials. The 3M products range from hearing protection to automotive care and refinishing products, adhesive tapes, abrasives and many more. With this expansion of the agreement, 3M Nexcare bandages and first aid tapes, ACE, Futuro and Tru-Fit support devices and certain other 3M medical products will be permitted to carry the prestigious NASCAR mark on packaging, promotional elements and related media. 3M’s association with motorsports spans decades and has taken many forms over the years. In addition to holding multiple NASCAR Officially Licensed product categories, 3M is a long-time sponsor of NASCAR racing as primary sponsor for Roush Fenway Racing’s #16 3M Ford Fusion driven by Greg Biffle in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.(NASCAR)(11-13-2009)
Study rates NASCAR sponsors: In a recent study that rated consumers' recall of NASCAR sponsors, Coca-Cola Co. was a big winner while FedEx ... not so much. FanLab, an Atlanta-based company, did the study to calculate which NASCAR sponsors consumers recalled when not prompted. In the June study of 1,044 consumers - of which 518 self-identified as avid or casual NASCAR fans - Coca-Cola came in fourth. That is a relatively high ranking for Coke, said Brian Evans, FanLab's director of client relations, given the company doesn't have its own car. The beverage giant is, however, the official "non-alcoholic beverage," the "official soft drink" and "official sport drink" of NASCAR. It also sponsors 14 drivers and has its name on two races. The companies that ranked highest have sponsored teams, however, and in some cases, racetracks and winning drivers: Budweiser was first, Home Depot was second and Lowe's third. FedEx, which sponsors a driver, failed to break the top 25 while the "official delivery service" and team sponsor UPS ranked 14th. Aflac, "official supplemental insurance" and a team sponsor, was 23rd. "If you're in the top 20, you're connecting with fans and that program should be working for you," said Evans.(Atlanta Journal-Constitution)(8-14-2009)
- Race for Television Exposure Goes Gordon’s Way: With seven top-10 finishes and a win to his credit through the first 10 races of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season, Jeff Gordon is easily winning the battle for television exposure on behalf of his corporate sponsors. Gordon’s brands have appeared for 12.5 hours during TV coverage devoted to the races, nearly 1.5 hours more than sponsors received from the second-most exposure prolific driver, Jimmy Johnson. According to research conducted by Joyce Julius & Associates, Inc. — which specializes in measuring the scope of sponsorships across all forms of media — 70 brands appearing on locations such as Gordon’s car, uniform and support crew’s uniforms have appeared clear and in-focus for a total of 12 hours, 27 minutes, 10 seconds (12:27:10) during television coverage of NASCAR’s first 10 official points races. Additionally, those sponsors have been mentioned by Gordon or the announcers 103 times. In comparison, 54 brands have been monitored with Johnson thus far in 2009, amassing a cumulative on-screen time of 10:42:03, while also being mentioned verbally on 100 occasions.
Other exposure findings from the first 10 race telecasts:
Most exposure for Series sponsor Sprint from a driver: 00:15:08 (Gordon)
Most verbal mentions for a primary team sponsor: 35 (Home Depot-J. Logano)
Most exposure for tire provider Goodyear from a driver: 00:12:24 (Johnson)
Most exposure for an auto manufacturer from a driver: 01:17:37 (Chevrolet-Gordon)
Most exposure from identity on a hood: 02:01:43 (Lowe’s-Johnson)
Top Exposure Producing Drivers (After 10 Races):
Driver, Points Standing, Total Brands, Exposure Time, Verbal Mentions
1) Gordon, J., 1, 70, 12:27:10, 103
2) Johnson, J., 6, 54, 10:42:03, 34
3) Busch, Ky., 5, 69, 10:01:00, 100
4) Kenseth, M., 12, 56, 08:22:09, 50
5) Busch, Ku., 2, 33, 07:53:00, 56
6) Earnhardt, D. Jr., 18, 45, 07:35:44, 32
7) Edwards, C., 9, 57, 07:24:10, 61
8) Stewart, T., 3, 46, 06:30:11, 58
9) Martin, M., 15, 56, 06:20:56, 34
10) Hamlin, D., 4, 46, 05:26:05, 58
(Joyce Julius & Assoc)(5-21-2009)
- State Water Heaters alters approach to stay in NASCAR: State Water Heaters, a NASCAR team sponsor since 2006, went into this season wanting to maintain the benefits of its marketing and hospitality program while trimming expenses. After visiting just about every NASCAR team as a free agent, State went in a markedly different direction. It decided to sponsor no one at all. Instead of spending the $5 million to $7 million a year for a low-level, often noncompetitive car, as it had done before, State opted for a unique program conceived by North Carolina-based 919 Marketing with former driver Ward Burton. It's a plan that has allowed State to keep its vibrant hospitality program at the track despite axing the costly sponsorship. Burton, a five-time winner and one of the sport's elite drivers from 1999 to 2002, essentially serves as State's NASCAR ambassador for anywhere from 30 to 100 of the company's guests on race day at a Sprint Cup event. He guides them on pit and garage tours, explains the race to guests in a suite and even talks sales on State's behalf. Until this year, State Water Heaters was known in NASCAR circles as a loyal sponsor of teams such as [#4 Chevy] Morgan-McClure Motorsports and [#66 Chevy] Haas CNC Racing. Burton enables State to deliver that race-day experience at the track with a noted driver, even though State's white, blue and orange car no longer competes. State wouldn't say how much State will save this year, but the company is not writing a hefty sponsorship check and it will be entertaining at about 10 races this year instead of 36, so the savings will be in the millions. In addition to the race-day activities, State puts on driving and ride-along excursions. During one such event on April 18 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, Burton took State guests on trips around the track at 160 mph, using cars from the Richard Petty Driving Experience.(SportsBusiness Journal)(5-5-2009)
- Lincoln Electric And NASCAR Extend Relationship: Lincoln Electric and NASCAR announced a five-year extension of their agreement in which Lincoln Electric remains an exclusive automotive partner under the NASCAR Performance brand and retains its competition contingency sponsorship which includes the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in 2009. Lincoln Electric became the exclusive NASCAR Performance sponsor of welders and welding helmets in 2000 and held contingency award programs in the NASCAR Nationwide Series, NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, NASCAR Canadian Tire Series and the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series. In 2009, Lincoln Electric will add contingency sponsorships in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series and the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series with weekly prize money provided to eligible teams based on finish position. Lincoln Electric will also continue their programs in the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series and the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series. In addition, a year-end award of $5,000 and a Lincoln Welder will be presented to the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series National Champion car owner during the season ending banquet.(NASCAR PR)(3-5-2009)
- O’Reilly Auto Parts NASCAR Contingency Award: O’Reilly Auto Parts, the official auto parts store of NASCAR, will sponsor a Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) and a Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) contingency special award this season. The O’Reilly Auto Parts “People, Service and Performance” award recognizes the team effort made both on the track and in the pits. The NSCS and NCWTS driver who records the fastest lap time and lowest cumulative pit stop time of the event will be the award winner. In order to be eligible, the driver must finish the race on the lead lap. In the event of a tie, the award will be presented to the driver with the highest finishing position in the event. The winning NSCS team will receive a $5,000 check each race and the team which wins the most awards during the course of the season will be awarded with a $100,000 year-end bonus. The winning NCWTS team will receive a $1,000 check each race and the team which wins the most awards during the course of the season will be awarded with a $10,000 year-end bonus.(NASCAR PR)(2-16-2009)
- Tissot sponsors NASCAR Sprint Cup Series contingency award: Tissot, the official watch and timekeeper of NASCAR, will sponsor a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in-race contingency award this season. The Tissot “Pit Road Precision Award” highlights the team aspect of NASCAR, as the over-the-wall crew members will play a vital role in winning the award. The award will be given to the eligible driver who has spent the least amount of time on pit road and has finished on the lead lap. The winning driver will earn $5,000 and a Tissot watch. There will also be a year-end award of $100,000 given to the driver who has won the most “Pit Road Precision Awards” during the season.(NASCAR PR)(2-9-2009)
- Craftsman Renews "Official Tools of NASCAR" Sponsorship: Craftsman tools announced the renewal of the "Official Tools of NASCAR" sponsorship through 2013. Building on a 14-year relationship with NASCAR, Craftsman continues to view the sport as a perfect fit for America’s most trusted tool brand. "We’ve enjoyed a long and successful association and we look forward to building on the heritage of Craftsman in NASCAR," said Mike Cassar, Craftsman brand manager. "NASCAR shows trust in our tools and that parallels the loyalty our customers have shown in making Craftsman their trusted brand of choice." With the renewal of the "official tools" status, Craftsman will return as presenting sponsor of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Pit Crew Challenge, which is held at Time Warner Cable Arena in Charlotte, N.C. during the All-Star Week in May. Taking a broader approach to the NASCAR sponsorship in 2009, Craftsman will introduce a season-ending award for crew members, and plans to announce a defining partnership before the season kicks off in Daytona.(NASCAR PR)(1-28-2009)
- Cutbacks announced for NASCAR's largest sponsors: The grim economic news isn't just affecting NASCAR's teams as they prepare for next month's season openers at Daytona International Speedway. Four of NASCAR's largest corporate sponsors -- including Sprint Nextel Corp. -- announced major layoffs and cutbacks Monday as a result of the worldwide economic slowdown.
