Hendrick Motorsports may be losing one longtime sponsor after the season, but another one reaffirmed its commitment to the team and the sport into the next decade.
Even though it seems like it some weeks, not all of the business/sponsor news coming out of NASCAR is bad. Hendrick Motorsports is saying goodbye to Lowe’s at the end of the season after a long and successful run together, but Axalta is sticking around through 2022.
Hendrick announced the new deal between the two companies today, revealing that Axalta would serve as the primary sponsor for 25 races for one of the team’s cars over each of the next five NASCAR Cup Series seasons, including the current one.
Both Alex Bowman and William Byron will carry the Axalta colors in 2018 and 2019, split up this way:
- 2018 – Bowman 15 races, Byron 10 races
- 2019 – Bowman 12 races, Byron 13 races
The sponsorship details for the final three years of the new agreement will be announced at a later date, perhaps a recognition of the fact that the Hendrick driver lineup could change at some point or other sponsors could come in who want to cover more races for either Bowman or Byron.
What’s really significant about the announcement is that while Axalta has only been on NASCAR race cars for a few years, it’s actually continuing a relationship with Hendrick Motorsports that dates back more than 25 years. That’s because Axalta was spun off from DuPont, which famously sponsored the No. 24 driven by Jeff Gordon all the way back to late in the 1992 season.
“Motorsports is in Axalta’s DNA,” Charlie Shaver, Axalta’s chairman and CEO, said in a press release. “For more than 25 years, our partnership with Hendrick Motorsports has enabled us to showcase our industry leading performance coatings that have helped make cars lighter, more efficient, and look terrific. We’re excited to continue our successful partnership with Hendrick Motorsports through 2022.”
It’s good to hear any company believe it benefits from staying in NASCAR, but particularly one with a sponsorship like Axalta. Even if you don’t root for Bowman and Byron, you should be glad to see those flames and rainbow colors on the track into the 2020s.