Today Disney/Pixar (NYSE: DIS) Cars fans teamed up with NASCAR driver Casey Mears to wave the green flag and kick off the Cars ‘Take Flight’ experience during Chase weekend at Chicagoland Speedway, Sept. 14-16. In celebration of the world television premieres of the Cars Toons short films ‘Air Mater’ and ‘Moon Mater’ this fall on Disney Channel and the launch of a new Cars ‘Take Flight’ product collection, Disney has created a fun and immersive family experience for race fans to enjoy the world of Cars.
Through Cars-themed ‘pit stops’ at Chicagoland Speedway Kids Zone in Champions Park, the world of Cars is brought to life. Fans can snap photos of the life-size LEGO® replica of Lightning McQueen made of 250,000 bricks, create Cars scenes at the puzzle building station, enjoy story time, race against friends on the Cars video game, see the new collectible die-cast cars and play with the products in the new “Take Flight” collection. The new Cars ‘Take Flight’ product line features die-cast, race tracks, games, books and more and is available now at retailers nationwide.
‘The Cars Toons shorts have done a great job extending the storytelling and fun that happens in the world of Cars,’ said Mary Renner Beech, senior vice president of licensing, Disney/Pixar animation, Disney Consumer Products. ‘Likewise, Disney/Pixar product designers take the story where only a child’s imagination can go through new toys and products. And what better place for us to celebrate the new “Take Flight” collection than right here at the Chicagoland Speedway during an actual NASCAR race weekend.’
‘A weekend at Chicagoland Speedway is about more than just the excitement on the track,’ said Scott Paddock, Chicagoland Speedway president. ‘We want the entire family to enjoy memorable experiences throughout their trip, whether it’s in the Kids Zone taking pictures with the life-size Lightning McQueen, in Champions Park with free entertainment or in our new infield fan experience. Our goal is to deliver additional value to our fans and give the start of the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup the platform it deserves.’
Chicagoland Speedway is the first race of the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup this September — the first of ten ‘playoff’ style NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races in pursuit of the 2012 championship. The Dollar General 300 powered by Coca-Cola NASCAR Nationwide Series will kick off the weekend on Saturday, Sept. 15 with the GEICO 400 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup concluding the weekend on Sunday, Sept. 16.
For tickets to the GEICO® 400, the start of the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup, or the Dollar General® 300 powered by Coca-Cola®, visit www.ChicagolandSpeedway.com or call 1-888-629-RACE (7223).
Photo courtesy Disney Consumer Products
Richard Petty Driving Experience (RPDE), the worldwide leader in stock car drive and ride entertainment, announced today that it will now offer “Junior Ride-Alongs” at its Walt Disney World® Speedway location in Orlando, FL.
RPDE’s “Junior Ride-Alongs” program will provide children, who are at least 48 inches in height, the opportunity to experience real-life racing excitement while they ride shotgun with a professional driving instructor for three thrilling laps in a specially equipped two-seat NASCAR race car.
“Junior Ride-Alongs” are possible as a result of RPDE’s partnership with The Joie of Seating, a premier fabricator of custom-fitted aluminum racing seats owned and operated by two-time NASCAR Nationwide series champion Randy LaJoie. The North Carolina-based company built custom racing seats for this program, specifically designed to ensure the safety and security of smaller bodies. These full containment racing seats feature built-in shoulder and head protection and a five-point safety harness that is the same design used by NASCAR drivers.
“For 10 years we’ve specialized in designing custom racing seats that provide the safest in-car experience,” says LaJoie, “Our extensive experience in the industry makes us confident your child will enjoy a safe and fun ride-along with RPDE.”
Located just outside the Magic Kingdom property, RPDE’s Disney location has been known as a high-speed attraction for adults for more than a decade, providing thousands of moms and dads the thrill of a lifetime. Now with “Junior Ride-Alongs” available just in time for summer, NASCAR racing can become a family affair at Disney.
“We’re thrilled to be able to make RPDE even more family friendly and can’t wait to see the ear-to-ear smiles on these kid’s faces after experiencing the excitement of NASCAR first-hand.” says Bill Scott, General Manager of Richard Petty Driving Experience at Walt Disney World® Speedway.
“Junior Ride-Alongs” with Richard Petty Driving Experience at Walt Disney World® Speedway are $59. No reservations are required. Children must be ages 14 and under and be at least 48″ in height.
Aflac today announced the creation of a special Toy Story 3 paint scheme for the No. 99 Aflac Ford Fusion that will be driven by Carl Edwards at the Toyota/Save Mart 350 at Infineon Raceway in Sonoma, CA on June 20. )
The paint scheme reflects a collaboration between the Georgia-based insurance company and Disney/Pixar, following the release of a television commercial using Pixar’s unique brand of animation. This marks the second time Aflac and Disney/Pixar have worked together for cross-promotion.
The commercial features the Aflac Duck and movie characters from the anticipated summer blockbuster Toy Story 3 demonstrating how Aflac policies provide protection when life presents challenges. The ad, which began airing nationally on May 17, will be televised nationally on TNT during the race.
“Aflac is pleased to once again team up with Disney/Pixar to help drive awareness for our brand and demonstrate the benefits of our products and services,” said Danny Fleishman, vice president of sponsorships and emerging markets at Aflac. “Whether on or off the track, life can be unpredictable, which is why Aflac offers policies to help keep you protected when you need it most.”
In May 2009, Aflac and Disney/Pixar collaborated for the release of the summer blockbuster Up. To support the release, Aflac created a special Up paint scheme for the Southern 500 race at Darlington Speedway and hosted a VIP screening event for NASCAR families.
