Monster Energy Cup Series News

Monster Energy Cup Series News (12857)

Advance America, one of the nation's leading providers of short-term loans and other financial services, announced today its new partnership with NASCAR star Danica Patrick. The relationship bolsters Advance America's presence in new and current markets, and showcases the many ways Advance America helps consumers to "power on" when times get tough.

Patrick took the world by storm when she entered the male-dominated sport of professional racing. Named as one of TIME Magazine's 100 most influential people, the professional race car driver and entrepreneur will be featured in a new integrated marketing campaign across TV, print and social channels. In addition, Patrick will sport Advance America's logo on her racing helmet throughout the 2017 NASCAR season.  

"Danica's admirable reputation, welcoming personality and can-do attitude fully align with our company's mission and values," said Trudy Boyles, senior vice president of customer experience at Advance America. "Danica is the perfect person to share our story."

"We all face obstacles from time to time and struggle to make ends meet," said Patrick. "I'm proud to partner with a company that offers reliable and trusted solutions to help Americans get back on track during tough financial times."

The short-term lending industry helps approximately 19 million households manage financial challenges annually. Advance America— with approximately 2,000 centers nationwide and online services in select markets— provides a suite of convenient, cost-competitive financial services to meet consumers' ever-changing needs and expectations, including cash advances, title loans and installment loans. The company also offers prepaid debit cards and tax preparation services.

"We all need a pit crew in life," said Boyles. "Advance America wants consumers to know that they can count on us wherever the road of life leads them. And, now Danica knows that our team around the country will be cheering her on every race!" 

For more information on Advance America's partnership with Danica Patrick, along with Danica's message to consumers, please visit www.advanceamerica.net/Danica.

Advance America PR

The new 2017 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series season could not have arrived soon enough for Germain Racing. Armed with young gun, Ty Dillon, the team zipped into Daytona International Speedway and made an immediate impact. The Cup Series rookie looked comfortable in his new No. 13 GEICO Chevrolet SS and without hesitation shot to the top of the board during Sunday's Daytona 500 qualifying session. Dillon advanced to the second round, where he notched a 12th place starting position, leaving him sixth on Thursday's Can-Am Duel number two starting grid.
 
When the GEICO team took to the starting grid for the first points paying race of the season, the goal was a solid performance and an undamaged racecar, as they head into Sunday's Daytona 500. Dillon aimed to exceed expectations and made his presence known, moving back and forth through the field at will and taking over the fourth position with 30-laps left in the race. Poised to challenge for the lead, Dillon exercised maturity and instinct when avoiding potential peril with 27 laps to go  when the No. 5 car of Kasey Kahne had an issue. While he surrendered positions in the process, Dillon quickly collected himself and hustled the GEICO Chevy back to the front of the field where he would remain for the balance of the evening. 
 
When the checkered flag closed out a busy 150-laps of action at the World Center of Racing, Dillon recorded a 10th place finish and, more importantly, scored an ever-critical point in the newly instated Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series point system. The points awarded in the qualifying races this year are the first awarded in the Duels since 1971 and match the points that will be awarded for each 'stage' win during regular race weekends.  In both cases, the top-10 finishers are able to earn points with 10 going to the winner and one going to 10th place.
 
On Sunday, when the drivers take to the starting grid for the 59th annual running of the Daytona 500, Dillon and his No. 13 GEICO Chevrolet SS will start their day from the 18th position.
 
"Our GEICO Chevy SS was fast," Dillon said in the garage after the race. "I was able to really relax out there and learn some more about racing at Daytona that I believe will help the team on Sunday. One of our goals for tonight was that we wanted to finish in a points position and we achieved that goal by finishing tenth."
                                                     
The Daytona 500 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race is on Sunday, February 26th, and it will be televised live on FOX beginning at 2:00 PM (ET). The Motor Racing Network (MRN) will carry the live radio broadcast, along with SiriusXM NASCAR Radio, channel 90.
 
PMI PR

DAYTONA BEACH, Fl— When Monster Energy was announced as the title sponsor for NASCAR’s premier series, their sense of activation was going to be considered “fun” and different than what fans have seen before.

However, during one of the sports marquee weekends, Monster’s activation does not show that they are the title sponsor for one of the top motorsports entities in the United States.

