Photo credit: Nigel Kinrade Photography

Hendrick Motorsports ends relationship with Hooters

Chase Elliott will no longer have Hooters as a primary sponsor after Hendrick Motorsports ended its relationship with the restaurant chain.

"Hooters has been a valued partner of Hendrick Motorsports since 2017, contributing to our shared successes both on and off the track," Hendrick Motorsports said in a statement shared with AltDriver. "In recent months, however, Hooters has not been able to meet its business obligations to our organization.

"Due to these unfortunate and unexpected circumstances, and despite extensive efforts on both sides to identify a workable solution, it became necessary for Hendrick Motorsports to end the relationship. It has been a privilege having Hooters as a part of our team and we wish them the best."

The business decision comes as the Atlanta-based restaurant chain faces financial challenges. According to Fox News, Hooters is closing nearly 40 locations across the United States. This includes locations in Kentucky, Florida, and Texas.

The restaurant chain issued a statement on June 26 and said that it had made the "difficult decision to close a select number of underperforming stores" and that it was under pressure from current market conditions. The statement also mentioned plans to open new locations both international and domestic.

Hooters first joined Elliott as a primary sponsor in 2017. Hooters took over the No. 24 Chevrolet at Talladega in the spring and then returned for playoff races at Texas Motor Speedway and Phoenix Raceway.

The relationship continued as Elliott moved to the No. 9 Chevrolet in 2019. Hooters continued to sponsor the Georgia driver for anywhere between two and four races annually as he delivered top-five and top-10 finishes.

A win with the Hooters primary scheme eluded Elliott, the 2020 Cup champion, until this season. He finally took the restaurant chain to victory lane at Texas Motor Speedway after leading 39 laps. This also marked Elliott's first win since the 2022 season.

This partnership also included the launch of a virtual restaurant in 2022. Chase Elliott's Chicken Tenders was exclusively available at 196 locations through DoorDash, Grubhub, and Uber Eats.

The virtual restaurant's menu included such items as tenders with 14 sauces, waffle fries, tots, boneless wings, chicken sandwiches, buffalo chicken salads, mozzarella sticks, fried pickles, and beverages.