Stewart-Haas Racing Adds Aric Almirola to Driver Lineup

Almirola Will Pilot No. 10 Smithfield Ford Fusion Beginning in 2018

KANNAPOLIS, N.C. (Nov. 8, 2017) – Stewart-Haas Racing has signed Aric Almirola to join its Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series lineup in 2018. The 33-year-old from Tampa, Florida, will drive the team’s No. 10 Smithfield Ford Fusion.

Almirola has won races in each of NASCAR’s top-three national touring series and is currently in his sixth full season in the premier NASCAR Cup Series. Almirola has one NASCAR Cup Series victory, three NASCAR Xfinity Series wins and two NASCAR Camping World Truck Series triumphs.

“I’ve known Aric since 2004 and have always been impressed with him on the racetrack,” said Tony Stewart, who co-owns Stewart-Haas Racing with Haas Automation founder Gene Haas. “I’ve raced with him and seen him mature into a really good racecar driver. He can compete for wins here at Stewart-Haas Racing and help our other drivers compete for wins. He’s an excellent fit for this team and for Smithfield.”

“This is the opportunity every racer wants,” Almirola said. “Stewart-Haas Racing is an experienced organization with a lot of depth, great technical support from Ford, and staffed with racers from top to bottom. They lean on each other, challenge each other and make each other better. I’m really looking forward to being a part of that.

“I’ve known Tony Stewart since our time together at Joe Gibbs Racing. I know what he expects and he knows my commitment. I can’t thank him and Smithfield enough for believing in me and providing this opportunity.”

“This is a great moment for Aric, and Smithfield is very happy to be a part of it because it’s a great opportunity for our company,” said John Pauley, executive vice president of sales and marketing, Smithfield. “Obviously, we strongly believe in Aric’s ability and that of Stewart-Haas Racing, and those abilities transcend the racetrack. They want to consistently run up front and contend for wins, but they’re also very interested in helping us win in the marketplace. This is a strong partnership with outgoing personalities who are driven to succeed.”

Almirola’s path to NASCAR started in his home state of Florida, beginning in karting in 1992 before advancing to open-wheel modifieds in 2000 and then late-model stock cars in 2002. In late 2003 at Hickory (N.C.) Motor Speedway, Almirola participated in a driver combine for Joe Gibbs Racing and was ultimately selected as one of the first two drivers for Gibbs’ diversity program, which launched in 2004. Almirola became a teammate of Stewart’s, who was in his sixth year as a NASCAR Cup Series driver and only two years removed from the first of his three NASCAR Cup Series championships.

Nine wins and 11 poles during the 2004-2005 seasons of the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series allowed Almirola to advance from local short tracks in the southeast to a fulltime, national schedule in the Camping World Truck Series in 2006. A handful of Xfinity Series starts also came in 2006, and Almirola’s NASCAR Cup Series debut took place on March 11, 2007 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, three days shy of his 23rd birthday.

About Smithfield Foods:

Smithfield Foods is a $15 billion global food company and the world’s largest pork processor and hog producer. In the United States, the company is also the leader in numerous packaged meats categories with popular brands including Smithfield®, Eckrich®, Nathan’s Famous®, Farmland®, Armour®, John Morrell®, Cook’s®, Kretschmar®, Gwaltney®, Curly’s®, Margherita®, Carando®, Healthy Ones®, Krakus®, Morliny® and Berlinki®. Smithfield Foods is committed to providing good food in a responsible way and maintains robust animal care, community involvement, employee safety, environmental and food safety and quality programs. For more information, visit www.smithfieldfoods.com.

About Stewart-Haas Racing:

Stewart-Haas Racing is the title-winning NASCAR team co-owned by three-time Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series champion Tony Stewart and Gene Haas, founder of Haas Automation – the largest CNC machine tool builder in North America. The organization fields four entries in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series – the No. 4 Ford Fusion for Kevin Harvick, the No. 10 Ford Fusion for Danica Patrick, the No. 14 Ford Fusion for Clint Bowyer and the No. 41 Ford Fusion for Kurt Busch. The team also competes in the NASCAR XFINITY Series by fielding a full time entry – the No. 00 Ford Mustang for Cole Custer – and one part-time entry – the No. 41 Ford Mustang. Based in Kannapolis, North Carolina, Stewart-Haas Racing operates out of a 200,000-square-foot facility with nearly 370 employees. For more information, please visit us on the Web at  www.StewartHaasRacing.com, on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/StewartHaasRacing, on Twitter @StewartHaasRcng and on Instagram @StewartHaasRacing.

