Jamie McMurray did not have a successful 2012 season with Earnhardt-Ganassi Racing and the news that one his his primary sponsors, Bass Pro Shops, is shifting most of it's money to Tony Stewart and his Stewart-Hass Racing No. 14 car will make 2013 even more important for McMurray.
In a sponsorship driven sport it will be important for McMurray to have a turnaround 2013 season with better on track results with his No. 1 EGR team. On Thursday an EGR team spokesman Jeff Dowling said that McDonald's will step up and be the primary sponsor for McMurray in more race in 2013. McDonald's was the primary sponsor in 13 of the 36 races in 2012 for McMurray.
Right now Dowling would not say exactly how many races McDonald's will be on board but said sponsorship announcements can be expected to be made on January 23 during the NASCAR media tour. He did confirm that Bass Pro Shops would not be completely gone for McMurray and said they will be an associate sponsor and possibly on for at least one race as the primary sponsor.
McMurray is a six time Sprint Cup Series winner and is going into his 11th full time season. He finished 21st in the drivers standings last year and only had three top ten finishes and no top 5's. The three top tens were the fewest in any of his full time seasons in Cup. 2013 will be McMurray's fourth with EGR. His best season with them came in 2010, his first year with them, when he won the Daytona 500, Brickyard 400, and the fall race at Charlotte. That year he finished 14th in the points and had 12 top tens and four poles. Since then McMuarry and the No. 1 team have only scored seven top ten finishes.
There is no doubt that 2013 will be an important year for McMurray. With EGR switching to Hendrick Engines they are hoping that will help some of their performance issues. The new Sixth Generation car could also play into their favor as leveling the playing field for everyone but it could also hinder them if they are not on their game from the get go with it.
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