SBD/Issue 152/Sponsorships, Advertising & Marketing

Shell/Pennzoil Leaving RCR To Sponsor Kurt Busch At Penske Racing

Shell/Pennzoil Moving NASCAR Sponsorship
From Harvick To Kurt Busch In '11

Shell/Pennzoil today announced a multi-year deal to serve as the primary sponsor for Penske Racing's No. 22 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series entry driven by Kurt Busch starting next season. The company currently serves as the primary sponsor of Richard Childress Racing's Sprint Cup No. 29 entry driven by Kevin Harvick. The new partnership also includes associate sponsorships of Penske Racing's three Izod IndyCar Series cars. Shell/Pennzoil starting in '11 also will be the official fuel and motor oil supplier to the Penske organization. Meanwhile, Miller Lite also announced it has reached a new multi-year deal with Penske to continue sponsoring the No. 2 Sprint Cup entry, which next season will be driven by Brad Keselowski. Busch will finish this season in the No. 2 car with Miller Lite’s sponsorship, while Keselowski will remain in the No. 12 Penske Dodge through ’10 (THE DAILY). In Charlotte, Jim Utter cites sources as saying that Busch has "agreed in principle to a long-term contract extension with Penske." His current contract was due to expire after the '10 season (CHARLOTTE OBSERVER, 4/21). The Shell-Penske deal also "creates a business-to-business relationship with both Penske Automotive Group and Dodge" (FOXSPORTS.com, 4/21).

ONE COMPANY IN, ANOTHER ONE OUT: YAHOO SPORTS' Jay Busbee reports ExxonMobil, which is the primary sponsor of Penske's No. 77 Cup entry driven by Sam Hornish Jr., "will discontinue its sponsorship relationship with Penske Racing after the 2010 season." ExxonMobil in a statement said, "It has been a long and successful relationship, and we wish the Penske team continued success on the track. ... ExxonMobil remains fully committed to motorsports and will continue to strongly support Mobil 1 in NASCAR going forward" (SPORTS.YAHOO.com, 4/21). SCENEDAILY.com's Bob Pockrass noted the move by ExxonMobil was likely "since Mobil and Shell are competitors" (SCENEDAILY.com, 4/20).

THIS BUD'S FOR YOU? ESPN.com's David Newton cited a source as saying that Harvick, who "reportedly wanted out of his deal with RCR last season, is negotiating with RCR to find a new sponsor and stay with the company he has been with" since the '01 Cup season. Meanwhile, with Budweiser in its last season as the primary sponsor of Richard Petty Motorsports' No. 9 entry driven by Kasey Kahne, a source indicated that "discussions between RCR and Budweiser ... have taken place" (ESPN.com, 4/20). Richard Petty said with Kahne departing next season, the future of Budweiser's sponsorship is "very hard to say." Petty: "That's strictly up to Budweiser. They've been really, really a neat crowd to work with. But they've got boss men above them now. They've been sold to an outside company, so I don't know how into racing these people are" ("NASCAR Now," ESPN2, 4/20).

DIG DUG: Harvick's Sprint Cup car will carry a "Call 811" logo on the deck lid and rocker panels at Sunday's Aaron's 499 at Talladega Superspeedway in support of National Safe Digging Month. The "Call 811" logo also will run on the hood, deck lid and TV panel of Roush Fenway Racing's No. 16 car driven by Greg Biffle (THE DAILY).

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