Monster Energy Cup Series News (14596)
Following a long and winding road, Martin Truex Jr. finally owns the biggest prize in motorsports.
The driver of the No. 78 Furniture Row Racing Toyota capped off a dominant season in fitting fashion –by capturing the 2017 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series championship with a stirring victory in Sunday’s Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
To take the title, Truex outdueled his Championship 4 competitors Kyle Busch (second), Kevin Harvick (fourth) and Brad Keselowski (seventh).
The Mayetta, New Jersey, native was the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series’ best driver all year, winning the regular season championship on the strength of four victories.
Once the playoffs began, Truex upped his performance to another level, recording a top-five finish in every postseason race except for Talladega. He won four times, including the playoff-opening race at Chicagoland, twice in the Round of 12 (Charlotte and Kansas) and the season finale at Homestead.
Truex finished the season with career highs in wins (8), top fives (19), top 10s (26) and laps led (2,250). He led the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series in all those stat categories.
Truex’s title also marks the first championship for Denver, Colorado-based Furniture Row Racing and owner Barney Visser.
A two-time NASCAR XFINITY Series champion, Truex joins Busch, Harvick, Keselowski and Bobby Labonte as the fifth driver in history with both an XFINITY and Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series title.
He is the first champion from New Jersey.
Truex’s teammate Erik Jones captured the 2017 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Sunoco Rookie of the Year. Driving the No. 77 Furniture Row Racing Toyota, Jones scored a rookie-high five top fives and 14 tops 10s.
On the strength of 16 victories, Toyota won its second-consecutive Monster Energy Series Manufacturers’ Championship.
NASCAR and The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company today announced a renewed sponsorship agreement that ensures Goodyear is the exclusive tire of NASCAR’s top three national series.
The newly signed agreement continues Goodyear’s designation as the “Official Tire of NASCAR” and extends an uninterrupted relationship that started in 1954. Goodyear and NASCAR’s six decades of partnership is one of the longest-running sponsor programs in any sport. In addition, Goodyear has been the exclusive tire supplier for the sanctioning body’s top three series since 1997.
“We proudly join Goodyear in celebrating our renewed and longstanding partnership,” said Brent Dewar, NASCAR president. “For more than half a century, NASCAR and our teams have trusted Goodyear tires. Our partners’ commitment to innovation and excellence plays a key role in our unyielding pursuit to deliver the best racing product in the world.”
From the introduction of the radial tire to NASCAR in 1989 to multi-zone tread design in 2013, Goodyear and NASCAR have consistently innovated to deliver compelling racing. NASCAR has served as a proving ground for Goodyear, preparing and supplying tires that meet the most grueling and demanding conditions. The technology that goes into a tire to withstand and perform in those conditions helps inform and differentiate Goodyear’s consumer tires.
“We are tremendously proud of the pivotal role Goodyear plays in the best racing competition in the world and excited that NASCAR drivers will be crossing the finish line on Goodyear tires in the years ahead,” said Rich Kramer, chairman, CEO and president of Goodyear. “With this new agreement in place, we celebrate our enduring relationship with NASCAR and the continuing value of NASCAR to the Goodyear brand"
Each tire Goodyear produces for NASCAR’s top three national series are custom-built by the hands of passionate Goodyear associates in Akron, Ohio – Goodyear’s global headquarters – and donned with the name of the employee who helped produce it.
The depth of the relationship has been built on competition, shared passion and brand growth for the two organizations. Goodyear’s industry-leading brand has been amplified through the duration of the relationship generating awareness for the tiremaker with NASCAR’s passionate fan base. According to a Turnkey Sports & Entertainment sponsor loyalty survey conducted for SportsBusiness Journal/Daily in 2016, Goodyear has been the most recognized sponsor in NASCAR for the past five consecutive years.
For their final race together, Ryan Blaney and the Wood Brothers team will start the Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway from a familiar position.
Blaney, crew chief Jeremy Bullins, and the Motorcraft/Quick Lane team bounced back from a mediocre practice session to advance through all three rounds of knock-out qualifying and earn the 11th starting spot for Sunday’s finale of Ford Championship Weekend.
It was the 26th time in 36 races this season that Blaney and the No. 21 team have qualified among the top 12.
“Ryan and the crew made some changes after practice, and obviously they were right ones,” team co-owner Eddie Wood said. “It’s really satisfying to be among the top 12 in our last race together, and I’m glad they were able to find some good speed tonight since they’ve been so good in qualifying all season.”
