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NAPA Racing/Martin Truex Jr. Daytona 500 Preview
No. 56 NAPA AUTO PARTS Toyota driver Martin Truex Jr. raced his new Gen-6 Camry to a top-10 finish in the Sprint Unlimited Saturday night. The 75 laps on the track proved to be invaluable as both the driver and crew chief Chad Johnston learned a lot about how the new car performs and reacts in the pack.
Now, the NAPA team switches gears to prepare for the Thursday’s Budweiser Duels. Truex will line up 10th in the first race after turning in the 19th-fastest lap in Sunday’s time trials. The Michael Waltrip Racing driver plans to do all he can to earn a top-10 starting spot in Sunday’s season opener — the 55th Daytona 500.
TRUEX COMPETING IN DUELS: “We’re going to have to race our way into the Daytona 500 if we want to get a really good starting spot. I think we will try to be smart about practice. I feel like I have a pretty good understanding of what I need the car to do. We learned a lot last Saturday night that is going to help us for the Duels.
“As for practice, I don’t expect to see us practicing too much. We don’t want to get ourselves in trouble or risk wrecking this NAPA Toyota. car. I think we can play it safe in practice and still know what we need for the Duels without getting wrecked. One thing is for sure, I’m going to have to make some friends this week.”
ON RACING IN HIS NINTH DAYTONA 500: “I’ve had cars capable of winning the Daytona 500 and I’ve been in contention in my NAPA AUTO PARTS Toyota. I feel really good about my chances this year because I like this new Gen-6 Toyota. I feel like it fits me a little bit better. This car demands you to drive it. It wants you to be aggressive. It likes to be pushed. The car we’ve been running the last few years was the opposite -- it was always telling you to slow down and wait and be patient and be smooth. I didn’t like that. I like to attack. I like to drive the car. It’s so much fun to drive this new NAPA Toyota because of that. It challenges you as a driver to push it and I really enjoy that, so I think it fits my style better for sure and hopefully that will be the case come race time.”
Michael Waltrip Racing Launches Insider Program
Michael Waltrip Racing today launched its Insider Program that offers all race fans sponsor discounts, specials on merchandise, exclusive pictures and video content plus fan giveaways throughout the 2013 NASCAR Sprint Cup season.
Fans can access the MWR Insider Program through the CardStar application available on most smartphones. MWR will work on behalf of the fans to expand the offerings beyond just its current sponsor line-up, aggregating industry-wide deals and discounts.
“The NASCAR fan is rightfully known as loyal, so creating this program is MWR’s way of giving back for all of their support,” said Michael Waltrip, MWR founder and co-owner. “CardStar is an app easily downloaded on your smartphone and already has nearly 3.2 million participants. When you select Michael Waltrip Racing, you will see the deals and discounts we are able to offer today. As more and more sponsors see the value in this program, the offerings will continue to grow. We think this will help MWR’s sponsors and all companies who participate earn an even closer connection with their customers. Plus the fans will get some cool stuff and save some money.”
Anyone can become an MWR Insider anytime by downloading the CardStar app and the MWR Insider Card. The card gets them access to MWR merchandise and exclusive offers from partners and sponsors, like Aaron’s, NAPA AUTO PARTS, 5-Hour ENERGY, Toyota and Fanvision right from their phone. The program will also drive foot traffic through geo-targeting capabilities that push special offers directly to the phones of consumers who are near participating local businesses.
“Recent research suggests that there are currently more than 114 million smartphone users in the US alone,” said Andy Miller, director of mobile products at Constant Contact. “That’s a huge opportunity for local businesses, letting them reach consumers with relevant offers when and where they are shopping. Our partnership with MWR demonstrates how easy that can be – so that you are delivering real value to fans, while also providing local merchants and franchises an opportunity to attract new customers.”
CardStar's free mobile loyalty application is available on all major mobile platforms, including iPhone and Android®. CardStar has more than 3 million active users, and with users in all 50 U.S. states and 173 countries worldwide, CardStar has become one of the most widely used mobile loyalty applications in the world. Smartphone users can download the app from the iTunes Marketplace or Google Play and add their rewards or membership cards with the tap of a button. The CardStar app can also be accessed by simply calling **CARDLESS (**22735377) from a smartphone to download the app.
