Steven B. Wilson
Follow us on Twitter @SpeedwayDigest
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
On the day he competes for his second consecutive NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Championship, GMS Racing officials announced that Johnny Sauter will return to the team for the 2018 season. Following a career-best season, Sauter will once again pilot the No. 21 Chevrolet Silverado.
“I can’t thank the Gallagher family and Mike Beam enough for the opportunity they’ve given me the last two years. To be able to compete at this level, where you know you could win any given weekend, is incredible and I’m excited to be able to continue with the No. 21 team next year.”
Additional information regarding 2018 will be released at a later date.
GMS Racing PR
The annual Night of Smiles shined brightly as attendees gathered to celebrate another successful giving year in 2017.
Officials of the Bristol Chapter of Speedway Childrens Charities (SCC) announced Thursday evening that it raised a substantial total of $805,000 that will be distributed to 93 rural-area child-focused agencies throughout Northeast Tennessee and Southwest Virginia.
“We’re blessed every year to have the support from this wonderful region to help make a difference in the lives of children,” said Claudia Byrd, executive director of the Bristol Chapter of SCC. “While demand for assistance has always outstripped our ability to help, we are thoroughly delighted that we will be able to assist numerous agencies with their child-focused needs for this coming year.”
The event gathered multiple agencies to receive grants, including: Abuse Alternatives, American Red Cross, Big Brothers/Big Sisters of East Tennessee, CASA of Northeast Tennessee, Coalition for Kids, Family Crisis Support Services, Girls, Incorporated, Niswonger Children's Hospital, Small Miracles Therapeutic Equestrian Center, TASK: Taking Action for Special Kids, Waiting to Hear, and Washington County Friends of Santa.
The 2017 Jeff Byrd Grant was also awarded to Waiting to Hear, a Johnson City-based non-profit organization dedicated to helping children who are deaf or hard of hearing. Presented in honor of the late general manager of Bristol Motor Speedway, the $50,000 award will help purchase a Mobile Hearing Screenings Unit. The plan for the unit is to help provide screenings and detailed hearing exams to children for free while setting children on a path to reach optimum hearing.
Night of Smiles is the culmination of a year of SCC fundraising events, including spring, fall and winter 5K races, golfing and shooting tournaments held during August Race Week, the Ultimate Bristol Experience Online Auction and The Pinnacle Speedway in Lights powered by TVA, which opens for its 21st season tomorrow at 6 p.m.
BMS SCC PR
Over the Edge At ONE DAYTONA Features Lesa France Kennedy, Rusty Wallace Rappelling Down 8-Story International Motorsports Center17 Nov 2017
The NASCAR Foundation and Easterseals Northeast Central Florida hosted the “Over the Edge At ONE DAYTONA” fundraising initiative on Thursday, with VIPs kicking off three days of donation-supported rappelling down the eight-story International Motorsports Center.
First to scale down the 102-foot structure were International Speedway Corporation CEO/NASCAR Vice Chairperson Lesa France Kennedy and former Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series champion Rusty Wallace.
Thursday-Saturday, rappelling will continue with participants having secured donations that will benefit The NASCAR Foundation and Easterseals of Northeast Central Florida. Donations are expected to exceed $150,000 for the event.
For more information on Over the Edge At ONE DAYTONA visit https://daytonaovertheedge.org/index.cfm or http://www.nascarfoundation.org/events/over-edge-one-daytona.
For the second consecutive season, the world’s best short track racers will descend upon The Last Great Colosseum when Bristol Motor Speedway again hosts the Short Track U.S. Nationals, May 18-20.
The second annual running of the signature event will be sanctioned by five different racing organizations and brings together six elite short track racing categories to compete on the high banks of The World’s Fastest Half-Mile in one spectacular weekend of action.
“Last year’s Short Track U.S. Nationals showcased an epic weekend of competitive racing in six different categories,” said Jerry Caldwell, executive vice president and general manager at Bristol Motor Speedway. “Seeing the best-of-the-best in the short track racing world take to the signature high banks of Bristol was a sight to behold. We anticipate this to be an even better event in 2018.”
Champion Racing Association powered by JEGS (CRA), who took the lead sanctioning role in developing this event, will be co-sanctioning the Super Late Model race with the ARCA/CRA Super Series Powered by JEGS, The CARS Super Late Model Tour (CARS) and the Southern Super Series (SSS). CRA also will oversee the action for the crate late model event with their JEGS/CRA All-Stars Tour presented by Chevrolet and the Street Stocks with their Lawrence Towing/CRA Street Stock Series. The CARS officials will oversee the Late Model Stock portion of the event with their CARS Late Model Stock Tour. The compacts will be organized and overseen by the Vore’s Compact Touring Series while the Modified portion of the weekend will be sanctioned by a Midwest based Touring Modified organization to be named at a later date. The Short Track U. S. Nationals is being presented by Vore’s Welding & Steel.
The inaugural event featured nearly 350 cars on track, leading the Short Track U.S. Nationals to join the likes of some of short track racing’s most revered events, including the prestigious Snowball Derby in Florida, Indiana’s famed Winchester 400 and Nashville’s All-American 400. The event featured 13 different winners who added their names to Bristol lore among multiple features in six divisions. Winners included soon-to-be fulltime NASCAR Cup Series driver Darrell “Bubba” Wallace, Myatt Snider, Cole Williams and Chad Poole, among others.
Specific details of the event regarding daily schedules, additional racing information, parking and more will be released in the coming weeks.
Information on tickets, camping and general details will be announced at a later date. Those who are interested can stay tuned to BMS’ social channels and www.BristolMotorSpeedway.com for updates.
