Finding solid sponsorship in NASCAR is a hard enough job as it is, but throw in a tough economy and it becomes a constant struggle for even the best of teams.
Yet at a time when other organizations seem to be searching for answers, Stewart-Haas Racing is succeeding in not only attracting new sponsors to the organization, but also to the sport of NASCAR.
The team announced Tuesday afternoon that Quicken Loans would become the primary sponsor on Ryan Newman's No. 39 Chevrolet for nine Sprint Cup Series races in 2012, while joining the organization as an associate sponsor for Newman and teammate and owner Tony Stewart.
And with a few more races left to fill, it appears Outback Steakhouse could be the next new sponsor to join SHR and NASCAR.
With half a dozen or so races left to fill, Newman told SB Nation "there's a chance" Outback could step up to fill that gap, something sources close to the situation indicated is in the process of finalization.
"In this sport, it seems like we've recycled so many sponsors – the Valvolines of the world – so many times with different teams and organizations," Newman said. "It's nice to step out of that box of the 'used and abused' sponsors and have Quicken Loans be a part of Stewart-Haas Racing and their first experience with NASCAR."
Stewart indicated current sponsors Tornados and U.S. Army have cut back their commitment to the No. 39 car for next season, which allowed Quicken Loans to join the program.
For Newman, the addition of new sponsors to NASCAR is a great indication of where Stewart-Haas stands as an organization.
"I feel like we're in a good situation," Newman said. "I'm really proud of Quicken Loans for multiple reasons. To be new to the sport, to be new to Stewart-Haas, that's something that's difficult to do right now, so we're proud of them for stepping up and supporting us."