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Circuit City drops sponsorship

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Circuit City drops sponsorship
Jun 14, 1998, 12:19 PM

Circuit City drops sponsorship of No. 8 Brett Borden BROOKLYN, Mich. (June 14, 1998) Circuit City, primary sponsor of the No. 8 Chevrolet since the beginning of the 1996 season, has pulled out of the NASCAR Winston Cup Series in that capacity, ...

Circuit City drops sponsorship of No. 8 Brett Borden

BROOKLYN, Mich. (June 14, 1998) Circuit City, primary sponsor of the No. 8 Chevrolet since the beginning of the 1996 season, has pulled out of the NASCAR Winston Cup Series in that capacity, effective after Sunday's Miller Lite 400 at Michigan Speedway.

The Stavola Brothers Racing team has struggled this season, qualifying for only eight of 14 NASCAR Winston Cup Series races.

Ironically, the move comes after one of the team's strongest qualifying performances of the season. Morgan Shepherd started the Miller Lite 400 26th on Sunday after posting the fastest time in Bud Second-Round Qualifying. His speed was actually the fastest posted in either session, but he was relegated to 26th after the first 25 positions were set on Friday.

"Circuit City remains the official electronics and appliance store of NASCAR and also a founding sponsor of DAYTONA USA," said Circuit City sports marketing manager Frank Burchfield. "Circuit City believes in NASCAR 100%. Just because we don't have the No. 8 car any more doesn't mean by any means we're out of this sport. We're simply going to concentrate our effort on that official status and DAYTONA USA for now. For the '99 season we'll look at all options for associate and primary sponsorship."

Burchfield indicated that he had talked with team owner Billy Stavola over the weekend and that Stavola was planning on reorganizing the team.

"He's looking at running a 12-race schedule," said Burchfield. "As far as a driver to put in the car I don't know."

After failing to qualify for the season-opening Daytona 500, the Circuit City team qualified 10th for the GM Goodwrench Service Plus 400 at Rockingham with Hut Stricklin in the driver's seat. A valve problem led to a 29th-place finish, and in the next six races with Stricklin the team made the field five times but failed to finish better than 31st.

Stricklin was released by the team, and interim driver Buckshot Jones made the field for the MBNA Platinum 400 at Dover Downs International Speedway, the 12th race on the schedule. Jones started 19th and gave the team its only top-10 finish of the season, placing eighth.

Jones signed on for a two-race deal, but at Richmond, he failed to qualify for the Pontiac Excitement 400.

"Our relationship with Billy has been great," Burchfield said. "It has been one of the best sponsor-owner relationships in the business. We mutually agreed to part ways under very good terms."

The veteran Shepherd signed a one-race deal to drive the car in the Miller Lite 400. The team has officially withdrawn its entry for the Pocono 500 next weekend at Pocono Raceway.

Source: NASCAR Online

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Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Morgan Shepherd , Buckshot Jones , Hut Stricklin