In an effort to reduce labor costs by more than $1 billion, Sprint Nextel officials announced the company will eliminate 8,000 jobs -- or 14% of its workforce -- by the end of the March, placing a freeze on salary increases and suspending its 401(k) match for the year. The nation's third-largest wireless phone carrier posted a net loss of $326 million in the third quarter of 2008 and nearly $1.2 billion for the first three quarters of 2008. The news was just as bad Monday at corporate headquarters for Caterpillar, Home Depot and General Motors. After announcing a 32% drop in fourth-quarter profit, Caterpillar -- the new sponsor of Jeff Burton's #31 Chevy -- will be forced to eliminate 20,000 jobs -- about 18% of its workforce -- through a combination of layoffs and buyouts. Approximately 2,500 workers have already accepted buyouts and some 8,000 contract workers will be eliminated. In addition, 4,000 full-time factory workers have been laid off. Home Depot, NASCAR's official home improvement warehouse, announced it will close 34 Expo Design Center stores and 14 other specialty stores over the next two months. That will account for a 2% reduction in the company's workforce, or about 7,000 jobs. Earlier this month, the company announced that it would end its Olympic sponsorship program, which had been in place since 1992. According to media ratings company Nielsen Co., Home Depot reportedly spent between $25 and $30 million in advertising for the last two Olympic games, and $12 million on NASCAR advertising in 2007. According to one tracking firm, Home Depot's total budget for sports sponsorships in 2007 was between $60 and $65 million. General Motors Corp. announced plans to cut shifts this spring at plants in Ohio and Michigan, eliminating about 2,000 positions. In addition, production will be decreased at 13 other plants in the United States and Canada. Less than a month ago, GM announced the temporary closure of 20 plants in North American in response to the slowdown in vehicle sales. All of those plants are expected to resume production during the first quarter of 2009, with the exception of the plants listed in Monday's release. About 1,200 workers will be laid off at GM's Delta Township plant near Lansing, Mich., beginning March 30 when GM eliminates one shift. Another 800 workers will be affected by the elimination of another shift at the Lordstown, Ohio, facility.(NASCAR.com)(1-27-2009)
- NASCAR looking to fill four sponsor categories: NASCAR will go into 2009 with openings in at least four categories - rental car, quick-service restaurant, home improvement store and digital photography - while five other sponsors renewed their official status deals. The biggest defection comes from Home Depot, which has spent the last 10 years as NASCAR's official home improvement warehouse. It is one of four official partners that decided not to renew its league deal amid budget constraints. Enterprise, Domino's Pizza and Kodak also elected to let their official status deals expire. These agreements, which normally range from three to five years in length, typically go for the low seven figures annually. Jim O'Connell, NASCAR's vice president of corporate marketing, characterized the departures as "companies that are leaving the sport entirely. They all had bad years, earnings-wise, and they're looking at tighter budgets." Domino's and Kodak also vacated team deals in the past year - Domino's at Michael Waltrip Racing and Kodak at Penske Racing. Among the sponsors that renewed with multiyear deals are Mars, Office Depot, Tylenol, Unilever and Craftsman. The overall reduction going into 2009 leaves NASCAR with 38 official partners, including the four auto manufacturers, about 10 fewer than three years ago. Another pair of sponsors remain in limbo as 2008 comes to a close. DuPont is in negotiations to extend its contract with the sanctioning body, as is Sony.(Sports Business Journal)(12-22-2008)
AND: Mars North America announced that it will extend its contract as official NASCAR partner. The multi-year sponsorship commitment allows multiple Mars brands to connect with racing fans and includes four designations: Official Chocolate of NASCAR (M&M'S); Official Chocolate Bar of NASCAR (Snickers); Official Cheese-Filled Snack of NASCAR (Combos); and Official Pet Food of NASCAR (Pedigree).(Mars PR)(12-22-2008)
- O’Reilly Auto Parts signs deal with NASCAR: O’Reilly Auto Parts and NASCAR announced an exclusive multi-year agreement for O’Reilly to become the Official Auto Parts Retailer of NASCAR. The agreement allows for O’Reilly Auto Parts to be an exclusive NASCAR partner and utilize NASCAR marks and marketing programs in store and in related media. As part of this agreement, O’Reilly will become a contingency sponsor for the competitors as well as provide season-ending awards in both the Sprint Cup Series and Camping World Truck Series. The O’Reilly Auto Parts “People, Service and Performance” Award recognizes the team effort made both on the track and in the pits. O’Reilly has been a longtime NASCAR industry participant. The auto parts chain is currently the title sponsor of six NASCAR events in 2008, including the O’Reilly 300 and O’Reilly Challenge Nationwide Series races both held at Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth, Tex. Additionally the company sponsors the Checker O’Reilly Auto Parts 500 Sprint Cup Series race at Phoenix International Raceway on November 9.(NASCAR PR)(11-6-2008)
- UPS Interested in Truck Series Sponsorship? Craftsman announced late last year that it would not return as title sponsor. The start of the post-Craftsman era officially begins in six months, but a sponsor has not emerged. Another tool manufacturer, Lowe's Kobalt Tools, was reported for much of the summer to be the front-runner, but dropped out in recent weeks. Other companies that sources said looked closely at the Truck Series were Old Spice, before committing to Tony Stewart's new Sprint Cup team, and the U.S. Army, which ran into conflicts due to the multiyear commitment NASCAR prefers in its title sponsors (usually five years or more). NASCAR is eager to land a sponsor, but the lack of one so far doesn't raise a black flag on the series. "In a perfect world, you know what you're doing financially, partnerwise, as soon as possible. They'd ideally like to be in activation mode, right now, gearing up with the new sponsor. I also think they have the discipline that if they wanted to have a deal done at any costs, they would have had a deal done. They'll be eager, but they won't be desperate. There is a difference between the two. NASCAR doesn't get desperate, they don't need to be desperate. They'll wait until they find the right overall package, but I'm sure they're in deal mode more today than five months ago." [said Zak Brown, CEO and founder of Just Marketing, an Indianapolis-based marketing group with various motorsports clients.] Where might that deal lead? Brown said the likely candidates remain companies that would fit the rugged, masculine image of the Truck Series, not unlike the current sponsor, Craftsman. One of his clients -- UPS, a company famous for its trucks -- is said to be intrigued and looking at the series. (ESPN.com)(8-15-2008)
- Kobalt to Sponsor Truck Series? Kobalt Tools, a Lowe's brand, has emerged as the leading candidate to sponsor the truck series, industry sources say. Craftsman has been the title sponsor since the series was launched in 1995, but the Sears brand will not renew after its deal with NASCAR runs out this year. NASCAR is believed to be selling the truck title rights in the mid- to high seven-figure range annually, with an advertising commitment on Speed, the broadcast home of the series, at close to seven figures. Stanley Tools and NAPA also have been involved in discussions with NASCAR. Kobalt Tools' presence in NASCAR has previously been tied to Sprint Cup driver Jimmie Johnson, whose primary sponsor is Lowe's. If NASCAR and Kobalt Tools eventually reach an agreement, the deal could have many tentacles. In addition to the title sponsorship, the deal likely would include status for Kobalt as the official tool of NASCAR, replacing Craftsman. Lowe's, represented by GMR Marketing, also could be moving into the official home improvement store category that currently is occupied by The Home Depot, whose deal with NASCAR runs out this year.(Sporting News)(7-15-2008)
- Checkers/Rally's no longer official burger of NASCAR: Checkers/Rally's has been released from its position as the official burger of NASCAR, creating an opening in the quick-service restaurant category. NASCAR called the separation a mutual decision. Checkers/Rally's, based in Tampa, also has exited its sponsorships of the Indianapolis 500, Allstate 400 at the Brickyard and Indianapolis Motor Speedway. All of the motorsports deals were scheduled to run through the 2009 season. Checkers/Rally's confirmed the end of the sponsorships, but its chief marketing officer, Terri Snyder, could not be reached for comment. NASCAR now has turned its attention to filling the QSR category. Brian Corcoran, managing director of corporate marketing in NASCAR's New York office, is spearheading the effort to find a brand with a national footprint. (Sports Business Daily/SceneDaily.com)(4-24-2008)
- NASCAR Sued for Contract Breach: NASCAR was sued by a maker of automotive wet wipes for breach of a license agreement. Sellars Absorbent Materials Inc., a manufacturer of automotive car products, said NASCAR refused to approve packaging and marketing materials in connection with its automotive disposable wet wipes. The company paid NASCAR $1.5 million for the exclusive right to use the NASCAR logo to market its products, including wipes that will protect the surface and interior of cars, according to a lawsuit filed April 11 in federal court in Orlando, Florida. NASCAR contends that Sellars can't market the wipes as a protectant due to an exclusive license agreement it has with 3M for "protectants," according to the complaint. Sellars alleges that NASCAR granted it the exclusive right to use its logo for the wipes and is now attempting to "retroactively limit the scope of the license rights." "Although Nascar identified certain limitations and exceptions in the license agreement and amendments," Sellars said in court papers. "NASCAR did not create an exception for 'protectants.'"(Bloomberg News)(4-18-2008)
- Two Official Sponsors not returning: Callaway and NewPage say they will not renew their contracts as official sponsors of NASCAR when their contracts run out at the end of this year, Street & Smith's SportsBusiness Daily reports. Callaway is the official golf club of NASCAR, while another Callaway brand, Top-Flite, is the official golf ball. NewPage is NASCAR's paper of choice. The story says Callaway has expressed interest in continuing to work with NASCAR on golf outings for sponsors and other partners.(SceneDaily.com)(12-15-2007)
