Stewart-Haas has won the battle for Bass Pro Shops NASCAR Sprint Cup sponsorship in 2013. It was announced at a news conference that Tony Stewart's #14 Chevrolet will have Bass Pro Shops as a major sponsor for 18 races next year (source - USA Today).
As with anything in the 21st Century, it seems this information was out a day earlier through the magic of Twitter: " @jennafryer @jeff_gluck "I want to introduce you to Tony Stewart, new driver of the Bass Pro Chevy." Johnny Morris, BP Founder #holysmoke""Bass Pro Shops was partnering with Stewart on a personal basis and as an associate sponsor. Recently, Bass Pro Shops has been the major sponsor for Earnhardt-Ganassi's #1 Chevrolet driven by Jamie McMurray. That partnership will end at year's end although they may still partner in a reduced associate roll.
Bass Pro Shops will continue to support Austin and Ty Dillon of Richard Childress Racing at the Nationwide and Camping World Truck level.
Mobil One will return in 2013 on Stewart's #14 car as major sponsor for 11 events. So there are still technically nine races where the #14 doesn't have a major sponsor but like in the past, Stewart's partner Gene Haas of Haas Automation would likely take that space if another sponsor isn't found. There are 36 total races for the season plus two all-star events. This announcement comes a few days after Stewart announced Quicken Loans would be the major sponsor on Ryan Newman's #39.
CEO Johnny Morris of Bass Pro Shops has wanted to partner with Stewart for some time. The two have been friends since first meeting in 1999. Said Morris: "No doubt our involvement in NASCAR was a big part of building our brands. We think racing helps grow the sports of hunting and fishing. When you see someone like Tony who has such a huge influence on young people, mostly a good influence, maybe it puts a spark in their heart to spend more time and fish and hunt. That's another reason we invest in the sport." Bass Pro Shops has been the sponsor on Tony Stewart's World of Outlaws sprint cars for several years.
Said Stewart of his relationship with Bass Pro Shops and Morris: "The best part is it's not just a business partnership, but a friendship that has evolved."
From a personal standpoint as a marketer, if this statement is true, that truly is a golden relationship to have in motorsports - a value few in racing acquire.
Sources - NASCAR
Daryle has been involved in motorsports most of his life and has three decades of experience inside racemarketing, plus for several years has blogged about every type of racing.