Chip Ganassi Racing has unveiled Scott Dixon‘s 2018 Verizon IndyCar Series #9 Honda, featuring new sponsor’s PNC Bank. The company will be the primary sponsor of Dixon’s car in a number of races over the upcoming season, most notably including the Indianapolis 500 in May.
The news was announced at an event held at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway’s Hall of Fame Museum, with Dixon and Chip Ganassi taking the covers off of the newly-liveried Honda with help from PNC Bank’s CEO, William S. Demchak. The new livery for four-time series champion Dixon features a primarily blue and orange colour scheme, the latest in a series of vibrant cars that have been revealed so far for the 2018 season.
The deal has more of a personal nature to the team’s owner, Ganassi, having had a long history with the company that is based in his home-town of Pittsburgh. Ganassi even went to the same school as PNC Chairman Bill Demchak and was also a customer of the bank in his teenage years:
“As a Pittsburgh native, PNC was a trusted brand I grew up with. I opened up my first account as a teenager and that relationship later expanded to include my business financing,” said Ganassi,
“Our racing team has enjoyed a formal relationship with PNC since 2013 where we have created opportunities to introduce our love of the sport of racing to PNC and their clients. Today’s announcement allows us to expand the fan experience at race tracks across the U.S. and take our two winning brands to a global viewing audience.”
PNC Bank and Chip Ganassi Racing first came together during IndyCar’s 2014 season, with the company coming onboard as an associate sponsor. Today’s announcement will see PNC graduate to a full primary sponsor for the first time.
“Expanding our association with Chip Ganassi Racing and champion driver Scott Dixon brings together two organizations specializing in innovation, determination and a commitment to excellence,” said PNC CEO William S. Demchak.
“As we debut the No. 9 PNC Bank Indy car this season, the global brand visibility and the unique race track experiences we can offer clients around the country will bring new opportunities for us in an industry that attracts an estimated 54 million fans.”
Pre-season testing continues to ramp up for the Verizon IndyCar Series. This week, many teams and drivers will be on track at Arizona’s ISM Raceway for oval testing. For Dixon and Chip Ganassi Racing, there’s added task, as they shall be conducting the first on-track testing of a windscreen in conjunction with IndyCar officials.
When testing at ISM Raceway concludes at the end of this week, just over a month will separate the teams and drivers from the season-opening race of the 2018 Verizon IndyCar Series. The Grand Prix of St Petersburg will take place on March 11.