This weekend BUBBA burger® returns as primary sponsor of JTG Daugherty Racing’s No. 47 Toyota Camry for the GEICO 400 at Chicagoland Speedway scheduled Sunday, September 16.
“BUBBA burger is a great brand and we are fortunate to have them back on our car at Chicagoland Speedway,” said driver Bobby Labonte. “They do a great job of using NASCAR as a platform to promote their brand to our loyal fans.”
President and CEO of BUBBA foods agrees with the 2000 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion.
“NASCAR fans are indeed very brand loyal and being part of NASCAR helps introduce our new product lines,” said Billy Morris president and CEO of BUBBA foods. “Our JTG Daugherty Racing relationship allows us to partner with national brands that work well with our high quality BUBBA products. Our long-standing relationship with co-owner Tad Geschickter and his racing organization brought us back to the team to promote our brand. We’re looking forward to being a primary supporter at Chicagoland.”
In 11 races at Chicagoland Speedway, there have been eight different race winners and 10 pole winners. Labonte’s best finish is 12th with Petty Enterprises in 2002. His best start is 11th, which occurred with Joe Gibbs Racing in 2004 and JTG Daugherty Racing last season.
“Chicagoland reminds me a lot of Kansas Speedway where we ran well until we had a mechanical problem,” Labonte said. “It makes us feel encouraged heading into this weekend. We’ve also had some wind tunnel time and spent time at the seven post rig. We learned some things that we can apply at Chicagoland. We haven’t had good past performances there, but we’re hoping to change that this weekend.”
The Corpus Christi, Texas-native’s immediate goal is to continue to improve results and ultimately find victory lane again. Entering Chicagoland Speedway, he has 21 career wins and his manufacturer Toyota owns 47. His first victory came at Charlotte Motor Speedway during the Coca-Cola 600 in 1995. His last win took place at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 16, 2003.
“Obviously, we’ve got 10 races left this year and we’ve shown better results and had good runs the past few weeks with Brian Burns as crew chief along with Bobby Hutchens being here,” Labonte said. “We’re making strides. We’re a notch ahead of where we were eight weeks ago. The shop is gelling and the communication has improved. Saying all that, really good things are happening.”
The next few weeks are busy for Labonte as he will be making store appearances in race markets. This Thursday, he is stopping by Dominick’s at 950 Brookforest Avenue, Shorewood, IL 60431 to sign autographs for fans from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. ET.
“We really enjoy being able to go into town and visit the stores and meet the fans,” Labonte said.
Labonte is not the only one that is hanging out with the locals this weekend. Jackman Mike Klein hails from the Chicago area. With no off weekends remaining on the schedule, it makes it challenging for crew members to visit their hometowns unless the race falls in the area where they grew up. This weekend is such the case for Klein.
“We’re on the road from February to November, which makes it hard to visit our hometown,” Klein said. “We take advantage of any opportunity we have because for most of us we’re only able to see our family a couple times a year. It is great coming home and being able to visit your family and go to the local spots. It’s also nice to have my uncles and cousins come out to watch the race. They race locally themselves at Rockford Speedway. It’s always nice to see them.”
JTG Daughtery Racing PR