To learn more about the MWR Insider Card and CardStar, please visit: http://plus.cardstar.com/mwr/partner/
Front Row Fords Can Factor into 500 Finish
One has been to Victory Lane. Another earned a podium finish in a wild dash to the checkers. The third is looking to make his first-ever start in the Great American Race. All three Front Row Motorsports drivers have milestone memories or big expectations as competitors in the Daytona 500.
David Ragan, David Gilliland and Josh Wise could each factor into Sunday's season-opening event at Daytona International Speedway. Ragan, driver of the No. 34 Detail Doctor Ford, earned a victory at the Daytona Beach, Fla., superspeedway in July of 2011.
"Daytona is obviously a special place for me," Ragan said. "Any time you have a win somewhere, you carry some confidence every time you go back there. Restrictor-plate races always make for some exciting finishes, and if we just keep our Detail Doctor Ford out of trouble, we can be there at the end and be a factor."
Gilliland, driver of the No. 38 Love's Travel Stops Ford, surged through the field in the closing laps of the 2011 Daytona 500 to finish third - Front Row Motorsports' best finish to date.
"That was a big day for this team and I know we turned some heads," Gilliland said. "But it didn't surprise me at all. We always bring fast cars to the superspeedways and I know we can be competitive every time we come here. I can't wait 'til Sunday to drive our Love's Travel Stops Ford to the front."
Wise is entering his second full-time year with Front Row Motorsports, but attempting to qualify for his first Daytona 500. He earned a career-best 14th-place finish at Daytona one year ago in the NASCAR Nationwide Series.
"Every racer dreams of being in the Daytona 500," said Wise. "All the guys on this '35' team have been working hard all winter to put together a fast car for us to make sure we're in the line-up on Sunday. We've just got to keep our nose clean and get a decent finish in our Duel on Thursday. But I like our chances."
Before the teams can prepare for Sunday's race, they need to get through the qualifying Duels. Gilliland will start in the first of the two 150-mile qualifying races Thursday. Ragan and Wise will compete in the second race. The two races will determine the starting field of Sunday's main event. SPEED will air the Duels Thursday at 2 p.m. ET, and FOX will air the Daytona 500 Sunday at 1 p.m. ET.
3-Time Runner-up, Kurt Busch Ready for Another Strong Daytona 500
The COPD Foundation announced the appointment of Richard Childress Racing driver Austin Dillon as the new Honorary Ambassador for the DRIVE4COPD campaign, the country’s largest public health initiative dedicated to raising awareness of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Dillon lost his paternal grandfather Stan, to COPD in May 2012, and this personal connection to the disease has given him the motivation to lead the charge in the fight against COPD.
On February 23rd, Dillon will drive in the DRIVE4COPD300—the season-opening event for the NASCAR® Nationwide Series held at the Daytona International Speedway. Since DRIVE4COPD is the official health initiative of NASCAR, Dillon will be supporting the millions of NASCAR fans and families living with COPD—a disease that takes one life every four minutes in the U.S.
“It means a lot to be able to work with DRIVE4COPD,” said Dillon. “It’s an honor to play a small part in helping raise awareness about COPD and work towards improving the quality of people’s lives.”
Dillon will help promote early diagnosis, which is key to treating COPD—a disease that affects 24 million Americans. He will encourage individuals to take a brief, five-question Risk Screener, which can be found at www.DRIVE4COPD.org/RiskScreener.
“Austin has a personal connection to COPD, and will help us build momentum to unite individuals who care about preventing, treating and ultimately, curing COPD,” says John W. Walsh, president of the COPD Foundation.
COPD Foundation PR
Koch, White Ready to Set the Tone at Daytona
Blake Koch and Jason White are ready to start SR² Motorsports' season off with a bang. Blake Koch, driver of the No. 24 Toyota Camry, and Jason White, driver of the No. 00 Toyota Camry, see this weekend's DRIVE4COPD 300 at Daytona International Speedway as the perfect opportunity to make a statement about the team's improvement and progress as it heads into its second season of NASCAR Nationwide Series competition.
Koch is returning for his second season with SR² Motorsports. He ran nine events with the team last year. He will be paired with the organization's lead crew chief and general manager, Benny Gordon, at the 2.5-mile high-banked, historic speedway. Koch has three Nationwide Series starts to his credit at Daytona. His best finish is 17th place, which he achieved in 2012.
"Daytona brings excitement to a whole new level," Koch said. "The history, the tradition, the unpredictability, they all make it one of the most special races of the season. It's definitely one of the most prestigious events in NASCAR and one that teams focus an extra amount on winning. SR² Motorsports has a very talented crew and they produce great equipment. I can't wait to go racing this weekend and show everyone what we're made of."
