Leading sports and entertainment marketing agency Wasserman today announced the signing of 19-year-old racing phenom William Byron, who will enter the NASCAR Cup Series in 2018 after a meteoric rise to stardom in the sport’s proving grounds. Wasserman Senior Vice President of Action Sports and Olympics, Travis Clarke, will represent Byron in his endeavors both on and off the racetrack.
One of the top young drivers in the racing world, Byron is currently in second place overall in the Championship standings and leading the race for Rookie of the Year in the NASCAR Xfinity Series, where as of November 4, he has notched three wins, 10 top-fives, 20 top-10s and two poles. This comes just one year after capturing Rookie of the Year honors in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series with the most successful rookie season in history, recording seven wins, 11 top-five finishes, and 16 top-10s. His stunning run of success prompted Hendrick Motorsports to choose Byron to drive the iconic No. 24 car at the Cup level next year, with HMS owner Rick Hendrick going so far as to compare the teenager to a young Jeff Gordon.
“We are ecstatic to have William join the Wasserman team, especially at such an exciting point in his career,” said Clarke. “He has already had so much success in such a short time, which is a testament not just to his tremendous raw talent but also his excellent work ethic. When you combine those two things, you have a very special talent. Then you add in his incredible poise, which is well beyond what you would expect from a 19-year-old, and there really is no limit on what he can achieve going forward.”
Byron did not begin racing cars – or even driving cars for the matter – until the age of 15, competing exclusively in online simulations throughout his childhood, but quickly displayed his immense potential by winning the 2013 U.S. Legend Young Lions National Championship in his first year of real racing competition, posting top-five finishes in 59 of his 69 races.
“Our growth strategy in action sports is centered on finding young athletes to support as they take the next steps towards their bright futures,” said Brad Lusky, Chief Operating Officer of Action Sports and Olympics. “Wasserman continues to identify the top up-and-coming talent across the sports landscape and assist those athletes in achieving their goals.”
While Byron is currently the only NASCAR driver on Wasserman’s roster, he is not the first and the agency has been involved in the NASCAR industry for more than 10 years, not only providing athlete relations and partnership management services, but also advising brands on business and marketing opportunities related to NASCAR.
In addition to its direct work with NASCAR on innovation projects and event strategies, the agency facilitated Nationwide’s partnership with NASCAR, which included their naming rights deal of the NASCAR Nationwide Series.
After assisting Nationwide in planning and measuring its marketing efforts throughout the duration of the series entitlement partnership, Wasserman then helped the brand become the majority primary sponsor of Dale Earnhardt, Jr. and the No. 88 car of Hendrick Motorsports.