Pending a settled lawsuit filed by NASCAR team Stewart-Haas Racing claiming that Nature’s Bakery had breached their contract, the baked goods sponsor will return support Danica Patrick.
It’s amusing how quickly something so innocuous can spiral out of control in the realm of NASCAR sponsorship. One would assume that when you’re dealing with the folks behind a fig protein bar company you may find some degree of easy-goingness. Not so for Danica Patrick and Co. Her team, Steward Haas Racing, has only just managed to settle a lawsuit that it had entered with Danica’s former (current?) sponsor, Nature’s Bakery.
— Danica Patrick (@DanicaPatrick) March 24, 2017
In January, Nature’s Bakery delivered a notice to SHR – presumably stamped on a fig bar – saying that they would no longer be sponsoring Danica for the 2017 season. Unfortunately for Nature’s Bakery, SHR bit back hard. The NASCAR team opened up a counter-suit, demanding that the baked goods company pay up the remaining $31 Million of the sponsorship deal, which would have covered the remaining time that Nature’s Bakery had agreed to.
Good news for Danica and Co. then, when their soon-to-be ex-sponsor has turned back around to become a SHR sponsor once again. While the details of the settlement have been kept undisclosed for the time being, it’s easy to assume that Nature’s Bakery have decided to plug the leak that could have become a major problem for the company. Remember folks, litigation ain’t cheap. The closest thing we received from the baked goods sponsor regarding the news of the settlement has not been much more than the standard PR-doctored statement, casting the company in the best light possible:
“We’re proud to enhance our partnership with Feeding America by drawing attention to the organization’s crucial work through placement of its logos on Danica Patrick and Clint Bowyer’s Ford Fusions.
Nature’s Bakery is committed to ‘Baking it up a notch in the fight to end hunger.” – Nature’s Bakery
Although the public-facing statements paint the company in a cheery light, it’s fair to believe that the atmosphere heading into the coming five races with Nature’s Bakery as sponsors will be painfully awkward for all parties involved. The baking company’s initial attempt to pull out of sponsorship comes from the belief that they weren’t receiving enough promotion from either Danica or Clint Bowyer, but we all know full well that there are only so many ways to promote a damn fig bar.
Time flies when you’re having fun. Starting my 26th season of racing!!! pic.twitter.com/ivwIADaawO
— Danica Patrick (@DanicaPatrick) January 19, 2017
Alas, the wheels will continue to turn, and hopefully all parties involved can put their past disagreements behind them and focus on the one thing that matters most: racing. Yet, if Nature’s Bakery do decide their fig brand is still under-represented, they can always adhere a giant sticker to the windshield.