White will make his debut with SR² Motorsports this weekend. He has one Nationwide Series start at Daytona, which came in 2003. He finished in 26th place. In Truck Series competition, White has tallied one pole and two top-fives in six starts.
Calling the shots for White at Daytona will be Newt Moore, who joined SR² Motorsports in the off season. Moore has served as crew chief for some of racing's top drivers since 1997. He has two top-fives in 14 Nationwide Series tries at Daytona.
"I love racing at Daytona," White said. "It's hallowed racing ground. It's what NASCAR is all about. There's not another event like it all season. It's one of the few races that has the fans on the edge of their seats from start to finish. I'm really excited to be a part of it and hope I can add my name and SR² Motorsports ' name in its history books on Saturday."
SR² Motorsports fielded one car at Daytona in its inaugural year. Benny Gordon piloted the No. 24 Toyota Camry to a 12th-place finish after starting 33rd. Team owner Jason Sciavicco is optimistic that the DRIVE4COPD 300 will reflect team's growth and development.
"Anything can happen at Daytona and usually does," said Sciavicco. "There's an unpredictable nature to the race, but SR² Motorsports has done everything we can to prepare for a successful event. We have Benny Gordon in the shop getting all of our equipment ready and preparing our crew for the weekend. All of our team's hard work has raised our level of competition. We've come a long way since 2012 and I think our on-track performance this weekend will show that."
SR² Motorsports PR
RCR Team Nationwide Advance - Daytona International Speedway
RCR's NASCAR Nationwide Series History at Daytona ... In 49 previous NASCAR Nationwide Series appearances at Daytona International Speedway, RCR has four wins at the famed restrictor-plate track, including victories in July 2010 and Feb. 2002 with Dale Earnhardt, Jr., a win with Clint Bowyer in July 2009 and Kevin Harvick in Feb. 2007. RCR has 24 top-five and 34 top-10 finishes at Daytona International Speedway, along with two poles (Bowyer in July 2009 and Harvick in July 2005).
Averages ... RCR boasts an average starting position of 10.3 and a 10th-place average finishing position among all Nationwide Series races the organization has contested at DIS. RCR drivers have completed 98.9 percent of the laps attempted at the 2.5-mile speedway (5,419 of 5,479 laps), with 461 laps led.
RCR in the NNS ... In 867 NASCAR Nationwide Series starts over the course of the last 15 years, Richard Childress Racing has earned 64 wins, 297 top-five finishes, 488 top-10 finishes and 42 pole awards, with an average starting position of 12.2 and an average finishing position of 12.8 among all races contested. RCR earned the Nationwide Series driver points championships in 2001 and 2006 with Harvick and in 2008 with Clint Bowyer. The Welcome, N.C.-based team earned the owner's title in 2003 with Johnny Sauter and Harvick and again in 2007 with Burton and Scott Wimmer.
The Starting Line-up ... New to the RCR lineup, Brian Scott (No. 2 Shore Lodge Chevrolet) joins 2012 Nationwide Series Rookie of the Year Austin Dillon (No. 3 AdvoCare Chevrolet) in competing fulltime for RCR in the Nationwide Series this season. Tony Stewart is driving the No. 33 Oreo 100th Birthday/Ritz Crackers Chevrolet at Daytona International Speedway this weekend.
Sporty New Look ... The RCR Nationwide Chevrolets will have an all new skin at Daytona International Speedway as the Camaro, the top-selling sports car in America, makes its series debut in the DRIVE4COPD 300. The Camaro Nationwide race car incorporates many of the distinctive styling elements of the production Camaro, including the unique power-bulge hood, deep recessed grille, distinctive halo light rings, dual-port grille appearances and the gold bowtie.
Social Media ... To keep up-to-date with the latest news and information and to view exclusive content, visit RCR's Twitter page - @RCRracing, RCR's NASCAR Nationwide Series team Twitter pages - @RCR2BScott, @RCR3ADillon and @RCR33NNS, RCR's NCWTS driver Twitter pages - @BScottRacing and @AustinDillon3, and the official Facebook fan pages - facebook.com/BScottRacing and facebook.com/austindillon3.
Catch the Action ... Flag-to-flag coverage of the Drive 4COPD 300 will be televised on ESPN beginning at 1 p.m. Eastern Standard Time on Saturday, Feb. 23 and broadcast live on the Motor Racing Network and Sirius XM Satellite Radio.
