News & Media


Champion's Week begins with Stewart in Vegas

November 30, 2011, Official Release, NASCAR.com

Tony Stewart left Las Vegas Motor Speedway a second-place finisher last March but returned to Las Vegas as No. 1 on Tuesday to begin celebrating his third Sprint Cup Series championship.

It's Stewart's first Sprint Cup Series Champion's Week in Las Vegas. His 2002 and 2005 titles were celebrated in New York. There was perhaps a bit of deja vu during Tuesday's annual Landmark Photo Shoot, with the faux Big Apple skyline of New York, New York appearing as background in one of the shots.

Welcome to Vegas


Tony Stewart kicks off Champion's Week in Las Vegas with a quick photo tour with the Sprint Cup trophy.

"There's so much to do here in Las Vegas," Stewart said. "It's the perfect place to have the year-end celebration. I look forward to having everyone from the Stewart-Haas Racing team, Office Depot and Mobil 1 here on Thursday night and spending some time with them."

Stewart hit a number of notable Las Vegas photo op hot spots for the traditional photo shoot. On this year's agenda: the "Welcome to Las Vegas" sign, the iconic lion outside the MGM Grand Hotel and an evening shoot at the Foundation Room in the House of Blues at Mandalay Bay, which overlooks the Las Vegas strip.

Stewart also participated in interviews with ESPN Radio, four Las Vegas television stations, members of the print media, all culminating with an appearance on MRN Radio's NASCAR Live With Eli Gold.

No surprise -- Stewart admits to being a bit winded during his cross-country championship festivities that followed his Nov. 20 Chase for the Sprint Cup victory at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

Miss Sprint Cup, Monica Palumbo, accompanied the champion on his Las Vegas media rounds and suggested Stewart "had better be on your game this week" because it will be a busy four days, culminating with the Sprint Cup Awards Banquet on Friday night at The Wynn Resort.

Champion's Week festivities begin in earnest Wednesday at Las Vegas' famed downtown Fremont Street where Las Vegas Motor Speedway hosts a Newlywed Game-type competition featuring the top-12 drivers.

Tuesday also marked the opening day of the NASCAR Motorsports Marketing Forum being sponsored for the 12th year by Street & Smith's Sports Business Journal. The conference, featuring an array of insight from sports and marketing executives from within and outside the motorsports industry, continues Wednesday at Caesars Palace. Stewart was interviewed to open the two-day event. Among the attendees and panelists were NASCAR chief marketing officer Steve Phelps, chief operating officer of NASCAR Media Group Jay Abraham and NASCAR managing director, entertainment marketing and business development Zane Stoddard. Dylan Kwasniewski and Darrell Wallace Jr., two of NASCAR's stars of the future, were also among first-day participants.

For more information on the 2011 Sprint Cup Series awards ceremony and NASCAR Champion's Week, click here.