As NASCAR waved the green flag on a very special regular season Sunday at Daytona, the sanctioning body also introduced a new creative campaign celebrating its 75th “diamond” anniversary with a set of three commercial spots showcasing the sport‘s past, present and future.
The first spot — titled “Anthem” — debuted as part of a special pre-race moment during FOX‘s telecast of the Daytona 500 on Feb. 19 and focuses on NASCAR‘s 75-year journey to this point.
MORE: All things NASCAR 75
“This 75th Anniversary campaign was created to honor the rich history of NASCAR and celebrate our bright future with the same adrenaline-inducing intensity that resonates with our fans,” said Pete Jung, senior vice president and chief marketing officer at NASCAR. “This is one of the biggest and boldest campaigns and creative executions in the history of the brand. We‘re grateful to have incredible creative partners that helped bring the campaign to life, and optimistic this milestone will be an opportunity to deepen our relationship with NASCAR fans new and old throughout this 75th anniversary season.”
“Anthem” is a 60-second thrill ride that races through NASCAR‘s evolution from humble beach beginnings to America‘s No. 1 motorsport, anchored by a No. 75-branded car that sheds its skin to reveal race cars from different eras.
Developed with agency partner 77 Ventures Creative and directed by Mark Jenkinson of Imperial Woodpecker over several days in Barstow, California, the spot combines original footage, historical highlights and reenactments, and computer-generated imagery (CGI) to recreate some of the sport‘s most memorable moments: from Cale Yarborough scrapping with Bobby and Donnie Allison at the 1979 Daytona 500 through Dale Earnhardt dumping Terry Labonte for a Bristol win in 1999 and onto Denny Hamlin inching out Martin Truex Jr. for the 2016 Daytona 500 victory.
It closes with the campaign line “Always Forward” — an ode to NASCAR‘s speed and motion on the track as well as its future progression off it.
“Commemorating NASCAR‘s 75th anniversary was a creative opportunity that allowed us to revisit the genesis of the sport and look forward to the future,” said Meredith Weiss, managing director at 77 Ventures Creative. “ ‘Always Forward‘ honors that history while also inspiring us to stay tuned for what is in store. The 75 car was a perfect vehicle (no pun intended) for telling that story because the car‘s physical transformation over the years has paralleled the evolution of NASCAR into a new era.”
“Anthem” will be followed in the spring by a “Present” spot showcasing the stories of today‘s young stars. An imaginative “Future” spot — focused on the potential that lies ahead — will break later in the summer.
The 75 car will be featured across all three ads, connecting the work with a metaphorical central character that helps reveal layers of NASCAR history and hints at future possibilities.
Each spot will have 60 and 30-second versions that run on television and across social and digital inventory.