Blaney and the Motorcraft/Quick Lane team were 20th fastest in Friday’s opening practice, with a best lap at 168.972 miles per hour.
After some tuning on the No. 21 Fusion, Blaney was 14th fastest in the opening round of qualifying with a speed of 172.590 mph.
He ran a lap at 173.055 mph in Round Two, which was ninth fastest of the 24 drivers and earned him a spot among the elite 12 qualifiers.
His final lap, a 171.255 mph, earned him the 11th starting spot for Sunday’s season-ending Ford EcoBoost 400.
“We made improvements from the first round to the second round, but we fell off for the third round,”
Blaney said in his post-qualifying comments. “We missed a bit on that last adjustment. It was a good effort.”
Blaney also said the increase in his speed in qualifying compared to his speed in practice was due in part to the fact that practice was held during the day and qualifying at night.
“We made some adjustments to the car between practice and qualifying, but the biggest difference is the temperature,” he said.
Sunday’s Ford EcoBoost 400 is set to get the green flag just after 2:30 p.m. with TV coverage on NBC.
Danica Patrick has announced today at Homestead-Miami Speedway her retirement from full-time racing. Announces will run the 2018 Daytona 500 and Indy 500 for yet unnamed teams.
At an event to kick off NASCAR Championship Weekend in Miami on Thursday, November 16, Comcast announced the Chip Ganassi Racing Pit Crew Department as the winner of the third annual Comcast Community Champion of the Year Award. Comcast created the award in 2015 to honor NASCAR industry members for their philanthropic efforts, awarding $60,000 to the winner’s selected charity and $30,000 to the respective charities of the two remaining finalists.
Led by coaches Shaun Peet and Mike Metcalf, the Chip Ganassi Racing Pit Crew Department began meeting monthly to identify ways to help and impact local organizations in need. The team has dedicated countless hours to charities around the Charlotte, North Carolina area, including Ronald McDonald House of Charlotte, Charlotte Rescue Mission, Camp Care and Barium Springs Home for the Children. They have participated in clothing drives, disaster relief cleanup, building clean up and restoration, cooking and serving meals, and trail building, among other activities. The department has also led a yearly bicycle drive called the “Race to the North Pole,” which in 2016 donated more than 150 children’s bicycles to the Ronald McDonald House of Charlotte.
In addition to their work with local charities, the team has also sought out ways to give back to the NASCAR family. After the unexpected passing of No. 42 NASCAR XFINITY Series car chief Ryan Shea in March 2016, the Pit Crew Department not only collected Christmas gifts for his wife and two kids, but also helped with tasks around their home to provide care and support during a difficult time.
The $60,000 donation from Comcast on behalf of the Chip Ganassi Racing Pit Crew Department will be provided to the Ronald McDonald House of Charlotte, and will support the organization’s efforts to provide a home for families of children receiving treatment at local Charlotte-area hospitals.
“It is an honor to recognize the Chip Ganassi Racing Pit Crew Department as the 2017 Comcast Community Champion of the Year, as they truly embody the selfless and passionate spirit of giving back that this award represents,” said Matt Lederer, Executive Director of Partnership Marketing at Comcast. “Comcast places high value on community service, and we’re humbled by the incredible stories that we’ve been able to highlight in the NASCAR industry through this impactful award.”
The Chip Ganassi Racing Pit Crew Department was chosen by a panel of judges consisting of former NASCAR driver Kyle Petty, NASCAR.com reporter Holly Cain and 2016 Comcast Community Champion Wade Jackson, as well as executives from Comcast and NASCAR. The other finalists, Jimmie Johnson and Brad Keselowski, were each awarded $30,000 toward their respective charities. Each finalist’s story can be viewed by clicking here.
“It’s huge for our team to win the Comcast Community Champion of the Year Award. We’ve always wanted to serve behind the scenes, but having the opportunity to bring awareness to the people and organizations we’re passionate about is a huge honor,” said Mike Metcalf. “Winning this award reminds us that it isn’t the Victory Lane hats, the trophies and the wins that impact others most in life, it’s about making a difference.”
Comcast has a long track record of community service, aiding in the advancement of local organizations, developing strategic programs and partnerships, and mobilizing resources to connect people and help them thrive. To learn more about the Comcast Community Champion of the Year Award, as well as the finalists, please visit: ComcastCommunityChampion.com.