Just last weekend, Monster Executives told SB Nation that they were taking a “wait-and-see” approach.

“We want to go into the season and learn as we go,” Mitch Covington, Monster’s Vice President of Sports Marketing, told SB Nation. “And I think you’ll see our presence build somewhat as the races go. Some races we’ll have more presence than others. We really just want to build it out first, (rather) than go all-in for the first weekend and the Clash.”

Over the past week, there was roughly nine posts mentioning “Daytona 500” or “NASCAR” on the Monster Energy Twitter page.

Compared to the opening weekend of Daytona Speedweeks for NASCAR, Monster’s activation has increased, but it is still lacking. Xfinity, who sponsors NASCAR’s number two series, has better activation compared to Monster.

Currently, Monster’s activation includes a social deck that showcases Monster girls and provides fans the opportunity to “sample” full cans of Monster’s products. On the social deck, there are video screens that showcase Monster’s other motorsports sponsorship. Outside of the social deck, Monster has a steel ball and rally cars for demostrations. The crowd at the Monster station was mainly filled with men.

Besides limited Monster Energy NASCAR Cup gear at the Fanatics tent, logos posted on the wall, logo in the grass, and a small section in the midway Monster’s activation is not that of other sponsors.

Monster has launched a microsite that provides content for the series.

However, the Xfinity activation showcased Xfinity products such as the X1 platform. Xfinity also had a spin to win game, virtual reality station that showed what it is like behind the wheel at Daytona, photo opportunity with a fan’s head and a fire suit. Xfinity even had a showcar to which fans can take pictures of. The people manning the station were engaging with customers asking if they had Xfinity or have tried out different products. The main demographic was a mixture of men and women.

Following a season highlighted by some of the closest, side-by-side racing NASCAR® fans have seen in years, NASCAR today announced the return of its 2017 season launch marketing campaign, Ready. Set. Race.

The new integrated campaign, including television creative promoting the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series™, will launch during the 2017 DAYTONA 500® on Feb. 26 (2 p.m. ET, FOX, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio).

NASCAR fans received a first look at “Sensory Overdrive” today on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. A 30-second thrill ride, the spot brings to life the high-stakes drama and intensity drivers experience competing in the sport’s premier series.

The campaign also includes social media videos featuring Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series drivers shared this week and throughout the season.

“The Ready. Set. Race campaign was so popular with our fans last year that we couldn’t wait to bring it back with even more intense racing action,” said Jill Gregory, NASCAR senior vice president and chief marketing officer. “The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series creative is unlike any advertising we’ve ever done. Monster Energy has built a bold, edgy brand, so we wanted to deliver creative that first and foremost is NASCAR but that also complements our new entitlement partner.”

The new Ready. Set. Race creative was developed in conjunction with agency partner 77 Ventures and acclaimed commercial director Gary Land. Additional creative breaking Sunday on FOX includes “A New Season,” an action-packed, 60-second spot that accentuates the NASCAR racing experience across all three national series.

Building on the Names Are Made Here® positioning, NASCAR will air “The Path” promoting the NASCAR XFINITY Series and featuring the sport’s up-and-coming drivers during the season-opening PowerShares QQQ 300 at Daytona International Speedway on Feb. 25 (3:30 p.m. ET, FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio).

The new creative will be available on NASCAR.com and shared via NASCAR social platforms as part of a busy weekend on social media. The DAYTONA 500 Hour Countdown social campaign in partnership with FOX will continue up until Sunday’s green flag as FOX and NASCAR post original DAYTONA 500-themed content on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.  

The first Snapchat Live Story of the season is planned for DAYTONA 500 race day. NASCAR XFINITY Series driver Darrell Wallace Jr. will serve as Live Story correspondent and bring the sights and sounds from the track to users across the world using Snapchat Spectacles.

Earlier this week, NASCAR and Twitter launched a DAYTONA 500 Twitter emoji. Every time a fan Tweets with #DAYTONA500, the colorful, waving flags of the DAYTONA 500 logo appear in the Tweet. Fans can also expect unique, behind-the-scenes content all weekend from NASCAR on Facebook and Instagram.

