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PENNZOIL SIGNS UP WITH THE INDIANAPOLIS MOTOR SPEEDWAY
Published March 19, 1996
The Indianapolis Motor Speedway (IMS) and Pennzoil announced yesterday that Pennzoil has become the official motor oil of the IMS, the Indianapolis 500 and the Indy Racing League. Pennzoil and IMS began discussions upon Valvoline ending its exclusive relationship with IMS on Friday. They agreed over the weekend to a multi-year relationship which will provide Pennzoil with a dominant presence at the Speedway. Elements of the agreement include track signage, Gasoline Alley presence, and sponsorship of a major attraction in May within Indy FanFest, the Speedway's on-site interactive "500" theme park. Further terms were not released. Pennzoil is also one of five official sponsors for Indy's Brickyard 400 NASCAR race. Pennzoil Senior VP/Marketing Thomas Floyd said the agreement gives Pennzoil a presence at the three "top" motorsports events -- the Indy 500, Brickyard 400 and Indy 500 pole day. Floyd said Pennzoil is equally pleased to be official motor oil of the new IRL: "Indianapolis racing is in its greatest growth mode ever, and it's our intent to capitalize on that growth in the oil retailing marketplace" (IMS). DUAL SPONSORSHIP: IMS spokesperson Bob Walters told THE DAILY that "it doesn't matter" that Pennzoil is also a sponsor of CART's U.S. 500. Walters: "It was not our choice to have sponsors brought into some of the political things going on [between IRL and CART]." Pennzoil spokesperson Carolyn Magnuson noted the chance to sponsor IMS was a "never-before-available opportunity," and she added that when there is a resolution between CART and IRL, "We'll be in a good position" (THE DAILY).