National Guard Extends Sponsorship Of Earnhardt's Sprint Cup Ride Through '14
The Army National Guard has “extended its sponsorship” of NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Hendrick Motorsports through the ‘14 season, according to Jenna Fryer of the AP. The National Guard will be the primary sponsor of the No. 88 Chevrolet for 20 Sprint Cup races, including the Daytona 500. Hendrick Motorsports on Friday said that the National Guard also will “have prominent brand placement during all non-primary events.” The reserve military force has been partnered with Earnhardt since ’08. Hendrick Motorsports said that recent research showed 85% of those who “enlisted or re-enlisted in the National Guard since 2007 agree that professional sports are beneficial to its overall efforts to attract and retain soldiers.” A majority of respondents were “exposed to recruiting or retention materials incorporating NASCAR and had seen NASCAR leveraged at a recruiting center or event.” Meanwhile, PepsiCo's brands are “committed to the No. 88 team with sponsorship of five primary races annually” through the ‘15 season. Hendrick Motorsports said that additional sponsorship “will be announced at a later date” (AP, 10/25). SPORTING NEWS’ Bob Pockrass wrote while Earnhardt still has 13 races "open for next season," he is "happy to have the majority of races sponsored" (SPORTINGNEWS.com, 10/26).