Throwback to when Taylor Swift sponsored an IndyCar

Taylor Swift, Tony Kanaan, Chip Ganassi Racing, IndyCar (Photo by Brian Cleary/Getty Images)
Taylor Swift, Tony Kanaan, Chip Ganassi Racing, IndyCar (Photo by Brian Cleary/Getty Images) /

Once upon a time, Taylor Swift appeared on a car driven by IndyCar champion and Indy 500 winner Tony Kanaan during a Detroit IndyCar doubleheader race weekend.

Since it seems like any and every news outlet this week is publishing content revolving around Kansas City Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce and musician Taylor Swift, let’s break from our usual coverage and throw it back to that one time when the pop star actually sponsored an IndyCar.

And for the record, I am firmly in David Malukas’ camp when it comes to not caring about the whole “Swiftie” fandom — but at the same time, needing to pretend otherwise to avoid an angry mob of worshippers.

So don’t mind my “I’m just here so I don’t get fined” attitude about the subject most of us are sick and tired of hearing about amid the NFL’s ongoing and increasingly obnoxious obsession.


Swift used to make recordings for Big Machine Label Group, a company founded and owned by former race car driver and huge racing fan Scott Borchetta. Borchetta now fields the Big Machine Racing team in the NASCAR Xfinity Series.

It was through this company that Taylor Swift ended up on an IndyCar.

She appeared on the No. 10 Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet which was driven by 2004 IndyCar champion and 2013 Indy 500 winner Tony Kanaan during the doubleheader weekend on Belle Isle in Detroit, Michigan back in late May 2015. Kanaan finished the two races in 20th and 13th place.

The sponsorship was tied to her fourth tour, the 1989 World Tour, which had begun earlier in the month. Now amid her sixth tour, the Eras Tour, the Wyomissing, Pennsylvania native’s popularity has skyrocketed even well beyond what it already was.

Swift is no stranger to the motorsport scene as a whole, having also sung the national anthem ahead of a NASCAR Cup Series race in Arizona and performed during a Formula 1 race weekend in Texas.

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Given Kelce’s own Indy 500 fandom, coupled with the fact that Swift’s presence as a fan at Arrowhead Stadium resulted in 24 million people tuning into a Chicago Bears game, suffice it to say that this relationship — that is, if it’s not just a publicity stunt, which it very well could be for a number of reasons — could be a good thing for IndyCar over the long run.

But admittedly, that’s quite a stretch.