- Coke/NASCAR sponsorship deal to last another 10 years: Coca-Cola is extending its marketing partnership with NASCAR for another decade, an arrangement that promotes the world's largest beverage company and its products to a U.S. fan base of 75 million people and millions more worldwide. The extension of the Coke-NASCAR relationship follows the announcement earlier this year of a new 10-year sponsorship agreement with the International Speedway Corporation, which meant Atlanta-based Coke bumped Pepsi out of the prestigious Daytona 500 and other ISC tracks. NASCAR spokesman Steve Phelps said most NASCAR sponsorships "average around 5 years," putting the latest move between Coke and the racing franchise — it runs through 2017 — in a unique category.(Atlanta Journal Constitution)(12-7-2007)
- NASCAR in talks with JetBlue: NASCAR chief marketing officer Steve Phelps has been talking sponsor consolidation for the past year, but that might change if NASCAR can expand into previously untapped areas. The airline category has been a difficult sell for NASCAR, but officials have been in discussions with JetBlue Airways about a partnership. The New York-based low-cost carrier offers 500 flights per day and provides 36 channels of DirecTV programming on its flights. DirecTV has been NASCAR's official satellite television provider since 2005. Footwear is another category that remains unmined and could hold some potential, whether it's Starter, which is owned by Nike and has a new shoe and apparel deal with Joe Gibbs Racing, or Puma, a brand that's commonly seen in the garage area. Expect NASCAR to also start pitching national real-estate companies, such as Century 21 and Re/Max, sources said.(Sporting News NASCAR Wire Service)(2-24-2007)
- UPS extends with NASCAR: UPS announced it had signed a new five-year agreement with NASCAR to continue as the official express delivery company of the sport through the 2011 racing season. The exclusive “Official Delivery Company” partnership extends a highly successful union dating back to UPS’s initial entry into the sport in 2000. As part of the deal, UPS will continue providing its popular Trackside Services to the industry at all Nextel Cup Series races as well as logistics, freight and supply chain services. Today, UPS serves as the delivery company to approximately 99% of the more than 1,000 NASCAR family businesses, race teams, race tracks, NASCAR business units, other NASCAR sponsors and suppliers. That represents a 55% increase in racing customers since UPS entered the sport. UPS’s decision to extend its relationship with NASCAR follows the company’s decision in 2006 to move its team sponsorship with Dale Jarrett to the new #44 Toyota Camry, which debuts at the Daytona 500 on February 18. UPS maintains six individual track sponsorships, including Bristol Motor Speedway, California Speedway, Daytona International Speedway, Homestead-Miami Speedway, Richmond International Raceway and Texas Motor Speedway. UPS also has been an active supporter of NASCAR’s diversity efforts to embrace the expanding demographics of its fan base. In November, the company contributed $100,000 to five minority students at the NASCAR Technical Institute in Mooresville, N.C. The scholarships cover all school expenses except room and board for qualified minority students attending the institute. To date, UPS has provided $600,000 in scholarships to the program. For more information, log onto www.racing.ups.com.(PR)(2-16-2007)
- NASCAR looking for $30 million from new 'Busch' Series sponsor: NASCAR is seeking approximately $30 million annually to sponsor its second series, multiple sources close to ongoing negotiations told
ESPN.com on Monday. The sources, speaking on condition of anonymity, said that is roughly twice the annual investment Anheuser-Busch forked out to sponsor the series with its Busch brand for the past several years. Sources say there is no clear front-runner at this point, but did admit that previously-speculated suitors Subway, Samsung and Wal-Mart are accurate. Sources also said Dunkin Donuts is a player, and that NASCAR met with Allstate last week. One key issue, though, is potential conflicts with existing sponsors. Sources said NASCAR went through all sponsors that would present conflicts with NASCAR's official partners, the race teams and tracks -- which is where Allstate presents an issue; all six Speedway Motorsports tracks are sponsored by Nationwide -- and created a short list before approaching existing partners to gauge interest. One source said the best-case scenario is to close the deal within the next three months. Asked for worst case, the source said "it doesn't sell." Asked for comment on the matter, NASCAR spokesman Ramsey Poston didn't deny the accuracy of the speculation and did say there is plenty of interest from corporate America. "I can confirm that there has been great interest from a number of multinational companies that are interested in this sponsorship," Poston said. "The entitlement would provide the eventual sponsor over $100 million annually in brand exposure, and that, along with the partnership with ESPN2, makes this a very desirable position in sports."(ESPN.com)(1-30-2007)
- Gillette Young Guns team to get new driver: To kick off the 2007 Nextel Cup Series season, the Gillette Young Guns are inviting race fans to visit GilletteYoungGuns.com for a chance to guess who will be the newest member of the team. From now until February 18, consumers can visit the Web site to correctly predict the new Gillette Young Gun driver. Each correct selection registers fans for the opportunity to win the grand prize package - a Phantom race car, a trip for two to a 2007 Nextel Cup Series race and the chance to meet the new Gillette Young Guns driver. The newest member of the team will be revealed prior to the Daytona 500 and will officially join the Gillette Young Guns team of drivers - Kurt Busch, Carl Edwards, Jamie McMurray, Ryan Newman and Jimmie Johnson. The drivers listed are: #5-Kyle Busch, #11-Denny Hamlin, #9-Kasey Kahne and #1-Martin Truex, Jr. (Alan Taylor Communications PR), Dale Earnhardt Jr. is the driver out.(1-23-2007)
- JEGS enters contingency program with NASCAR; will sponsor 60 local tracks: Just days after announcing its sponsorship of veteran NASCAR racer #78-Kenny Wallace, JEGS Mail Order has unveiled a comprehensive contingency program for the country's most popular form of auto racing. The Delaware, Ohio-based, high-performance parts company will also sponsor 60 local NASCAR-sanctioned racetracks across the country. Beginning in 2007, NEXTEL Cup teams displaying a JEGS sticker on their cars will be eligible for contingency money depending on where they finish on the 43-car grid. Each race winner will receive contingency as will other drivers finishing in random positions in the final order.(The Auto Channel)(12-16-2006)
- BAC and NASCAR sign 5-year deal: Bank of America Corp. has signed a five-year deal as the official bank of NASCAR. The bank shared details of the agreement with The Associated Press before the public announcement Monday. The multiyear deal greatly expands Bank of America's sponsorship of stock car racing, while also marking a change in how NASCAR lines up sponsors. NASCAR has begun to reduce its sponsor base by consolidating deals and seeking opportunities to cover entire industries in one deal.
Bank of America already has an "official bank" deal in place with baseball, long known as the national pastime. Now, the nation's No. 2 bank adds a similar deal with a sport widely viewed as the nation's fastest-growing. A person familiar with the agreement put the overall value of the five-year deal between $15 million and $20 million. Under the deal, Bank of America will be NASCAR's exclusive sponsor for banking and related financial services, including checking and savings accounts, credit and debit cards, mutual funds and securities brokerage services. The company gets the right to use the NASCAR logo and name in marketing and advertising promotions through 2011.(Associated Press)(11-27-2006)
- Goody's out, Tylenol in..with NASCAR: Goody's Headache Powders, a staple in NASCAR since 1977, will be replaced by Tylenol next season as the sport's official pain reliever. It's yet another break the stock car racing series is making from its longtime, but regional, partners. Goody's plans to stay involved with Petty Enterprises and continue its relationship with Martinsville (Va.) Speedway, where Goody's sponsored a Busch Series race this season. The agreement also provides promotional opportunities around all the NASCAR tracks and gives Tylenol exclusive-rights deals with the International Speedway Corporation and Dover International Speedway.(Associated Press)(11-17-2006)
- NASCAR sponsorships set off liquor industry spat: Pernod Ricard has said it will pull out of an industry-funded responsible-drinking organization in a dispute over the group's support of liquor sponsorships in auto racing. In a letter sent to the Century Council and obtained by MarketWatch, the France-based spirits maker resigned its membership, although its departure won't be effective until November. While that could give them time to work out some kind of compromise, the missive from Alain Barbet, the company's U.S. president, put the issue in fairly stark relief: "We at Pernod Ricard firmly believe that is inappropriate for the distilled spirits industry to engage in sponsorship of motor sports," he wrote. "We also believe strongly that any involvement of the Century Council in these sponsorship activities runs the risk of damaging [its] well-earned credibility . . . and undermining its message of responsibility."(full story at MarketWatch.com)(11-10-2006)
- Fuel Cell Update; 17 gallons in 2007: Drivers say that they don't need the smaller, 14-gallon fuel cell for the races later this month at Lowe's Motor Speedway. NASCAR mandated the smaller fuel cell instead of the regular 22-gallon cell because of concerns about tires on the new surface. A smaller fuel cell will lead to more pit stops and more chances to change tires. This week's test showed the tires are durable enough that they should last what would be a regular fuel run with the larger fuel cell. John Darby, Nextel Cup series director, said more information is needed before deciding to change back to the larger fuel cell. "Until you go through that 600 miles, you don't know what's going to happen," Darby said. Darby said that next year, the fuel cells will be 17 gallons.(Roanoke Times)(5-6-2006)
- Gillette Prostate Cancer Challenge: Gillette announced the launch of the Gillette Prostate Cancer Challenge, a nationwide effort to raise awareness of the risks, symptoms and benefits of early detection of prostate cancer, the second leading cause of cancer deaths in American men. Gillette is teaming with the National Prostate Cancer Coalition (NPCC) Foundation and sports partners Major League Baseball and six NASCAR drivers - The Gillette Young Guns, to educate men about the risks related to prostate cancer, the fastest-growing men's health issue today. Men can participate in the Gillette Prostate Cancer Challenge by logging on to www.gillettepcc.org, and taking the important steps of knowing their risks, talking to their
doctor and telling their friends. The Challenge will begin with events surrounding this week's Daytona 500, when Gillette Young Gun Ryan Newman will serve as spokesman for the NASCAR portion of the program. Newman also will be featured in a Public Service Announcement (PSA). This year, Gillette and the NPCC will have screening vans present at major events throughout the country. The vans will provide free prostate cancer screenings, as well as information on topics such as prevention strategies, diagnostics and symptoms of the disease. For more information about the NPCC, visit pcacoalition.org.(Alan Taylor Communications)(2-19-2006)
