Thursday, December 1, 2016

NASCAR Announces NEW Cup Series SPonsor

via press release

NASCAR Announces Multi-Year Partnership with Monster Energy for Premier Series Entitlement
Brand Becomes Official Energy Drink of NASCAR, NASCAR All-Star Race Title Sponsor

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (December 1, 2016) — NASCAR and Monster Energy announced today a multi-year agreement for the premier series entitlement as well as the prestigious annual NASCAR All-Star Race. Monster Energy, which will begin its tenure as naming rights partner on Jan. 1, 2017, will become only the third company to serve as the entitlement sponsor in NASCAR premier series history, following RJ Reynolds and Sprint/Nextel.

As part of the agreement, the brand also becomes the Official Energy Drink of NASCAR.

“Monster Energy is a brand built on excitement and enthusiasm, qualities that align with NASCAR,” said Brian France, NASCAR Chairman and CEO. “This sponsorship position is the most unique in all of sports and entertainment, and we are thrilled to have a partner that will help us further elevate the series. Today’s announcement is the culmination of a thorough search, one that resulted in the right partner at this important time in our sport’s history.”

NASCAR premier series races long have been a bucket-list destination for sports fans throughout the country, and starting next season, Monster Energy will elevate the event experience to an even higher level.  As part of the agreement, Monster Energy will engage with fans in creative, innovative ways at all race tracks where the premier series will race.

“Monster Energy has an established and versatile history in motorsports, and we’re thrilled to take this historic next step,” said Rodney Sacks, Monster Beverage Chairman and CEO. “We feel strongly that our brand is a perfect fit for this sport and its star athletes. We look forward to interacting with the millions of passionate NASCAR fans week-in, week out.”

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Wednesday, November 30, 2016

The Field Is Set For ‘The Clash’ 2017 At Daytona

via press release

Recently crowned seven-time NASCAR premier series champion Jimmie Johnson will join a star-studded elite field as NASCAR kicks off its 2017 season with The Clash at Daytona International Speedway on Saturday, Feb. 18, 2017.

The annual season-opening event will be broadcast live on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio at 8 p.m. ET. The 75-lap race again will be split into two segments with a competition caution at lap 25 separating the segments.

“What better way to kick off the 2017 season than the sport’s brightest stars under the lights at Daytona International Speedway” said Steve O’Donnell, NASCAR executive vice president and chief racing development officer. “Coming off a thrilling season finale at Homestead-Miami, we’re looking forward to continuing that momentum into Daytona. With bragging rights and no points on the line, the Clash will set the tone for what should be a season full of great racing and tough competition.”

“We’re bringing back The Clash at Daytona,” said Chip Wile, Daytona International Speedway president. “The Clash was a race name that has always been popular among both the competitors and race fans. We’re looking forward to bringing it back and building on the rich history of this thrilling and always unpredictable event that kicks off the NASCAR season.”

Unlike previous years, the starting field for the 2017 Clash at Daytona will not be a predetermined number of cars; rather, the field is limited to drivers who meet more exclusive criteria. Only drivers who were 2016 Coors Light Pole Award winners, former Clash race winners, former Daytona 500 pole winners who competed full-time in 2016, and drivers who qualified for the 2016 Chase are eligible.

Eligible drivers are:


2016 Coors Light Pole Awards winners (14)
·         Greg Biffle, Alex Bowman, Kurt Busch, Kyle Busch, Austin Dillon, Carl Edwards, Chase Elliott, Denny Hamlin, Kevin Harvick, Jimmie Johnson, Matt Kenseth, Brad Keselowski, Joey Logano, Martin Truex Jr.


Former Clash Race Winners (2)
·         Dale Earnhardt Jr., Tony Stewart


Former DAYTONA 500 Coors Light Pole Award winners (1)
·         Danica Patrick


2016 Chase drivers (3)
·         Chris Buescher, Kyle Larson, Jamie McMurray

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Sunday, November 20, 2016

Jimmie Johnson Is Now A Seven-Time Cup Champion

via press release

Jimmie Johnson Makes History, Wins Record-Tying Seventh NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Championship Ties Richard Petty and Dale Earnhardt for Most Premier Series Championships.