For additional coverage of The Great American Race®, fans can visit Race Center on NASCAR.com.

Tickets to NASCAR national series events are available at NASCAR.com/tickets.

NASCAR PR

With a 14th-place finish in Thursday night's second Can-Am Duel race, Gaunt Brothers Racing and driver D.J. Kennington qualified the No. 96 Lordco/Castrol Toyota Camry into the 59th running of the Daytona 500. Kennington will start 28th in Sunday's race.

For team owner Marty Gaunt, making GBR's Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series debut is the most profound step in a motorsports odyssey that began when he was 13 years old.

"To me personally, this means a lot, just with our name on the car," said Gaunt, also the president of Triad Racing Technologies. "Having grown up with my brother, going racing with him over the years since the mid-70s, to think he took me to my first race when I was 13, and now we're in the Daytona 500, is pretty spectacular."

Gaunt Brothers Racing previously competed in what is now the NASCAR Pinty's Series in 2011. Their Cup Series debut will be the result of a collaborative effort between GBR, Triad, Toyota Racing Development and RAB Racing.

"This was a total team effort after all the hours that everybody put in, literally 15 to 18 hours a day putting a car together," added Gaunt. "From everybody at Triad with the unbelievable horsepower and reliability we had throughout the race to TRD giving us time in the wind tunnel and guiding us in the right direction for putting a speedway car together; we came to Daytona for the very first time as a team and made the race. There are probably 50 people who contributed."

Kennington, hailing from St. Thomas, Ontario, will become the first Canadian to compete in The Great American Race since Calgary's Trevor Boys in 1988, a 29-year drought that the two-time NASCAR Pinty's Series champion is thrilled to end.

"This is huge; huge for Canada, huge for all of my team and my family. It's just an unbelievable feeling," said Kennington. "I don't even know how to explain it. I feel like I won the Daytona 500."

Kennington, who teamed with longtime sponsor partners Castrol (Wakefield Canada) and British Columbia-based Lordco Auto Parts for what will be his second-career Cup Series start, has 19 career victories in the Pinty's Series; however, he is relatively new to the concept of drafting, the style of racing on display at Daytona. Gaunt and team prepared their driver, who improved before everyone's eyes during Thursday's qualifying race.

"(Kennington's improvement) comes down to Robby [Benton] on the roof spotting, guiding him throughout the race," said Gaunt. "There was one time that looked like he was going to lose the draft. Robby talked him through splitting the wake to get back through there. D.J. came on and said, 'Wow, I'm learning a lot. I'm going to school.' Then he came back through and caught the tail end of the draft. He's been watching tapes and Robby's been working with him. D.J. did everything he needed to do to make the 500."

For Kennington, Thursday's race was the ride of a lifetime.

"The 7 car, I thought, was locked in on time and was going to be a little more cautious than that, but we had to race him to the line. I wouldn't want it any other way. That was awesome. This is one of the biggest moments of my life."

The 40-car field for the 59th Daytona 500 will take the green flag on Sunday, Feb. 26 at 2 pm ET.

GBR PR

Current and former Roush Fenway Racing drivers Trevor Bayne, Ryan Reed, Greg Biffle and David Ragan all share a unique bond; each driver scored historic first wins at the famed Daytona International Speedway.

Biffle, in his rookie season in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series at Roush Fenway, captured his first victory in the series on July 5, 2003 at the 2.5-mile superspeedway.  After starting 30th, Biffle found his way to the front, leading the final 21 laps to take his first checkered flag.

In just his second start in the Cup Series, piloting the No. 21 Ford for the Wood Brothers, Bayne advanced from a 32nd starting position and led the final six laps to earn his first career victory in the Great American Race on February 20, 2011.  Bayne took the checkered flag just one day after his 20th birthday, making him the youngest Daytona 500 winner of all time - a record which still stands.

Later that season, another Roush Fenway driver would find victory lane for the first time at Daytona.  David Ragan started the scheduled 160-lap race in fifth. Ragan found the lead for a total of seven laps on three different occasions early in the race.  The driver of the No. 6 Ford retook the lead during overtime on Lap 163 and never looked back, earning his first career Cup victory.

