Concord, N.C. - DuPont will continue as the primary sponsor of Jeff Gordon, the leading NASCAR Winston Cup driver of the 1990s, and the Hendrick Motorsports No. 24 team through the 2005 racing season. Gordon, Rick Hendrick, chief ...
Concord, N.C. - DuPont will continue as the primary sponsor of Jeff Gordon, the leading NASCAR Winston Cup driver of the 1990s, and the Hendrick Motorsports No. 24 team through the 2005 racing season.
Gordon, Rick Hendrick, chief executive officer of Hendrick Motorsports, and Louis F. Savelli, president of DuPont Performance Coatings, have announced a six-year contract, including 2000, which extends a relationship that began in 1993, Gordon's rookie year.
To commemorate this long-term agreement, Gordon will drive a newly designed and distinctive paint scheme in this Sunday's 600-mile NASCAR Winston Cup race at Lowe's Motor Speedway. For this event, the No. 24 car's familiar rainbow paint scheme has been replaced with a design by prominent motorsports graphic artist Sam Bass. The hood will bear the signatures of Savelli, Hendrick and Gordon, along with the date, May 24, 2000. The car has been dubbed the "Signature Car," and scale models will be available to collectors.
"We're fortunate to have been with Hendrick Motorsports and Jeff Gordon from the start, and we plan to be with them for the foreseeable future," said Savelli. "This contract represents the future and what we feel is 'the deal of a new century for the driver of the decade.'"
Rick Hendrick added the No. 24 team to his two existing NASCAR Winston Cup teams in 1993. After noticing the young Gordon's talents at a NASCAR Busch Series event at Atlanta Motor Speedway, Hendrick pursued Gordon as his driver. Sponsorship was the missing piece to what would become a winning combination.
"DuPont was there when we needed a sponsor for a brand new team with a young driver, who, although he had a lot of potential, did not have a Winston Cup resume," said Hendrick. "They put their trust in all of us and we've all benefited because of it.
"We are honored that a world-class company like DuPont is willing to be a long-term partner of our organization and we look forward to our future with them"
After three championships, two Daytona 500 and two Brickyard 400 victories, along with extensive national media exposure, the DuPont car has become one of the most recognizable cars in motorsports history. Having been the only primary sponsor of the No. 24 Hendrick Motorsports team, DuPont has built strong identity with both Gordon and the team.
"It was all sort of overwhelming when it came together," Gordon said. "Here I was, 21 years old, going Winston Cup racing with Hendrick Motorsports and DuPont as my sponsor. No pressure there. Then what was really amazing is that they stuck with me beyond '93 because I messed up a lot of paint jobs that year.
"All joking aside, we've been truly privileged to have DuPont as our primary sponsor from the beginning. I think it says a lot about our sport when a sponsor like DuPont commits itself the way it has through at least 2005.
"Their commitment to this sport has been tremendous and the support they have shown this No. 24 team through good times and bad and all of the changes we've had really means a lot.
"We not only look forward to their continuing support, we look forward to continuing the relationships that we have built with the people from DuPont and their customers. We couldn't ask for a better group of people to be associated with."