Tony Stewart‘s race teams have made some moves ahead of their respective seasons. Both Stewart-Haas Racing and Tony Stewart Racing have secured a new partner.
According to a press release sent to Heavy, Rinnai America Corporation, a manufacturer of tankless gas water heaters, has partnered with Stewart and his teams. The company will have a presence in both NASCAR and NHRA while supporting multiple drivers.
Chase Briscoe will be the main NASCAR driver receiving support from Rinnai. The company will be an associate partner on the No. 14 team as the Indiana native attempts to return to the playoffs.
“We’re incredibly proud to have this partnership with Rinnai because it shows the strength of our motorsports program,” Stewart said. “NASCAR and NHRA offer two very different fan experiences, and combined they touch every corner of the country. Rinnai and its customers get the best of both worlds because our program allows a number of choices to promote its products and services.”
Stewart’s NHRA Team Will Have a New Primary Partner
Rinnai will have a presence in NASCAR as it serves as one of Briscoe’s associate partners. The company will also serve as a primary for both of Stewart’s NHRA drivers.
Leah Pruett will have a Rinnai primary sponsorship during two events on the 2023 schedule. The company will take over her Top Fuel dragster in Pomona, Cal., from March 30-April 2. It will then return for the NHRA Carolina Nationals in Charlotte, N.C., on September 22-24.
Matt Hagan, for comparison, will have Rinnai as his primary partner during one event. The company will take over his Funny Car for the NHRA New England Nationals in Epping, N.H., on June 2-4.
There is one more part of this new partnership between Rinnai and Stewart. The company will also become the official tankless water heater of both Stewart-Haas Racing and Tony Stewart Racing.
The 2023 Season Will Be Pivotal for Stewart’s Teams
The addition of a new partner sets up a pivotal season for Stewart and his race teams. Both are about to take on important schedules while pursuing wins and championships.
Tony Stewart Racing, in particular, is about to enter its second full-time campaign in NHRA. 2022 was the debut season for the Pruett and Hagan-led team, and they delivered wins. Now they will pursue even more while Tony Stewart Racing establishes a foothold.
Stewart-Haas Racing also faces an important season. The team will move into 2023 with the knowledge that at least one of its drivers will retire after the season finale. Kevin Harvick announced this news on January 12 while confirming that 2023 will be his last as a full-time Cup Series competitor.
The other driver facing questions is Aric Almirola. He announced his pending retirement before the 2022 season, but he changed course ahead of the regular-season finale at Daytona International Speedway.
Almirola announced that he had signed a multi-year extension with both SHR and primary partner Smithfield Foods. Though the veteran driver also noted that nothing after 2023 is guaranteed. He could still opt to retire after the finale at Phoenix.
The rest of the lineup remains secure for 2023. Ryan Preece will take over the No. 41 Ford for his first full season with Stewart-Haas Racing while Briscoe will be back in the No. 14 for another campaign. They will set out and try to ensure that they are the future of the organization by contending for wins and spots in the playoffs.