No. 2 Shore Lodge Chevrolet Camaro
Event Preview Fact Sheet
This Week's Shore Lodge Chevrolet at Daytona International Speedway... Scott will pilot a brand new chassis from the Richard Childress Racing Nationwide Series stable for Saturday's DRIVE4COPD 300.
Welcome To the Team Brian Scott... Brian Scott joins RCR and will climb into the driver's seat of the No. 2 Shore Lodge Camaro this Saturday at Daytona International Speedway. The Boise, Idaho native enters his fourth year of Nationwide Series competition with 109 series starts under his belt, one pole, five top-five and 23 top-10 finishes.
Daytona History... The 25-year-old driver has six previous starts at "The World Center of Racing". His best start of ninth came in the July 2012 event. He scored his best finish of 12th in the July 2011 event. Additionally, he has two Truck Series starts to his credit, finishing ninth in the series' 2008 event.
Welcome Aboard Shore Lodge... ... Shore Lodge will serve as primary sponsor for Scott and the No. 2 team in 2013. Set on the southern shore of Payette Lake in McCall, Idaho, four seasons of adventure await at this idyllic location. A family favorite since 1948, the travel destination allows guests to enjoy the spectacular views, friendly service and generous accommodations at the lake front resort. Shore Lodge serves as the perfect mixture of adventure and luxury featuring 26 spa adventures, fitness studio, golf privileges at Whitetail Club, jet skiing, and a private beach for guests.
Gould's Turn on Top the Box ...10-year veteran RCR crew member, Phil Gould, will take over crew chief duties for the No. 2 Shore Lodge team in 2013. The Kendall Park, N.J native, spent the 2012 season as car chief for the No. 2 Nationwide Series team, which ended the season runner up in the series' point standings. Gould also served as car chief for Kevin Harvick and the No. 29 Cup crew earning notable victories at Daytona International Speedway and at Charlotte Motor Speedway in the Coca-Cola 600.
No. 2 in the Nationwide Series... For more than a decade the No. 2 has appeared on Nationwide Series entry lists earning championships, wins, pole awards with veterans and future Sprint Cup stars behind the wheel. Kevin Harvick first piloted the No. 2 Chevy in his NNS debut in a single race in 1999. Harvick earned Rookie of the Year honors and won three events in his first full season of competition in 2000, following up his rookie season by winning the 2001 series championship. Another young driver, Clint Bowyer, took the reins in 2005 for the next three years bringing RCR its second Nationwide Series title. Other drivers who have climbed aboard the No. 2 have included Austin Dillon, Sean Caisse, Ron Hornaday, Johnny Sauter, Kenny Wallace and Elliot Sadler. Everyone who has competed in full-time Nationwide Series seasons have found their way to victory lane during their time in the No. 2 Chevrolet. No. 2 has visited victory lane 21 times over the years while earning 19 pole awards.
BRIAN SCOTT QUOTES:
What's your immediate focus in 2013 with the new team?
"Our immediate forcus is to be consistent, finish races. We want to make it through Daytona (International Speedway) with a top five or top-10 finish. It seems so often that teams who don't get off to a good start have trouble climbing out of a hole, especially if you start off with a bad race. If we can get through the first five races and are right there in the top five in points that would be a huge success."
Thoughts on driving the new Camaro?
"It's awesome to drive a name plate like the Camaro; it's such an iconic muscle car in American history. My parents were always huge Camaro fans growing up, so they're excited that I get to drive a Camaro. It's a great to be a part of anything new in NASCAR, to be a part of the Camaro coming into the Nationwide Series is a real honor."
No. 3 AdvoCare Chevrolet Camaro
Event Preview Fact Sheet
This Week's AdvoCare Chevrolet at Daytona International Speedway ... Austin Dillon will pilot Chassis No. 121 in the DRIVE4COPD 300 at Daytona International Speedway. This is a new addition to the RCR fleet that will be utilized for the first time this weekend.
Dillon at Daytona ... Dillon has two previous Nationwide Series starts at Daytona International Speedway, finishing fifth in February 2012 and fourth in July 2012. He also has two NASCAR Camping World Truck Series starts at the track with a best finish of 20th in 2011.
