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BW & MWR Unveil Stock Car Racing "Tweet Crew Team"

3/25/2010

BEST WESTERN AND MICHAEL WALTRIP RACING UNVEIL STOCKCAR RACING’S FIRST-EVER “TWEET CREW TEAM”

This First-of-its-Kind Team Will be Introduced Before the Sprint Cup Series Race at the Phoenix International Raceway on April 10, 2010

CORNELIUS, N.C. (March 25, 2010) – Best Western, The World’s Largest Hotel Chain®, in conjunction with Michael Waltrip Racing has developed stockcar racing’s first-ever “Tweet Crew Team, ”with three Twitter correspondents selected to cover the NASCAR race in Phoenix on April 10, 2010.

As part of a national “Tweet Crew Team” job search, fans were asked to submit an application, which included a link to a creative video or picture, to become a member of this historic team. Best Western and Michael Waltrip Racing received hundreds of applications from excited racing fans hoping to be one of three people chosen to travel to Phoenix and work as driver David Reutimann’s team of Twitter correspondents.

When Reutimann arrives at Phoenix International Raceway on Saturday, April 10, he’ll be followed by the newly-selected “Tweet Crew Team,” which includes Randall Martin, a father and longtime racing fan from Worcester, Mass., Rebecca Kivak, copy editor and avid NASCAR Tweeter from Plains, Penn., and Nancy Mills, an actress and contractor from Cordova, Tenn.

The Tweet Crew Team will spend the afternoon Tweeting about every twist and turn David makes on-and-off the track. Each “Tweet Crew Team” member will be provided with a smartphone that has camera capabilities to enable “Twitpics.”

“While my pit crew team will keep me racing during the Subway Fresh Fit 600 in Phoenix, our ‘Tweet Crew Team’ will put NASCAR fans in the middle of the action throughout the weekend,” said Reutimann. “Fans will get a driver’s perspective into everything that goes on behind-the-scenes at the racetrack, as well as a never-before-seen play-by-play of the race – from start to finish – on Twitter.”

The “Tweet Crew Team” will give racing fans a written play-by-play of the race in 140 characters or less via Twitter from the team’s different vantage points around the track. Fans can follow all the heart-pounding and intimate action by logging onto www.twitter.com and following the team at @tweetcrewteam.

Additionally, fans watching the race from home and following the “Tweet Crew Team” on Twitter will be given the chance to win prizes including official Best Western Racing and Michael Waltrip Racing gear, as well as earn Best Western Speed Rewards® points that can be redeemed for future hotel stays and a wide variety of merchandise.

One lucky Best Western Speed Rewards member, Best Western’s loyalty program for race fans, will also win a Best Western Travel Card® valued at $500.

As part of the promotional grand prize, the first-ever “Tweet Crew Team” will receive roundtrip airfare to Phoenix, hotel accommodations, local transportation, as well as a Best Western/Michael Waltrip Racing- branded team uniform and VIP access to the track for the race. The winners will also have the opportunity to join Michael Waltrip and David Reutimann in a race day press conference for the unveiling of the Best Western and Michael Waltrip Racing “Tweet Crew Team.”

“With our newly-formed Tweet Crew Team, we’re once again giving fans a unique opportunity to get closer to drivers Michael Waltrip and David Reutimann than ever before,” said Dorothy Dowling, Best Western’s senior vice president of marketing and sales. “Our guests have come to count on Best Western to create integrated and exciting promotions that fully leverage our partnership with Michael Waltrip Racing and create one-of-a-kind experiences for the fans.”

To join Speed Rewards log onto www.bwracing.com.

ABOUT BEST WESTERN INTERNATIONAL
Best Western International is THE WORLD'S LARGEST HOTEL CHAIN®, providing marketing, reservations and operational support to over 4,000* independently owned and operated member hotels in 80* countries and territories worldwide. An industry pioneer since 1946, Best Western has grown into an iconic brand that hosts 400,000* worldwide guests each night. Equally committed to the business and leisure traveler, Best Western recently embarked on a mission to lead the hotel industry in customer care. World Vision is the charity of choice for Best Western in building the world's largest family, with our hotels and staff sponsoring children in need around the globe. Our partnerships with AAA/CAA, Michael Waltrip Racing and Harley Davidson help guests make the most of every trip. For the fastest way to a free night, join Best Western Rewards®, the only hotel frequency program that's truly global. For more information or to make a reservation, please visit www.bestwestern.com.

*Numbers are approximate and can fluctuate.

ABOUT MICHAEL WALTRIP RACING
From its 140,000-square-foot shop in Cornelius, N.C., Michael Waltrip Racing fields Toyota Camrys in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series for Waltrip, David Reutimann and Martin Truex Jr. as well as a NASCAR Nationwide entry for Trevor Bayne and a Camping World East Series entry for Ryan Truex. The team also maintains JTG-Daugherty’s No. 47 Toyota Camry driven by Marcos Ambrose. MWR began more than a decade ago as a modest family-owned NASCAR Nationwide Series team in Sherrills Ford, N.C. and has posted five NASCAR Nationwide victories. In 2007, MWR served as a flagship team for Toyota Racing Development, USA’s entry into both NASCAR Sprint Cup and NASCAR Nationwide competition. Reutimann earned MWR its first NASCAR Sprint Cup victory in May 2009 at Charlotte Motor Speedway. MWR announced the formation of Diamond-Waltrip Racing with majority owners Gary and Blake Bechtel for the 2010 season. The NASCAR Nationwide team will help develop young drivers for MWR’s Cup effort.