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History has been made.

Jimmie Johnson captured his record-tying seventh NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship with a stirring victory Sunday at Homestead-Miami Speedway, tying NASCAR Hall of Famers Richard Petty and Dale Earnhardt atop the all-time list.

Sunday’s win was Johnson’s 80th career victory.

To win the 2016 championship, the driver of the No. 48 Lowe’s Chevrolet outdueled the other Championship 4 drivers Joey Logano (fourth), Kyle Busch (sixth) and Carl Edwards (34th) at Homestead.

It was a year of sevens for Johnson, who took over sole possession of seventh place on the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series all-time wins list after his win at Auto Club Speedway earlier this season. His wins at Atlanta and Auto Club catapulted him into the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup.

Johnson breezed through the first round of the Chase, logging his two highest laps led totals of the season to that point at Chicagoland and Dover. When the Round of 12 rolled around, he added his all-time track-record eighth win at Charlotte, leading a race-high 155 laps on the way to a Round of 8 berth. Johnson was the first to lock up a spot in the Championship 4, winning at Martinsville Speedway for the ninth time.

At the age of 41, Johnson becomes the youngest seven-time champion. Petty was 42 when he captured his seventh title in 1979; Earnhardt was 43 in 1994.

All seven of Johnson’s championships were won under team owner Rick Hendrick and with crew chief Chad Knaus.

Hendrick, owner of Hendrick Motorsports, captured his record-extending 12th NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship. Along with Johnson’s seven titles, Hendrick has won championships with Jeff Gordon (four) and Terry Labonte (one).

Knaus cemented his legacy as one of the top crew chiefs in NASCAR history with his seventh title, one shy of the all-time record held by NASCAR Hall of Famer Dale Inman.

Also on Sunday, Chase Elliott was named Sunoco Rookie of the Year Award.

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Daniel Suárez Wins 2016 NASCAR XFINITY Series Championship

via press release

Daniel Suárez Wins 2016 NASCAR XFINITY Series Championship Becomes First Latin American And Drive For Diversity Graduate To Capture NASCAR National Series Title


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DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Nov. 19, 2016) – It’s been a rapid rise for Daniel Suárez, who captured the 2016 NASCAR XFINITY Series championship Saturday at Homestead-Miami Speedway by winning the Ford EcoBoost 300 in only his second full-time season of NASCAR national series racing. The driver of the No. 19 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota is the first Latin American, as well as the first graduate of the NASCAR Drive for Diversity program operated by Rev Racing, to win a NASCAR national series title.

To take home the crown in “The Series Where Names Are Made,” Suárez, 24, outlasted his Championship 4 competitors Elliott Sadler (third), Justin Allgaier (sixth) and Erik Jones (ninth).

It was a year of firsts for Suárez, who burst onto the NASCAR XFINITY Series scene last season by earning its Sunoco Rookie of the Year Award and finishing fifth in the championship standings. In his sophomore campaign, Suárez became the first Mexico-born driver to win a NASCAR national series race (June at Michigan) and to lead the points standings in a NASCAR national series.

The Monterrey, Mexico, native dazzled from the outset of the season, racking up four top-five and nine top-10 finishes in his first 10 contests. Suárez led the points standings following 14 separate races in the regular season and made his way into the NASCAR XFINITY Series Chase with his win at Michigan.

Once the Chase started, Suárez upped his performance to another level. He breezed through the Round of 12 with a win at Dover, sandwiched between a runner-up result at Kentucky and a third-place finish at Charlotte. Then, Suárez registered finishes of third (Kansas), fifth (Texas) and fifth (Phoenix) to set up his championship-clinching victory at Homestead.

Suárez is the third member of the NASCAR Next program to win a NASCAR national series championship (Erik Jones, NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, 2015; Chase Elliott, NASCAR XFINITY Series, 2014).

