By on January 5, 2022

NASCAR/Getty Images

We reported on Monday that NASCAR said driver Brandon Brown’s team had jumped the gun when it announced it had paired with a cryptocurrency that referenced the “Let’s Go Brandon” chant that has become popular in conservative circles as a sort of code for “f–k Joe Biden”.

Reports now indicate that NASCAR has rejected the sponsorship.

Yahoo! Sports cites tweets from two NASCAR beat reporters that claim NASCAR rejected the sponsorship on Tuesday. NASCAR has final approval over sponsorships.

NASCAR president Steve Phelps signaled a desire to avoid politics in general and the “Let’s Go Brandon” phrase specifically in November, according to a quote cited by Yahoo!:

“We do not want to associate ourselves with politics, the left or the right,” Phelps said before the final race of the season. “We obviously have and we’ve always had as a sport tremendous respect for the office of the president no matter who is sitting.

“I think it’s an unfortunate situation. Do we like the fact that it kind of started with NASCAR and then is gaining ground elsewhere? No, we’re not happy about that. But we will continue to make sure that we have respect for the office of the president.”

The Yahoo! piece cites The Athletic in reporting that NASCAR had told the team in November it would not approve any sponsorship involving the phrase. Apparently, NASCAR initially missed that the sponsorship would be related to the phrase.

Brown’s team claims NASCAR had said it would approve the sponsorship, and a tweet posted online seems to show that the sponsorship initially received approval. It’s worth noting here that NASCAR can approve a paint scheme and not a sponsorship or vice-versa — the two are separate — and also that NASCAR could’ve changed its mind, or higher-ups could’ve overruled the initial approval.

Lawsuits are being threatened over NASCAR’s decision.

We won’t take sides in this, other than to point out that as a private entity, NASCAR has the right to approve (or not) sponsorships and paint schemes, and it’s not censorship, any more than us moderating a racist comment that violates our rules would be.

One reporter suggested that NASCAR didn’t have its online portal for approval requests ready to go, and that created confusion.

For the curious, here’s the NASCAR rulebook on sponsorship approval:

“NASCAR may refuse to permit a competitor to participate in an event if NASCAR determines that any advertising, sponsorship, or similar agreement to which the competitor is or will be a party, is detrimental to the sport, to NASCAR, series sponsor, or to the promotor for any reason, including without limitation, the public image of the sport.

Decals, advertising slogans, paint schemes, and other graphic designs and text on the vehicle that have not been previously approved by NASCAR must not be used unless and until they have been submitted by the crew chief to NASCAR headquarters and approved by NASCAR prior to the event. The review and approval of decals, advertising slogans, paint schemes and other graphic designs and text on the vehicle that have not been previously approved by NASCAR is at the sole discretion of NASCAR and such approval may be withheld for any reason. All NASCAR members agree to accept NASCAR’s decision in this regard.”

We’ll see if this ends up in court. For now, Brown finds himself without a sponsor and the start of the season looming.

[Image: NASCAR]

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43 Comments on “UPDATE: NASCAR Rejects Brandon Brown’s Sponsor...”


  • avatar
    Astigmatism

    “#cancelnascar”

    Jeez, what is it with these snowflakes and their cancel culture?

  • avatar
    aja8888

    Yes, we have respect for the OFFICE of the president, but not the current moron in it.

    • 0 avatar
      slavuta

      MOTUS

    • 0 avatar
      Ol Shel

      The current guy couldn’t attempt a coup if his life depended on it. He doesn’t even know how to steal from his own charity!

      • 0 avatar
        slavuta

        Hey, he is a PRO when it comes to stealing from Ukraine!
        Also pretty good at plagiarizing and telling lies non-stop for 50 years

        • 0 avatar
          mcs

          Well, he didn’t steal a whole section of their country like putin did.

          • 0 avatar
            Astigmatism

            Nor try to use $400 million of US taxpayer dollars to blackmail them into helping him smear a political opponent.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Well, he was part of the administration that stole the rest of it.

          • 0 avatar
            slavuta

            Biden stole entire! Ukraine.
            $400 million…. my head is spinning. How about $1,000,000,000 – for just initial bribe?
            This is how it went – listen to the tape
            https://youtu.be/7lA3oOo1oZc

            Basically, Biden has sent $1B of American taxpayer money to Ukraine as payment for removal of the Prosecutor General of Ukraine who was going after the corrupt Hunter Biden and his accomplices from NAFTOGAZ

            Thanks Biden for selling America

  • avatar
    ajla

    I’m not a fancy lawyer but I don’t believe a lawsuit will get very far here.