Team Penske has announced an enhanced partnership agreement for 2018 with REV Group, a leading manufacturer of specialty vehicle brands serving the commercial, fire and emergency and recreational markets. REV, a Team Penske partner in the NASCAR XFINITY Series (NXS) and the Verizon IndyCar Series since 2016, will showcase its brands as the company steps up to become a sponsor for the team in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series (MENCS) in 2018.
REV will be the primary sponsor of the No. 12 Ford Fusion and driver Ryan Blaney for two races next season, including the spring race at Bristol Motor Speedway and the fall race at Talladega Superspeedway. REV will also be featured as an associate sponsor on the No. 12 Ford Fusion for the rest of the team’s 2018 MENCS races.
In addition, REV will continue its association with the team’s INDYCAR program - as a full-season associate sponsor on the No. 1 of Josef Newgarden and the No. 3 of Helio Castroneves during the 102nd running of the Indianapolis 500 during the month of May.
“We are always looking for ways to give our partners more exposure and teaming REV up with Ryan Blaney in the Cup Series was a perfect opportunity,” said Roger Penske. “We’ve been able to build a great relationship with the entire REV organization over the last couple of years. Tim Sullivan, Marcus Berto and their entire group do a fantastic job leveraging their partnership to bring in guests and help expand their business-to-business opportunities.”
REV has featured its Fleetwood RV brand with Team Penske since 2016 as primary sponsor of four NXS races on the No. 22 Ford Mustang, including the season finale event at Homestead-Miami Speedway. Joey Logano took REV to their first victory as a Team Penske primary sponsor at Las Vegas Motor Speedway earlier this year. The company has also sponsored three-time Indianapolis 500 winner Castroneves and was the primary sponsor of the No. 3 Team Penske Chevrolet at several races over the last two seasons.
"We couldn't be more pleased to continue our association with Team Penske in 2018,” said REV Group President and CEO, Tim Sullivan. “We are very excited to be associated with two of Team Penske’s young guns next year. We have supported Ryan Blaney in the XFINITY Series the past two years and we look forward to continue that as he moves to the No. 12 in the Cup Series next season. We are equally excited to have newly-crowned INDYCAR Series Champion Josef Newgarden become a part of the REV family. And of course, the master Helio Castroneves as he strives for number four at Indy."
At just 23 years old, Blaney is a key pillar to NASCAR’s youth movement. Currently racing in his second full-time season for the legendary Wood Brothers Racing team, Blaney captured his first MENCS career pole at Kansas Speedway, as well as his first Cup Series career win at Pocono Raceway this season. The victory at Pocono earned Blaney a coveted spot in the 2017 MENCS Playoffs for the first time in his young career.
“It will be great to have REV on board with No. 12 Ford Fusion next season,” said Blaney. “They have been an important sponsor for Team Penske’s XFINITY Series program and growing the relationship and taking it to the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series level is exciting. Not only that, but I’ve utilized one of their motorhomes each weekend at the track and I love it. It’s great to see a partner continue to build their program with us year after year. We’ll be working hard to bring REV to the Cup Series Victory Lane in 2018.”
REV has had a strong presence in the motorsports industry for years. In the area of track safety, REV fire trucks and ambulances are used at race tracks around the country. In addition, race fans and general consumers utilize REV vehicles including their extensive list of bus brands, mobility vans, street sweepers, yard trucks and popular recreational vehicles. The partnership with Team Penske continues to provide visibility and activation opportunities for these REV brands in the racing community.
The 2018 NASCAR Cup Series regular season begins with the 60th anniversary running of the Great American Race, the Daytona 500, on Sunday, February 18.
Team Penske PR
At the 2017 SEMA Show, Pennzoil® announced that Jiffy Lube will be the presenting sponsor of the first ever Pennzoil 400 race at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway (LVMS) in 2018. The Pennzoil 400 presented by Jiffy Lube will race on March 4, 2018, at LVMS as the anchor of a Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series (MENCS) triple header weekend.
“The Pennzoil 400 is a tremendous opportunity for the Jiffy Lube brand to further leverage Shell’s rich motorsports history,” said Steve Ledbetter, President, Jiffy Lube International. “It’s exciting to see two industry leading brands in the automotive aftermarket business, Jiffy Lube and Pennzoil, come together for this exhilarating event to deliver race fans an action-packed weekend, as well as further showcase our vast array of products and services between us.”