- Checkers Expands Role with NASCAR Checkers Drive-In Restaurants, the nation's largest chain of double drive-thru restaurants and the Official Drive-Thru Restaurant of NASCAR, announced that it is expanding its popular Double Drive-Thru Challenge Contingency program from the NEXTEL Cup Series to include the Busch and Craftsman Truck Series as well. Checkers/Rally's Double Drive-Thru Challenge focuses on the team element of the race that is integral to successful performances each week. To win, teams were required to finish on the lead lap while spending the least amount of time in pit lane. For details on the Checkers/Rally's Double Drive-Thru Challenge, visit checkers.com.(Yahoo Biz)(1-26-2006)
- Budweiser gets the most in-broadcast TV exposure value: The streak continues. For the 21st consecutive season, the primary team sponsor of the NASCAR Cup Series champion (The Home Depot/Tony Stewart) did not earn the most in-broadcast exposure value for the season. The 2005 team sponsor top-five ranked as follows: Budweiser ($149.0 million), Lowe's ($140.2 million), The Home Depot ($125.0 million), NAPA Auto Parts ($105.5 million) and DuPont ($84.7 million). The hood of a NASCAR Nextel Cup Series car is some of the most valuable real estate in all of sports. The following is the top-3 of the top hoods in terms of generating on-screen time during the race telecasts: 1) Lowe's/#48-Johnson, 7:16:32; 22.0%; 2) DuPont/#24-Gordon, 5:40:24 (exposure time), 28.3% (% of Brand's Exp); 3) The Home Depot/#20-Stewart, 5:39:27; 19.7%.(Joyce Julius PR)(12-23-2005)
- Domino's stay with NASCAR: Domino's Pizza, the Official Pizza of NASCAR, announced it will extend its partnership with the NASCAR. "We continue to be a proud sponsor of NASCAR, and feel our brand has been enhanced by this partnership," says David A. Brandon, chairman and CEO of Domino's Pizza. "As the number one choice for pizza among NASCAR fans, we feel we have been rewarded for our connection to this exciting sport." By focusing its marketing and advertising efforts on promoting Race Day is Domino's Pizza Day, Domino's has increased sales consistently across the country on race days by promoting the Race Day 555 Deal. When NASCAR fans are preparing to watch a race, ordering pizza from Domino's is becoming part of their race day ritual. The road ahead is promising. Domino's Pizza is the title sponsor of the upcoming Domino's Pizza 250 NASCAR Busch Series race on August 20 at Michigan International Speedway, and the primary sponsor of driver Michael Waltrip's #99 Domino's Pizza car [for that race].(Dominos.com)(8-11-2005)
- Life Insurance of NASCAR: Allstate Insurance Co. is preparing to sign a multiyear, multimillion-dollar sponsorship to become the life insurance sponsor of NASCAR, Street & Smith's SportsBusiness Journal reports. Unidentified sources told reporter Scott Warfield that Allstate will "likely pay a minimum of $2 million a year, with a contract requirement for an additional investment at the team or track level."(NASCAR Scene)(3-1-2005)
- Safety-Kleen signs up with NASCAR: Safety-Kleen Systems Inc., a Plano supplier of parts cleaning and oil refining services, has signed a two-year sponsorship deal with NASCAR. The exact amount that Safety-Kleen will pay NASCAR was not disclosed, but NASCAR officials say it's "a seven-figure deal." Under the deal, Safety-Kleen will use the NASCAR name and sponsorship logo on uniforms worn by about 1,300 of its customer service representatives, who clean auto parts and dispose of industrial and hazardous waste. NASCAR branding also will appear on the sides of some 200 new trucks that Safety-Kleen will use on its routes. The company also has tentative plans to retrofit its existing fleet of 1,800 route trucks with the NASCAR mark. Meanwhile, NASCAR will play a prominent role in Safety-Kleen's print ads and other marketing, especially to repair shops and service departments of auto dealerships. The company has more than 200,000 customers, all of whom do repairs on cars and trucks. In addition, the company will put a NASCAR "performance mark" on its mechanical parts cleaning equipment. Safety-Kleen also is the exclusive provider of environmental services to about 40 racing teams on various circuits, including 20 in NASCAR.(Dallas Business Journal)(2-22-2005)
- Wal-Mart teams up with NASCAR: NASCAR announced "NASCAR Comes to Wal-Mart," a major event at more than 1,100 Wal-Mart stores to draw attention to the start of the 2005 NASCAR season. The promotion will roll into 43 NASCAR race markets throughout the 10-month 2005 NASCAR season.
To kick off the NASCAR season, more than 1,100 Wal-Mart stores within 50 miles of 36 race markets in the NASCAR Nextel Cup Series and seven markets in the NASCAR Busch Series will participate in the NASCAR promotion. Wal-Mart stores will feature NASCAR-themed point-of-sale displays for partners such as Duracell, Gillette, Jack Link's, Ice Breakers and Kodak in the NASCAR promotion. The NASCAR Fan Guide will feature NASCAR highlights and milestones, team rosters, the 2005 NASCAR schedules, and shopping lists of items that fans can purchase enhance their racing experience. More than one million NASCAR Fan Guides were developed exclusively for the promotion.
More than 500 Wal-Mart stores will also feature NASCAR-themed "retailtainment" activities. For example, fans can test their knowledge of the sport in the "NASCAR Comes to Wal-Mart Match Game" — a trivia game tied to visiting NASCAR sponsor displays at Wal-Mart. More than 100 of these stores will feature parking lot sponsor fan fests that will provide an array of fun activities for NASCAR fans and customers. Sponsors featured in the "retailtainment" portion of the promotion include: Coca-Cola, M&M, Kingsford, Pedigree and Kellogg. Fans can enjoy the Coca-Cola wall of Speed, riding in a Kellogg's race car simulator, or getting up close to their favorite sponsor show cars.
Additionally, starting February 1 through mi-March, Wal-Mart will be the exclusive retailer of the new DVD, NASCAR 3D: The IMAX Experience from Warner Home Video. The IMAX DVD provides an insider's perspective of NASCAR racing and was the second-highest grossing film documentary of 2004. Wal-Mart currently offers more than 250 NASCAR sponsor products, making it the largest seller of NASCAR licensee and sponsor products in the country.(retail-merchandiser.com)(2-8-2005)
- Checkers in...McDonalds out: Checkers Drive-In Restaurants will take over next year as a fast-food sponsor for NASCAR, replacing longtime corporate partner McDonald's Corp., the Sports Business Daily reported Tuesday. The Tampa-based chain, which has more than 400 locations primarily in the Southeast, will join deli sandwich chain Subway in replacing McDonald's, which has been connected with NASCAR since 1993. Checkers is relatively small compared with the Golden Arches, yet its Southern roots match those of the stock-car racing league. The company's sister chain, Rally's (with another 389 restaurants, mostly in the Midwest), will likely also gain NASCAR rights. Checkers previously signed racing sponsorship deals making it the "official burger" of both the Brickyard 400 and Indianapolis 500. It also has sponsorships with professional and college sports teams, including the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Tampa Bay Devil Rays, University of Florida and Florida State University. McDonald's will remain connected with NASCAR in a different capacity. It will continue to leverage the sport with a soon-to-be-assembled collection of teams, tracks and drivers. "We are definitely not leaving the sport," a McDonald's insider told the Sports Business Daily. "We'll just be using different assets."(Tampa Bay Business Journal)(12-8-2004)
- Official Tax Service of NASCAR: Jackson Hewitt Tax Service Inc. today announced a three-year sponsorship with NASCAR, in which Jackson Hewitt Tax Service will be known as "The Tax Service of NASCAR." Jackson Hewitt's motorsports marketing strategy also includes an endorsement sponsorship of three NASCAR NEXTEL Series drivers - Greg Biffle, #16 Ford, recent winner of the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Ford 400 at Homestead - Miami Speedway; Michael Waltrip, #99 Chevrolet [Busch Series], two-time Daytona Champion; and Kasey Kahne, #9 Dodge, 2004 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Rookie of the Year. These sponsorships, which were brokered by motorsports marketing agency, Just Marketing, will run through the 2007 tax season, and will also feature promotional offerings, guest appearances and use of the NASCAR trademark in marketing communications. The Jackson Hewitt Tax Service promotion for NASCAR fans will run from January 3, 2005 through April 30, 2005, and will provide customers with free NASCAR gear and a money-saving coupon. The coupon, which will be available on jacksonhewitt.com/racinggear, entitles customers to discounted tax preparation services at any of the over 4,900 Jackson Hewitt Tax Service locations nationwide. After redemption of the coupon, customers will be sent a free, NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series schedule T-shirt and a race day cooler, featuring images of Greg Biffle, Michael Waltrip and Kasey Kahne. Jackson Hewitt entered the world of NASCAR last year with its sponsorship of the Roush Racing #16 National Guard/Subway Ford Taurus car and its driver, Greg Biffle. More information about the Company may be obtained by visiting the Company's Web site at www.jacksonhewitt.com.(PRNewswire/Arizona Racing Times)(12-1-2004)
- NASCAR Approves Hard Liquor as a sponsor in 2005: After conducting an extended review of its sponsorship policies and researching trends in consumer attitudes, NASCAR announced that distilled spirits products are now a new category for sponsorship in the sport beginning in the 2005 season. "We felt the time was right to allow distilled spirits companies into NASCAR," said Mike Helton, President of NASCAR. "Attitudes have changed, and spirits companies have a long record of responsible advertising. Any spirits company involved in NASCAR will have marketing campaigns strongly grounded in responsibility and will follow advertising and marketing guidelines set by NASCAR that are consistent with the Distilled Spirits Council's advertising code. Spirits companies are recognized as leaders in responsibility and are encouraging adults who choose to drink, to do so responsibly. We are confident that the spirits companies entering our sport will come to apply that same level of responsibility to their involvement in NASCAR, and will communicate the same responsible marketing and messages that beer companies have exhibited in the sport for the past 25 years," Helton said. "Additionally, this will provide numerous new sponsorship opportunities to our teams. While the NASCAR industry will benefit across the board, teams will be the primary beneficiaries of this decision in a way that promotes a responsible drinking message consistent with the practices in other motorsports."