Dirt Tracking and Double Duty ... Dillon's 2013 Speedweeks actually started on Feb. 12 at Volusia Speedway Park, where he and his brother, Ty, began a week-long stint racing dirt Modifieds as part of the 41st annual University of Northwestern Ohio DIRTCar Nationals. He is also pulling double duty at Daytona International Speedway, where he is attempting to make his career first Daytona 500 start in the No. 33 Honey Nut Cheerios Chevrolet. Sunday's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race is live on FOX beginning at 1 p.m. ET.
Spark your Engines ... Dillon and the RCR team will sport the colors of award-winning premier health and wellness company AdvoCare on the No. 3 Chevrolet at Daytona International Speedway. AdvoCare offers nutrition, weight loss, energy and sports performance products of the highest quality developed through comprehensive research and backed by a Scientific and Medical Advisory Board. Dillon trains with AdvoCare products throughout the week and is a distributor as well. For more information about Dillon's favorite products, including Spark, Rehydrate, meal replacement bars and Post-Workout Recovery, visit http://www.AdvoCare.com.
Need for Speed ... Dillon is scheduled to spend Tuesday, Feb. 19 with the United States Air Force Thunderbirds team, where a portion of the day will be spent flying in an F-16 fighter jet with America's Ambassadors in Blue. Dillon has been a long time aficionado of the movie Top Gun and has a series of "Maverick" themed helmets that he races with. A replica of his original Maverick, which he wore when he won the 2011 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Championship, can be purchased at http://www.rcrstore.com.
Meet Dillon ... Dillon is scheduled to make an appearance at the Chevrolet Stage at Daytona International Speedway on Friday, Feb. 22 at 2:30 p.m. ET. This season, the Chevrolet Display includes a No. 3 AdvoCare Chevrolet Camaro show car.
AUSTIN DILLON QUOTES:
Is it a competitive benefit to you to run both the NASCAR Nationwide Series and the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at Daytona International Speedway because you get more track time?
"I think it's helpful. By running the NASCAR Nationwide Series race on Saturday, I can gather good information that I can use on Sunday, especially as it relates to pit strategies and drafting. It's good to be out there drafting and gaining experience and learning how people drive and run around in the pack. Anytime you can see how people make a move to gain positions it's nice because you can see how people do that and try to learn from that."
Have you had a chance to drive the new Camaro and have you noticed much of a difference in the new race car?
"It's a faster car. It's a little bit of a different feel out there but not much. I think the overall balance may be a little bit better, so that's a good thing, actually. Because it's faster it's going to be very helpful to go out and race against all of these other competitors."
No. 33 Ritz Crackers/Oreo Chevrolet Camaro
Event Preview Fact Sheet
This Week's Ritz Crackers/Oreo Chevrolet at Daytona International Speedway ... Tony Stewart will pilot Chassis No.123 from the Richard Childress Racing NASCAR Nationwide Series stable in the DRIVE4COPD 300. This Chevrolet will run its first competitive laps during the 2013 season opener.
Proven winner ... Stewart will make his 14th-career Nationwide Series start at the Daytona Beach, Fla.-based facility during the DRIVE4COPD 300. Since 2006, the Columbus, Ind., native has held the hardware in Victory Lane on six occasions (February '05,'06, '08-'11). Stewart has also collected seven top-five and nine top-10 finishes with 206 laps led.
In-Race Reporter ... Stewart will be the ESPN in-race reporter for Saturday afternoon's 120-lap event. Rear-tire carrier Brad Robinson will also wear a crew cam during the race to give fans a birds-eye view of a live pit stop.
The Ritz Cracker, a Lucky Token? ... Stewart will attempt to claim his seventh Nationwide Series victory in the annual season opener at Daytona International Speedway on Saturday. Riding shotgun with Stewart will be Nabisco's Ritz Cracker brand, which coincidentally has seven holes in each cracker. In 2010, the buttery-tasting snack was the primary sponsor when Stewart drove to Victory Lane after winning his fourth-consecutive Nationwide Series season-opening event.
2012 Race Rewind ... Stewart was poised to notch his fifth-straight win in the 2012 season-opening Nationwide Series race at Daytona International Speedway, but a last-lap crash while vying for the lead forced him to limp the No. 33 Oreo 100th Birthday/Ritz Crackers Chevrolet across the finish line in eighth place.
TONY STEWART QUOTES:
You have the opportunity to tie Dale Earnhardt for the most wins in the Nationwide Series at Daytona with seven. How special would that be for you?