In 198 Cup Series starts at Daytona, Roush Fenway has six wins, two of which are Daytona 500 victories.  The organization also boasts five poles, 38 top-fives, and 72 top-10s.

While Bayne chases his second Daytona 500 victory in the No. 6 AdvoCare Ford, Roush Fenway teammate Ricky Stenhouse Jr. seeks his first win in the Daytona 500, driving the No. 17 Fastenal Ford.

In 2015, Reed earned his first career NASCAR XFINITY Series victory in the season-opener at Daytona International Speedway.  Reed qualified eighth for the 120-lap race and remained in contention for the duration of the race, taking the lead for the first time of the day on Lap 88.  The young driver paced the field for 13 laps, before dropping back into the top-10.  As the race came to a close, Reed maneuvered into position to battle for the lead.  Reed crossed the finish line just ahead of his competitors to capture the victory.  The victory was team owner Jack Roush’s first at Daytona in the NASCAR XFINITY Series.

In 89 NASCAR XFINITY Series starts at Daytona, Roush Fenway has earned one victory and two poles, along with 20 top-five and 43 top-10 finishes.

The Cup Series will take the green flag in the Great American Race on Sunday, Feb. 26 at 2:00 p.m. ET, airing on FOX.  The NASCAR XFINITY Series returns to action at Daytona International Speedway on Saturday, Feb. 25 at 3:30 p.m. ET, airing on FoxSports1. 

RFR PR

 

Austin Dillon and the Dow Chevrolet Team Rely on Momentum to Earn Fourth-Place Finish in Duel at Daytona
"I felt like I put myself in a good position to win. We were running second with one lap to go, but down the backstretch I didn't move quick enough and it put us to fourth. It was a good race anyways. I just feel like I needed to move faster to the right. I know the momentum is in the top lane and I didn't get there. It was a tough call to stay where I was on track. Overall, the Dow Chevrolet was really good and I feel like we have something we can work with for the Daytona 500 on Sunday."
- Austin Dillon

On-Track Contact Halts Strong Run by Paul Menard in the First Can-Am Duel at Daytona International Speedway
"I'm not really sure what happened. We had a good run and I think the No. 18 came up to shoot the middle and I was kind of side drafting and we just came together. We had a good run with the Peak/Menards Chevy. It was tight, but fast all night long. We could get some momentum, just couldn't do much once we got towards the front. I'm proud of my guys. We shook some rust off from the off-season and will be ready for the Daytona 500."
- Paul Menard

Ryan Newman Earns Seventh-Place in Action-Packed Second Duel to Start 16th in the Daytona 500 
"We kept the Caterpillar Chevrolet in one piece which was a challenge a couple of times. I think we realized tonight what we still need to work on without having competed in the Clash or had any practice. I'm pleased with the fact that we were able to drive from the back and into the top 10 in the final three laps. We had a better car than where we finished, probably a top-five contender. With that said, we still have some work to do in order to have a car capable of winning on Sunday." 
 

- Ryan Newman

 

Michael McDowell and Leavine Family Racing (LFR) will start the 59th running of the Daytona 500 in 22nd after finishing the second Can-Am Duel in 12th place.

 

After a rain-plagued day forced practice for the Can-Am Duel to be canceled, McDowell and LFR would start the second duel in 15th where they would look to assess and gauge the set-up of the No. 95 K-LOVE Chevrolet SS.

 

After starting off strong, McDowell settled into the Top-10, where he would stay for a majority of the 150-mile sprint. McDowell was able to work his way up to third before dropping back during a three-wide battle for position that would ultimately put him in the 12th position crossing the start/finish line.

“It was a typical duel,” said McDowell. “We definitely got a good feel as to what our car can do. We were able to get to the front, and we had good speed the whole race. We just got shuffled out and put three-wide towards the end. We lost a lot of our track position, but the car was good and doesn’t have too much damage. We are just going to get it ready for the 500.”

 

Crew Chief Todd Parrott is equally as satisfied with the team’s effort in capturing a solid starting position for Sunday’s Daytona 500.

 

“I felt like we had a good car and good speed,” said Parrott. “I thought the handling was pretty good, so we just have a few things we need to clean up before Sunday. The pit crew did a great job too. We made a four-tire stop and took some right sides during the cautions. I think it was a good test for the race on Sunday.”