NASCAR's internal review included outreach to advocacy groups such as the National Commission Against Drunk Driving and other experts in the field of alcohol-related issues. Additionally, NASCAR reached out to industry groups such as the Distilled Spirits Council of the United States (DISCUS) and The Century Council. NASCAR based its guidelines on the input received from these groups. The distilled spirits companies participating in NASCAR must agree to comply with the Distilled Spirits Council's "Code of Responsible
Practices for Beverage Alcohol Advertising and Marketing" and abide by the Code Review Board's decisions. Each company's marketing activities will be grounded in a responsible behavior message. A dedicated portion of advertising by spirits companies in NASCAR will be solely focused on encouraging responsible drinking decisions, with all remaining advertising including a responsible behavior tag.(NASCAR PR(11-10-2004)
- Still waiting a yes or no on hard liquor UPDATE 3 Yes is Official: There is still no official word from NASCAR executives about lifting the ban on hard liquor sponsorships on Nextel Cup cars, but an announcement is expected shortly, to come with Richard Childress' expected announcement of Jack Daniel's as a sponsor, apparently to replace AOL [or does it go to #7-Robby Gordon?]. NASCAR's announcement could open the door for Smirnoff to put its vodka brand on Matt Kenseth's car, replacing Smirnoff Ice [which moves to the #97 in 205], and for #99-Carl Edwards to get a Crown Royal-Diageo sponsorship, too.(Winston Salem Journal)
AND NASCAR officials are expected to announce this week that they will lift their long-standing ban on hard liquor sponsorships for next season. Several teams are hoping to court hard liquor companies, including Roush Racing and Richard Childress Racing. Under NASCAR's current rules, teams are allowed to advertise beer and so-called "malt beverages" such as Smirnoff Ice.(USA Today)(11-8-2004)
UPDATE: NASCAR officials are expected to announce this week that they will lift their longstanding ban on hard-liquor sponsorships for next season. The move could bring an influx of sponsorship money. Several Nextel Cup teams -- Roush Racing and Richard Childress Racing among them -- are primed to sign deals with hard-liquor companies, including Diageo and Jack Daniels.(Chicago Tribune Wires)(11-9-2004)
UPDATE Yes..but too late for the #99?: NASCAR officials e-mailed a bulletin to team executives Tuesday afternoon advising them that a longstanding ban on hard-liquor advertising will be lifted for next season. By removing the ban, officials could create a sponsorship windfall for a couple of racing teams that have been courting liquor companies in recent months. NASCAR president Mike Helton will make the formal announcement Wednesday. NASCAR is not expected to name an official hard-liquor brand, but teams and tracks will be allowed to advertise hard-liquor products — as long as the advertising programs include a commitment to promoting responsible drinking. Roush Racing president Geoff Smith called the announcement "a victory for all the teams" but said he was disappointed that officials didn't lift the ban several months ago. Smith has spent much of this year vigorously lobbying NASCAR officials to allow liquor advertising. Smith was hoping to sign a brand from liquor manufacturer Diageo as the primary sponsor for up-and-coming driver #99-Carl Edwards next season. But because the ban was lifted so late in the year, Smith says the company can only commit to a reduced role as an associate sponsor for driver #97-Kurt Busch. Richard Childress Racing also is pursuing a liquor company to sponsor its No. 30 car for next season.(USA Today), would expect some team announcements within the next 10 days ago on sponsorship with these type companies, like RCR and Roush.(11-10-2004)
NASCAR Announcement: on Wednesday morning, November 10th, 2004, NASCAR is scheduled to make an announcment about Sponsorship - hard liquor? looks like it...(11-10-2004)
UPDATE - OFFICIAL: After conducting an extended review of its sponsorship policies and researching trends in consumer attitudes, NASCAR announced that distilled spirits products are now a new category for sponsorship in the sport beginning in the 2005 season. "We felt the time was right to allow distilled spirits companies into NASCAR," said Mike Helton, President of NASCAR. "Attitudes have changed, and spirits companies have a long record of responsible advertising. Any spirits company involved in NASCAR will have marketing campaigns strongly grounded in responsibility and will follow advertising and marketing guidelines set by NASCAR that are consistent with the Distilled Spirits Council's advertising code. Spirits companies are recognized as leaders in responsibility and are encouraging adults who choose to drink, to do so responsibly. We are confident that the spirits companies entering our sport will come to apply that same level of responsibility to their involvement in NASCAR, and will communicate the same responsible marketing and messages that beer companies have exhibited in the sport for the past 25 years," Helton said. "Additionally, this will provide numerous new sponsorship opportunities to our teams. While the NASCAR industry will benefit across the board, teams will be the primary beneficiaries of this decision in a way that promotes a responsible drinking message consistent with the practices in other motorsports."
NASCAR's internal review included outreach to advocacy groups such as the National Commission Against Drunk Driving and other experts in the field of alcohol-related issues. Additionally, NASCAR reached out to industry groups such as the Distilled Spirits Council of the United States (DISCUS) and The Century Council. NASCAR based its guidelines on the input received from these groups. The distilled spirits companies participating in NASCAR must agree to comply with the Distilled Spirits Council's "Code of Responsible
Practices for Beverage Alcohol Advertising and Marketing" and abide by the Code Review Board's decisions. Each company's marketing activities will be grounded in a responsible behavior message. A dedicated portion of advertising by spirits companies in NASCAR will be solely focused on encouraging responsible drinking decisions, with all remaining advertising including a responsible behavior tag.(NASCAR PR)(11-10-2004)
- PowerAde and Coca-Cola leaving NASCAR? NASCAR sources indicate that Coca-Cola / PowerAde may drop its NASCAR sponsorship at the end of the season. NASCAR signed PowerAde to a victory-lane sponsorship that has proven too hot to handle, according to NASCAR sources, who said the brand would like to get out of NASCAR because of the disputes and because business hasn't been that good lately.(Winston Salem Journal)(10-30-2004)
- Pepsi tops Coke at Daytona: An analysis done for the Sports Business Daily shows that Pepsi easily bested Coca-Cola in terms of television exposure during the July 3 Pepsi 400 Nextel Cup race at Daytona International Speedway. The Daily says Pepsi got 58 minutes 22 seconds of exposure to Coke's 1 minute 19 seconds. The study was done by SRi for the Daily after Coca-Cola put its C2 low-carb soda brand on eight cars for the race.(NASCAR Scene Daily Newsletter)(7-14-2004)
- The Official Bank: SunTrust Banks announced a multi-year agreement with NASCAR to become the "Official Bank of NASCAR." SunTrust's relationship with NASCAR, one of the largest and most popular sports in the country, reinforces the company's commitment to serve the financial needs of the motorsports industry. Under terms of the agreement, SunTrust will be involved in NASCAR at many levels, including supporting the sport's diversity initiatives, the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series, grassroots racing, and various charitable and community programs. In order to best serve the NASCAR community of drivers, owners and teams, SunTrust will build upon its Motorsports Banking Group announced earlier this year. The expanded unit will support both the financial needs of NASCAR's drivers and teams as well as assist with the sport's community-related programs that directly benefit the families of NASCAR's drivers and teams. Sanctioned organizations that will receive immediate support from SunTrust Motorsports Banking include Women's Auxiliary of Motorsports (WAM), which helps to provide support for the families of NASCAR racers; Motor Racing Outreach (MRO), a non-denominational group that provides religious services for NASCAR and other racing series; and Victory Junction Gang Camp, a retreat for children living with chronic or life-threatening illnesses. SunTrust will also take its sponsorship to the track and broaden the number of NASCAR fans it reaches across the country by becoming an associate sponsor of a NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series team to be named, as well as a contingency award sponsor of NASCAR's Dodge Weekly Racing Series, NASCAR's grassroots racing series. This local program will also include sponsorship of several grassroots racing facilities.(Yahoo Biz)(6-19-2004)
- Official NASCAR Windshield: Visteon has signed an agreement to be the exclusive manufacturer of Officially Licensed NASCAR Performance Windshields. Today's announcement marks the second Visteon Aftermarket product line to be Officially Licensed NASCAR Performance products; the first was radiators.(biz.yahoo.com via Insider Racing News)(3-18-2004)
- NASCAR Sponsors Debuting during the Daytona 500: The Daytona 500, one of the largest and most-watched sporting events of the year, is more than just NASCAR’s richest and most prestigious race. It is a television event used by some of America’s largest and most successful companies to launch new advertising campaigns. In 2002, 35 million viewers watched all or part of NBC’s coverage, a record in the race’s 24-year broadcast history. NBC will again broadcast the 46th annual Daytona 500 live on Sunday, Feb. 15 at 12:00noon/et, with approximately 200,000 spectators expected to attend the race at Daytona International Speedway. Following are several companies’ high-profile advertising plans for reaching the sporting world’s most brand-conscious fans tuned in to “The Great American Race”:
· Nextel Communications Inc., continues its first NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series ad campaign with two new spots showing fans using their Nextel phones with digital walkie-talkie Direct Connect, often with humorous consequences. In one ad, fans “Direct Connect” each other to embellish the truth and shorten a very long concession line. A second spot shows friends in the racetrack’s RV park using Direct Connect to navigate through the masses. Nextel will run three other spots that debuted in the weeks leading up to the Daytona 500. One spot, featuring Dale Earnhardt Jr. scoring an NFL touchdown – in his race car – was rated one of the best ads from this year’s Super Bowl broadcast.
· UPS will air two new spots to launch this year’s Race the Truck ad campaign, in which Dale Jarrett, driver of the No. 88 UPS Ford, receives "proper training” from UPS drivers about what it takes to drive the big, brown truck. In "Safety," a UPS driver asks if Jarrett has ever had any accidents driving his UPS vehicle. In "Yoga,"Jarrett finds himself in entirely new positions. UPS will also air three more humorous spots featuring Jarrett during the 2004 season.
