NASCAR could report a sponsorship deal related to “Come on Brandon!” »Song

The NASCAR driver whose victory in a second tier race last fall inadvertently spawned a coded vulgar insult from President Joe Biden has unveiled a plan to compete next season in a car sponsored by a cryptocurrency that was derived of the sentence.

But it looks like Brandon Brown, 28, from Woodbridge, Va., Who was little known before his Oct. 2 win in an Xfinity Series race at Talladega, Ala. Superspeedway, may have taken the plunge by posting photos of its No.68, LGBcoin-sponsored red-white-and-blue Chevrolet, a nearly worthless cryptocurrency inspired by the slogan “Let’s go Brandon!”

NASCAR must approve all sponsors and paint schemes of all racing cars. According to a NASCAR employee familiar with the deliberations of the governing body, the governing body has yet to approve the sponsorship of LGBcoin.

Based on previous comments from NASCAR President Steve Phelps, who has led efforts to make stock car racing more inclusive, the racing body might be reluctant to give the division message the green light, no matter what. its coding.

Political analyst Larry J. Sabato, director of the Center for Politics at the University of Virginia, urged NASCAR to reject the plan.

“‘Let’s Go Brandon’ is nothing more than a rude middle finger of President Biden by Trump supporters – and there is no doubt that NASCAR fans are disproportionately pro-Trump,” Sabato wrote in an exchange of e-mails. “For the most part, NASCAR has admirably tried to disassociate itself from the partisan and racist meanness, so let’s hope they do the right thing and rescind this sponsorship deal … That’s not the image NASCAR should. want to project. “

Phelps, who was asked at his end-of-season press conference what he thought of NASCAR being associated with “Let’s Go Brandon!” song, called “unhappy”.

“We don’t want to associate with politics, left or right,” Phelps said. “We obviously have, and always have had, as a sport immense respect for the office of the president, regardless of who sits.

“… do we like that it sort of started with NASCAR and then it’s gaining ground elsewhere? No, we’re not happy with that. But we’ll continue to make sure we respect the office of the President .”

Phelps added that NASCAR will block any instance in which the phrase is used in conjunction with the NASCAR logo or marks.

It is unclear whether Brown realized that NASCAR must approve the sponsorships before his Fredericksburg-based team, Brandonbilt Motorsports, announced on Thursday its 33-race deal with the cryptocurrency coin for the 2022 NASCAR Xfinity Series season. Neither he nor a spokesperson for the team responded to a request for comment.

The press release makes no mention of Biden and characterizes the product, which has a disclaimer that makes it clear that it has “no intrinsic value” and should not be purchased in a strong belief in the American Dream. “

James Koutoulas, founder of Typhoon Capital Management and the investor behind the coin, called Brown an example or perseverance and “truly America’s driver.”

“We are proud to support Brandon this season, to help him pursue his American dream,” Koutoulas said in the team press release. “If we do our job right, when you think of us and you hear, ‘Let’s go Brandon,’ you’ll think and feel, ‘Let’s go to America. “Https:// / jan / 01 / nascar-could-red-flag-sponsorship-deal-related-to /”

The story of how Brown’s name has been appropriated as a euphemism for “F — Joe Biden” needs explanation.

After Brown’s first career victory at Talladega, the crowd erupted into chants of “F — Joe Biden,” which an NBC Sports reporter leading the on-track interview apparently heard as “Come on Brandon! ” She announced on the air that the crowd was expressing support for the driver.

The phrase quickly established itself as a coded message of animosity towards Biden that was chanted en masse at several sporting events and rallies. Last week, an Oregon man used the phrase during a Christmas Eve phone call with Biden and First Lady Jill Biden, causing an avalanche of attention; he later said he was considering running for office. Rep. Lauren Boebert, R-Colo., Wore a red dress emblazoned with “Let’s Go Brandon” during a November 4 meeting with former President Donald Trump at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach, Fla. and then tweeted a photo with the caption: “It’s not a phrase, it’s a movement! #LGB.”

Brown has been less explicit about his own views.

In a December 20 editorial in Newsweek, he wrote about his fear of being “canceled” by sponsors because of the controversy and explained how, deep down, he is a pure runner with no time for politics.

But Brown also hinted at his growing solidarity with those who feel the current administration is out of step or hurting them.

“I will also no longer be silent about the situation I find myself in and why millions of Americans chant my name,” Brown wrote. “I hear them, even though Washington can’t hear them.”

Corporate sponsorship is the lifeblood of auto racing, as the prize money falls far short of the costs of putting even moderately competitive cars into service.

As Brown noted in his Newsweek comment, “… in my world, there is no car to drive without sponsors.”

In this business model, NASCAR racing cars serve as rolling billboards designed to grab the attention of ticket holders and viewers as they spin at nearly 200 miles an hour.

But just as the Federal Communications Commission regulates what products can be advertised on television, NASCAR regulates what products can be displayed on cars that participate in its events.

This has been a tricky line for the police – even before the current division in US politics and the viral spread of “Let’s Go Brandon”.

In recent decades, NASCAR has allowed the sponsorship of race cars by political candidates, but has not allowed explicit political messages.

NASCAR cleared the NRA trackside billboards, but angered gun rights activists in 2019 for rejecting ads from assault rifle manufacturers.

While years ago NASCAR banned the display of the Confederate flag on its racing cars, the sport sparked a backlash among a segment of its supporters by extending it in June 2020 to a fan ban. display the Confederate flag in its stands and infields.

The question NASCAR now faces regarding the Brown LGBcoin sponsorship is whether it will allow a car to be used as a billboard to promote a product that its maker insists is patriotic but which is viewed by many as a coded message of political hatred.

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