Dirt, Tide and Erik Jones coming to Bristol

Betsi JamesFood

As part of Bristol Motor Speedway’s 60th anniversary celebration in 2021, the half-mile, high-banked concrete oval will be transformed into a state-of-the-art dirt racing facility for the Food City Dirt Race. The event will mark the first time the NASCAR Cup Series will compete on dirt in the sport’s modern era.


Erik Jones, 24, will drive the No. 43 Tide Chevrolet Camaro ZL1. Food City CEO Steven Smith is excited: “How awesome is it that we have the opportunity to serve as the primary partner of the iconic Richard Petty Motorsports No. 43 Chevrolet Camaro for the running of this historic event at the Bristol Motor Speedway.”

As part of the partnership, Tide will bring NASCAR fans “The Ultimate Dirt Race” Sweepstakes. Three first place winners will each receive one $1,500 Best Buy gift card to be used toward the purchase of a new washer/dryer. Three second place winners will each receive one $500 Best Buy gift card, and three third place winners will each receive free Tide for a year.

The Food City Dirt Race at the Bristol Motor Speedway will be broadcast live on FOX on Sunday, March 28, at 3:30 p.m. (ET).

Food City rewards associates: Feb. 22, 2021, was declared national Supermarket Employee Day by the Food Industry Association to recognize employees at every level for the work they do feeding families and enriching lives.

“Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic nearly a year ago, our dedicated team of over 17,000 supermarket heroes has gone above and beyond the call of duty to meet the needs of our customers and the communities we serve.

“We would also like to recognize our outstanding team of over 250 Food City pharmacists for their extraordinary commitment to our loyal customers throughout this pandemic,” said Steven C. Smith.

As a token of appreciation for their extraordinary service, Food City is awarding each of its 17,000 associates a $15 gift card/certificate to a local restaurant – a $255,000 boost to restaurants in communities served by Food City.

Eddie Neely

Eddie Neely is Food City’s new senior vice president and chief financial officer. Neely is a seasoned business professional with over 40 years of experience in finance and accounting. He graduated with a bachelor’s degree in accounting from ETSU and is a certified public accountant.

Haskel Bledsoe

Haskel Bledsoe has been promoted to the new position of vice president of special projects. He brings nearly 40 years of industry experience to this position. Bledsoe joined Food City in December 2002 as project manager. He was later promoted to store manager and then served as district manager for 17 Food City locations in the Tri-City market area.

Food City is hiring, needing to add 200-plus employees for our new store opening soon on Schaad Road in northwest Knox County. Apply or learn more at foodcitycareers.com.

Ad specials for today and Saturday (Feb. 26-27) here: Food City_2.26 Knox ROP

Betsi James is special events manager for Food City’s Knoxville and Chattanooga divisions.

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