SBD/July 30, 2014/Marketing and Sponsorship

Top NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Teams Seeing Benefits Of Partnership With OrthoCarolina

OrthoCarolina will now have 2,500 NASCAR team employees as potential patients
Joe Gibbs Racing, Hendrick Motorsports, Roush Fenway Racing and Stewart-Haas Racing have all "formalized agreements" with OrthoCarolina to "treat and prevent nagging injuries and also handle major injuries as needed," according to Erik Spanberg of the CHARLOTTE BUSINESS JOURNAL. The pact gives OrthoCarolina, the team doctor of the NFL Panthers, "about 2,500 NASCAR team employees, pit crew members and drivers as potential patients -- plus their family members." Physician Assistant Bill Heisel "fostered OrthoCarolina's entry into motorsports." Heisel: "I had this idea that you could take sports-medicine principles that had been applied to (other) sports for years and years and, with a few modifications, apply those to motorsports and taking care of the guys who take care of the cars." Heisel "first took an interest in NASCAR" in '02 when he treated Ricky Hendrick, the son of team Owner Rick Hendrick, for a shoulder injury. As he "learned about Hendrick and NASCAR, Heisel saw an opportunity." Informal alliances "were formed, and Heisel became a familiar face at races, assisting the NASCAR medical liaison team of nurses who attend" Camping World Truck Series, Nationwide and Sprint Cup Series races. JGR became the "first team to sign with OrthoCarolina, which doesn't have any kind of sponsorship role with its NASCAR clients." Spanberg notes JGR Owner Joe Gibbs "came from football, where training, nutrition, rehab and preventive care had already become routine." Heisel said that that "made Gibbs willing to take a chance on OrthoCarolina." Hendrick Motorsports Dir of Human Performance Andy Papathanassiou said that OrthoCarolina "spends three to four days a week" at Hendrick HQ (CHARLOTTE BUSINESS JOURNAL, 7/25 issue). 
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