INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – An IndyCar Series team is tapping into the developing CBD industry for sponsorship money.
DEFY performance drink is partnering with Arrow Schmidt Peterson Motorsports to have its name on James Hinchcliffe’s and Marcus Ericsson’s cars for the Indianapolis 500 and rest of the IndyCar season. The company was co-founded by Pro Football Hall of Famer, Terrell Davis.
“This partnership with them right now is extremely important for us,” Davis said. “Our partnership is based on Sam Schmidt and his story. He’s what DEFY is all about, defying the odds and doing things people said you couldn’t do.”
Schmidt founded his race team in 2001, just 14 months after being diagnosed as a quadriplegic after an offseason testing accident.
DEFY launches next week in Denver and will be available nationwide. The company brands itself as the first mainstream hemp extract drink made for athletes. Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb signed a bill last year authorizing the sale of CBD products in Indiana.
“It’s really based off of science and purpose,” said Davis. “There’s benefits to it. There’s electrolytes in our drink. We have B vitamins in there. It has coconut water and it also has a performance-based CBD with zero THC.”
Other CBD companies are also getting involved with IndyCar. Jonathan Byrd Racing has announced a sponsorship with Liquid Gold Processing and Craft 1861 sponsored RC Enerson and Carlin Racing during offseason testing this year.
Davis played seven seasons for the Denver Broncos, rushing for over 7,000 career yards and helping lead them to two Super Bowl wins. The three-time Pro Bowler says he’s excited to be back in a competitive arena with the IndyCar sponsorship.
“Your blood is flowing,” Davis said. “You got the adrenaline going and you have the chance to be competitive in a place like this. This is an iconic venue and to have a car racing here and have a chance to win with our flag flying on a car, I don’t think we could have asked for a better scenario and hopefully, we get the chance to celebrate.”
“Athletes attract athletes,” said Hinchcliffe. “I think he’s really getting into the racing spirit. He’s loving it here at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.”
Davis has never been in the Indianapolis 500, but plans on attending this year’s race.