Square D, Wallace, Petree sign multi-year deal By Shawn A. Akers ASHEVILLE, N.C. (Sept. 3, 1998) Andy Petree Racing and Square D Inc., announced at APR's complex that they have agreed to a three-year deal that will make Square D the primary...
Square D, Wallace, Petree sign multi-year deal By Shawn A. Akers
ASHEVILLE, N.C. (Sept. 3, 1998) Andy Petree Racing and Square D Inc., announced at APR's complex that they have agreed to a three-year deal that will make Square D the primary sponsor on Petree's second entry in the NASCAR Winston Cup Series beginning next season. Kenny Wallace has been signed to be the driver of the new No. 55 Square D Chevrolet.
"Over the last three years of my NASCAR Winston Cup career, the one constant has been my sponsor, Square D Company," Wallace said. "I cannot say enough about them, and I am thrilled to have the opportunity to continue to represent them.
"I have been searching for the right chemistry to take me to the winner's circle. This is an opportunity to join a proven team and work together with a family friend, Ken Schrader. I look forward to helping take APR to the next level of success."
The deal has been expected for quite some time, but was contingent upon Wallace's release from his contract with Filbert Martocci's No. 81 FILMAR Racing Ford team, which is currently sponsored by the supply company based in Palatine, Ill. Martocci granted Wallace his release earlier this week.
Square D had announced recently that it would not return as the primary sponsor on the No. 81 Ford next year. Instead, it chose to follow Wallace to Petree's team. The deal will run through the 2001 season. The three-year deal means that the maker of electrical distribution, control and automation products will continue its successful NASCAR-centered marketing campaign.
Petree, who also fields Skoal Bandit Chevrolets for Schrader, has talked about adding a second team to his operation throughout the 1998 campaign. He joins the ranks of multi-car team owners in the series, joining the most recent owner, Job Gibbs, who announced his second team earlier Thursday.
Work is already in progress to ready a fleet of Square D Chevrolets for the 1999 season. Both teams will be housed in Asheville, but in separate facilities, where ironically, Square D has a large manufacturing plant.
"We're doing a lot of planning right now as we get ready to run a two-car team next year," said Petree, owner and crew chief of Schrader's Chevrolets. "We'll still have Hut (Stricklin) in the 55 car at Daytona in October, and we'll be building cars and buying the equipment needed to field a competitive team when we unload at Daytona in February.
"Square D is going to be great to work with because they already have an excellent understanding of the sport. They realize the challenges of Winston Cup racing, and their support will be a great asset to this race team."
Wallace, who has driven Fords and Pontiacs during his brief NASCAR Winston Cup Series career, will now drive Chevrolet Monte Carlos under the Andy Petree Racing banner.
Beginning in 1995 as an associate sponsor with FILMAR Racing in the NASCAR Busch Series Grand National Division, Wallace won two races for Square D -- the 1995 Hardee's 250 and the 1996 Autolite 250, both at Richmond International Raceway.
Square D then moved up to the NASCAR Winston Cup Series ranks when Wallace made the move, becoming a co-sponsor on Martocci's No. 81 Ford along with TIC Financial Systems. Square D then became the sole primary sponsor on the car in 1997 and '98, and the team has tallied two Bud Poles, one NASCAR Winston West Series Bud Pole and a total of nine top-10 finishes thus far.
"Throughout our four-year association in NASCAR as a team sponsor aligned with Kenny Wallace, Square D has benefited from increased sales via heightened exposure and customers' brand loyalty to Square D products," said Ken Fairleigh, vice president of sales and marketing for Square D. "Our new relationship with Andy Petree Racing is an extension of our commitment to the NASCAR Winston Cup Series and the benefits we enjoy through our sponsorship and hospitality programs."
Source: NASCAR Online