Smithfield to sponsor Almirola for 31 races in 2016


In a sport where business relationships are pivotal to being competitive, Richard Petty Motorsports (RPM) has shown great success, and with that, continue to improve on track. After a successful off-season on the business front, RPM heads into 2016 with a solid foundation while pursuing additional opportunities. The Mooresville, N.C.-based team renewed or expanded all of their current partnerships while adding new partners to their team.

Late last season, RPM and Ford Performance announced their commitment to winning races and championships together in an extension that will see RPM carrying the iconic blue oval in years to come. RPM will continue to have the championship caliber engineering, technology and resources of Ford Performance. Officials from RPM and Ford Performance have worked diligently toward building a mutually beneficial relationship that saw immediate results. They have worked together in the wind tunnel, on aerodynamic packages and on collecting engineering data. The result was increased consistency and performance for the organization.

The No. 43 team and Aric Almirola showed consistency and success on the race track in 2015. All the primary partners on the car have renewed or expanded their relationships with the team, lining them up for a solid footing as they continue to improve on track. Smithfield Foods, a partner since 2013, has once again expanded their partnership with the No. 43 team. They will be the primary partner for 31 races, up from last year’s 29 races, this season and continue to find innovative ways to activate their partnership. Primary partners United States Air Force, STP and the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services’ “Fresh From Florida” campaign all renewed their partnerships with the No. 43 team and Almirola.

With the No. 43 team on stable ground, RPM got to work on building stability for the No. 44 team. Working to fill the gaps last season, the team focused on having a strong foundation for the 2016 season. In addition to announcing the number change from 9 to 44, the team welcomed new driver Brian Scott. Earlier today, RPM announced new partners Albertsons Companies and Shore Lodge for a multi-year partnership that includes 16 primary races.   Twisted Tea continues to see value in their relationship and expanded their program to include three primary races as well as their associate partnership with the team.

All of the additions, expansions and renewals give RPM a good foundation to kick off the 2016 season. The added stability allowed the team to expand from hanging their own bodies to building chassis as well. This will allow the team to innovate with their race cars and make quicker adjustments as they work with the new Ford Fusion body and new NASCAR rules package.

“We continued to make solid progress during the 2015 season on and off the track and really set our sights on building a solid foundation to kick off the 2016 season,” said Brian Moffitt, Chief Executive Officer. “We’ve seen organic growth with all of our partners and continue to add new companies to our team. It makes me proud that companies continue to see a return on their investment with us and are growing right alongside of us. We are definitely making big strides to see that winning tradition of the Petty family return today, and I think that can happen this season.”