By Seth Eggert, Staff Writer
The potential blank space on Richard Petty Motorsports No. 43 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 is slowly being filled in. With World Wide Technology (WWT) announcing a six-race sponsorship of Darrell ‘Bubba’ Wallace, Jr., the team has fewer races that they need to sell.
RPM has had several sponsors on Wallace’s Chevrolet this season including Click n’ Close (three-plus race deal), NASCAR Racing Experience, The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas, STP (three race deal), Smithfield’s partners (8-10 race agreement) Farmer John and Food Lion, Petty’s Garage, and Medallion Bank. Smithfield partner Eckrich will adorn Wallace’s No. 43 this weekend at Dover International Speedway. The United States Air Force (two races) and WWT will make their first appearances in the coming weeks.
“We still have probably six to eight races that we need partnership on,” RPM CEO Brian Moffitt said. “But Andy (Murstein) and Richard have made the commitment. So, we may see Petty’s Garage and Medallion Bank on for a few more races throughout the year, but we’re committed to seeing this through. We’re looking forward to hopefully bringing on some new partners, maybe in a few weeks.”
Some of RPM’s sponsors have been contracted on a race-to-race or year-to-year basis (the U.S. Air Force for example). This could cause some uncertainty as sponsorship dollars vary throughout the year and from season to season. WWT may be the start of a long-term partnership for RPM, however.
“I don’t know, this year and next year for sure. We’ll go from there,” team co-owner Richard Petty said when asked about the length of the deal.
Prior to this season, RPM had a nearly full-season sponsorship from Smithfield and its’ partners from 2012 through 2017. Smithfield followed Aric Almirola to Stewart-Haas Racing. The split between Smithfield and RPM was rough with a war of words between Petty and Smithfield’s CEO. The two parties settled their differences with Smithfield and its partners sponsoring several races for RPM in 2018.