 

“The Great American Race” will take place on Sunday, February 26, at 2PM ET. Race fans can follow @LFR95 on Twitter and Leavine Family Racing on Facebook for Daytona 500 updates.

 

LFR PR

Team Penske announced today that the organization has reached an agreement with 26-year-old Joey Logano to drive for the team through the 2022 season and beyond. The multi-year extension ensures that the 2015 Daytona 500 Champion and 17-time Monster Energy Series NASCAR Cup Series (MENCS) winner will continue to be an integral part of the Team Penske organization.

The announcement follows the news that Team Penske partner Shell-Pennzoil will continue as the primary sponsor of the No. 22 Ford Fusion driven by Logano through the 2022 season and beyond.

“We are so proud of the driver Joey has become since joining our team in 2013 and all the success he has been a part of on the No. 22 team,” said Roger Penske.  “But more importantly, we are proud of the man that Joey has become.  He has evolved into an effective leader both on and off the track. Joey is a great ambassador for all of our partners and his philanthropic work through his Joey Logano Foundation has been remarkable. Joey is the type of person we are proud to have at Team Penske and we are excited that he will be a big part of the team’s future for many years to come.”

Since joining Team Penske in 2013, Logano has earned 15 MENCS wins, nine NASCAR XFINITY Series (NXS) victories, three NXS Owners’ titles and he has finished inside the top 10 in the Cup Series championship standings each season – including racing his way into the Final Four in the season finale two out of the last three years. Logano finished a career-best second in last season’s Championship and won the season-opening Clash event at Daytona last weekend.

“I’ve known my entire life I wanted to be a NASCAR Cup Series driver,” said Logano, who also won the 2016 NASCAR All-Star race. “Now, to be able to know that I get the opportunity to drive for Roger Penske for the foreseeable future where I can focus solely on winning races and championships, is a life-long dream for me. To know that our executives, our sponsors, my team and all of the employees at Team Penske have that much faith in me means so much and that type of commitment really says a lot about this team and this organization.”

Logano began his racing career driving Legends and Bandoleros around the Southeast before moving to Late Models and eventually the Pro Cup Series and NASCAR Touring Series, where he garnered considerable national attention from several prominent NASCAR organizations. Just after his 18th birthday, he made his first NXS start and won his first race just two weeks later, becoming the youngest NXS winner in NASCAR history.

Moving up to the Cup Series ranks, Logano won his first MENCS race in his rookie season at 19, making him the youngest Cup winner in NASCAR history. He also holds the record for being the youngest NASCAR Cup Series Rookie of the Year.

Logano joined Team Penske in 2013 and found immediate success, winning a race and qualifying for the Chase in his first season. Building on that strong initial season, Logano earned five wins in 2014, a series-leading six victories in 2015 (including his first Daytona 500 victory) and three triumphs in 2016.  His 14 wins since the start of the 2014 season are tied for the most in the series with seven-time Cup Champion Jimmie Johnson.

“This has been a great chapter of my life since joining Team Penske in 2013,” added Logano.  “It was really a second chance for my career. Since then, we’ve experienced a lot of success and a lot of great life moments, both on and off the track. Now, we have to go out there and continue to perform on the track. With Team Penske, Shell-Pennzoil, Autotrader, AAA, Ford and all of our partners showing their belief in me, I want to go out and show what I can do for them. I’ve worked really hard to get here. Now I need to embrace this commitment and take advantage of this awesome opportunity.”

The 2017 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series season begins in February with the running of the Daytona 500 on February 26.

Team Penske PR

Diamond Resorts International®, a global leader in the hospitality and vacation ownership industries, together with legendary race car driver Michael Waltrip delivers an Events of a Lifetime® experience for its members at the 59th Daytona 500 on February 26, 2017.

As a part of the event, members will have the opportunity to take an exclusive behind-the-scenes tour of the world-famous motorsports stadium, hosted by Michael Waltrip. Immediately following the tour, members will enjoy premium stadium seating to watch Michael Waltrip’s historic last race.

