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It's Official: Labonte To HOF Racing

As previously reported [1], Bobby Labonte will drive Hall Of Fame Racing’s No. 96 Ford Fusion next season.

The team will be sponsored by Ask.com.

Following his release from Petty Enterprises [2], Labonte was rumored to be going to Earnhardt Ganassi Racing [3] in the No. 41 sponsored by Target, or, more recently, the No. 8 Chevy. No word on who will drive that car, now that Labonte is out of the picture.

Labonte said of joining HOF Racing:

I’m excited to be part of what Ask.com is bringing to our sport. In a time like this, it’s great to see a sponsor come in with technology and ideas that will help all of the competitors in NASCAR and enhance the experience for all of our fans, no matter which driver or team they cheer for.

HOF Racing co-owner Tom Garfinkle said:

Jeff Moorad and I are excited to add Ask.com as a primary sponsor on the No. 96 car. We’ve been working closely with Ask.com for several weeks now, and their talented management team has come up with more creative ideas to serve NASCAR fans than I’ve seen in a long time. With our new Yates [Racing] [4]¬†partnership and having a true champion and class person in Bobby Labonte behind the wheel, we’re expecting great things on the race track as well.

Separately, Ask.com also entered an agreement to become the official search engine of NASCAR, meaning Ask.com has category exclusivity and a broad set of promotional rights.

Under the agreement, Ask.com will exclusively power the search experience on NASCAR.com.
Ask.com CEO Jim Safka said:

Through these partnerships, we will break new ground by applying our semantic search technology capabilities to NASCAR-related content while also tapping one of the largest marketing channels in America. Our goal is to win over the millions of loyal fans by providing them with the best NASCAR search experience on the Web, and introduce them to all of Ask’s capabilities when they come.