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CASTROL LEAVING FORCE AT END OF 2014 SEASON

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JFR_JForce-speed_Epping_Nastase640After 29 years together, Castrol has announced it will be withdrawing its sponsorship of John Force Racing after the 2014 season.

“John Force has been the ultimate ambassador for the Castrol brand and we are grateful for his passion and dedication,” said Rich Pond, head of US marketing for Castrol, “but after 29 successful years, we have decided to pursue new ways to engage with our consumers and customers, while still celebrating the superiority of Castrol motor oils.”

John Force

John Force

During this partnership, Force and his organization have captured a record 17 NHRA Funny Car championships with 15 won by John himself, including 10 in a row.  That is a record that no other sports team or athlete in the world has accomplished.

“Castrol has been with me for so long now, they really are part of the JFR family,” John Force said. “They’ve been there as my daughters have grown up with the Castrol name on all those cars for all those years. It’s gonna be tough to part ways, but I want to thank them for being a great partner.

“All of us are going to stay focused on the rest of the 2013 season and on winning a final championship for Castrol in 2014.  It’s far from over.  We’ve had a great past but I believe we also have a great future.  I’m just going to keep doing my job and we’ll see who’s ready to be part of our success going forward.”

Through the end of their current agreement in 2014, both John and Brittany Force will continue to represent the Castrol brand.

“John will always be part of Castrol’s heritage and we will be working closely with John Force Racing to assure a smooth transition” Pond said.  “We look forward to celebrating Castrol’s successful relationship with John Force Racing throughout the 2014 season.”

(Photos courtesy JFR; NHRA/National Dragster; Click to enlarge)

Comments

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43 Comments

  1. Bob Steele

    August 20, 2013 at 1:33 PM

    WOW…first Ford and now Castrol. Is the economy so bad that marketing partners are being forced out of the very sports that typify their target demo.

  2. mike covelli

    August 20, 2013 at 1:36 PM

    castrol another sell out!

  3. Daisy Masminster

    August 20, 2013 at 1:52 PM

    They are making a mistake, John Force is the best thing that ever happened to Drag Racing.

  4. JOHN BURTON SR

    August 20, 2013 at 1:53 PM

    ALL I CAN SAY IS IT WILL BE THEY’RE LOST BECAUSE JFR IS THE FACE AND NAME OF NHRA AMONGST OTHER’S SHUMACHER WELL WHO WILL BE ON THE SIDE OF OUR CAR’S WELL WE WILL JUST WAIT AND SEE BUT FOR NOW LET’S GO GET THEM WALLY’S

  5. Butch

    August 20, 2013 at 1:54 PM

    I’ve used Castrol and drove and raced Fords all my life but I guess that will all end. Not that it will hurt either of them but I will feel better. lol

    • jim

      August 20, 2013 at 9:01 PM

      You don’t sound that old(all my life)and I’m sure they won’t miss all your life business !!

  6. Bob

    August 20, 2013 at 2:13 PM

    The big teams are too big drag racing is a bore this can only help drag racing IMHO

  7. Bob

    August 20, 2013 at 2:27 PM

    I believe Castrol makes a very good oil, as a engine builder I know so do many other companies. I’ve choose Castrol because they back John Force, I hope their marketing dept understands how many people like me are out here. John will survive and of course continue to dominate

  8. bob meluskey sr

    August 20, 2013 at 2:28 PM

    big business is big business besides Ford is only for the body style in a funny car all of the engines are a clone of the mopar hemi anywayso they really aren’t Ford Powered they aren’t like the days when the snake and sneaky pete robinson ran the good ole ford sohc in top fuel that was a real Ford

  9. Dave

    August 20, 2013 at 2:29 PM

    The Pro Drag Classes have gotten way to expensive to compete in. The amount of cash it takes to make 1 lone pass in a nitro car tops 6000 dollars with nothing getting broken. Fuel to feed the semi tractors that haul race to workshop to race to workshop or a show has got to be a huge cost also. I realized years ago when I saw Detroit’s Jack Ostrander who raced a Top Fueler for many years tell how expensive it was on his own dime. I knew someday the economy just would not hold and corporate monies were going to be harder and harder to get. As the speeds of these monsters has rose so have technology costs, which takes us into parts costs. I hate to imagine Auto Racing without these straight line warriors but I do believe its heading into the sunset.

  10. Mark

    August 20, 2013 at 3:12 PM

    Driven (no pun) people always find a way. I am sure there will be many sponsors waiting in-line to join JFR. All great things must come to and end and with that said “one door closes and a new door opens”. I would wish JFR good luck but the good news is they make their own!

  11. Marty Dunn

    August 20, 2013 at 3:13 PM

    Well, I will be dropping Castrol….I may be only one vote….but for almost 30 years I have bought nothing but Castrol….So I will be voting with my wallet too….Bye Castrol.

