NASCAR & Auto Racing

Hendrick 'very close' on sponsorship deal for Dale Earnhardt Jr.

NASCAR’s most popular driver should have his car fully adorned with sponsorship decals the rest of the year.

In January, Hendrick Motorsports said there remained 13 unsold races on Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s No. 88 Chevrolet for the 2013 season. The races lacking sponsorship were pushed to the second half of the season.

Team owner Rick Hendrick on Monday said HMS was “very close” to a new multi-year sponsorship deal for Earnhardt’s ride in the Sprint Cup Series.

“I’ve not been worried about it because we could sell it if we wanted to piecemeal it. We’ve been looking for the future,” Hendrick told the Charlotte Observer.

“We don’t want to get into (sponsor relationships) where you see somebody one time and you don’t seem them anymore after that.

“I am very confident that in the next couple of weeks we should have not only this year (covered) but we should have a lot done for next year, too.”

Hendrick said in January he has had companies interested in sponsoring Earnhardt for the entire season but that would conflict with the organization’s current sponsor contracts. The majority of the No. 88's season is currently sponsored by the National Guard, Diet Mountain Dew and AMP Energy.