Chip Ganassi's long relationship with Target is coming to an end at the conclusion of the current NASCAR season. Target has had a relationship with Chip Ganassi since 1989 and has been a primary sponsor for their cars in the Cup series since 2002.
It was not a question of performance, as Kyle Larson has the No. 42 car up to second in the point standings. Target will instead be investing in Soccer.
Target released a statement saying:
"We are enormously proud of how Chip and the entire Ganassi Racing team have represented the Target brand throughout our partnership. Together, we've seen tremendous success in NASCAR over the past 16 seasons, both on and off the track.
As we looked to evolve our sports marketing program, soccer provided Target with a unique opportunity to reach our guests in new places, and at all levels of the sport. Through partnerships with Major League Soccer, Minnesota United FC, US Youth Soccer and the U.S. Soccer Foundation, Target has been able to create meaningful connections with players, fans and families, no matter how they participate in the sport. We will continue to build on these and other soccer investments in 2018 and beyond.
Over the past season, Target has worked closely with Chip Ganassi Racing on this transition. We have incredible respect for Chip and the talented team he has assembled, and are confident they will continue to see great success for years to come."
Target had already started the process of stepping away from NASCAR by sponsoring fewer races in 2017, but that will not lessen the shock of not seeing the familiar red and white target on the hood of Larson's car next year.
Related: Tempers flared even among teammates during the tension-filled Brickyard 400