· ExxonMobil will run a new commercial promoting the “Mobil 1 Million,” a consumer promotion in which one lucky fan can win a total of $1 million by predicting the winners of all 36 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series races in 2004.
· AOL will advance its new campaign for the company’s TopSpeed technology with a new spot featuring NASCAR team owner Richard Childress. AOL will also carry a special Daytona 500 Advertising Poll on AOL.com. AOL members will log on to vote for their favorite commercial, selecting one of 12 spots from the Daytona 500.
· NAPA AUTO PARTS will air two new spots featuring Michael Waltrip, driver of the No. 15 NAPA Chevrolet and the defending champion of the Daytona 500, and his DEI teammate Dale Earnhardt Jr. The new commercials will run throughout the NASCAR season with a third spot to be introduced in the spring.
· The Gillette Company will break a new NASCAR-themed commercial for its Duracell battery brand during the Great American Race. Gillette aired two spots for the “Gillette Young Guns” during the Budweiser Shootout on Feb. 7. The Gillette Young Guns are Kurt Busch, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Kevin Harvick, Jimmie Johnson, Matt Kenseth and Ryan Newman.
· Coca-Cola will take a lighthearted look at NASCAR drivers’ competitive nature in a spot called “To the Victor.” NASCAR stars in the Coca-Cola Racing Family – including Tony Stewart, Bobby Labonte, Dale Jarrett, Kurt Busch, Kyle Petty, Michael Waltrip and Kevin Harvick – heatedly race remote controlled cars for an ice-cold Coke. A 60-second version of the spot will be shown in movie theaters across the country this spring.
· ChevronTexaco will air a new TV spot for its Havoline brand that uses historical footage to celebrate the brand’s 100th anniversary. Texaco/Havoline is in its 18th year as a sponsor of NASCAR’s premier national series and currently sponsors the No. 42 Dodge driven by Jamie McMurray, the 2003 Raybestos Rookie of the Year.
· Visa is again this season giving its cardholders a chance to win the Visa Ultimate NASCAR Experience in 2004 with a new spot. Ten winners will receive the NASCAR “weekend of a lifetime.” More details are available at www.visa.com/nascar.
· Anheuser-Busch, the Official Beer of NASCAR, will be showcasing its new 2004 creative, starring Dale Earnhardt Jr., driver of the No. 8 Budweiser Chevrolet. The company is running eight ads in the race, including two NASCAR-themed spots.
· Toyota: Three-time NASCAR champion and new Toyota team owner Darrell Waltrip will star in a series of TV, print and radio ads beginning with the Daytona 500. The TV spots will run during other sporting events including NBA and NCAA basketball games. Waltrip is expected to drive the No. 11 Toyota Tundra in three races this year.
· Lowe's is debuting a 60-second spot featuring Jimmie Johnson, driver of the No. 48 Lowe's Chevrolet. The ad ties the passion Lowe's has for helping its customers with home improvement projects with the passions fans have for racing. It is also intended to reflect Lowe's long-term commitment to the sport while showcasing the new "face" of NASCAR NEXTEL Cup racing.
· NASCAR is launching its own new image advertising campaign – the story of a fantasy race where, through computer wizardry, the greatest NASCAR drivers of all time compete against the stars of today. The first of six TV spots in the campaign, called “Timeless,” will debut during the Daytona 500. The campaign, developed by The Martin Agency, features archive film and audio of NASCAR heroes of the past blended with images of hard-charging champions of today – all set to Boston’s classic rock ballad “Long Time.”
Other strong supporters of NASCAR that will advertise during the race include Domino’s with a spot for Cheesy Domino’s Dots and Ford, with the Ford GT 60-second commercial which debuted in the Super Bowl kickoff show.(NASCAR PR)(2-14-2004)
- Raybestos and NASCAR extend agreement: Brake Parts Inc., manufacturer of Raybestos, the world's leading brand of brake components, has reached an agreement with NASCAR to extend sponsorship of the Raybestos Rookie of the Year program through 2010. Raybestos will sponsor the rookie race in NASCAR NEXTEL Cup, Busch, and Craftsman Truck Series in addition to the Busch North and NASCAR Grand National West Division. Raybestos has renewed their marketing partnership with NASCAR and will remain the "Official Brakes of NASCAR." Raybestos celebrates their 10th anniversary as an associate sponsor with Robert Yates Racing. The Raybestos colors will once again grace the quarter panels of Elliott Sadler's #38 M&M's Ford.
The Raybestos Rookie of the Year in the NEXTEL Cup Series is awarded an original portrait by Motorsports artist Jeanne Barnes and a check for $50,000 presented during NASCAR Awards Night in New York. The Busch Series Raybestos Rookie of the Year Award is worth $15,000 to that division's top rookie. In addition, the highest finishing rookie in each Busch Series race earns $1,000 from Raybestos brand Brakes. The Raybestos Rookie of the Year in the Craftsman Truck Series collects $10,000 at season's end and like the Busch Series, the highest finishing rookie in each race earns $1,000 from Raybestos.
· As part of the "Official Brakes of NASCAR" Raybestos will award $1,750 at each NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series event to the winning driver, $1,200 to the second place driver, $800 to third, $500 to tenth, and $450 to 20th position. The only eligibility requirement is that the car credited with those finishing positions must carry the Raybestos contingency decals.
· Raybestos also gives $5,000 to the crew chief of the highest qualifying Raybestos Rookie at the Brickyard 400 NASCAR Winston Cup race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The names of the crew chief and driver will be engraved on the Golden Walrus trophy that is on display at the speedway's museum.
· In the NASCAR Busch Series, $500 will be paid to the winner of each race, $400 for second, $300 for third, and $300 for 20th place, provided each finisher is carrying a Raybestos decal.
· In the Craftsman Truck Series, $600 will be paid to the winner of each race, $400 for second place, and $400 for third, provided each finisher is carrying a Raybestos decal.
· Now in its 48th consecutive year of association with the Indianapolis 500, Raybestos presents the winner with the prestigious Safety-In-Speed Award along with a check for $5,000.
· Raybestos will continue to sponsor the "Raybestos Brake of the Race Award" on all Motor Racing Network Winston Cup broadcasts. The award gives $500 to the Motor Racing Outreach Children's Ministry in the name of the driver selected by MRN as the winner of the Raybestos Brake of the Race Award, which is given to the driver who experiences the best brake (break) in the race. The award is announced on all the network's Winston Cup broadcasts.
· Raybestos will continue to sponsor the Raybestos FasTalk with Benny Parsons radio show on the Performance Racing Network. The program airs each Monday night on approximately 300 affiliates nationwide.(Raybestos / Camp and Assoc PR)(2-11-2004)
- Marketers Fuming at New Championship Restrictions: In a move that raises the financial risk for the marketers who sponsor race cars and their drivers, NASCAR is instituting a new scoring system that will more tightly restrict eligibility to win the Nextel Cup Championship. Marketers, who covet the intense media exposure that follows the winner back to Pit Road, are fuming. Some tell AdAge.com they are seriously reassessing their season-long NASCAR sponsorship budgets, which can range from between $15 million and $30 million. "We've made a commitment to our team for this year," said an executive for a marketer that sponsors one of the 42 Nascar drivers. "But if our guy isn't one of the 10 drivers competing for the championship, then maybe next year we do look at [sponsoring] the first 26 races and then seeing what happens."(See full story at Ad Age)(2-3-2004)
- Goody's Re-Ups with NASCAR: Goody's Headache Powder and NASCAR announced the renewal of Goody's status as the "Official Pain Reliever of NASCAR" - a title it has held for the past 27 years. Of NASCAR's current 2004 official sponsor roster, Goody's Headache Powder is the longest serving, non-automotive sponsor of NASCAR. In addition to maintaining its status as the "Official Pain Reliever of NASCAR," Goody's will continue its long-running sponsorship of the the Goody's "Extra Strength Award" presented to the highest-finishing eligible driver in the NASCAR Busch Series as well as the Goody's "Headache Award" presented during MRN race broadcasts to the driver/team who experiences the biggest "headache" as a result of the day's racing activities in the NASCAR Busch Series.
Beginning this year, Goody's will also present the "Goody's Fast Relief Zone" at selected tracks on the NASCAR circuit, offering fans an interactive and engaging respite. The Goody's Fast Relief Zone will feature free Goody's samples, chilled water, portable misters on hot days, racing-themed activities, and games where fans can win prizes such as a chance to climb in a race car and drive around the track at the Richard Petty Driving Experience.
The Goody's Relief Zone will be available at ten events this season at the following five venues: Atlanta Motor Speedway (March 13 & 14, October 30 & 31), Bristol Motor Speedway (March 27 & 28, August 27 & 28), Lowe's Motor Speedway (May 21 & 22, May 29 & 30, October 15 & 16), Texas Motor Speedway (April 3 & 4) and Richmond International Raceway (May 14 & 15, September 10 & 11).
In addition to its 27-year history with NASCAR, Goody's is also the official pain reliever of Petty Enterprises. Goody's announced in October 2003 that Richard Petty had signed on for another two years to continue as the brand's spokesperson. Richard Petty, who personally uses Goody's, has been the face of the product for nearly 25 years. Petty will once again appear in electronic and print advertising, point-of-sale and instore materials and direct mail pieces. He will also sign autographs in the Goody's Fast Relief Zone at selected events.