The Pennzoil 400 presented by Jiffy Lube is an expanded relationship with Speedway Motorsports Incorporated (SMI) and its motorsports properties; in addition to key B2B elements, the new title race and Jiffy Lube’s presenting sponsorship offer the brands exclusive, one-of-a-kind experiences to extend to their customers.
“It feels like a milestone moment to see Pennzoil and Jiffy Lube, two iconic brands, come together for one thrilling weekend of racing,” said Colin Abraham, President of Shell Lubricants Americas. “In its first year, the Pennzoil 400 presented by Jiffy Lube will promise race fans an adrenaline-inducing track experience.”
Las Vegas is a valued market for Pennzoil with significant brand activations around NASCAR, NHRA, and the SEMA Show in recent years. The race consistently has had one of the highest TV ratings on the circuit and has traditionally enjoyed sell-out crowds in attendance.
"We're pleased to welcome Pennzoil and Jiffy Lube, two respected automotive brands, to fabulous Las Vegas for our spring NASCAR weekend," said Chris Powell, President, Las Vegas Motor Speedway. "Pennzoil has a rich history in NASCAR, showcasing its faith in the future of our industry and sport. We appreciate Pennzoil bringing in Jiffy Lube as presenting sponsor for its first Pennzoil 400 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway."
Follow all the action and updates from the 2017 SEMA Show on social media via #ShellatSEMA and #Pennzoil400 and check out www.shell.us/sema for a full schedule of events at the Shell “Pioneering Performance” experience and Live Stage. For more information about technical relationships between Pennzoil and motorsports teams, visit www.Pennzoil.com.
Bosch Giving Track contributed $3,000 to charities specified by its sponsored teams, Joe Gibbs Racing and Team Penske in the month of October. Through Giving Track, Bosch contributes $1,000 to a team-specified charity each time a driver from one of its sponsored teams secures a 2017 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series™ victory. Bosch Giving Track has contributed a total of $19,000 in donations this season following wins by drivers of sponsored teams.
Contributions were secured by Joe Gibbs Racing driver Kyle Busch and Team Penske driver Brad Keselowski:
· Kyle Busch’s victories on October 1 at the Apache Warrior 400 and October 29 at the First Data 500 earned $2,000 for the Kyle Busch Foundation, which is committed to empowering children, families and communities to overcome hardship by providing essential tools to allow them to live their best lives possible.
· Brad Keselowski’s victory at the Alabama 500 on October 15 secured $1,000 to the Checkered Flag Foundation, which honors and assists those who have sacrificed greatly for our country.
“As the end of the season nears, Bosch is proud to continue to help support our sponsored team’s drivers as they battle for the championship title.” said Tony Pauly, director of advertising and brand management for Robert Bosch LLC, Automotive Aftermarket NA. “Through Giving Track and our partnerships with all our sponsored teams, Bosch is able to provide support both on and off the track.”
Bosch involvement in motorsports dates back to the early 1900’s, and it has been equipping NASCAR teams with parts and technical advice since 1991. In 2012, when NASCAR made the move from carbureted engines to more efficient fuel injected engines, Bosch became the sport’s exclusive oxygen sensor supplier. Bosch is now the technical partner for gasoline components including oxygen sensors, fuel injectors and fuel pumps.
Joey Gase returns to BK Racing for the final race in the 2017 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Homestead-Miami Speedway, to pilot the No. 83 Toyota Camry. Eternal Fan will be the primary sponsor on board, alongside Premier Millwright, as an associate sponsor.
Eternal Fan is a new alternative for fans to celebrate in the passion that they have for their positive shared memories. Homestead-Miami Speedway marks their fourth race as a primary sponsor with Gase in 2017.
Premier Millwright, an Iowa based company, is one of the leaders in the Millwork industry, specializing in installation and/or the election of Building Equipment and Conveyors. For more information on Premier Millwright, visit their website at www.premiermillwright.com.
“I'm very excited to be racing in the Cup series this weekend in Homestead during championship weekend and representing two different company's from my home town of Cedar Rapids, Iowa,” commented Joey Gase. “It is awesome how much support we receive from the people in Iowa!”
Tune into NBC, Sunday at 3pm ET to catch the Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway, to see a Champion crowned. For more information on Eternal Fan visit their website http://eternal.fans/.
Joey Gase PR