FCC to sponsor Yates carUPDATE A taxpayer watchdog group named FCC Chairman Kevin J. Martin the October Porker of the Month, hitting the Republican for the agency's sponsorship of Mr. Gilliland, a fellow North Carolina native.
"Even though the commission has inundated networks with paid announcements for months, Martin considered it necessary to use additional taxpayer dollars to pay for the car and driver to bear slogans such as 'Is Your TV Ready for Digital?'" said Citizens Against Government Waste, citing the $355,000 price tag of the sponsorship.
10/16/08 Yates Racing announced today that the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) will sponsor the No. 38 entry with driver David Gilliland for a total of three races in the remaining NASCAR Sprint Cup Series schedule. The primary sponsorship will debut at Martinsville Speedway on October 19th as the No. 38 Digital TV Transition Ford will take to the track. The primary sponsorship is to help educate the American public about the fact that on February 17th, 2009 all full-power broadcast television stations in the United State will stop broadcasting on analog airwaves and begin broadcasting only in digital. Digital broadcasting will allow stations to offer improved picture and sound quality along with additional channels.
"I'm flattered that the FCC chose our No. 38 Ford to help them convey the message about the upcoming digital television transition taking place next year," commented Gilliland. "This is a very big undertaking to convert the entire country to digital services, but the end result will be improved picture and sound quality and those are definitely important factors to NASCAR fans. Yates Racing has had a tremendous 2008 season which allowed us to have a variety of important partnerships, and our No. 38 Digital TV Transition Ford will be another great example of partners who believe in the reach that we have. I am honored to help promote the Digital TV Transition messaging."
"NASCAR fans are known for their avid interest in this sport," said FCC Chairman Kevin Martin of the primary sponsorship. "Their awareness and responsiveness to NASCAR sponsors is also exceptionally high. I believe this sponsorship is an extremely effective way for the FCC to raise DTV awareness among people of all ages and income levels across the United States who loyally follow one of the most popular sports in America."
The debut of the No. 38 Digital TV Transition Ford Fusion will take place on October 19th, 2008 for the TUMS QuikPak 500 when Gilliland and his Yates Racing teammate, Travis Kvapil, travel to Martinsville Speedway for the 32nd race of the 2008 Sprint Cup Series season. The Tums QuikPak 500 will be broadcast on ABC Sunday, October 19th with television coverage beginning at 1:00 pm EST and radio coverage provided by the Motor Racing Network.
The remaining two races of the primary sponsorship will include the Sprint Cup Series events at Phoenix International Raceway and Homestead-Miami Speedway.
Gilliland has achieved one top-five finish and two top-ten finishes this season in the NASCAR Sprint Cup series within the first 30 starts of the year and is currently 27th in the driver point standings.
Digital Television (DTV) is a new type of broadcasting technology that will transform television since the DTV signal is delivered digitally the television signal is virtually free of interference. DTV is more efficient than our current analog signal and with DTV broadcasters are able to offer television with improved quality pictures and surround sound. For more information about the Digital Transition visit www.DTV.gov
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