"He certainly has, as part of his reinvention, made himself more likable," said Steve Phelps, NASCAR's chief marketing officer. "He's philanthropic, he does a lot with the Armed Forces Foundation. That's a side of Kurt that people didn't see for a long time. Whether it was there or not or whether it's new, it's hard to say. But it's certainly there now."
Phelps said unsettled team sponsorship situations aren't unusual.