Smokey Mountain Herbal Snuff, America's original and best-selling tobacco-free smokeless brand, will sponsor Johnny Sauter's No. 98 ThorSport Racing Toyota Tundra in six NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races, beginning with the series' second race, at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway.
Sauter, who tied a NASCAR record last season by winning the season's first two Truck Series races, is the defending champion of the race that's scheduled on March 29on the half-mile Martinsville oval.
Smokey Mountain will sponsor Sauter, who led Truck Series regulars in 2013 with three victories, in additional races at Gateway, Kentucky, Iowa, Martinsville and Texas in the fall.
The deal with Smokey Mountain on Sauter's truck is the product of a blossoming business-to-business relationship between Smokey Mountain Chew and ThorSport, according to TSR vice president of corporate partnerships Matt LaNeve. It will run in conjunction with a one-race deal for Smokey Mountain as the primary sponsor of Jeb Burton's No. 13 ThorSport Toyota Camry in this weekend's ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards season opener at Daytona International Speedway.
ThorSport won both the ARCA owners' and drivers' championships in 2013.
"Smokey Mountain Herbal Snuff was looking for a competitive team and a specific type of driver to fit our brand identity," Dave Savoca, president of Smokey Mountain Chew, Inc. said. "We believe both ThorSport and Johnny Sauter are a great fit for the Smokey Mountain brand. Further, the association with Curb Records, Carolina Nut and Nextant Aerospace provides some ancillary opportunity for cross promotions.
"Additionally, having the chance to partner with a great young talent like Jeb Burton for the ARCA race in Daytona was something we couldn't pass up."
Sauter is the defending champion of the season's opening race, the NextEra Energy Resources 250 scheduled on Friday, Feb. 21 at Daytona, where he'll drive the No. 98 Nextant Aerospace Toyota.
"Smokey Mountain fits our model as a popular, high-quality product," said Sauter, who in 2013 finished fourth in Truck points behind champion teammate Matt Crafton. "Matt and I went one-two at Martinsville and it would be pretty cool to have another shot at that this year with Smokey Mountain's new colors on our new 2014 Tundra."