"It's cool just to be even close to him. Whether we ever get another win and catch his mark or even surpass him, that's still a record that's pretty remarkable here at Daytona. That's a pretty cool feeling to know we've closed in on something he's done here. To me, this was his playground. You just watched him play with the guys here. He was the best at this place. To even be remotely close to him in the record books, in anything here at Daytona, is very humbling."
You've won the season-opening Nationwide Series race six times. How nice is it to start the year with a win, and how much confidence does it give you going into the Daytona 500?
"The good thing is I'm probably the happiest guy going into the Daytona 500 if we get a win on Saturday. It shows that we can win, and it's just a matter of whether the cards play out for you on Sunday. It's always a bonus when you can win on Saturday before going into the biggest race of the year on Sunday. Getting a Nationwide win there, that's how you like to go to bed the night before the Daytona 500, knowing that you've got that trophy sitting out there on your desk from what you did Saturday afternoon."
Defending Daytona Champ Ready for Nationwide Action
As the saying goes, "If ain't broke, don't fix it." Phoenix Racing and Kurt Busch have certainly subscribed to that notion upon their return to Daytona International Speedway for this weekend's DRIVE4COPD 300. The winner of the most recent Nationwide Series event at 2.5-mile high-banked, historic track is revisiting the site of his victory with all the ingredients of the winning recipe. The same team, driver and car will all reunite to try for victory lane a second consecutive time.
Busch took the checkered flag driving in the Subway Jalapeno 250 at Daytona last July driving a Phoenix Racing-prepared Chevrolet. On Saturday, Busch will hop behind the wheel of the same car that he pedaled in his winning effort. Crew chief Nick Harrison will once again call the shots for Busch's No. 1 Chevrolet.
Although very few of the elements on the triumphant feat have changed, one key addition has been made. Guy Roofing joined Phoenix Racing as the sponsor of the No. 1 car at Daytona. Like Phoenix Racing, Guy Roofing is a Spartanburg, S.C.-based company. It is a family owned and operated business with a national footprint specializing in storm related roof replacements.
"Everyone at Phoenix Racing is excited to have Guy Roofing partner with us for Daytona," said Steve Barkdoll, general manager of Phoenix Racing. "Their offices are literally next door to our race shop, so we're really looking forward to racing with them at one of NASCAR's most famous tracks. We always feel optimistic when we race at Daytona and we're hoping to make Guy Roofing's first weekend at Daytona one to remember."
In addition to Bush's win at Daytona, Phoenix Racing also won at the track in 1999 with Randy LaJoie. The team has 16 top-10s, six top-fives and one pole at Daytona.
The green flag for the Drive4COPD 300 will wave on Saturday, Feb. 23 at 1:15. ESPN, MRN and Sirius Satellite Radio will broadcast the event.
Phoenix Racing PR
NASCAR Launches Largest Brand Campaign Ever
Big brands break new commercials at DAYTONA 500®, and NASCAR is no exception. NASCAR will reveal a brand new creative vision – a campaign featuring more than two dozen drivers, with nine original spots in both English and Spanish. The drama-filled campaign will premiere during NASCAR’s crown-jewel event, the Daytona 500. The race will broadcast live on FOX and FOX Deportes on Feb. 24 beginning at 1 pm ET.
At the heart of the campaign are NASCAR drivers, who help bring to life the unpredictability and drama of NASCAR racing, both on and off the track. With an unprecedented incorporation of drivers, number of creative treatments featuring new digital engagement, radio and print, this is by far the most comprehensive and integrated campaign NASCAR has ever launched.
“The campaign was created to excite existing fans while engaging with new audiences, and is representative of where NASCAR is headed as a sport” said Kim Brink, NASCAR, vice president, marketing. “In developing the spots, we wanted to celebrate the heart of what makes our sport unique, challenge existing perceptions, inspire the entire industry and do it all as authentically and confidently as possible.”
The spots are:
- · We Are(English and Spanish) – Highlights the pageantry, power, magnitude and scale of community that fans can only experience through NASCAR.
- · Twist(English and Spanish) – Portrays the emotion, drama, and many levels of duality within the sport in truly unexpected fashion. Click here to view the spot:http://youtu.be/N24KvH8dV5s
- · Rivals(English and Spanish) – Spotlights actual on-track rivalries among drivers, including that of two legendary NASCAR heroes. Click here to view the spot:http://youtu.be/zMJTfHSPlYc
- · Chess (English and Spanish) –Gets inside the mind of a driver during a race, coolly breaking down the strategic thought process of drivers while they compete on the track.