In 2004, Goody's will share title sponsorship with NASCAR for the "Fun Walk On Track for Charity" at three Speedway Motorsports tracks, Bristol, Texas and Lowes Motorspeedways. Proceeds from the events will benefit Speedway Children's Charities and the Victory Junction Gang Camp in Randleman, NC.(NASCAR PR)(1-28-2004)
- USG to Continue Partnerships with NASCAR, MB2/MBV Motorsports: USG Corporation, a leading manufacturer of building materials, including the industry leading Sheetrock Brand, announced it will continue its partnership affiliations with NASCAR and MB2/MBV Motorsports. The 2004 sponsorship programs that USG Sheetrock Brand will be actively involved in are as follows:
* Primary, Associate Sponsorships with MB2/MBV Motorsports
Along with being a season-long major associate sponsor on the #01 U.S. Army/MB2 Chevrolet, driven by Joe Nemechek, USG Sheetrock Brand will also be the team's primary sponsor at four NASCAR NEXTEL Cup races in 2004 -- Las Vegas (March 7), Chicago (July 11), New Hampshire (Sept. 19) and Darlington (Nov. 14).
USG will also carry a season-long associate sponsorship with MB2's teammate, the #10 Valvoline/MBV Chevrolet driven by Scott Riggs in 2004.
* NASCAR Promotional Partner
* USG Person of the Year
The award is designed to honor NASCAR NEXTEL Cup drivers for their community service contributions and charitable efforts. For the purpose of determining the NASCAR USG Person of the Year award, the program will be divided into four quarters in which drivers are nominated for their off-track charitable efforts. A group of panelists will select one of the quarterly finalists as the USG Person of the Year. The award will be presented in New York during the week of the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Awards Banquet.
* USG Driver of the Race
At each NASCAR NEXTEL Cup points race, the driver displaying the USG contingency decal on their car who has the best finishing position will win the cash award. The award will be split between the driver and the driver's selected charities.
* NASCAR Dodge Weekly Series USG Night at the Races
USG will sponsor "USG Night at the Races" at 26 local race tracks that are part of the NASCAR Dodge Weekly Series. The events are intended to provide USG customers an opportunity to enjoy an evening of stock car racing.
USG Corporation, based in Chicago, is a Fortune 500 company with subsidiaries that are market leaders in their key product groups: gypsum wallboard, joint compound and related gypsum products; cement board; gypsum fiber panels; ceiling panels and grid; and building products distribution. For more information about USG Corporation, visit the USG home page at www.usg.com.(PR)(1-27-2004)
- No Hard Liquor Sponsors: NASCAR will not follow the lead of the International Race of Champions series and accept advertising money from hard liquor companies, CEO Brian France said Thursday. IROC officially announced Crown Royal as its new sponsor Thursday. The sponsorship will allow the all-star series to quadruple its championship prize to $1 million. NASCAR has had a longstanding policy of not allowing sponsorship from hard liquor brands. ``We think the negatives outweigh the positives in terms of accepting hard liquor at this time,'' France said. ``We understand other series might feel differently. There's been a lot of loosening up in the last several years. Remember, in the '70s, the networks voluntarily pulled those ads off. Some of them have brought them back on. We'll monitor that, but right now we just think it's best to stay as we are.''(Tampa Tribune)(1-16-2004)
- Wal-Mart and NASCAR: Wal-Mart shoppers will be able to race radio-controlled stock cars in the toy departments of 3,100 stores for one day in February as the centerpiece of a Fan Days program that NASCAR will run with the world's largest retailer as a lead-in to next year's Daytona 500. The NASCAR-licensed cars will run on tracks built using the products of sponsors and licensees that tie in to the program, with as many as 10 brands, including Coca-Cola, expected to participate. NASCAR Fan Days will run from Feb. 1 through Feb. 22, with participating brands receiving prime placement and point-of-sale support throughout the three-week span. The "retailtainment" event, slotted for Feb. 7, will include radio-controlled car racing and NASCAR-themed programming on Wal-Mart's in-store television and radio networks. NASCAR and Wal-Mart are discussing a "presented by" sponsorship with Gillette-owned battery brand Duracell, according to sports marketing sources. Gillette recently signed on as a NASCAR sponsor in multiple categories, including alkaline batteries. NASCAR and Wal-Mart declined comment on the program. Financial details were unavailable. This will be the fourth consecutive year in which NASCAR ties to Wal-Mart for a Fan Days promotion, but the first time that the two hook up on anything as extensive and attention-grabbing as in-store racing.(Street & Smith's SportsBusiness Journal)(12-16-2003)
- Best Western theOfficial Hotel of NASCAR and to the #15 as an assoc in 2004: Best Western International, Inc. has entered into a three-year partnership with NASCAR to become the sport's first-ever Official Hotel, beginning January 1, 2004. Best Western will also serve as an associate sponsor of reigning Daytona 500 champion Michael Waltrip and the #15 NAPA Chevrolet for the 2004 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup season. Waltrip is a driver for Dale Earnhardt Inc.(Yahoo Finance)(11-3-2003)
- NASCAR sponsors are happy: When it comes to making a sponsor happy, no other sport does it better than NASCAR, according to a study from Sports Business Journal. The magazine talked with national sponsors that are involved in professional sports throughout the country and found NASCAR sponsors have more satisfaction with they way they're being represented by race teams than any other sport. Overall, NASCAR, the PGA Tour, the LPGA Tour and the NHRA drag-racing series ranked as favorites among sponsors who spend billions a year in advertising, the magazine said. The IRL IndyCar Series, CART Champ Car World Series and the WNBA were ranked as the least-favorites.(Augusta Chronicle)(10-16-2003)
- Tobacco to be banned too? After Winston's departure as title sponsor of NASCAR's top series this year, could tobacco join distilled liquor products and pornography on a list of sponsors excluded from the sport? "That's an issue that's on our radar for next year," NASCAR president Mike Helton said Friday at Pocono Raceway. The series will be known as the Nextel Cup beginning in 2004 when that firm replaces R.J. Reynolds Tobacco. NASCAR's deal with RJR kept other cigarette companies out of the sport for the 33 years of their relationship. But once RJR leaves, Helton said, the sport must decide if it will allow any other tobacco company's products into the sport. "We've kept hard liquor and pornography, hard core and soft core, out of the sport on the morality issue," Helton said. "The question we're going to have to look at is whether we need to do that with tobacco." Helton's comments came during a conversation about his trip to Washington, D.C., on Thursday to testify before the House Energy and Commerce Committee about NASCAR's position on ephedra-based diet supplements. Earlier this year, NASCAR added ephedra to a list of drugs it looks for under a substance abuse policy that allows for testing if there is "reasonable suspicion" a driver or crew member is using banned substances. NASCAR also could have sponsorship issues to work out if the federal government moves to restrict ephedra-based products. Stacker 2 sponsors the #23 team owned by Bill Davis Racing and TrimSpa sponsors a Busch Series team and is the title sponsor of the Busch race being held this weekend at Pikes Peak.(ThatsRacin.com)(7-26-2003)
- Sponsor Issues: NASCAR officials, working on possible new series sponsors for the Winston Cup tour, have run into a few unexpected roadblocks: at least one of the potential new sponsors (reported to be a telecommunications operation, such as Motorola or Nextel) is reported to be having second thoughts about taking NASCAR's offer after learning that it would not have exclusivity in the sport. R.J. Reynolds' Winston brand has had that exclusivity, if not on contract at least at the behest of Daytona executives, and tobacco rivals were kept out (except for smokeless U.S. Tobacco). Any telecommunications sponsor would find a couple of corporate rivals already here, Cingular and Alltel, backing heavyweight car owners Richard Childress and Roger Penske. Regardless of what happens to the anticipated change in the Winston Cup series sponsorship next season, it appears that Visa will become not just a major sponsor on the NASCAR tour but also the only credit card that can be used at the Winston Cup tour's speedways, according to sources.(Winston Salem Journal)(5-26-2003)
- Circle K Transitioning Away from NASCAR: On Wednesday, a series of television and radio commercials developed by Dailey & Associates of West Hollywood, Calif., will mark the move of Circle K convenience stores in a new marketing direction, company officials said. "With our NASCAR sponsorship ending this year, we are transitioning away from our positioning as The Official Pit Stop of NASCAR," said Kathleen Grodsky, director of retail advertising and brand management for ConocoPhillips, Circle K's parent company. "We were excited by the challenge of repositioning the brand. Our new tagline "What else do you need?" addresses both our selection and services and can be implemented operationally and across all consumer and internal communications," said Grodsky.(MotorsportsTV)(5-20-2003)
- Get Well: RJR's/Winston's Denny Darnell had a heart attack yesterday while attending Church on Sunday. Fortunately, they were about 10 minutes from the hospital. They arrived at the emergency room at 12:00noon, and he was in the operating room by 1:00pm. Turns out, he had three blocked arteries which were treated with stents and a balloon. He does have some light to moderate damage to the wall of the heart, but he seems to be doing well. Last night, they said he'd be in CCU for at least one night, and he was moved to a private room this morning. Darnell will be in the hospital until Wednesday or Thursday before going home. Get well Denny.(5-5-2003)
UPDATE: Darnell is getting out of the hospital around mid day today. He still has a somewhat irregular heart beat, but after three hours of tests yesterday, the cardiolgists feel it will be normalized in time. No word yet on how long he will be out of work It depends on how quickly the heartbeat gets back to normal.(5-8-2003)
- NASCAR Sponsor Summit Postponed: NASCAR says concerns stemming from the war with Iraq have led it to postpone a sponsor summit that was scheduled to start yesterday and run through Wednesday in Naples, FL, according to today's Sports Business Daily. NASCAR had expected about 175 attendees for the event, which the sanctioning body now hopes to hold in the fall.(Winston Cup Scene Daily Newsletter - free)(3-31-2003)
- Sponsor holding Money: One sponsor representative relayed to www.teamfordracing.com that his sponsor intends to hold all of their television advertising dollars until the NBC crew picks-up the broadcast duties, which will begin with the Pepsi 400 at Daytona International Speedway. Pushed somewhat, the rep said that his company didn’t care for the Fox network presentation of the sport. The rep said, NBC’s professional presentation of the sport is more fitting with his company’s image. Additionally, the sponsor disputed an ad buy guaranteeing coverage. “[The driver] could be banging fenders for second place and they’d show the 14th and 15th place cars nose-to-tail. It didn’t matter if [the sponsor] bought time or not. They just wouldn’t show the car. They were not getting anything out of it, so they’ve decided not to bother.”(Ford Racing)(3-20-2003), no idea who the sponsor is.
