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Volume 25 No. 177
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          NASCAR will kick off its 50th Anniversary celebration
     tonight with the '97 NASCAR Winston Cup Awards banquet at the
     Waldorf-Astoria in New York City.  The event can be seen live
     on ESPN at 9:00pm ET.  For its golden anniversary, NASCAR
     will feature its largest integrated marketing and media
     program ever, with its six TV partners and more than 20
     sponsors and 40 licensees participating in the year-long
     celebration.  GA-based Primedia has worked in conjunction
     with NASCAR on the campaign, which features the tagline "This
     is NASCAR."  The 50th Anniversary logo will be unveiled
     tonight and be featured throughout the year on all NASCAR
     materials.  The logo was designed by Jamie Skiles of NY-based
     Bone Design (THE DAILY).
          PARTNERS: NASCAR's 22 Official Status Sponsors for the
     Anniversary are: Pontiac, Coca-Cola, Anheuser-Busch, Ford
     Motor, Gatorade, R.J. Reynolds, Circuit City, Craftsman,
     MasterCard, True Value, Tabasco, Food Lion, Tide, Kellogg's,
     Kodak, Kraft, Lowe's, McDonald's, MCI, DuPont, Glaval and
     Serengeti.  Primedia President Mark Johnson told THE DAILY
     that Coca-Cola will launch a $5-10M print/electronic campaign
     around the celebration, which will include a 90-second NASCAR
     promo trailer running in movie theaters across the U.S. 
     Official sponsors must purchase their own ad time on NASCAR's
     telecasts, but Johnson added that NASCAR is in talks with its
     TV partners to incorporate ad time in future packages. 
     Johnson: "We're trying to break the mold.  NASCAR is not a
     regional sport anymore."  Johnson added that other partners
     who will have a large national presence include   A-B,
     Pontiac, Kellogg's and McDonald's (THE DAILY). 
          LICENSE TO DRIVE: At retail, the 40-plus licensees will
     produce apparel, trading cards, die cast collectibles and
     novelty gifts, among others, all branded with the 50th
     anniversary logo (THE DAILY). In AD AGE, Jeff Jensen reports
     that JCPenney, KMart, Sears and NAPA are  "negotiating" for
     national distribution of NASCAR items (AD AGE, 12/1).  
          FROM THE PIT: AD AGE's Jensen adds that SI "plans a
     special issue" devoted to the Anniversary that will hit
     newsstands January 26.  The 124-page issue has a rate-base of
     200,000 and a color page costs $16,300 (AD AGE, 12/1). 
     NASCAR Online will conduct fan balloting that will select
     NASCAR's greatest drivers and moments.  The winners will be
     announced at a May "Hollywood Salute to NASCAR" on ESPN. 
     Balloting will also take place through NASCAR publications. 
     The balloting has no title sponsor (THE DAILY).
          TV: During the Anniversary, ESPN will air a five-part
     documentary series on NASCAR's history.  Each part focuses on
     one decade, with the first installment set to air January 16
     and the next four airing every Friday night up to the Daytona
     500 in February.  ESPN is scheduled to air three other
     documentaries that will review NASCAR's greatest rivalries,
     races and drivers, as well as a feature on the France family. 
     ESPN2's "RPM 2Night" will feature a daily "This Day in NASCAR
     History" vignette, and on every race Sunday, "SportsCenter"
     will feature a moment in NASCAR history.  On Christmas and
     New Year's, ESPN will air NASCAR marathons of 27 1/2 and 32
     hours, respectively (THE DAILY).   
          IT'S EVERYWHERE: In terms of NASCAR's other TV partners,
     ABC Sports' race broadcasts each will have a 50th Anniversary
     theme.  CBS will air the Pepsi 400 live from Daytona Int'l
     Speedway on July 4 at 8:00pm ET, the first race to air on a
     network in primetime.  CBS will also air two weekend
     "Speedweeks Special" programs and an August entertainment
     special "Country Music Salute to NASCAR."   TBS will continue
     its "Road to the Championship" programming, and on May 31,
     will air a one-hour special on the 50th anniversary. 
     Starting in January, CNN/SI will feature a NASCAR minute on
     its Wednesday night broadcasts.  TNN will feature NASCAR
     country music specials in July and August and present the
     first authorized biography of the France family.  Speedvision
     will air "50 Years -- A Celebration" on December 14 at 1:00pm
     ET, exactly 50 years to the hour NASCAR was founded, along
     with special editions of "Inside Winston Cup Racing" focusing
     on the anniversary, and the Motorsports Hall of Fame
     ceremonies (THE DAILY). 
          YOU WANT MORE? While in New York to accept the Winston
     Cup Award, Jeff Gordon appeared as a guest on "Live with
     Regis & Kathie Lee."  Asked by Kathie Lee Gifford how much
     DuPont pays for its logo to adorn the hood of the car, Gordon
     said "about" $4-5M ("Regis & Kathie Lee," 12/4).
          FORD TOUGH: Timed to coincide with the 50th Anniversary
     of both the Ford F-Series Trucks and NASCAR, Ford announced a
     multiyear agreement to become the Official Truck of NASCAR
     starting in '98.  Ford will have Official Truck status for
     all 12 NASCAR divisions and will produce a limited number of
     '98-model NASCAR special edition Ford F-150's (Ford).