News & Media

Report: UPS cutting back sponsorship, eyes 99 car

September 03, 2011, Sporting News Wire Service,

Company seeks limited partnership with 99 car; expects to renew NASCAR deal

UPS plans to cut back dramatically on its support of Roush Fenway Racing's No. 6 car driven by David Ragan in 2012, SportsBusiness Daily reported Friday.

Sources familiar with the company's plan said it will drop its full-season primary sponsorship of the No. 6 car and sponsor four to eight races at RFR in '12. The company is in talks to shift its sponsorship to Carl Edwards, who drives the team's No. 99 car.

UPS has adorned the No. 6 car of David Ragan since 2009. (Getty)

If UPS is in talks to become part of Edwards' sponsorship program next year, he has yet to be part of the discussions.

"I still don't know that it's anything more than a rumor. Nobody's come to me and said, 'Hey, here's what's happening; here's what's going on.' I wish I knew," Edwards told Sporting News on Saturday at Atlanta Motor Speedway.

"I think they've done a great job for our team. Hopefully, David gets some more wins for them this year, and hopefully they want to be back in whatever capacity is good for them. I'm sure [RFR president] Steve Newmark and [owner Jack] Roush will accommodate 'em in whatever they want to do."

Newmark declined to comment Friday and said the team still is in discussions with UPS. The company did not return a call seeking comment.

The move will further reduce the number of sponsors paying for their logo to appear in all 36 NASCAR races. UPS was one of seven sponsors slated to be on the same NASCAR hood for all 36 Sprint Cup races. The other full-season primary sponsors are FedEx, The Home Depot, Lowe's, Menards, Miller Lite and NAPA Auto Parts. (Red Bull and Furniture Row own the teams that feature their logos.)

The move comes on the heels of UPS' four-year, $100 million deal with 68 colleges. The company had a long history in NASCAR and was one of the first in the sport to effectively make a driver the public face of its brand by featuring Dale Jarrett in a multi-year campaign.

Known as "Race the Truck," the humorous campaign showed the company trying to convince the driver to race its "Big Brown" truck in a race. Though UPS won't renew its full-season primary sponsorship at RFR, sources said the company is expected to renew its official partnership with NASCAR. It has been the sport's official delivery company since 2000.