Also on Saturday, Erik Jones won the Sunoco Rookie of the Year Award in the NASCAR XFINITY Series, a season after accomplishing the feat in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series.



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Tuesday, October 25, 2016

FOX and NASCAR Bring A Second Season of ‘Beyond the Wheel’

via press release:

FOX Sports and NASCAR Productions Collaborate on Second Season of ‘Beyond the Wheel’

FS1 and NASCAR Productions will present the second season of the acclaimed documentary series Beyond the Wheel as part of FS1’s NASCAR RACE HUB. Created to depict the sport’s most pivotal moments and compelling narratives, the short films focus on influential characters – both past and present – and the unique stories that have shaped NASCAR as a sport since its inception. The first film premieres on Wednesday, Oct. 26 at 6 p.m. ET during NASCAR RACE HUB on FS1.

The second season of the documentary short film series is comprised of the following:

    Bonneville 71 details how NASCAR Hall of Fame driver Bobby Isaac set 28 land speed records with a banned Dodge Charger Daytona on the Bonneville Salt Flats in 1971, accompanied only by his crew members, a USAC official and a Chrysler engineer. Using the authentic No. 71 K&K Charger and featuring interviews with original crew members Buddy Parrott and Ken Troutt, the documentary pays homage to Isaac’s historical runs by revisiting the Salt Flats to shoot all-new footage down a 10-mile straightaway. A remarkable story of innovation, the short film depicts Isaac’s desire and dedication to always test the limits of speed, no matter the barriers.

    Sueños de NASCAR follows NASCAR XFINITY Series driver Daniel Suárez from his roots in Monterrey, Mexico, to his rise in one of the sport’s top series through the NASCAR Drive for Diversity program. As Suárez returns home to visit family and friends, the film explores his place in Mexican racing culture, how the country has embraced stock car racing, and the impact of Mexican drivers on the future of the sport. Illustrating the young driver as a source of inspiration, the documentary also examines Suárez’s success as the first Mexican-born driver to win a NASCAR national series race and his current pursuit of the NASCAR XFINITY Series championship.

    Miracle at Daytona – The Tiny Lund Story recounts how DeWayne “Tiny” Lund risked his life to rescue fellow driver, Marvin Panch, from his burning Maserati at Daytona International Speedway before going on to win the 1963 DAYTONA 500 just days later. The true story of a journeyman driver who was one of the most likeable characters of his era, Lund was also awarded the Carnegie Hero’s Medal for his selfless bravery in what became one of the greatest DAYTONA 500 stories of all time. 



The second film in the series featuring Daniel Suárez will premiere on Nov. 9 at 6 p.m. ET, while the original special on Tiny Lund will air in early 2017. Each documentary will also be available on FOX Sports GO and FOXSports.com following its premiere.

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Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Mars Chocolate and NASCAR Announce Partnership Renewal

Mars Chocolate and NASCAR Announce Sweet Partnership Renewal
Long-Standing Relationship to Continue through 2019

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Sept. 6, 2016) — In the midst of a year-long celebration of the 75th anniversary of the iconic M&M’S® Brand, NASCAR, and Mars Chocolate North America announced today a renewed agreement that will extend their Official Partnership through 2019. As part of the renewed relationship, Mars Chocolate will continue its designation as the Official Chocolate of NASCAR®, ensuring its various brands remain a race day staple for millions of fans.

Since entering NASCAR as a team sponsor more than 25 years ago, Mars Chocolate has steadily increased its level of participation in the sport. In 2000, the company expanded its sponsorship by becoming the “Official Chocolate of NASCAR,” emphasizing to fans its dedication to the sport. In the spirit of thanking its loyal NASCAR fans, M&M’S will celebrate race fans during Richmond International Raceway’s inaugural Fan Appreciation Weekend. To help honor its 75th Anniversary, the brand will roll out the red carpet and give fans a VIP welcome at the Front Stretch Gate on Saturday.

