The Frontstretch: Voices From the Heartland: NASCAR and Planters Begin Negotiations by Jeff Meyer -- Wednesday June 15, 2005

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(“Voices” Newswire 6/16/05) Daytona, FL – Upset with another proposed series name change, NASCAR officials admitted today that they have in fact been wooing other potential suitors to sponsor NASCAR’s Cup Series.

Nextel, who replaced Winston in 2004, recently merged with Sprint, and Sprint wants to make the change from the NEXTEL Cup to the Sprint Cup. The change is expected to take place with the beginning of the 2007 season.

“Do you know how money we spent on replacing all the Winston signs?” said Brian France, CEO of NASCAR. “We had NEXTEL signed on for ten years, and now they go and pull this crap! If we have to go through this whole process again, we might as well try and find someone willing to pay even more than they did.”

Normally, the powers that be at NASCAR are pretty tight lipped about such drastic changes, and usually play their cards close to the vest until the last minute. Reporters became suspicious, however, after seeing an elderly gentleman with skinny legs sporting a top hat and wearing a monocle leaving NASCAR headquarters earlier this week. The figure also reportedly wore white gloves and used a cane.

After repeated inquiries, France did admit that it was in fact Mr. Peanut, the head spokesperson for Planters Nuts.

“Rest assured that nothing at this point is set in stone,” said France. “We are talking to a number of companies who have expressed interest in sponsoring our top series. Those companies include, but are not limited to, Planters, Stanley Tools, Square D and Nestle. Hell, even the United States government has expressed interest. We’ll have to see who puts up the most money, and which one our marketing gurus think will work best.”

In the end, it will probably be NASCAR’s marketing department that has the final say. Many possibilities exist with the above mentioned companies. Possible names that have been tossed about have been: the NASCAR America’s Cup Series, NASCAR Stanley Cup Series, NASCAR Nestle Tea Cup Series, NASCAR Square D Cup Series, and even the NASCAR Planters Nut Cup Series.

“Who knows where this change may take us,” said France. “It may even prompt Craftsman to get off the fence and make a commitment to finally sponsor a new Truck Series in Mexico.”

The series in Mexico that France was referring to is the proposed Craftsman Pea Cup Truck Series, which has been rumored to be in the works for the last two years.

(Remember folks, any and all news from the “Voices” Newswire is just that!)

Stay off the wall (no matter what’s painted on it!),
Jeff

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