Racers should follow the websites of the appropriate sanctioning bodies for more news and information as details are released.
Fans looking to experience the thrill of Charlotte Motor Speedway’s high-banked turns will get their chance on Nov. 24, when Black Friday Blowout roars into Charlotte with exciting, once-a-year opportunities for fans and spectacular savings in the speedway gift shop from 8 a.m.-4 p.m.
Nowhere else on Black Friday can race fans drive their personal cars on the same iconic track as stars like Dale Earnhardt Jr., Jeff Gordon and Tony Stewart – and all it takes is spending $50 on merchandise or tickets to 2018 NASCAR or NHRA events, or donating $25 to Speedway Children’s Charities.
“Driving the track is awesome. Taking your car around a 1.5-mile superspeedway is definitely an adrenaline rush,” said Emily Curtiss of Concord, North Carolina, who drove the track last year. “We always do a little Christmas shopping and then take the car for a spin. I would highly recommend everyone visit the Black Friday Blowout. There are great deals and great fun.”
The fan-friendly Black Friday Blowout will feature major discounts on souvenir merchandise including diecast cars and men’s and women’s apparel.
In the speedway’s biggest sale of the year, the gift shop will feature items for as low as $1.
A lunch buffet will be on sale in the Speedway Club to provide shoppers with an unmatched view of the speedway while enjoying exquisite holiday food. Fans interested in taking in a full day at the speedway can also witness the extravagant Speedway Christmas light show on Friday evening – as well as every night leading up to Christmas Day.
Fans can buy or renew tickets to 2018 events at the speedway by calling 1-800-455-FANS (3267), visiting the ticket office on Black Friday or visiting http://www.
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
One of the world’s most spectacular Christmas light displays will illuminate one of the world’s most remarkable sporting venues on Sunday, when the holiday cheer of Speedway Christmas returns to Charlotte Motor Speedway. The eighth edition of the immensely popular drive-through light show opens for families and friends featuring a “Santa’s Mountain” theme of light displays throughout the legendary superspeedway. Seven thousand 12-foot strands of lights – totaling nearly 16 miles – are strewn throughout the course to provide fans with a visual experience unlike any other.
Dozens of speedway staff members spent more than 4,300 hours to create Speedway Christmas’ drive-through course and its family-friendly attractions, which are sure to entertain attendees of all ages throughout the six-week show, which runs through Dec. 31 but is closed on Christmas Day.
Building on the family-friendly holiday atmosphere, this year’s Speedway Christmas will also feature an infield Christmas village Thursday-Sunday nights with a petting zoo, pony rides, Bethlehem village, crafts, games, s’more roasting, horse-drawn wagon rides and photos with Santa.
Additionally, fans can sit in their cars and cozy up to FOX 46 Movie Nights on the giant,16,000-square-foot Speedway TV every Thursday-Sunday.
This year’s Speedway Christmas movie schedule includes:
- 19 – “National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation”
- 23-26 – “Frosty's Winter Wonderland”
- 30-Dec. 3 – “Fred Claus”
- 7-10 – “National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation”
- 14-17 – “Elf”
- 18-24 – “The Polar Express”
- 28-30 – “Frozen”
The first look at this year’s new 3.75-mile course through 3 million lights will take place for runners in the Egg Nog Jog 5K fun-run Saturday night. Registration is still open for Saturday’s Egg Nog Jog 5K – a high-energy fun run to kick off the holiday festivities with hundreds of runners dressed in holiday attire taking to the speedway’s spectacular infield course.
Fans can buy tickets to the Speedway Christmas lights show, which start at just $20, by calling 1-800-455-FANS (3267), or visiting http://www.
At Homestead-Miami Speedway, crowning champions is not limited to the action on the track, but also extends into the community in a variety of ways. In the classroom, the Speedway also celebrates champions, as it continues its commitment of helping kids excel in school through the “Write Track Poetry” program.
For the second year in a row, the championship track partnered with Miami-Dade County Public Schools and the Omari Hardwick bluapple Poetry Network of the Jason Taylor Foundation to hold the Write Track Poetry competition. Starting in September, students from 13 Miami-Dade County middle schools submitted poems based on the theme, What is Your Legacy? In addition, pep rallies were held at the participating schools, where students were treated to spoken-word performances from members of the bluapple Poetry Network.
The winning poem was submitted by Kyle King, an 8th-grader at Leewood K-8 Center in Kendall. His poem, Tick, Tick Boom, was professionally recorded and produced, and will be played prior to Saturday’s Ford EcoBoost 300 XFINITY Series championship race.
The top-three poets overall, including King, will be awarded the unique opportunity to be driven to school in the Homestead-Miami Speedway Official Pace Car. Also, the top three students in each grade (6-8) from all 13 schools will be in attendance for Saturday’s Ford EcoBoost 300.
“At the bluapple Poetry Network, we know how life changing spoken word poetry can be for young people as it gives them a platform, encourages their voice and validates their experiences,” said Sierra DeMulder, Director of the bluapple Poetry Program. “It was an honor to work with Homestead-Miami Speedway to bring this empowering art form to so many students.”
“The Write Track Poetry program has made a profound impact on the youth of South Florida, providing kids an opportunity to express themselves artistically,” said Homestead-Miami Speedway President Matthew Becherer. “It’s imperative to empower students with instructional tools, such as poetry, that help build upon their creative skills, while also expanding their cultural horizons. We are thrilled that we have been able to partner with the bluapple Poetry Network to help achieve these goals again this year.”
Homestead-Miami Speedway PR