“Our association with NASCAR has proven to be a true win-win partnership and we’re excited to continue the relationship for the next several years,” explained William Clements, vice president, sponsorships and sports marketing, Mars Chocolate North America. “From helping M&M’S celebrate their 75th anniversary to energizing the thousands of Mars Chocolate Associates coast to coast, NASCAR is the perfect platform to fuel our business.”

With more than 15 consecutive years of Official Partnership and a historic championship run as the primary sponsor of the No. 18 M&M’S Toyota last season, Mars Chocolate is undoubtedly one of the most recognizable brands in the sport. Mars Chocolate continues to execute a fully integrated strategy that includes advertising, event marketing, social media, business to business, and associate engagement.

“Mars Chocolate has delivered creative and engaging activation that our brand loyal fans have embraced throughout the past 15 years,” said Steve Phelps, executive vice president and chief global sales and marketing officer, NASCAR. “As the Official Chocolate of NASCAR, Mars Chocolate has made race day more enjoyable for millions of fans and we are proud to continue our successful partnership.”

As the Official Chocolate of NASCAR, Mars Chocolate encourages fans to “Celebrate Race Day with M.” The campaign reminds fans to include irresistible and colorful chocolate in their race day rituals. Many of Mars’ most iconic brands belong to the category, including M&M’S®, and SNICKERS®. Additionally, Mars/Wrigley and Petcare iconic brands are also included, such as SKITTLES® and PEDIGREE®. 

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Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Betty Jane France Passes Away 8-29-16

via press release

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Aug. 30, 2016) – Betty Jane France, a philanthropist in support of children’s health causes, passed away Monday evening. France is the mother of NASCAR Chairman and CEO Brian France and International Speedway Corporation CEO Lesa France Kennedy.

A native of Winston-Salem, North Carolina, the former Betty Jane Zachary was the widow of the late NASCAR Chairman and CEO William C. France, who passed away in 2007. Betty Jane France was executive vice president and assistant treasurer of NASCAR and the chairwoman emeritus of the NASCAR Foundation.

“Last night, the NASCAR family lost a mother, a grandmother, a friend and the light that guided the sport’s charitable arm,” said Brian France. “My mother taught us incredible values, that of love, patience, compassion and joy. She embraced life every day, and nothing fueled her passion more than children. Her unmatched efforts in building The NASCAR Foundation improved the lives of millions of children throughout this country. And because of that, her legacy will live forever.

“My father leaned on my mother throughout his life, relying on her wisdom and calming demeanor to help grow the sport of NASCAR. She was there, every step of the way. When we lost my father, her positive presence remained, as she used her immense skill to grow NASCAR’s heart and soul, The NASCAR Foundation.

“Our family thanks you for all of your thoughts, prayers and well wishes. My mother was a special woman, and an impressive person, and she will be dearly missed.”

France became chairwoman of The NASCAR Foundation upon the foundation’s inception in 2004. Headquartered in Daytona Beach, the foundation is an entity that embodies the compassion of the NASCAR Family and its commitment to serving communities.

The Betty Jane France Humanitarian Award Presented by Nationwide, recognizing outstanding charitable and volunteer efforts of NASCAR fans, was created in her honor in 2011.

France was a longtime community leader in Daytona Beach, Florida, and best known as a steadfast champion of health care for children. She assisted in the establishment of “Speediatrics” children’s care unit at Halifax Health in Daytona Beach and at Homestead Hospital in Homestead, Florida.

In 2003, France was presented the Halifax Medical Center Foundation’s Humanitarian Award in recognition of her advocacy, commitment, support and advancement of numerous area community service organizations including the Volusia/Flagler chapter of the American Red Cross.

She was a member of the Junior League of Daytona Beach serving on boards of numerous area community service organizations.

In July 2008, she was named as an honorary co-chairperson for the Childress Institute for Pediatric Trauma, a project headed by longtime NASCAR team owner Richard Childress in Winston-Salem, N.C.

Funeral arrangements will be forthcoming.


