It took long enough, but Monster Energy is staying as the sponsor of NASCAR’s Cup Series for another season.
The energy drink and NASCAR announced a one-year extension Tuesday afternoon. Monster signed a two-year deal to sponsor the Cup Series starting in 2017 with a two-year option to follow. That option has been reduced to a single season.
“NASCAR and Monster Energy enjoyed a productive first year and both parties have benefited significantly from the partnership,” NASCAR COO Steve Phelps said in a statement. “Monster Energy successfully utilized our sport as a platform to elevate its brand and drive business, while introducing NASCAR to new audiences. With this renewal, we look forward to building upon our early success.”
Monster got multiple extensions on its deadline to decide if it would stay as the Cup Series’ sponsor past the 2018 season.
The energy drink replaced longtime sponsor Sprint, which took over the sponsorship of NASCAR’s No. 1 series when the company merged with Nextel. Nextel began sponsoring the Cup Series in 2004, succeeding Winston, which had sponsored NASCAR’s top level since 1972.
A sport with an aging fanbase, NASCAR has touted Monster’s sponsorship as a way to reach younger fans. If NASCAR is getting new young fans, the gains in that demographic are being canceled out elsewhere. All of the Cup Series’ races so far in 2018 have had declining television audiences, a continuation of a years-long trend.
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Nick Bromberg is a writer for Yahoo Sports.
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