NASCAR show cars, racing sims and, oh yeah, Dale Earnhardt, Jr. coming to a Walmart near you

As race fans prepare for the SHOWTIME Southern 500 at Darlington next weekend (May 7th), Pee Dee (South Carolina) Walmart stores are gearing up for their new Race Time program. Race fans are invited to attend the special events and enjoy racing stock car displays, a special appearance by Dale Earnhardt Jr., and racing simulator machines on May 3-6 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Walmart will also feature great prices on NASCAR merchandise such as T-shirts, racing flags, and tailgating food and beverages.

The participating stores in the Pee Dee include:

Tuesday, May 3 from 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Events free and open to the public include General Mills Cheerios Show Car, Kraft Oreo Ritz Nationwide Show Car, Pepsi Max/Amp Simulator and Coca-Cola 5-Seat Racing Simulator at:

Walmart Store #642
1040 Chesterfield Hwy. 10
Cheraw, S.C.

Wednesday, May 4 from 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Events free and open to the public include Mars M&M Show Car Simulator, General Mills Cheerios Show Car, Kraft Oreo Ritz Nationwide Show Car, Hefty Show Car Simulator, Pepsi Max/Amp Simulator and Coca-Cola 5-Seat Racing Simulator at:

Walmart Store #2703
2014 South Irby St.
Florence, S.C.

Thursday, May 5 from 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Events free and open to the public include Mars M&M Show Car Simulator, General Mills Cheerios Show Car, Kraft Oreo Ritz Nationwide Show Car, Hefty Show Car Simulator, Pepsi Max/Amp Simulator and Coca-Cola 5-Seat Racing Simulator at:

*NASCAR Driver Dale Earnhardt Jr. will be signing autographs from 6-8p.m.

Walmart Store #1135
1150 South 4th St.
Hartsville, S.C.

For further information, please visit Walmart.com/NASCAR.

Walmart to offer NASCAR licensed merchandise and discounted race tickets

We all had heard about  Walmart possibly getting more involved with NASCAR racing up to the point they were thinking about sponsoring Jeff Gordon’s No. 24 Hendrick Chevy. Well, apparently the rumor was half correct.

Walmart and NASCAR announced that Walmart  will carry new NASCAR branded merchandise and special savings on race tickets, which is available on Walmart.com/NASCAR for select races.The new retail program, branded  “Race Time”, is the largest retail promotion in NASCAR’s history.

Participating Walmart stores will offer exciting merchandise such as T-shirts, racing
flags, and tailgating food and beverages with even more selection of merchandise on
Walmart.com/NASCAR.  In addition, Walmart customers and NASCAR fans can save money by purchasing a discount ticket package available exclusively through the website for select NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races.  Ticket packages include four race tickets, four hot dogs, four beverages and one race program for just $99, a savings of approximately $100.*
The NASCAR Team Properties, which is open to any NASCAR national series race team that chooses to participate, explores merchandising opportunities in four key categories apparel, collectable die-cast, toys and trackside retail. Team Properties currently consists of 11 teams, as well as NASCAR and represents more than 30 top drivers.

*Ticket packages are limited per market and available through Walmart.com/NASCAR while
supplies last.

Walmart eyeing Hendrick for sponsorship(s) while Tylenol says goodbye to NASCAR

Ok, so now Walmart is getting into the mix of looking into sponsorships in NASCAR.  But they are not only looking at sponsorships, but rather a possibly direct license agreement with NASCAR that would make it NASCAR’s exclusive retailer in the mass merchandise space. A direct license would give Walmart the ability to select its suppliers and set prices for certain categories, such as hats and T-shirts.

Walmart is believed to be exploring sponsorship opportunities with Hendrick Motorsports as well. Hendrick’s drivers  #48-Jimmie Johnson, #24-Jeff Gordon, #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. and #5-Mark Martin  account for close to 75% of all licensed sales in the sport, industry analysts say, making it a logical team for Walmart to sponsor.

Walmart is thought to be considering a sponsorship arrangement with a team or multiple teams, with Hendrick Motorsports in the middle of those discussions. It’s unclear, though, if the mass retailer will settle on one car for a chunk of the season, sponsor multiple cars for a few races each, or perhaps put together several driver deals into a marketing platform, a la the Gillette Young Guns or the Coca-Cola family of drivers. One scenario, according to sources, has Walmart sponsoring Gordon’s #24 Chevy for half of the season or more, as primary sponsor DuPont looks to scale back its spending. DuPont’s current primary sponsorship on the #24 car ends this season, and while the longtime sponsor is expected to remain in some form, it’s uncertain whether DuPont will remain the primary.

In other news as one sponsor is looking to come, another will be leaving.  Tylenol will not renew its official partnership with NASCAR. The sport’s official pain reliever since the start of the 2007 season, Tylenol’s current deal with NASCAR runs through the 2010 season.

With the official partnership, track and driver deals, Tylenol’s total spend was in the $5 million to $6 million range annually. The brand has not activated its Team Tylenol campaign, which started in 2005 to coincide with the launch of its rapid-release gels.