-SHR-

Contact Mike Arning with True Speed Communication on behalf of Stewart-Haas Racing

(704) 875-3388, ext. 802 or [email protected]

Smithfield Foods Joining Stewart-Haas Racing in 2018

KANNAPOLIS, N.C., (Sept. 12, 2017) – Smithfield Foods Inc., a global food company and the world’s largest pork processor and hog producer, announced earlier today it will join Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR) as a primary team sponsor beginning in 2018. Details of the agreement, including the driver who will be added to SHR’s Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series lineup in 2018, will be provided at a later date.

“We’re very proud to have Smithfield Foods join the Stewart-Haas Racing family,” said Brett Frood, president, SHR. “Smithfield has activated heavily and successfully within the sport, and we’re honored to be a part of the brand’s forward initiatives and strategy. Although we’re not ready to announce the full details of the program, we look forward to this new endeavor while remaining focused on the upcoming playoffs and putting forth the best effort possible to win more races and contend for another championship.”

About Stewart-Haas Racing:

Stewart-Haas Racing is the title-winning NASCAR team co-owned by three-time Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series champion Tony Stewart and Gene Haas, founder of Haas Automation – the largest CNC machine tool builder in North America. The organization fields four entries in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series – the No. 4 Ford Fusion for Kevin Harvick, the No. 10 Ford Fusion for Danica Patrick, the No. 14 Ford Fusion for Clint Bowyer and the No. 41 Ford Fusion for Kurt Busch. The team also competes in the NASCAR XFINITY Series by fielding a full time entry – the No. 00 Ford Mustang for Cole Custer – and one part-time entry – the No. 41 Ford Mustang. Based in Kannapolis, North Carolina, Stewart-Haas Racing operates out of a 200,000-square-foot facility with more than 300 employees. For more information, please visit us on the Web at  www.StewartHaasRacing.com, on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/StewartHaasRacing, on Twitter @StewartHaasRcng and on Instagram @StewartHaasRacing.

Contact Mike Arning with True Speed Communication on behalf of Stewart-Haas Racing

(704) 875-3388, ext. 802 or [email protected]

Hunt Brothers® Pizza Expands Partnership with Stewart-Haas Racing

– Harvick To Pilot No. 41 Hunt Brothers Pizza Ford Mustang in NASCAR XFINITY Series

– Hunt Brothers Pizza Will Serve as an Associate Sponsor of Harvick’s No. 4 Ford Fusion in Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series and Cole Custer’s No. 00 Ford Mustang in XFINITY Series –

– Hunt Brothers Pizza is the Official Pizza of Stewart-Haas Racing

KANNAPOLIS, N.C., (Jan. 5, 2017) – Hunt Brothers Pizza, the No. 1 made-to-order pizza brand in convenience stores across the United States, is expanding its partnership with Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR) to include a four-race sponsorship of Kevin Harvick in the NASCAR XFINITY Series.

Hunt Brothers Pizza has been involved with SHR since 2014, serving as an associate sponsor of Harvick and the No. 4 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series team while also being the official pizza of SHR.

As SHR expands its operation into the XFINITY Series for the first time in 2017, Hunt Brothers Pizza will be the primary sponsor of Harvick’s No. 41 Ford Mustang April 8 at Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth, May 27 at Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway, July 7 at Kentucky Speedway in Sparta and Sept. 2 at Darlington (S.C.) Raceway. Hunt Brothers Pizza will also serve as an associate sponsor of SHR’s No. 00 Ford Mustang driven by XFINITY Series rookie-of-the-year contender Cole Custer.

“NASCAR has been a strong platform for Hunt Brothers Pizza thanks to the roles Kevin Harvick and Stewart-Haas Racing have played in representing our brand,” said Keith Solsvig, vice president of marketing, Hunt Brothers Pizza. “NASCAR fans love to travel and visit convenience stores. We want to continue to show our appreciation to our store partners and their consumers. Having our own Hunt Brothers Pizza Ford Mustang on the racetrack with a partner like Kevin is a great way to showcase how we constantly strive for excellence.”

