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Tony Stewart's team loses key sponsor

Stewart's other primary backer for the remaining 14 Sprint Cup races, Mobil 1, recently confirmed an extension of its existing contract and will still be with the team next year.

The team had been hoping to expand to a three-car line-up in 2013 with Danica Patrick expected to step up from Nationwide to a full-time presence in Sprint Cup after getting her feet wet with 10 Cup races this season. Patrick brings her own sponsorship backing for the #10 from long-time supporters GoDaddy.com.

However, with both Stewart and Newman now with big gaps in their financial backing it's looking increasingly likely that the team will have only be able to afford one of them to run alongside Patrick. And with Stewart the proven champion and moreover the co-owner of the team with Carl Haas, it's looking increasingly unlikely that Ryan Newman might be without a race seat next season after missing this year's Chase.

Stewart said that he was "praying" that he could still field three cars in 2013, while Arning added the sales pitch to any sponsors who might be listening

"When a brand partners with Stewart and the #14 team, they also get access to Ryan Newman and Danica Patrick, as well as a presence at Eldora Speedway and primary sponsorship on the Sprint Cars and dirt Late Models that Stewart runs for fun," Arning pointed out. "Stewart has won nine of these kinds of races so far this year, including two in the elite World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series. He also won Denny Hamlin's Late Model charity race at Richmond in April."

It's a great stall the team is laying out. The worry is that if there's no takers for someone of Stewart's obvious appeal and success in the sport, what's going to happen to other teams over the coming months and years as more and more deals come up for reconsideration?




Related Pictures

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Tony Stewart, driver of the #14 Office Depot/Mobil 1 Chevrolet, poses with his pole award after he qualified first during qualifying for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Advocare 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway on Aug. 31, 2012, in Hampton, Ga. (Photo Credit: Tyler Barrick/Getty Images)
Tony Stewart, driver of the #14 Office Depot/Mobil 1 Chevrolet, poses with his pole award after he qualified first during qualifying for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Advocare 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway on Aug. 31, 2012, in Hampton, Ga. (Photo Credit: Tyler Barrick/Getty Images)
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Kurt Busch, driver of the #41 Monster Energy/Haas Automation Chevrolet SS, celebrates with his crew chief, Tony Gibson, after capturing the pole position Friday, March 4, 2016 for Sunday`s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway in Las Vegas, Nevada. Busch set a track record with a fast lap of 196.328 mph. This was his second pole position this season. (Photo by Rusty Jarrett for Chevy Racing)
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Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Busch/Jimmy John`s Stewart-Haas Racing Chevrolet SS and Austin Dillon, driver of the #3 Dow Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet SS race Sunday, February 21, 2016 during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida. Harvick finished 4th and Dillon finished 9th. (Photo by Andrew Coppley for Chevy Racing)
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Chase Elliott, driver of the #24 NAPA Auto Parts Chevrolet, looks on during qualifying for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 14, 2016 in Daytona Beach, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
Austin Dillon, driver of the #3 DOW Chevrolet, Clint Bowyer, driver of the #15 5-hour Energy Chevrolet, Brian Vickers, driver of the #14 Mobil 1 Chevrolet, and Danica Patrick, driver of the #10 Nature`s Bakery Chevrolet, practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Sprint Unlimited at Daytona International Speedway on February 12, 2016 in Daytona Beach, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Photo by Sarah Crabill/NASCAR via Getty Images)
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Kurt Busch, driver of the #41 Haas Automation Chevrolet SS, races to a sixth place finish with Ryan Newman, driver of the #31 Caterpillar Chevrolet SS who finished in eleventh place Sunday, October 18, 2015 in the second round of the Contender 12 NASCAR Sprint Cup Chase race at Kansas Speedway in Kansas City, Kansas. Busch and Newman will join four other Chevy drivers to compete in the final round of Contender 12 next weekend at Talladega Superspeedway in Lincoln, Alabama.  (Photo by Alan Marler/HHP for Chevy Racing)

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