Hollywood actor and race car driver Patrick Dempsey brings new sponsor aboard ahead of Daytona 24.
Dempsey Racing and Simmons Bedding Company announced today that the leading mattress producer and the maker of Beautyrest® have entered into a multi-year partnership that will see the Beautyrest Black® line of premium mattresses join the sports car racing team as an official supplier and sponsor of the No. 27 Dempsey Racing Porsche GT America driven by actor and professional race car driver Patrick Dempsey and his full-season teammate Andrew Davis.
The announcement was made on the eve of the Rolex 24 At Daytona, January 23 – 26, the internationally recognized day-long endurance race at Daytona International Speedway that this year serves as the inaugural event of the debuting IMSA TUDOR United SportsCar Championship season. Dempsey and Davis will be joined by longtime teammate Joe Foster and standout German factory Porsche driver Marc Lieb in the race that is scheduled to start Saturday at 2:10 p.m. EST with live coverage on FOX commencing at 2 p.m. EST/11 a.m. PST.
The Dempsey team’s GT Daytona (GTD) class Porsche will carry the Beautyrest Black® logos for the first time at the Rolex 24, the first step in establishing a relationship that will see Dempsey Racing and its team of endurance racing Porsche drivers promote the premium mattress line that is fittingly billed as the ultimate pairing of luxury and performance. The Dempsey Racing drivers and crew will also have the use of Beautyrest Black® mattresses at the upcoming endurance races on the IMSA TUDOR calendar, beginning with March’s 12 Hours of Sebring.
“We were very fortunate to enter into a multi-year relationship with Porsche at the end of last season and Beautyrest Black® is an ideal and perfectly complementary partner to now also welcome to our racing team,” Dempsey said. “As sports car endurance racing drivers, we know the importance of quality sleep for not only top performance on the track but also for getting anyone through life’s day-to-day routine. We are looking forward to racing, resting and sleeping with Beautyrest Black®.”
In addition to Beautyrest Black® branding on the No. 27 Porsche, Dempsey Racing will provide Simmons with the foundation for an at-track B2B (Business to Business) marketing platform. Dempsey Racing will also be featured in an upcoming television commercial for Beautyrest Black®. The new partnership will be officially unveiled away from the track immediately after the Rolex 24 when Dempsey Racing attends the Beautyrest Black® launch event at the Las Vegas World Market Center Furniture Show, Monday, January 27.
“Simmons is excited to be partnering with Dempsey Racing to introduce Beautyrest Black® to race fans and the general consumer,” said Rolf Sannes, Vice President Beautyrest® Brand, Simmons Bedding Company. “We have found a partner that not only shares our passion for, but personifies powerful performance and high-end luxury. Beautyrest Black® delivers the quality sleep needed for optimal focus and performance – both on the track and when facing the everyday grind – and we look forward to supporting the Dempsey Racing team for years to come."
The new relationship also unites two Atlanta-based organizations. Simmons and Dempsey Racing are both headquartered in the greater Atlanta area where Foster, Davis and the team’s technical and commercial operations are also based.
This weekend’s Rolex 24 At Daytona will be the perfect venue for debuting the new Dempsey Racing and Beautyrest Black® partnership. The grueling, non-stop race is considered North America’s toughest test of man and machine but Dempsey Racing has still seen some success there. Dempsey and Foster joined two other drivers in finishing a race career-best third place in the GT class in the 2011 Rolex 24 At Daytona.
"It's very important to get proper rest and nutrition between stints during this event,” Davis said. “As a driver, you are asking a tremendous amount out of both your body and mind. To ensure that you are performing at your best, it's essential to force yourself to get a little sleep and consume foods and drinks that help the body recover and energize for the next stint."
Along with the sister No. 27 entry, Dempsey Racing is also fielding a second Porsche in a partnership with European powerhouse team Konrad Motorsport. The No. 28 Dempsey Racing/Konrad Motorsport Porsche 911 GT America will be co-driven by Porsche Junior Driver Klaus Bachler, Christian Engelhart, Rolf Ineichen, Lance Willsey and team owner Franz Konrad. The No. 28 team clocked in an impressive fifth-fastest overall in the GTD class in the annual Roar Before the Rolex 24 At Daytona test earlier this month.
Team drivers Engelhart (right in picture) and Ineichen (left in picture) brought that same top pace halfway around the world the following weekend and were among the co-drivers in the overall winning Porsche at the 24 Hours of Dubai in the United Arab Emirates.
In addition to Porsche and Beautyrest Black®, additional Dempsey Racing partners include Motegi Racing, Porsche Design and Lesonal. The team also races in support of the Dempsey Center for Cancer Hope and Healing and, this weekend at the Rolex 24, the Children’s Tumor Foundation’s Racing4Research program that raises research funding for the fight against neurofibromatosis.
Practice and qualifying for the 2014 Rolex 24 will be held Thursday and Friday, January 23 – 24, with the day-long classic scheduled to start at 2:10 p.m. EST on Saturday, January 25. Live coverage begins at 2 p.m. EST/10 a.m. PST on FOX with two hours of race-opening action. At 4 p.m. EST/1 p.m. PST coverage continues on sister station FOX Sports 2 until 9 p.m. EST/6 p.m. PST. For the overnight hours, live images, in-car cameras and announcers will stream on www.IMSA.com. On Sunday, January 26, beginning at 7 a.m. EST/4 a.m. PST, FOX Sports 1 takes over the coverage and continues through the end of the race and post-race festivities, concluding at 3 p.m. EST/12 p.m. PST. Motor Racing Network (MRN) will also air flag-to-flag radio coverage, streaming live at www.MRN.com.