Axalta signs three-year deal for Hendrick, Gordon
June 06, 2013, Kenny Bruce, NASCAR.com
Axalta Coatings Systems doesn’t debut as a primary sponsor for Jeff Gordon until this weekend’s Party in the Poconos 400 at Pocono Raceway. But the company has already extended its relationship with the Hendrick Motorsports driver and team.
Officials announced a three-year contract extension with HMS, with primary sponsorship in 10 races annually through the 2016 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season.
"I'm so excited that Axalta has decided to move forward with us beyond 2013," Gordon said. "They've been with me since the beginning and I look forward to a lot more racing, some more wins and hopefully another championship with them before it's all over.”
Gordon’s No. 24 Chevrolet has carried familiar DuPont branding since his Cup debut in 1992. Earlier this year, the Carlyle Group purchased DuPont Performance Coatings, LLC, and renamed the company Axalta.
The new company, Gordon said, “is still comprised of the same people I’ve been working with for more than two decades, and I can’t imagine my career without them.
“They are truly like family to me, Rick Hendrick and this No. 24 team. I'm so excited that they're moving forward with us."
A four-time Cup champion, Gordon is the leading race winner among active drivers with 87 career victories. He is currently 11th in the points standings, and made his 700th career start earlier this year.
The DuPont/Axalta relationship with HMS is in its 21st year, and is the longest-running sponsorship in the series.
"This has truly been one of the most effective and iconic relationships in sports marketing," said Hendrick. "We celebrated 20 years together with a win at Homestead (in 2012), and all of us look forward to many more successes with Jeff and the No. 24 team.
“The people at Axalta are like family, and we're committed to bringing even more value to the partnership."
Axalta is scheduled to be the primary sponsor on the car for 14 races this season. AARP’s Drive To End Hunger program, a primary sponsor since 2011, will continue its association with the No. 24 team for the majority of the events.
The success of the relationship made the decision to continue it beyond 2013 an easy one, according to Nigel Budden, North American business director for Axalta.
"We have built up so much equity in the No. 24 team over the years and Jeff Gordon is the best spokesperson any company could ask for," Budden said. “And like everything we do, the decision is customer driven. Our customers feel like a part of the No. 24 team after all these years.”
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