during the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series GEICO 500 at Talladega Superspeedway on May 7, 2017 in Talladega, Alabama.

Top driver in danger of losing his sponsorship and ride for 2018

As with everything nowadays in NASCAR, sponsorship is everything.

On Tuesday, we learned that while Richard Petty Motorsports would like to find another sponsor so it can field a team of Aric Almirola and Bubba Wallace in 2018, Almirola could actually be replaced by Wallace.

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Now, we know why.

It seems Almirola's sponsor, Smithfield, is in talks to sponsor the Stewart Haas No. 10, which would give Danica Patrick a much-needed sponsorship -- and potentially leave Almirola out in the cold. The news came from Adam Stern of the Sports Business Journal.

As written about a number of times, Patrick isn't accomplished, but she remains very popular.

There's another factor at work as well. If Smithfield decides to stay with RPM but cuts its sponsorship, then the team may go  with  Wallace alone.