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Saturday, August 13, 2016

NASCAR 2017 Start Times

via press release

NASCAR Announces Race Start Times for 2017 Season

Seventeen National Series Events Move Closer to Primetime

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DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (July 27, 2016) – NASCAR, along with FOX Sports and NBC Sports, today announced 2017 race start times and network coverage for the NASCAR Cup Series, NASCAR XFINITY Series and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series – based on the previously released schedule dates. Through collaborative efforts with its broadcast partners, race teams and tracks, NASCAR was able to finalize full 2017 start times for all three national series almost six months earlier than in recent seasons.

Seventeen national series events will start closer to primetime, helping to bring NASCAR’s photo finishes and close, side-by-side racing to larger audiences. Seventeen NASCAR Cup Series points races will air on broadcast television next year, including the DAYTONA 500 and Coca-Cola 600 on FOX; and the Brickyard 400 and the NASCAR Cup Series championship race, the Ford EcoBoost 400 from Homestead-Miami Speedway, on NBC.

“It’s our responsibility, collectively as an industry, to ensure the sport is healthy, strong and growing by delivering great racing in a way that best meets the needs of our fans,” said Steve Herbst, senior vice president, broadcasting and production at NASCAR. “Earlier insight on start times benefits not only fans, but also our teams and tracks, as it provides more opportunities to plan travel and to purchase race tickets.”


Wednesday, February 24, 2016

NASCAR Announces Nominees for NASCAR Hall of Fame Class of 2017

via press release


Legendary engine builders, crew chiefs, owners, drivers and the most recognizable voice in motorsports. The talents, eras and levels may differ, but all share a common thread. They shaped NASCAR, and on Wednesday, they were recognized as nominees for the highest honor the sport bestows – enshrinement into the NASCAR Hall of Fame.

NASCAR today announced the 20 nominees for the NASCAR Hall of Fame’s Class of 2017, as well as the five nominees for the Landmark Award for Outstanding Contributions to NASCAR. Included among the list are five first-time nominees, all legends who made excellence a habit through their various contributions to the sport.

Among them are record-holding four-time NASCAR Camping World Truck Series champion Ron Hornaday Jr.; the man with the most car owner wins in NASCAR national series history with 322, Jack Roush; former all-time consecutive starts leader Ricky Rudd; legendary motorsports broadcasting pioneer Ken Squier; and three-time premier series champion engine builder and three-time Daytona 500-winning crew chief Waddell Wilson. For a full list of nominees, please see below.

The nominees were selected by a nominating committee consisting of representatives from NASCAR and the NASCAR Hall of Fame, track owners from both major facilities and historic short tracks and the media. The committee’s votes were tabulated by accounting firm Ernst & Young.

From the list of 20 NASCAR Hall of Fame nominees, five inductees will be elected by the NASCAR Hall of Fame Voting Panel, which includes a nationwide fan vote on NASCAR.com. Voting Day for the 2017 class will be Wednesday, May 25.

Added to this year’s list of Landmark Award nominees is Janet Guthrie – the first female driver to compete in a NASCAR premier series superspeedway race. The four returning nominees for the Landmark Award are H. Clay Earles, Raymond Parks, Ralph Seagraves and Squier (more on each below). Potential Landmark Award recipients include competitors or those working in the sport as a member of a racing organization, track facility, race team, sponsor, media partner or being a general ambassador for the sport through a professional or non-professional role. Award winners remain eligible for NHOF enshrinement.

Following are the 20 nominees for induction into the NASCAR Hall of Fame, listed alphabetically:


Tuesday, February 9, 2016

NASCAR Implementing Team Owner Agreement for Cup Series

via press release

During a historic event held today in Charlotte, N.C., NASCAR Chairman and CEO Brian France joined with NASCAR Sprint Cup Series team owners to announce a landmark long-term agreement that provides teams with increased business certainty and the ability to work more closely with NASCAR to produce best-in-class racing.

