When word broke Saturday that Subway had terminated its four-race deal with Joe Gibbs Racing and Daniel Suarez it left lots of observers scratching their head. ESPN said there wasn't a violation of any morals clause; Suarez said he was in the dark.
But now comes word from the Sports Business Journal that Subway just may have been upset by a segment with Suarez that involved a competitor -- Dunkin' Donuts:
So many that's it. Donuts did it.
Suarez said he found out on Friday that Subway was terminating its four-race sponsorship with one race to go, and like everyone else, he's in the dark. Here's what he told ESPN:as he prepared to race for Joe Gibbs Racing at Darlington:
In the race weekend, I don't really have time to think about that. I have to think about the race. ... Sponsorship comes and sponsorship leaves. That's part of racing. There's nothing we can do about it. I don't really know the reasons so there's not a lot I can add to it.
What we do know is this could be a case of of musical sponsorshipSubway may be shopping its sponsor money elsewhere, according to a tweet from the Sports Business Journal's Adam Stern.
This "this" that he refers to is the report that, according to ESPN,Subway has decided to move on.
Subway sponsored Suarez, who drives the No. 19 Toyota Camry. Subway, in a fairly cryptic statement, said, "Due to circumstances beyond our control, Subway had to terminate its sponsorship of Daniel Suarez." A Joe Gibbs spokesman wouldn't talk about the exact reason Subway dropped its sponsorship, but said it has nothing to do with a violation of a morals clause.
In different times, losing Subway might not be that big of a deal. Subway only sponsored Suarez for four races.
But in these times this is a big deal. Teams are scrambling for sponsorship dollars, with drivers such as Kurt Busch, Matt Kenseth and Danica Patrick all scrambling for dollars.