You have to love the silly season in NASCAR. It gets earlier and earlier every year and this season has been no different.
On Tuesday night, Scene Daily’s, Bob Pockrass and Lee Spencer from Fox Sports broke news of a major sponsorship shift.
On Wednesday, Richard Childress Racing announced that Shell Penzoil would not be back to sponsor the No. 29 car in 2011. Leaving Childress without a primary sponsor for Harvick, who is in contract negations with the team.
Owner Richard Childress in a release said “I’m disappointed that our partnership will conclude at the end of the year but understand some of the reasons that went into their business decision. RCR will continue to provide Shell-Pennzoil the highest caliber program possible, keeping in sharp focus the ultimate goal of winning the 2010 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship.”
Shell will be moving over to Penske Championship Racing in 2011, with Kurt Busch. Busch who is also in contract negotiations, signed a contract extension. The sponsor change put’s Bush in the No.22 in 2011 and moves Brad Keselowski to the No. 12 Miller Dodge.
That still leaves a lot of questions for Sam Hornish, Jr. His primary sponsor Mobil will not be back, but will remain the “official oil of NASCAR”. That leaves a sponsorship gap for the No.77.
The move for Miller to sign on with Keselowski is a smart move. Keselowski is young enough to attract new beer drinkers who have not decided on beer loyalty just yet.
He is also a rising star in the series, "Brad is one of the hottest young drivers in NASCAR and we're thrilled to welcome him to the Miller Lite Racing family," said Andy England, chief marketing officer at MillerCoors. "Rarely in this sport are you presented with the opportunity to build a relationship with a top-tier driver at the start of his career. We look forward to 'tasting greatness' with Brad and Penske Racing in the years ahead."
Only eight races into the season we already have seen one driver change and three sponsorship changes. We still have seven months of racing ahead, yes silly season just keeps getting sillier.