It was announced on Sunday, September 2, 2012, that Office Depot would no longer be sponsoring Tony Stewart after the end of the 2012 season. There was reportedly no bad blood between the two and the company simply wanted to allocate its funding differently. Mobil 1 will be returning to sponsor the driver for a few races but he will need another sponsor, or combination of sponsors, to cover the remaining races. As Stewart had done advertisements for Office Depot since the sponsorship began in 2009, this may be a surprise to many fans.
The loss of Office Depot is just one more problem for Stewart-Haas Racing. Ryan Newman, who is also a driver for the team, recently lost one of his sponsors too. After a public outcry against the use of military funds on sports sponsorship, the United States Army decided to stop sponsoring Newman. Not only is the team now looking for a main sponsor for Stewart, but also a sponsor for Newman as well.
Stewart-Haas Racing is expected to expand in 2013 by adding Danica Patrick. Though she almost definitely seems to need to spend one or two more seasons in the Nationwide Series, there are plans in place to bring her up to the Sprint Cup Series for the 2013 season. Luckily, she will be bringing her own sponsor so there is little that would prevent her from moving up. As she has not proven that she can race well consistently, or even just finish races on a consistent basis, her debut season as a Sprint Cup driver may not be as good as she hopes.
Stewart had just won a championship in 2011 and it is surprising that his sponsor is leaving. He should not have too hard of a time finding a new sponsor. Newman has been running in the middle of the pack and will likely not make the Chase for the Cup. He may have a more difficult time finding a sponsor. Patrick is lucky to have her own sponsor that is willing to stick with her. Without the sponsor, she may not have been able to try to make the jump so easily.
Kristin Watt has been a NASCAR Winston Cup, now Sprint Cup, fan for as long as she can remember starting way back when she was a little girl and her mother would sit on the couch with her every Sunday during the season to watch the races. Back then, they were fans of Bill Elliott and newcomer Davey Allison.
- Motor Racing
- Sports & Recreation
- Tony Stewart
- Office Depot
- Ryan Newman
- Danica Patrick