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The Most Iconic Driver Sponsor Combinations In Modern NASCAR

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Joshua Lipowski

Joshua Lipowski

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In NASCAR, drivers need sponsors to race, and those sponsorships often create iconic partnerships that become synonymous with the driver and their brand. Richard Petty was always driving the 43 STP car, Dale Earnhardt was the driver of the number 3 Goodwrench Chevrolet, and Jeff Gordon drove the 24 Dupont car. While it is fairly rare to see a sponsor work with a driver for a full season these days, there are still some pretty iconic partnerships in NASCAR.

5. Martin Truex Jr. and Bass Pro Shops

To start his career, Martin Truex Jr. drove the Bass Pro Shops number 1 car, and he won his first race in the car. After leaving DEI, Bass Pro left the car for some time, but they soon returned once Truex Jr. went on to Furniture Row Racing.

Since then, Truex Jr. has run Bass Pro Shops for at least part of the schedule throughout the season. The most iconic moment in this scheme came in 2017 when Truex Jr. held off a hard-charging Kyle Busch for the NASCAR Cup Series Championship.

4. Joey Logano and Pennzoil

Since he took over the 22 car at Team Penske Pennzoil has been on the hood of Joey Logano’s car. Since then, Logano has won two Cup Series Championships and 30 races. It also helps that the bright yellow paint scheme stands out both on TV and at the race track.

Logano has two iconic moments that came in this car, and they both featured Championships. He won the 2018 Championship in upset fashion over the “Big Three” of Kyle Busch, Martin Truex Jr., and Kevin Harvick. Logano also won the Championship in 2012 in a dominating fashion over Ross Chastain.

3. Kevin Harvick and Busch

In 2011, Kevin Harvick began a longstanding partnership with Anheuser-Busch that will come to an end after he retires at the end of the year. Harvick and Busch have been known for multiple different paint schemes featuring multiple different Busch products. From Budweiser at the beginning of the run, to all of the different flavors of Busch throughout the last few years.

In 2020, Harvick won nine races, with eight of those coming from Busch cars. This included the first NASCAR race back from the pandemic in 2020 at Darlington where Harvick led 159 laps en route to a win.

2. Denny Hamlin and FedEx

Denny Hamlin and FedEx have been synonymous with each other since the beginning of Hamlin’s career. Of Hamlin’s 50 career wins, 46 of them have come in FedEx colors. The schemes have also had multiple variations to them as FedEx promotes each of its different brands.

Amongst all of the incredible race moments that Hamlin has had with FedEx, his best moment has to be his first win at Pocono back in 2006. It was his first race at the “Tricky Triangle”, and the FedEx 11 car ended up in victory lane.

1. Chase Elliott and NAPA

Ever since his time in the Xfinity Series, Elliott has had the same major primary sponsor, NAPA. Why not partner with him, as he is the most popular driver in the sport? The blue and white Napa number nine is slowly gaining the type of history that the red number 9 of Elliott’s father, Bill did.

The most iconic moment for the two together came at Phoenix in 2020 when Elliott won his first Cup Series Championship. Elliott took the NAPA car to the ultimate victory lane, just like his father Bill did.

When we look back on this era of NASCAR, we will think about these driver/sponsor combinations. Which of these will become the most iconic?

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Joshua Lipowski

Joshua Lipowski

All Posts