NASCAR

Dale Jr. optimistic about sponsorships

Image: NASCAR star Dale Earnhardt Jr. (Sam Sharpe/USA Today Sports)
Dale Earnhardt Jr. is savvy about the nature of NASCAR's sponsorships.
Share This Story

Lee Spencer

Lee Spencer is the Senior NASCAR Writer for FOXSports.com. She has provided award-winning coverage of auto racing over the last 15 years. Spencer has lent her expertise to both television and radio and is a regular contributor to SiriusXM Radio and the Performance Racing Network. Follow her on Twitter.

MORE>>
 
   
 

CONCORD, NC

Dale Earnhardt Jr. remains bullish on NASCAR.

BOOGITY! BOOGITY! BOOGITY!

NASCAR on FOX brings live coverage of the Sprint Cup race at Dover International Speedway on Sunday. The green flag drops at 1 p.m. ET, with coverage on FOX beginning at 12:30 p.m. ET.

Although the sport’s most popular driver still has inventory for sale on the No. 88 Chevrolet, Earnhardt believes “things are on the upswing.”

“We have a unique, limited amount of races to fill, and those packages aren’t the most exciting propositions for corporate America to come in and do an eight-race deal,” Earnhardt said Wednesday. “You have to find the right guy that’s interested in something that size and is willing to fit the price range you want as a team.

"You can’t undersell compared to what you’re working with on the other races and the contracts you have in place. Everything has to align itself, and there’s other opportunities out there.”

The lack of sponsorship on Earnhardt’s car doesn’t seem to concern team owner Rick Hendrick, who also has several races for sale for Kasey Kahne’s program. Hendrick Motorsports is by far the most successful organization currently in NASCAR. In the past dozen years, Hendrick drivers have won six Sprint Cup titles. In the short term, Hendrick believes that finding the proper fit for Earnhardt is more important than making a hasty decision.

“We’re always talking, working with people,” Hendrick said. “You can take the short-term deal and fill the car up, or you can try to work with someone that’s a long-term situation for years to come. The way we’re positioned, our cars are covered until the end of the summer. I don’t have a timeline. I’m looking for the right deal — not any deal. If I wanted any deal, I would put Hendrick Cars on it. We have two or three deals that are close, but we’re looking beyond 2013. We’re looking at 2014 and 2015. We haven’t put a line in the sand.”

Dale Earnhardt career moments

SUPER STAR

Junior's impact goes well beyond the track. CAREER MOMENTS

Earnhardt understands his branding. The third-generation driver has enjoyed extremely successful runs with Budweiser in the past, and his reach with the National Guard and other military programs has been stout. Earnhardt also realizes that the race-sponsorship market is cyclical and agrees with his boss that patience is prudent.

“There are 15-race deals that were available, but, like Rick said, we feel like we can be patient and find the right package and the right deal that’s a good fit for me and something that I’m going to enjoy working with and something that will be around for more than one year or a couple of years,” Earnhardt said.

“They usually like to work with people that are interested in working their way up into the sport starting with a package that is kind of small and working their way into a full-time deal or a multiyear deal with teams.

“I’m not really worried about it, but I think it’s at the tail end of the reset that we had several years ago. I think it’s the remnants of that. Everything else seems to be moving in the right direction. There seems to be a lot more attention being paid to this season; maybe that’s a sign of things to come.”

Tagged: Dale Earnhardt Jr.

More Stories From Lee Spencer

Member Comments

Please note by clicking on "Post comment" you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Use and the comment you are posting is in compliance with such terms. Be Polite. Inappropriate posts may be removed by the moderator.

powered by



NASCAR Videos

Larry’s Notebook: Is Jimmie Johnson Behind the Curve? Posted: Jul 15, 2014
Larry McReynolds weighs in on whether or not the No. 48 will be at a disadvantag...

Larry’s Notebook: Off-Week Blues Posted: Jul 15, 2014
Larry McReynolds weighs in on which teams will benefit the most from the week of...

Winner's Weekend: Brad Keselowski Unstoppable at Loudon Posted: Jul 15, 2014
The biggest issue the No. 2 team faced at Loudon was where to hide the champagne...

More Than Sports on MSN

Fox Sports Store

    itemName itemURL imageSrc price itemDescription
    Chase Authentics Danica Patrick Big Rig Tri-Blend T-Shirt - Charcoal http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Danica_Patrick/browse/featuredproduct/974547/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_974000/ff_974547_xl.jpg&w=100 26.95 Chase Authentics Danica Patrick Big Rig Tri-Blend T-Shirt - Charcoal
    Kyle Busch One Spot Gauge T-Shirt - Black http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Kyle_Busch/browse/featuredproduct/1011659/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1011000/ff_1011659_xl.jpg&w=100 19.95 Kyle Busch One Spot Gauge T-Shirt - Black
    Matt Kenseth One Spot Gauge T-Shirt - Black http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Matt_Kenseth/browse/featuredproduct/1011661/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1011000/ff_1011661_xl.jpg&w=100 9.99 Matt Kenseth One Spot Gauge T-Shirt - Black
    Chase Authentics Carl Edwards 2013 Driver Schedule T-Shirt - Ash http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Carl_Edwards/browse/featuredproduct/1041164/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_1041000/ff_1041164_xl.jpg&w=100 24.95 Chase Authentics Carl Edwards 2013 Driver Schedule T-Shirt - Ash