  12. Mike

    August 20, 2013 at 3:15 PM

    Is it a coincidence that Ford and Castrol pull the plug right after Courtney bares all in that magazine?

    I like seeing naked females as much as any man, but I don’t think that stunt did the sport any favors at all. In my mind it was a despicable act merely to draw attention.

    Be careful what you wish for, you may actually get it, and the result may be…unpredictable.

    • jim

      August 20, 2013 at 9:05 PM

      I agree with you Mike !!

    • Christina

      August 20, 2013 at 10:43 PM

      I was thinking the same thing. Not good for the sport. They supposedly supported the decision, but it’s the timing is awfully coincidental.

      • Christina

        August 20, 2013 at 10:44 PM

        typo on previous comment – but the timing is awfully coincidental.

  13. Rich Pauza

    August 20, 2013 at 4:33 PM

    Will this finally be the wake up call nhra needs..? Or will Nitro Drag Racing just become a Billionaire’s hobbie…??

  14. Jack

    August 20, 2013 at 4:57 PM

    It’s all about the exposure (and I dont mean Courtney). Or, lack thereof. The poor economy is likely not helping either. Im not by any means a JFR fan or supporter, but they do run a top notch team with some of the best tuners in the business. If there were any team out there I would want promoting my company, it would be them. And I say that from a business standpoint only. It’s concerning to see the big companies pulling out, but its happened to everybody. They have been fortunate to have had Castrol backing them for as long as they have. Hopefully, for them they find a major sponsor and can keep doing what they do. One more thing I feel didn’t help was the over exposure of John’s daughter. This is a personal opinion, but you cant tell me this didn’t ruffle a few feathers in a negative way.

  15. GARY G

    August 20, 2013 at 5:49 PM

    I’VE USED CASTROL EVER SINCE THEY STATED WITH JOHN FORCE RACING BUT IF THEY LEAVE JFR I’LL STOP USING THEIR OIL AND I KNOW MANY OTHERS WILL ALSO THAT FOLLOWS DRAG RACING THIS WILL HURT THEM IN THE LONG RUN…

  16. Bob

    August 20, 2013 at 6:50 PM

    NHRA has become so boring they are losing fans and followers everyday. Ford, Castrol and other sponsors are leaving to invest their marketing dollars where the fan base is growing. NHRA had better do something to turn this sport around or there won’t be any NHRA left!

  17. Darrin Howitt

    August 20, 2013 at 7:18 PM

    John Force,love him or hate him has been the greatest ambassador of nhra and drag racing.Nhra would be nothing without him and his teams.Castrol will be very sorry they made this decision.As of today i will no longer be using castrol products in my fleet of vehicles!! I support those who support drag racing!

  18. J..D. Coppedge

    August 20, 2013 at 7:23 PM

    Anyone else thinking about the ESPN magazine photos besides me ?

  19. Michael Pavlov

    August 20, 2013 at 7:33 PM

    That is just wrong on Castrol’s part, I use Castrol exclusively in my race car but will be looking for another brand, John Force is an icon in drag racing and to be abandoned by a major sponser just isn’t right..

  20. jimmy granlund

    August 20, 2013 at 9:15 PM

    now more castrol for me,

  21. David

    August 20, 2013 at 9:37 PM

    If you are a man and didn’t like Courtney’s pictures, you must be gay… That is all.

  22. Dave

    August 20, 2013 at 10:05 PM

    Well,,, The next time somebody tells me that the economy is recovering I will bitch slap em !

  23. April

    August 20, 2013 at 10:56 PM

    NHRA is not going anywhere. Their are to many drag racing fans. Also John posed nude in the same magazine that Courtney did a couple of years ago and no one said anything about that. Ford is pulling out of JFR, Bob Tasca and other pro teams that run Ford but they are staying involved in the sportsman ranks of drag racing. Courtney’s pictures were very tasteful and the rest of bitching about it would have done it if you got paid as much as she did.

  24. Ken

    August 20, 2013 at 11:00 PM

    John Force is a black hole when it comes to sponsorship. He will suck every cent he can get out of the sponsor. there comes a time when a business has to say you are costing more than you are producing.
    As far as those of you that will quit the brand or quit following NHRA, maybe but sounds like empty BS to me.

  25. Denny

    August 21, 2013 at 1:01 AM

    Budweiser, Miller Light, the tobacco companies, UPS, etc. have drag racing and it survived. John will survive too. Maybe with fewer cars, but he is an ad man’s dream (and so is Courtney). Speaking of which, she has everyone talking about her and she has appeared on magazine covers that weren’t about drag racing.

  26. Freddie Bates

    August 21, 2013 at 1:41 AM

    John Force was one of the main reason I have always use castrol oil even in my DRAGBIKE even if it cost a little more. Well they have just lost a loyal customer!!!