After a prosperous racing career spanning more than 30 years, Waltrip will retire from the sport. The two-time winner of the prestigious Daytona 500, having won in 2001 and 2003, posted more than 130 top 10 finishes on NASCAR’s premier Sprint Cup series, including four career race wins. He scored 11 wins and more than 105 top 10 finishes in NASCAR’s Xfinity Series and even has a win in NASCAR’s Camping World Truck Series division.

“Driving has been a passion of mine for as long as I can remember and it will be bittersweet to drive my last laps at Daytona,” says Waltrip. “I couldn’t ask for a better farewell than to spend the day with the Diamond Resorts members and owners and help give them a vacation experience they will hopefully remember for a lifetime. I’m looking forward to slowing down a bit and taking some time to vacation more and enjoy Diamond Resorts all over the world.”

Waltrip will continue to make personal appearances at Diamond Resorts’ increasingly popular Events of a Lifetime®, which deliver exciting vacation experiences that are unique and memorable. Throughout 2017, members will have the opportunity to enjoy premium seating at races in Daytona Beach, Florida, Las Vegas, Nevada, and Phoenix, Arizona. In addition to hosting meet-and-greets and signing autographs, Waltrip will also provide members and owners with behind-the-scenes tours of the race track, pit row and Fox broadcast facilities.

“Michael has had an outstanding career and will always be an icon in the automotive racing industry,” said Michael Flaskey, Chief Sales & Marketing Officer, Diamond Resorts International®. “We are proud to have him as a part of our Diamond family. We look forward to watching as he makes his last laps this Sunday and wish him the best of luck on his final race.”

As a Diamond Resorts Ambassador, Waltrip is a part of an ever-expanding roster of high-profile celebrities including country music stars Colt Ford and Jana Kramer, baseball Hall of Famers Reggie Jackson and Gaylord Perry, professional baseball player Bud Norris, PGA touring professionals Brian Gay, Brittany Lincicome and John Cook, Super Bowl XXVI MVP Mark Rypien and war veteran Chad Pfeifer.

Diamond Resorts PR

 In celebration of his return to racing at this Sunday's Daytona 500, Dale Earnhardt Jr. donned a Goodyear Blimp pilot uniform and took a different kind of lap in the Goodyear Blimp on Wednesday, surprising a U.S. military veteran with the experience of a lifetime. 

Earnhardt Jr., who missed 18 races last season while recovering from a concussion, will get behind the familiar wheel of his "88" car Sunday seeking his third Daytona 500 victory on the confidence of Goodyear tires.  But it was an altogether different experience sitting at the controls of the iconic Goodyear Blimp.

"This was such a cool day – being able to co-pilot the Goodyear Blimp and connect with a fan who has so honorably served our country," said Earnhardt Jr. "I'm proud to be involved with Goodyear. Ever since we started working together, I've wanted to ride in the blimp, so this was a great experience that I will never forget."

With weather less than ideal in the Daytona Beach area Wednesday, the blimp was limited in flight and only got off the ground for a few minutes.  But the day was all about Paul Siverson, a Vietnam and Gulf War veteran who served in the military for 30 years. Siverson describes Earnhardt as his "first, second and third favorite NASCAR driver."

Coupled with his Earnhardt Jr. fandom, it was Siverson's dedication to NCServes, a non-profit organization that provides comprehensive services to veterans, service members and their families, that made Siverson the perfect candidate for the surprise ride with NASCAR's most popular driver.

In honor of soldiers like Siverson, the Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company donated $10,000 to NCServes with Earnhardt Jr. on hand for the check presentation.  In addition to the blimp flight, Siverson will receive access at Daytona Speedweeks including tickets to the Great American Race on Sunday.

Goodyear has more than 100 years of history building innovative tires and equipment to help support and protect U.S. troops and is the largest producer of military tires in the country. The tire manufacturer has helped build more than 150 blimps for the U.S. Navy and continues to recognize the skills of veterans through a robust hiring program and was recently recognized with the Secretary of Defense Freedom Award.

"We're honored to celebrate the return of Dale Jr. to NASCAR and recognize an American hero like Paul," said Seth Klugherz, Goodyear's director of North America marketing.  "Connecting American icons NASCAR and the Goodyear Blimp to provide an experience for a military veteran is a natural way to extend Goodyear's unwavering support to the U.S. Armed Forces."

Goodyear Racing PR