Lilly Diabetes

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Ryan Reed’s status for 2019 uncertain after sponsor leaves

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Lilly Diabetes announced Monday that it will not return to Roush Fenway Racing after this season, ending five years with the organization and Ryan Reed, who said he was unsure of his plans for next year.

Lilly Diabetes issued a statement that read:

“For the past five years, we have been fortunate to have had a wonderful partnership with Ryan Reed and Roush Fenway Racing. Together, we have increased awareness among NASCAR fans about the importance of managing diabetes and have inspired people with diabetes to live the lives they want to live. Moving forward, we have decided to shift our focus to other initiatives that support the diabetes community and, therefore, our partnership with Roush Fenway Racing to sponsor Ryan will end at the conclusion of the 2018 NASCAR season.

“We are grateful to Ryan for his dedication to the diabetes community, and we admire all he has accomplished. We wish him all the success in the future as we turn from sponsor to fans. We also thank Jack Roush and the team at Roush Fenway Racing for their exceptional partnership. As the Official Diabetes Health Partner of NASCAR, we look forward to continuing our support of fans impacted by diabetes through our educational initiatives that raise awareness of the importance of diabetes management and overall good health.”

Reed, who was eliminated from the Xfinity playoffs at Dover, offered his thanks to Lilly Diabetes in a statement and said: “I am ready for the challenge of free agency and putting myself in the opportunity to do what I love, which is win races and be a champion for others that live with diabetes. (Seven)-and-a half years ago when I was diagnosed, I was told I would never drive race cars again. I defied that then and have no doubt will continue to defy that and compete in the sport I love.”

The 25-year-old Reed has two career Xfinity victories. Both came in the season-opening race in Daytona. He won there in 2015 and ’17.

Roush Fenway Racing also issued a statement Monday:

“We would like to thank Lilly Diabetes for a truly great partnership over the last five seasons. We consider the program a success, as we were able to win two races at Daytona, qualify annually for the playoffs, and educate the racing community on important health initiatives, while at the same time inspiring those living with diabetes to live their lives to the fullest.

“We wish Lilly Diabetes nothing but the best going forward, as they continue their effort to push this important message.”

Ryan Reed signs new multi-year deal with Roush Fenway, Lilly Diabetes

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Roush Fenway Racing announced Friday that it has re-signed driver Ryan Reed to a multi-year contract extension to continue racing in the Xfinity Series.

In addition, RFR officials also announced that Lilly Diabetes has extended its relationship to sponsor Reed and the No. 16 Ford Mustang going forward, as well.

The 23-year-old native of Bakersfield, California, earned his first career Xfinity win in last season’s opening race at Daytona.

He remains part of the inaugural Xfinity Series Chase for the Championship. His best finish this season is fifth at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin.

Reed has proved to be an inspirational figure in the sport. Five years ago, doctors told him he’d never be able to race again after being diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes.

“We are very excited to continue our program with Lilly Diabetes,” said Reed, who will make his NASCAR Sprint Cup Series debut this weekend at Talladega Superspeedway. “Not only to continue to drive the No. 16, but more importantly, the opportunity to encourage and educate people who are living with diabetes and those who care for them.

“We will continue to share the message about diabetes awareness, specifically the importance of talking to doctors as well as proper nutrition and daily exercise.”

Added Mike Mason, vice president, U.S., Lilly Diabetes, “Through sharing his diabetes story with NASCAR fans throughout the country over the past three years, Ryan has inspired thousands of people affected by diabetes to live healthier lives and take an active role in managing their health.”

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