Mars/M&MS re-ups with Gibbs, Kyle Busch

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The Mars corporation announced it has extended its partnership with Joe Gibbs Racing in a multi-year role as primary sponsor of Kyle Busch’s No. 18 Toyota Camry.

That means the M&Ms brand – which joined up with Busch and Gibbs in 2008 – isn’t going anywhere, including to a potential new fourth entry for Carl Edwards, which has been widely speculated.

“Being the M&M’s driver and representing Mars on and off the track has been one of the proudest accomplishments in my racing career,” Busch said in a release, via NASCAR.com.

Added NASCAR Chief Operating Officer Brent Dewar, also via NASCAR.com: “Mars is one of the most recognizable brands in NASCAR and is among the best-in-class marketers in all of sports. More than two decades after entering NASCAR, Mars continues to help make race day more fun and we couldn’t be more proud to see the company continue to re-invest in our sport.”

Mars entered NASCAR as a team sponsor in 1990 and stepped up to primary sponsorship beginning in 1999 with Ernie Irvan.

The heavy yellow presence on the Gibbs cars continues for 2015 with Busch’s No. 18 and Matt Kenseth’s No. 20 both seeing an uptick from their primary sponsors. M&Ms is on board the No. 18 the majority of the races and with the Home Depot pulling out from Kenseth, Dollar General is the featured primary on the No. 20.

MRTI: Telitz gets creative to help racing career

Photo: Indianapolis Motor Speedway, LLC Photography
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To say that Belardi Auto Racing’s Aaron Telitz has endured a difficult start to the 2018 Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires season would be an understatement. The Wisconsin native only completed four corners through the first three races – Races 1 and 2 at St. Petersburg, and Race 1 at Barber Motorsports Park – with St. Pete being especially problematic.

He took the pole for Race 1, but a crash during qualifying for Race 2 prevented him from actually starting. What’s more, the damage was so severe that the Belardi team needed a brand new chassis, with Telitz’s Dallara IL-15 damaged beyond repair.

They also had to borrow a car from Carlin for Race 2, but Telitz’s race ended after he got tangled up with Victor Franzoni in Turn 2 on Lap 1.

With the damage bill well into the six figures as a result, Telitz has taken to some unique, or rather, creative ways to raise money in the aftermath to help cover the costs. “Creative,” in this case, meaning Telitz is using his art skills.

An artist in his spare time, Telitz has begun selling his own original paintings to help raise money.

 “I’ve been to a lot of art shows and I see stuff and I go, ‘Holy cow, someone’s going to pay a thousand dollars for that thing?’” Telitz quipped in a story posted on the Milwaukee Journal.

In discussing his artistic abilities, Telitz added, “I’m working at getting better. I’d like to be able to paint some animals, those types of things. I got a request from Alexander Rossi to see if I could paint his dog. Unfortunately I can’t do that yet.”

Further, in a partnership with The Styled Garage, Telitz is selling his own merchandise, and accepting donations, to help his cause.

Telitz finished fourth in Race 2 at Barber on Sunday, and sits seventh in the Indy Lights championship, 59 points behind leader Pato O’Ward.

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