Ah yes NASCAR, screaming around ovals at many miles an hour featuring usually quite serious looking crashes and general carnage. Based mainly in deep south USA with fans that may have a reputation for behaviour that some SOME people may class as redneck in nature. The American equivalent of Aussie V8 racing but without the corners. Usually the last place one would expect to find Lara Croft.
But this weekend in Las Vegas that is exactly where she was, on the hood of a NASCAR driven by rookie sensation and likely future cup champion Christopher Bell. Sponsorship is important in all sports, in motor racing sponsors keep cars on the track and drivers in their seats. But whilst some get to ride in cars sponsored by water heaters, bacon, beer and the like. Christopher Bell is sponsored by GameStop.
Given that racing is one of the most popular genres in video games one would think the association between video games and real life racing would be obvious. However other than Sega’s sponsorship of the Williams F1 team (back when Sega had money) way back in the day, you rarely see characters plastered over race cars these days. With the support of Gamestop; Christopher Bells #20 Camry features a completely new design each week, which is a unique approach among NASCAR sponsors.
As far as the driver goes, Christopher Bell is 23 years old and is racing his first NASCAR Xfinity season (the rookie league) full time. So far he has put away 4 wins, 14 top 5 finishes and is running second overall. Expectations are that he is definitely a favourite to take the series and a move to top tier cup racing is looking inevitable. Sponsors love drivers that win and win he does. It also helps that he is photogenic and a gamer.
It may be that the car was going too fast for the crowd to make out Lara Croft perhaps, but nevertheless GameStop and Christopher Bell appear to be a winning combination and we at Checkpoint wish them all the best.