Disney has been driving on thin, black ice lately when it comes to their ABC affiliates and their advertisers.
Two separate events are threatening the financial stability of the ABC network’s affiliate stations, most notably throughout the southern region of the United States.
The affiliates are noticeably upset over recent moves by Disney-owned ESPN taking several sporting events away from the affiliates, most notably several NASCAR events. It’s believed that ESPN, which has been producing all sports for the ABC network since 2006, is being handed carte blanche from the parent corporation in terms of which events it can air exclusively because it helps justifies the already industry-high retransmission fees from cable operators. The affiliates fear a significant loss in programming and local ad revenue as a result.
Meanwhile, ad revenue for the same ABC affiliates will be falling as 22Squared, an ad agency representing 173 auto dealerships in the southeast, has announced it will be pulling advertising from local ABC networks. The move was made in response to ‘excessive stories on the Toyota issues [regarding a known issue with the accelerator sticking].’
Comic Book Heroes’ (CBH) new single “Move Out of the Way” off their “Take A Seat” EP has been chosen by ESPN as the featured song for the network’s coverage of the 2010 NASCAR Nationwide Series season. The season opens at Daytona International Speedway on Saturday, Feb. 13, at noon ET on ESPN2.
To kick off their new relationship with ESPN, CBH filmed a video for “Move Out of the Way,” portions of which will be used throughout the season during ESPN’s NASCAR Nationwide Series race telecasts. A new music video for the teen rock band’s first single, “Catch Me If You Can,” and six original songs from CBH also will be included in promotions for ESPN’s NASCAR coverage. Throughout the 10-month NASCAR Nationwide Series season, CBH’s music, videos and promotions will be featured in 35 races televised on ESPN, ESPN2 and ABC.
“Our music is fast and loud just like a NASCAR race, which makes working with ESPN on the Nationwide Series a great match. We know ESPN will showcase another great season and are thrilled our music will be a part of it,” said Comic Book Heroes’ Steve Kowalski and Collin MacGregor.
Much like the NASCAR Nationwide Series, which has become a proving ground for up-and-coming stars of the sport, CBH is a rock band on the rise in the music scene. With a fan-base and influences as vast as the ESPN audience and a sound as clean, loud and fast as the cars racing throughout the NASCAR season, the band will seamlessly fit into the culture of one of today’s top sports.
“NASCAR racing is a sport with sights, sounds, and speed that lends itself to rock and roll music in a very natural blend. With their fresh look and huge sound, Comic Book Heroes will add an exciting element to our NASCAR coverage in 2010,” said Rich Feinberg, ESPN vice president, motorsports, event and studio production.
After being named a Radio Disney “Next Big Thing” artist in January 2009, CBH continued their break-out year with “Catch Me if You Can” becoming a top 15 Radio Disney single, being named to Popstar Magazine’s Top 100 Stars Of Summer and enjoying a successful summer tour including a stop on the Van’s Warped Tour. In November, Comic Book Heroes attended the American Music Awards as the only selected artist to play the official after-party of one of the music industry’s biggest nights. CBH’s recently released second single, “Move Out of the Way,” is receiving great reviews from the band’s ever-growing fan base. CBH has also been named as one of 100 bands to the lineup for the Taco Bell Feed The Beat Virtual Music Festival. In conjunction with this program, “Move Out of the Way” was also featured throughout the X-Games.
Comic Book Heroes self-released their current EP “Take a Seat,” which is available through iTunes. They are currently writing and recording their follow-up EP to be released in 2010 and are planning a summer tour.
ESPN, Paramount, NASCAR Join Forces in the Ultimate Street Battle of Good Vs. Evil with the Transformers
HOLLYWOOD, Calif. and BRISTOL, Conn., Oct. 13 — NASCAR fans will have the chance to choose their side in the battle to control the planet when Paramount Home Entertainment and ESPN launch a unique promotional campaign in support of the October 20 debut of TRANSFORMERS: Revenge of the Fallen on DVD and Blu-ray. Paramount Home Entertainment will sponsor not one, but two of the vehicles taking part in the October 17 “NASCAR Banking 500 only from Bank of America Race” at the Lowe’s Motor Speedway in Charlotte, North Carolina, a first for any film property.
The cars will be driven by rising star and 2008 Daytona 500 winner Ryan Newman and 4-time Sprint Cup Series Jeff Gordon. Newman’s car, uniform and pit crew all will be branded with images of OPTIMUS PRIME, the heroic leader of the peace-loving AUTOBOTS. Gordon’s car, uniform and crew will sport graphics of MEGATRON, the malevolent leader of the DECEPTICONS. Michael Bay, the director of the TRANSFORMERS megahits, will be the official pace car driver for the 50th running of the NASCAR Banking 500 only from Bank of America at Lowe’s Motor Speedway on Saturday night, Oct. 17. The race will air on ABC at 7 p.m. ET.
Here’s a first look at the new Aflac #99 NASCAR vehicle inspired by Disney/Pixar’s Up. Driven by Carl Edwards, the vehicle will make its television debut on May 9 during the Southern 500 NASCAR race at Darlington Raceway and televised on FOX. Also premiering during the event will be a new commercial where Aflac’s mascot and Pixar’s style team up to show how Aflac can help to prevent injuries and illnesses from derailing your dreams. The commercial will also be the unveiling of Aflac’s newest tagline, ‘We’ve got you under our wing.’
Special thanks to Aflac for the photo. Unfortunately the ultra-cool SK watermarks are not part of the car’s design… yet.