Harrah's to sponsor Texas event

FORT WORTH-DALLAS (Nov. 17, 2000) - The 2001 NASCAR Winston Cup race at Texas Motor Speedway will have a new name - The Harrah's 500. "We are pleased to welcome Harrah's Entertainment, Inc. to our group of sponsors," said speedway general manager...

FORT WORTH-DALLAS (Nov. 17, 2000) - The 2001 NASCAR Winston Cup race at Texas Motor Speedway will have a new name - The Harrah's 500. "We are pleased to welcome Harrah's Entertainment, Inc. to our group of sponsors," said speedway general manager Eddie Gossage. "They are a company recognized around the world and will be a great promotional partner for us. They are actively involved in several racing series so it only makes sense that they would want to branch out and sponsor the race that draws the second-largest crowd and the second-highest television ratings of the NASCAR Winston Cup season."

"This sponsorship of the 2001 Harrah's 500 is a logical next step in our evolving participation in motorsports," said Gary Loveman, Harrah's Entertainment Chief Operating Officer.

"The Harrah's 500 will reinforce our brand with race fans in the Dallas-Ft.Worth area, which is a key feeder market for our Harrah's and Rio facilities in Las Vegas and our Shreveport and Lake Charles casinos in Louisiana. The timing is especially right, with the February 2001 opening of our new 500-room hotel in Shreveport, approximately one month prior to the race. Further, the sponsorship provides us the opportunity to entertain up to 1,000 people at the race, thus strengthening relationships with our best customers."

The entertainment giant was able to strike a deal with former sponsor, DIRECTV, to take over the remaining year of the sponsorship of the Texas race.

"PRIMESTAR began sponsoring this race in 1999," said Gossage. "DIRECTV became the sponsor this year after acquiring PRIMESTAR, but the company does not have any plans for marketing through motorsports at this time. With our blessing, Harrah's acquired this sponsorship from DIRECTV. Harrah's has been working hard to have a major presence in motorsports, so this was the perfect solution for all parties involved."

Harrah's currently sponsors both of A.J. Foyt's Indy cars competing in the Indy Racing Northern Light Series. They also recently announced sponsorship of a car in the NASCAR Busch Series for Larry Foyt, A.J.'s 23-year-old son.

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Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Larry Foyt , A.J. Foyt