Prior to winning the 2014 NASCAR Cup Series championship, Harvick won two XFINITY Series titles in 2001 and 2006. The 41-year-old from Bakersfield, California, has 46 XFINITY Series wins to augment his 35 NASCAR Cup Series victories.

“I’ve always enjoyed competing in the XFINITY Series,” Harvick said. “With Stewart-Haas Racing starting a new program, I’m excited to be a part of the building process because it will make us stronger going forward as a company. I’m proud to continue working with Hunt Brothers Pizza and seeing their colors on my Ford Mustang.”

Hunt Brothers Pizza became involved in NASCAR as a team partner in 2008 where the company sponsored Haas CNC Racing, the precursor of SHR. Hunt Brothers Pizza aligned with Harvick in 2011, and 2017 marks its seventh year with the veteran driver.

For more information about Hunt Brothers Pizza or to locate a store near you, visit HuntBrothersPizza.com. Follow Hunt Brothers Pizza on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram for news and current promotions.

About Hunt Brothers Pizza:
With more than 7,300 locations in 28 states, Hunt Brothers Pizza is the nation’s largest brand of made-to-order pizza in the convenience store industry. Prefect for today’s on-the-go lifestyle, Hunt Brothers Pizza offers original and thin crust pizzas with All Toppings No Extra Charge®, breakfast pizzas, cheesebread and marinara dipping sauce, plus Hunt Brothers Pizza Wings and WingBites®. Headquartered in Nashville, Tennessee, Hunt Brothers Pizza is family-owned and operated and for more than 25 years has offered all of the food products, marketing programs, equipment and training convenience stores need to operate their own turnkey pizza program.

About Stewart-Haas Racing:
Stewart-Haas Racing is the title-winning NASCAR team co-owned by three-time Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series champion Tony Stewart and Gene Haas, founder of Haas Automation – the largest CNC machine tool builder in North America. The organization fields four entries in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series – the No. 4 Ford Fusion for Kevin Harvick, the No. 10 Ford Fusion for Danica Patrick, the No. 14 Ford Fusion for Clint Bowyer and the No. 41 Ford Fusion for Kurt Busch. The team also competes in the NASCAR XFINITY Series by fielding a full time entry – the No. 00 Ford Mustang for Cole Custer – and one part-time entry – the No. 41 Ford Mustang. Based in Kannapolis, North Carolina, Stewart-Haas Racing operates out of a 200,000-square-foot facility with more than 300 employees. For more information, please visit us on the Web at  www.StewartHaasRacing.com, on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/StewartHaasRacing, on Twitter @StewartHaasRcng and on Instagram @StewartHaasRacing.

Motorsports Industry Honors Tony Stewart with Sizeable Charitable Donation On His Behalf to EB Research Partnership

LAS VEGAS – To honor three-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion Tony Stewart as he retires from his 20-year NASCAR driving career, the motorsports industry came together in unprecedented fashion at the season-ending NASCAR Awards Banquet by making a $1.8 million contribution on Stewart’s behalf to the EB Research Partnership, the largest global non-profit dedicating to curing EB.

EB, or Epidermolysis Bullosa, is a devastating skin disorder. Those with EB lack critical proteins that bind the layers of skin together. Without these proteins, the skin can tear apart, blister and sheer off, leading to severe pain, disfigurement and wounds that never heal. EB can also affect the body internally, causing blisters in the eyes, mouth, esophagus and the fusing together of fingers and toes. EB affects one in every 50,000 births and is not specific to any ethnicity or gender, but because it only affects an estimated 25-30,000 people in the United States, advancing research to combat this disease relies on the generosity of individuals and corporations.

The industry initially targeted a $1.4 million donation to the EB Research Partnership as a subtle nod to Stewart’s No. 14 car number, which he drove to his third Sprint Cup title in 2011 and chose in honor of his hero and friend, the iconic A.J. Foyt who raced the No. 14 throughout his versatile career. However, widespread support for this initiative quickly gained momentum and the original $1.4 million target was easily surpassed.