- · Resumé(English) – Uses a light-hearted tone to highlight the personalities of the drivers as they vie for a spot on fans’ NASCAR Fantasy Live rosters.
- · Wanna Know(English) – Offers fans an unmatched look at the sport through the eyes of the drivers in order to promote NASCAR’s newly revamped NASCAR.com and its suite of digital fan engagement products.
NASCAR’s new brand campaign was developed by Ogilvy & Mather’s New York office, inclusive of Ogilvy Rojo the Hispanic arm of the agency, which was awarded the business after an extensive pitch process in the summer of 2012.
“There’s no sport in the world with a more loyal and passionate fan base than NASCAR. Drivers are what make NASCAR racing so dramatic and unpredictable for everyone,” explained John Seifert, Chairman and CEO of Ogilvy & Mather North America. “To bring the NASCAR experience to life, we helped create a brand platform that reflects the roots and character of what makes NASCAR unique, personified by remarkable athletes who will ensure that this sport remains the greatest show on earth."
In addition to the brand campaign, NASCAR will continue to focus on seven planks strategically aimed at growing the sport: Gen Y, Youth, Multicultural, Digital/Social Media, Event Experience, Product Relevance and a focus on Driver Star Power. Already this year, the industry is experiencing many firsts across all of these platforms, including the launch of a new digital platform following the reacquisition of its digital rights, the unveiling of the new Gen-6 race cars that will reignite rivalries on the race track and in showrooms nationwide, and the first-ever live Spanish-language broadcast of NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races.
Max Gresham enegized to start season at Daytona
Max Gresham got to Daytona Beach on Tuesday, February 12 - 12 full days before the NextEra Energy Resources 250 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) event at Daytona International Speedway.
The driver of the No. 8 AmWINS Chevrolet Silverado was so eager to start the 2013 racing season that he arrived at the world's most famous beach early to do some dirt racing and get geared up for the season-opener.
"For a racer, there's no place more special than Daytona," Gresham said. "I plan to soak up the atmosphere there for as long as I can. I love racing over at Volusia Speedway Park, and I love being at Daytona."
Gresham, who plans to run the entire truck series season, is not only looking for his first top-10 finish in his young Truck Series career, but he also hopes to make Eddie Sharp Racing (ESR) a winner for the first time at the World Center of Racing.
The team also will be carrying the blue and silver colors of AmWINS, a leading specialty insurance broker that's one of the fastest-growing companies in North Carolina, and especially in the Charlotte region.
"When you start a new season, you bring over your best truck and everyone is energized," the 19-year-old driver from Milner, Ga., said. "The same goes for our sponsor AmWINS. We've spent nearly three months getting ready for our biggest race, so we're ready to get things rolling."
The 2.5-mile speedway will open for practice on Thursday, with pole qualifying at 1:40 p.m. ET on Friday. The 100-lap race is scheduled for a 7:30 p.m. green flag on SPEED.
While Gresham said the team's primary goal is to establish and build momentum for the rest of the season, he knows survival is ultimately "a crap shoot" when the trucks run two- and three-wide on the 31-degree banking. A year ago, John King rebounded from two earlier accidents to win the race.
Gresham's first Daytona start ended with a 26th-place finish a year ago. In addition to his one NASCAR Camping World Truck Series start at Daytona, has had ARCA Racing Series success at Daytona with a sixth place finish in 2012. This event will mark his NASCAR Camping World Truck Series career-second start at a super speedway.
"The key is to keep the truck under you, stay out of trouble and make a run in the last couple laps," Gresham said. "If you're not in the middle of something, you've got a good chance for a win."
Gresham also came to Daytona Beach early because he loves the racing atmosphere that surrounds the iconic raceway.
"I really enjoy the fan interaction when you're at the racetrack," he said. "People come from all over the world to see racing there. It's become a classic racing tradition. I can still remember taking my father there in 2008 for the 50th Anniversary Race and sitting in the stands. It was five years ago, and is still a special moment for both of us."
Gresham also loves the largemouth bass in Lake Lloyd along the backstretch. Part of last year's race preparation also included an afternoon of fishing where he caught a big bass.
"That fish gets bigger every time I tell the story," Gresham said with a laugh. "Hopefully we'll make some new memories with our AmWINS truck this weekend. It's been a lot of fun to be around Daytona Beach for nearly two weeks. Now it's time to get busy and have some real fun."