NASCAR: Farmers Insurance extends Hendrick deal through 2017

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A bit of important business news has emerged from the NASCAR garage with Farmers Insurance announcing a three-year extension of its current pact with juggernaut Hendrick Motorsports.

Farmers primarily backs the team’s No. 5 program for Kasey Kahne and as part of this new agreement, it will serve as that car’s primary sponsor for 12 Sprint Cup races (including the Daytona 500) during the 2015, 2016, and 2017 seasons. In all other races, it will be an associate sponsor.

The insurance company has been involved with sponsoring the No. 5 team since 2011.

“Our partnership with the team at Farmers has been unbelievable,” HMS owner Rick Hendrick said in a statement. “Everything that’s been accomplished in just three years is extremely impressive, and they continue to seek ways to engage our fans and use the sponsorship to improve the lives of others.

“It’s gratifying to see the impact of our two organizations working together, and we look forward to more successes in the coming years.”

For those curious, nothing is mentioned in the Hendrick/Farmers release about Kahne’s own driving contract with HMS beyond the 2015 season.

Kahne has earned back-to-back Chase berths, but he and the No. 5 team is currently lagging on performance compared to teammates Jeff Gordon, Dale Earnhardt Jr., and Jimmie Johnson.

Last week at Pocono, Kahne was pegged as a dark horse to claim his first win of the year and make the Chase. But on Lap 143 of 160, he hit the wall in Turn 2 and was saddled with a 42nd-place finish; in the aftermath, Kahne put the blame on Kyle Busch for starting the accident.

Currently on the outside looking in with regard to the post-season and with his teammates doing well on the track, today’s Farmers announcement could give Kahne an even greater urgency to get better results.

Holmatro, INDYCAR renew partnership in five-year extension

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Holmatro, a long-time partner of INDYCAR and title sponsor of the Holmatro Safety Team, have renewed a long-standing partnership that will see Holmatro and INDYCAR continue their partnership in a five-year contract extension.

“Holmatro has been a trusted partner and supplier in Indy car racing for more than 20 years,” said president of competition and operations Jay Frye. “Holmatro’s growth parallels some of the great strides made in safety for INDYCAR drivers and teams. We’re pleased to see this partnership continue, as it is a great benefit to everyone in the paddock.”

Holmatro’s relationship with INDYCAR dates back to 1991, when they first supplied tools to the safety team of the CART sanctioned PPG IndyCar World Series. Holmatro branding will continue to be featured on the firesuits, vehicles, and transporters of INDYCAR’s safety team throughout the agreement.

“Holmatro is extremely pleased to extend our partnership with INDYCAR for another five years,” said Tony Barboza, general manager for Holmatro. “We’re extremely proud to be affiliated with the premier on-track safety team in the world. Members of the safety team serve on their home fire departments when not at INDYCAR events and, like them, we believe in constant improvement and innovation. When the race is for life, you can count on the INDYCAR Safety Team and Holmatro rescue tools.”

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