  27. Rob

    August 21, 2013 at 3:05 AM

    Bob, NHRA drag racing boring ??? 300 MPH race cars boring ??? I suppose you prefer 200 Mph race cars going around in circles !!!!Talk about boring !!!! PS, This could be part of the explanation of why John is sleeping at the wheel. 3 straight embarrassing hole shot losses in the last 3 races.

  28. jim smith

    August 21, 2013 at 4:07 AM

    wide open sales at the racestation this year and next! as for jfr, folks say that he is such an intergral part? he has so many tshirts on sale that it takes up over half the nhra tent. over exposure? you bet. he is half the funnycar field by his own teams. castrol was initially seen by me as a european product and was very surprised to see it come over in top fuel and then force. ford and castrol same time.. interesting… did force become too top heavy ? i think so. three drivers will be looking for jobs in two years. only the girls will continue on i think. john will retire in two years. watch.

  29. Peter Haley

    August 21, 2013 at 4:48 AM

    I live in Australia & I have been involved with different motorsports(Drag Racing V8 Supercars Water Ski Racing to name a few) for over 30 years, Castrol have been major sponsors for many of the bigger names racers in all kinds of Motor Racing in this country.

    In recent years Castrol have withdrawn their “Major” sponsorship to many of Australia’s top racing teams,they have all risen to the occasion and sort out new Major Sponsors.

    Compared to NHRA racing we are little fish in the pond, so I am sure that JFR will not have any trouble finding BIGGER & BETTER sponsors for the coming years.

  30. Aussie Mitch

    August 21, 2013 at 5:12 AM

    What a shame. Castrol has changed the focus of their marketing strategies. Less focus on motor racing and more focus on mainstream sports ie – Soccer star Christiano Ronaldo getting paid a fortune to advertisde Castrol products.

  31. Eddie

    August 21, 2013 at 5:22 AM

    I’ll bet the price of their oil won’t go down as a result of this stupid cost saving measure

  32. john

    August 21, 2013 at 7:27 PM

    I USE CASTROL IN ALL MY CARS AND TOLD MY FRIENDS TO USE IT. NO MORE!!!!

  33. Jimmy M

    August 22, 2013 at 2:05 AM

    Force had no loyalty to his sponsors…so why would he expect loyalty from them. He took the Ford money so where does he turn now? Maybe Korea or Japan brands. All he needs is a different paint job.

  34. Joe

    August 22, 2013 at 7:41 PM

    John Force has been my #1 driver since I saw him interviewed on Diamond P Motorsports. I really don’t think Courtney’s photos had anything to do with Castrol and Ford ending their sponsorships AT THE END OF THE 2014 SEASON!!! If JFR violated the Morals Clause in the contracts with Castrol and Ford over these photos, both companies would have ended the deal right away, not a year and a half from now! John Force is an extremely smart business man. Do you really think he would chance loosing a sponsorship for photos in a magazine? Since the early ’80s that I can remember, Castrol has been a major sponsor for Gary Ormsby, Pat Austin and John Force. It’s not horribly rotten, a disgrace, a shame or a lack of loyalty that Castrol and Ford are changing their focus. It’s just business. It sucks but it’s still business. Castrol and Ford’s bean counters looked at their return on investment very closely for a long time before recommending ending the sponsorships. No company in the world owes any race team, even my favorite John Force, a lifetime contract. I’ll bet the previous “faces of NHRA” like Don Prudhomme, Kenny Bernstien and Don Garlits would give there left nut for a 30 year major sponsorship. How many of you quit drinking Budweiser or Miller Lite when they ended their sponsorships? NADA! Who’s going to quit driving Fords over this? No one! Those of you who buy Castrol because of JFR and are going to stop buying it over this news, do you also only buy insurance from AAA Auto Club? Do you only shop at Brand Source?

  35. mick

    August 26, 2013 at 1:41 PM

    From what I have seen the pictures Did offend some people in the sport like mrs lucas and others in the spirt and it was a black eye to castrol for her to do that as it is not what most people what there daughters to look up to and not the image nhra wants…. I thought it was very cheep and I love women as much as the next guy but that was tastless… just saying

  36. Randy

    September 1, 2013 at 9:11 PM

    Well, all of the comments before me have said all there is to say. A company sponsors any kind of sports team to hopefully “reap the benefits” of a successful winner selling their products. And it looks like Castrol is going to LOSE quite a few customers over this “pull-out”. Reap what you sow. I have 5 cars in my family fleet that have always has run on castrol but now I will be swapping castrol for Valvoline. Castrol obviously won’t be going bankrupt, but I’m sure even “they” will feel a bit of money loss out of this decision.

  37. Steve

    December 18, 2013 at 1:04 PM

    I HAVE SOLD ALL MY FORD VEHICLES.
    I WILL NEVER USE ANOTHER CASTROL PRODUCT.
    THESE PEOPLE TRYING TO BLAME BRITTNAY’S
    MAGAZINE APPEARANCE IS RIDICULOUS,

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