In effect as the 2016 NASCAR season prepares to kick off this weekend, the new Charter system addresses three key areas – participation, governance and economics – to promote a more predictable, sustainable and valuable team business model. The agreement grants NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Charters to 36 teams, establishes a Team Owner Council that will have formal input into decisions, and provides Charter teams with new revenue opportunities including a greater interest in digital operations.

“Today represents a landmark change to the business model of team ownership in NASCAR,” France said. “The Charter agreements provide nine years of stability for NASCAR and the teams to focus on growth initiatives together with our track partners, auto manufacturers, drivers and sponsors. The Charters also are transferable, which will aid in the development of long-term enterprise value for Charter members.”

The system affords Charter teams that remain in good standing more predictable revenue over the nine years of the agreement. Along with improved financial certainty, the new framework is designed to increase the long-term market value of teams and provide the ability to plan farther ahead with existing, new and prospective partners.

Similar to the five-year sanctioning agreements that NASCAR begins with tracks in 2016, team owner Charter agreements allow for longer planning cycles around competition, innovation, digital marketing, governance and research and development.

“The new Charter program strengthens each of our businesses individually and the team model as a whole, which is good for NASCAR, our fans, drivers, sponsors and the thousands of people who we employ,” said Rob Kauffman, co-owner of Chip Ganassi Racing. “This will give us more stability and predictability, and it will allow us to take a more progressive, long-term approach to issues.

“NASCAR and the teams share a desire to preserve, promote and grow the sport and ultimately produce great racing for our fans and partners. These common goals served as the foundation for discussions and helped bring us to this unprecedented agreement. This is a great step forward for the entire sport made possible by Brian France setting a new course for the NASCAR industry and the owners coming together on shared issues. Everyone involved then compromised a bit to be able to come up with something that worked for all.”

Each Charter team owner has a guaranteed entry into the field of every NASCAR Sprint Cup Series points race. To maintain the historical openness of NASCAR racing, the balance of the field will be open for team owners who do not hold Charters. These Open team owners will compete for the remaining starting spots and positions in the race, as each event in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series’ starting lineup shifts in 2016 to a 40-car field.

“The new team owner agreements will offer a more appealing environment for both current and prospective team owners at the NASCAR premier series level,” France said. “I’ve always stressed that if we can do things to improve the business of our stakeholders, we will pursue it. I’m very proud of what we’ve accomplished today with this agreement.”

NASCAR Charter teams
(Listed by historical inception of race team entity, then numerical)
2015 Car #
2016 Car #
Organization
43
43
Richard Petty Motorsports
9
44
Richard Petty Motorsports
3
3
Richard Childress Racing
27
27
Richard Childress Racing
31
31
Richard Childress Racing
2
2
Team Penske
22
22
Team Penske
5
5
Hendrick Motorsports
24
24
Hendrick Motorsports
48
48
Hendrick Motorsports
88
88
Hendrick Motorsports
6
6
Roush Fenway Racing
16
16
Roush Fenway Racing
17
17
Roush Fenway Racing
1
1
Chip Ganassi Racing
42
42
Chip Ganassi Racing
11
11
Joe Gibbs Racing
18
18
Joe Gibbs Racing
20
20
Joe Gibbs Racing
15
TBD
Michael Waltrip Racing
55
TBD
Michael Waltrip Racing
4
4
Stewart-Haas Racing
10
10
Stewart-Haas Racing
14
14
Stewart-Haas Racing
78
78
Furniture Row Racing
35
34
Front Row Motorsports
38
38
Front Row Motorsports
47
47
JTG Daugherty Racing
7
7
Tommy Baldwin Racing
13
13
Germain Racing
32
32
Go Fas Racing
23
23
BK Racing
83
83
BK Racing
62
62
Premium Motorsports
33
95
Circle Sport Racing
51
15
HScott Motorsports

The 2016 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season will kick off with the Sprint Unlimited on Saturday, Feb. 13 and the 58th running of the Daytona 500® on Sunday, Feb. 21 at Daytona International Speedway®. The Sprint Unlimited and the Great American Race® will be broadcast live on FOX, MRN Radio and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio, with additional coverage on NASCAR.com.
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