Defender of IndyCar

Tony Kanaan’s Indy Car Sponsorship Situation

Concerned IZOD Indy Car fans like myself are concerned with replacement of 7-11 as the primary sponsor for one of Indy Car’s most popular drivers, Tony Kanaan. That company recently announced they were shifting primary sponsorship from Kanaan to associate levels for Danica Patrick in Indy Car and possibly Jeff Gordon’s 24 car in NASCAR.

If we look for replacement convenience stores, which ones would work? There are a few, and most any of them could leverage coop advertising dollars from manufacturers that supply their sellable products.

-Speedway seems like a natural. They are located all over the Midwest and have over 1,600 stores. That makes them top 5 in the U.S.A. Plus, can you imagine a race car with that logo? With Kanaan behind the wheel?

-Along those same lines is Race Trac with over 500 stores. Problem is they are mostly in old NASCAR country. But what another natural fit. Perhaps Indy Car ought to venture further into NASCAR country since their popularity is slipping.

-Pennsylvania-based Wawa has nearly 600 stores, but the fact that it’s called Wawa might be a better fit for either Danica Patrick or Marco Andretti. Particularly Andretti. It’s based in their home state, and just saying the name of that company screams Andretti.

-Considering Tony’s propensity to (allegedly) ‘Tiger’ any attractive female that walks by then do the ‘ol ‘pump and dump’ routine, perhaps the Midwestern-based Kum & Go chain would be right up his alley. It would be a nice tie-in to the little oval in Iowa, too.

In any event, this guy needs to be in the series, and hopefully Andretti Autosport works it out in the next few months.


4 replies to “Tony Kanaan’s Indy Car Sponsorship Situation

  1. I don’t care WHO sponsors Tony Kanaan, just so it’s SOMEBODY. This guy is absolutely essential to the IndyCar series, and without him, it would lose much of its hard-earned credibility. Pony up, somebody!

  2. I really think we’ll see him in some sort of Apex-Brasil deal. Like the second Panther car, everyone sort of seems to expect it at this point.

    He’ll be in the series.

  3. Yes, Tony Kanaan needs to be in the series.

    RHR needs to be in the series.

    Paul Tracy needs to be in the series.

    Graham Rahal needs to be in the series.

    It’s easy to throw out statements like ‘This must happen’, and ‘Pony up’, but the bottom line is, that IndyCar isn’t the most attractive sponsorship opportunity right now. And a large part of that is the Versus TV deal. Regardless of what revenue we’re getting from it, I think IICS needs to strongly look at getting out of the deal. Because 400,000 (or 300,000 or 450,000) viewers a race isn’t cutting it. Until we can get the series on a channel where people will actually watch; where we can take ratings numbers to potential advertisers and show that IICS is a worthwhile investment, we’re going to see a lot more of the 7-11’s downgrading from Primary to Associate. We’re going to see a lot more of the Izod’s pulling out of car sponsorships. And a lot more of the TK’s and RHR’s looking for rides than getting them.

  4. Hi from Canada. Wawa is also a town north of Michigan. Funny thing is it is known for it’s big statue on the highway – of a Canada Goose! Just like the logo. Huh!

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