- USG takes over awards from True Value: Along with its sponsorship involvement with MB2/MBV Motorsports, USG's NASCAR involvement in 2003 includes:
* Official Building Products Supplier of NASCAR
* USG Person of the Year - The award is designed to honor NASCAR drivers for their community service contributions and charitable efforts. For the purpose of determining the NASCAR USG Person of the Year award, the program will be divided into four quarters in which drivers are nominated for their off-track charitable efforts. An elite group of panelists will select one of the quarterly finalists as the USG Person of the Year. The award will be presented in New York during the NASCAR Winston Cup banquet.
* USG Driver of the Race - The program will award the driver, who has the best finishing position of the race and displays the USG decal on his/her car. The award will be split between the driver and the driver's selected charities.
* Dodge NASCAR Weekly Racing Series "USG Night at the Races" - USG will sponsor "USG Night at the Races" at 20 local race tracks that are part of the Dodge NASCAR Weekly Series. The events are intended to provide customers and USG employees an opportunity to enjoy an evening of stock car racing.
USG Corporation, based in Chicago, is a Fortune 500 company with subsidiaries that are market leaders in their key product groups: gypsum wallboard, joint compound and related gypsum products; cement board; gypsum fiber panels; ceiling panels and grid; and building products distribution. For more information about USG Corporation, visit the USG home page at www.usg.com.(USG PR), True Value used to award the Person of the Year and Driver of the race, you can see the USG logo on the front fender of the cars where True Value used to be.(2-26-2003)
- Remember those old Two Division rumors? The possibility of two Winston Cup divisions in the future, effectively doubling the number of races NASCAR could run over the course of a season. ``We did a focus group on that a few years ago and it wasn't really feasible,'' he said. ``I don't know if television would be in favor of it. This is a different ballgame now. With the revenue they're putting into the sport, we've got to pay attention to them.''(Tampa Tribune) AND A proposal made by [Bruton] Smith to split NASCAR into two divisions to create more race dates has been deemed unworkable by the sanctioning body and likely would be rejected by its TV partners.(Fort Worth Star Telegram)(2-11-2003)
- Pizza and NASCAR: Domino's has signed a five-year deal to become the first official pizza of NASCAR, according to this week's Street & Smith's SportsBusiness Journal. Sources told the publication's Terry Lefton that Domino's will support the sponsorship "with at least $30 million in media, promotions and rights fees over the life of the deal, with additional marketing support anticipated from local Domino's franchises." Domino's first TV ad, which was produced by J. Walter Thompson and features driver Michael Waltrip and his family, will air this week.(Winston Cup Scene Daily Newsletter)(2-11-2003)
- Changes to the Winston: NASCAR and R.J. Reynolds officials on Wednesday confirmed changes to the format of the 2003 Winston all-star race, including a record $1 million payoff for the winner. The race, scheduled for May 17 at Lowe's Motor Speedway in Concord, NC, features race winners from the 2002 and 2003 seasons as well as past winners of the event. Then-rookie Ryan Newman won the 2002 Winston and its then-record $750,000 purse. The race, entering its 19th season, has been hosted by Lowe's Motor Speedway since 1987. The Winston will continue to be run in three segments for a total of 90 laps. However, several changes have been in thoses segments and to The Winston Open, a race among drivers not already qualified for The Winston. Among the changes:
- The first segment will consist of 40 laps, during which teams must make a mandatory green-flag, four-tire pit stop. If there's a late-segment caution, efforts will be made by NASCAR to ensure a green-flag finish. The top-20 finishers advance to the next segment.
- Following a 10-minute break, during which teams may work on their cars without losing track position, the second segment of 30 laps will be held. Only the top-14 finishers will advance to the third segment.
- Following another 10-minute break, the final segment of 20 laps will take place. The starting order will be inverted from positions three through 10 following a random selection process during the break. Only green-flag laps will count toward the total.
The winner of the final segments receives $1 million. The winner of the first two segments - as well as the pole winner - receives $50,000.
- The Winston Open, which included opportunities for two drivers to advance to The Winston the last two years, will return to one race in 2003. However, the race will consist of two segments - of 20 and 10 laps - and only the top-14 finishers from the first will advance to the second. Only green-flag laps will count in the final segment and only the winner will advance to The Winston. The Winston weekend will also feature the debut of the NASCAR Craftsman Truck series at Lowe's Motor Speedway, with the inaugural Hardee's 200 set for May 16.(ThatsRacin.com)(2-5-2003)
- More Money: NASCAR announced today that the Winston Cup point fund will be $17 million in 2003, an increase of $3 million over 2002. The NASCAR Winston Cup champion will receive a minimum of $4.25 million from Winston and NASCAR in 2003, a $500,000 increase over last year. Drivers finishing second through fourth will each receive more than $1 million at the annual awards ceremony in New York in December. The total point fund includes money from Winston, NASCAR and the tracks that host NASCAR Winston Cup Series events. 2003 NASCAR Winston Cup Points Fund Distribution:
Total Point Fund Distribution for Positions 1-25: $16,640,000
NASCAR Winston Cup Leader Bonus: $360,000
TOTAL: $17,000,000 (ThatsRacin.com)(1-28-2003)
- No Bull Five News UPDATE No More: Changes are expected to be announced soon in R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company's No Bull Five fan-driver bonus program. The five-year-old program paid million-dollar prizes to drivers and fans at selected Winston Cup races. Drawings paired five drivers and fans at each race, and a victory won $1 million for the driver and his fan. RJR officials have discussed major changes in the program and, in the next few days, are expected to announce how the 2003 version will operate. "Some people think it's served its purpose, and you either change it or look to do other things," said RJR spokesman Denny Darnell. "We've looked at a couple of variations of the program."(Greenville News)(1-5-2002)
UPDATE: R. J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. announced on Monday its Winston brand will not continue the Winston No Bull 5 program in 2003. The No Bull 5, a bonus program for both drivers and fans, was introduced in 1998 in celebration of NASCAR's 50th anniversary. Five races were picked prior to the start of each season in which one of five drivers was eligible to win $1 million if he won the race. In recent seasons, fans were paired with the drivers, allowing a fan to win $1 million as well if one of the eligible drivers won the event. "The Winston No Bull 5 program was a very successful program for the Winston brand," said Ned Leary, president of RJR's Sports Marketing Enterprises. "However, we are constantly evaluating the allocation of resources. "For 2003, the decision has been made to deploy those resources in other areas." Leary said the decision to end the bonus program did not affect the company's sponsorship of NASCAR's Winston Cup series, which RJR has sponsored the past 32 years.(ThatsRacin.com)(1-6-2003)
- Army to be an official sponsor of NASCAR: The U.S. Army is becoming the first branch of the military to become an official sponsor of NASCAR and will spend at least $16 million as part of its deal with the sanctioning body, according to this week's Street & Smith's SportsBusiness Journal. The Army, which had already announced plans to sponsor driver Jerry Nadeau in MB2 Motorsports' renumbered #01 Pontiac this season, is also working on media buys for NASCAR events on Fox and NBC. Reporter Terry Lefton says a deal with International Speedway Corp.'s 12 Winston Cup tracks is complete, and additional venue deals are being negotiated. The Army plans mobile marketing recruitment stations at all NASCAR races, along with "Army Nights" at NASCAR Weekly Racing Series events. The story says MB2 is changing the number of Nadeau's car from #36 to #01 to reflect the service's "Army of One" campaign.(Winston Cup Scene Daily Newsletter)(1-6-2003)
- Anheuser-Busch extends NASCAR contracts through 2007: Anheuser-Busch has extended its sponsorship of BGN through the 2007 season. Busch has been the title sponsor of the series since its inception in 1982. The sponsor’s contribution to the series’ annual points fund distribution, which totals $2.5 million this season, will increase by $400,000 per year over the length of the new contract, reaching $4.5 million at the conclusion of the 2007 season. In addition, Budweiser has extended through 2007 its sponsorship of the pole award in all NASCAR divisions and the annual preseason non-points race, Budweiser Shootout at Daytona International Speedway.(ThatsRacin.com)(11-16-2002)
- Winston Cup Draws 6.7 Million Winston Cup races once again drew the largest number of motorsports fans in the United States and Canada to tracks last year, The Sports Business Daily says today. The Daily's "Turnstile Tracker" says some 6.7 million spectators attended Winston Cup races, practices and qualifying sessions out of the total of the 35.8 million people who saw some form of live racing in the U.S. and Canada. DIRT racing drew 4.5 million to its numerous events to rank second. The online publication, which is put out by Scene Daily's parent company, Street & Smith's Sports Group, says the Busch Series drew 2.37 million, while the Craftsman Truck Series attracted 900,000.(Winston Cup Scene Daily Newsletter)(11-13-2002)
- ExxonMobil Official: NASCAR named ExxonMobil's Mobil brand of products as the "Official Lubricants of NASCAR" beginning in 2003. The announcement was made during the 2002 Automotive Aftermarket Parts Expo (AAPEX) in Las Vegas. An industry leader in the development of innovative, problem-solving lubricants, including synthetics, the Mobil family of automotive lubricants includes motor oil, transmission fluid, gear lubricants and greases, and will join a list of performance products endorsed by the nation's number one motorsport -- NASCAR. A long-time supporter of NASCAR racing, this marks Mobil 1's 12th season as a major sponsor of Penske Racing South with veteran driver Rusty Wallace and rookie sensation Ryan Newman.(Exxon Site/Business Wire) NOTE: this does not cover gasoline.(11-7-2002)