Published January 23, 2013
Textron, which today announced a 10-race sponsorship with Earnhardt Ganassi Racing
for the No. 1 NASCAR Sprint Cup Chevy driven by Jamie McMurray, is eyeing sales increases across the NASCAR industry for its Cessna airplanes, Bell helicopters, E-Z-Go golf carts and Bad Boy Buggies ATVs. Speaking at a press event, Cessna CEO Scott Ernest said that the company has a 20% penetration rate among owners, drivers and sponsors. He declined to say how much it hopes to boost its percentage of that market, but did say that it will have a dedicated sales team working to sell planes across the NASCAR industry. He added that the company will use the sponsorship to promote six new lines of planes. Ernest: “The ability to network in this world was important. We’re going to continue to invest and grow our product here.” E-Z-Go is working to increase its golf cart sales at racetracks across the sport. Atlanta Motor Speedway currently uses its carts and it is in discussions with Charlotte Motor Speedway and Talladega Superspeedway. E-Z-Go President Kevin Holleran said the company has not made a concerted sales effort at racetracks in the past. But he added, “Now with Ganassi, I would anticipate we’ll be able to do that much, much better.” The company’s Bad Boy Buggies ATV brand will be the No. 1 car's primary sponsor of races in Talladega and Charlotte. Holleran said that the sponsorship is designed to raise awareness of Bad Boy Buggies among NASCAR fans who hunt. He added, “There’s a great opportunity there.” EGR President Steve Lauletta said the team only has four races to sell on the No. 1 car in '13, which is a major decrease in the inventory it had available at the end of last year after Bass Pro ended its 18-race support of the team. McDonald’s will sponsor 15 races, Textron (Cessna, E-Z-Go and Bad Boy Buggies) will sponsor 10 races, Liftmaster will sponsor four, Bass Pro will sponsor two and Banana Boat will sponsor one race. Four races that have been sold will be announced at a later date. Lauletta said the team is in an enviable position to start the season.