“Tony wanted to have a very low-key sendoff during his final NASCAR season and he was pretty emphatic about it. He certainly earned a lot of recognition for all that he accomplished, and as an industry we felt it was important to honor him,” said Mike Helton, vice chairman, NASCAR. “People know how passionate he is about motorsports, but he’s equally passionate about helping others. On behalf of the entire motorsports industry, we felt this collective donation in Tony’s name was a fitting tribute to all that he’s accomplished during his NASCAR career.”

Well known for his accolades on the racetrack, which includes 12 driving championships and victories in nearly every American-based racing series, Stewart is also known for his philanthropy.

In 2003, he formed his own charitable foundation. Known simply as the Tony Stewart Foundation, the 501(c)(3) organization’s goal is to raise funds primarily distributed to serving three specific groups – chronically ill and physically disabled children, animals that are endangered or at-risk, and drivers injured in the sport of motor racing. To date, the Foundation has awarded more than $6.5 million to assist charitable initiatives for more than 150 well-qualified organizations throughout the United States.

Stewart’s work on behalf of the foundation crossed paths with his love for music earlier this year when he met Pearl Jam frontman Eddie Vedder. The two discussed their work in racing and in music, respectively, before the conversation dovetailed into their mutual commitment to charity. It was here where Stewart learned about EB from an impassioned Vedder, who co-founded the EB Research Partnership.

“When I first heard about it, it was quite hard to grasp the intensity of the condition,” Vedder said. “It’s about the most insane skin disorder you could imagine. And when you realize it also affects the internal organs, you see it as diabolical. It’s very hard to describe until you meet the young folks with it, and they make you realize how much you take for granted. You also realize that these are some of the strongest, coolest, most admirable people on the face of the Earth.”

The tenacious and sometimes cantankerous demeanor Stewart carries at the racetrack vanishes when he is off the track and in the presence of children, especially those who face physical and mental challenges. Children fighting EB have a perseverance and strength that is unworldly, and it has resonated with Stewart.

“The pain these kids face is constant, and yet they still find ways to stay upbeat,” Stewart said. “You quickly realize that your idea of a bad day is nothing. It puts your life and the things you take for granted in perspective. But it also makes you mad, because this is a devastating disorder that no one should have to endure. Yet it exists, and after seeing it, you want to do anything you can to make it go away.”

Stewart’s $1.8 million donation to the EB Research Partnership will accelerate life-changing research and reduce the timeframe of getting results for children with EB, while ensuring treatments go to those in need as swiftly as possible.

This donation on Stewart’s behalf is an embodiment of all the philanthropic work Stewart has performed as a NASCAR driver. He never sought accolades for his work, but his charitable efforts have been noticed nonetheless.

Stewart was named “Most Caring Athlete” by USA Weekend in 2004 and in that same year was selected by The Sporting News as “NASCAR’s ‘Good Guy’” and received the NASCAR USG Person of the Year award. In 2008, NASCAR Illustrated bestowed upon Stewart its Person of the Year award, as Stewart’s Prelude To The Dream all-star dirt Late Model race at Eldora Speedway in Rossburg, Ohio, raised more than $4 million for charity during its eight-year run. In 2009, Stewart was nominated for the National Motorsports Press Association’s (NMPA) Humanitarian and Spirit awards, each of which recognizes philanthropy. In 2010, Stewart again was a finalist for the NMPA Humanitarian award, becoming the only person to ever be nominated in back-to-back years. Making the 2010 selection even more noteworthy was that Stewart won and earned $100,000 for his Foundation. And in 2013, Stewart earned the prestigious NMPA Myers Brothers award, which recognizes outstanding contributions to the sport of stock car racing.

“Tony’s legacy on the track is known and respected, but his efforts off the track should be known as well, even though he’ll never be the one talking about them,” Helton said. “Tony Stewart is a true humanitarian, and this sport is better off thanks to him and all of his contributions. It’s only appropriate that we, as an industry, can contribute to Tony’s philanthropic endeavors.”

To learn more about the EB Research Partnership, please visit www.EBResearch.org or www.Facebook.com/EBResearch. And to learn more about the Tony Stewart Foundation, please visit www.TonyStewartFoundation.org or www.facebook.com/14TSF.