RIDGEWAY, Va. – When Jimmie Johnson’s quest for an eighth championship begins next season, he’ll have a brand-new, full-season sponsor on his No. 48 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1.
Sunday morning, it was announced that Ally Financial will join Hendrick Motorsports as the whole-season primary sponsor of Johnson’s No. 48 team in 2019 and 2020.
“It’s massive,” Johnson said. “I think the statement it sends is unreal. To have a primary sponsor for all the races for two years, hasn’t happened for a long time. So, I commend Ally.”
Johnson, Hendrick Motorsports owner Rick Hendrick and Ally CEO Jeffrey Brown joined NBC Sports Network’s pre-race show to make the announcement.
“They are just a class act,” Hendrick said of Ally. “I’m really proud that Jeff Brown, the CEO, is here today to make this announcement the way we did.”
Brown noted that while the partnership announced Sunday is a two-year agreement, he hopes it will develop into a long-term commitment.
The partnership will feature the leading digital financial services company on the champion driver’s cars across the entire 38-race NASCAR schedule, beginning with 2019 Daytona Speedweeks and the 61st running of the Daytona 500.
Hendrick noted that it didn’t take Ally very long to decide to sponsor the No. 48 team for the entire season, and Brown agreed that it was an easy decision.
“I think it’s simple,” the Ally CEO said. “I talked about our philosophy and our mantra is really ‘do it right,’ and if we are going to do something, we are going to do it right.”
The significance of the full-season partnership was not lost on Johnson.
“To enter this new chapter in my racing career and have one sponsor once again I think says a lot about Hendrick Motorsports and the value of this No. 48 car and also our sport,” the seven-time champion said.
“I feel that this is really, really a good fit. They really want to support me as an individual and the things that I’m into and why I love racing. So, out of the gate, from a primary standpoint, this is a home run.
The feeling is mutual on Ally’s side of the table, and Brown said the company can’t wait to get to work with a driver of Johnson’s caliber.
“He obviously has seven championships – we are going to be excited to be there as part of number eight and maybe even number nine,” he said. “He is just an incredible guy and we are fired up for what this means for our brand and for our company and where we take this partnership going forward.”