    That said, this is yet another situation (both on and off the track) that NASCAR leadership handled with all the grace of two rhinos f*cking.

  • avatar
    FreedMike

    Brown should have thought twice about an signing on with an overtly political sponsor.

    From what I gather, he’s a very good driver, though, so he should find a seat with someone. I wish him well.

    • 0 avatar
      Tim Healey

      The Yahoo piece made the same point in a bit of editorializing at the end. I sorta agree, but I also understand the desperation for sponsor money among up and coming drivers.

      The whole thing seems a mess — NASCAR communicated poorly, the bit-coin bro sees any criticism as an affront worthy of a lawsuit, and a relatively anonymous up and coming driver got swept up in politics, at first through no fault of his own and later because he tried to take advantage of his newfound fame.

      We live in strange times.

      • 0 avatar
        FreedMike

        He isn’t the first sports star to derail his career with politics.

        • 0 avatar
          Astigmatism

          This won’t derail his career. He’ll have some other sponsor that wants the exposure in conservative circles who know who this is. If it’s not MyPillow then it could be one of the tech companies that relocated to Texas.

        • 0 avatar
          ajla

          I give him a lot more benefit of the doubt than some other might.
          -He didn’t come up *at all* with the LGB chant.
          -His team was probably getting desperate with the season about to start.
          -The joker at NASCAR race operations literally wrote “the sponsors are approved”. I doubt they would have made any public announcement without that sign off. My guess is they thought the car not
          fully saying “Let’s go Brandon” anywhere might have been okay.
          -NASCAR leadership is a bunch of double-talking clowns so who knows what was really communicated in the November meeting.

      • 0 avatar
        Ol Shel

        Brown went around to national media claiming to reject the politics of FJB and LGB. Turns out he was negotiating this sponsorship at the same time. He took what was initially an offense by the crowd, and he embraced it when he saw dollar signs. Dumb move on Brandon’s part.

  • avatar
    Mike Beranek

    ““We do not want to associate ourselves with politics, the left or the right,” Phelps said”

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/sports/2020/08/20/nascars-trump-2020-car-must-use-goodyear-tires-despite-presidents-call-boycott/

    https://www.blackhillsfox.com/content/news/NASCAR-driver-to-race-Trump-2020-vehicle-sponsored-by-pro-Trump-PAC-571603121.html?ref=121

    https://www.foxbusiness.com/sports/nascar-trump-2020-car-goodyear-tires-boycott

    WHOOPS!

    • 0 avatar
      Astigmatism

      What about it? The President attacking a NASCAR sponsor of his own volition is not the same as a NASCAR car whose sponsorship is solely devoted to attacking the President.

  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    Should have added a silent “T”, instant approval.

  • avatar
    OA5599

    LET’S GO BRANDON!

    • 0 avatar
      Jesse

      Tell me you’re a knuckle-dragger without specifically telling me you’re a knuckle-dragger.

      • 0 avatar
        slavuta

        Ok, lets go president-Fart!
        Hey, he is a definition of “old fart” – showering with his daughter – check; sniffing on girl’s hairs – check; farting in presence of British royalty – check.
        I wouldn’t wanna be his driver in the Beast. I’ve heard they now fill air freshener into fire extinguisher.

  • avatar
    dal20402

    Let’s go Steve?

  • avatar
    ToolGuy

    Hey, rules are rules – which I’m pretty sure is how stock car racing got started… ;-)

  • avatar
    dukeisduke

    The whole “Let’s Go Brandon” thing started because the stupid NBC reporter, instead of ignoring the FJB chants, decided to try to fool viewers into thinking they were hearing “Let’s Go Brandon”. Since then, the thing has taken on a life of its own. Why couldn’t she just let it go?

  • avatar
    kjhkjlhkjhkljh kljhjkhjklhkjh

    I love useless lawsuits over alt-coins.. only one winning is the lawyers on both sides.

    As for the politics .. no way in hell is Nascar going to alienate 30-35% of their paying audience over a slogan … game set match … greed winds over deep-right nutz, cancel wins

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      “greed winds over deep-right nutz’

      But not truck nutz? or are those things still a thing?

    • 0 avatar
      RHD

      Racing and all professional sports are entertainment, which exists only to extract the maximum number of dollars from the crowd’s pockets.
      The players change, the owners change, the coaches change; the only thing that stays the same is the uniform. So you’re rooting for a shirt and a couple of colors, and paying for tickets, overpriced food, parking, souvenirs and so on. The owners are multi-millionaires, and many of the players are, too.
      Any fanatic who says “We did it!” when their team wins is deluding themself.

  • avatar
    Bike

    These red vs blue slanging matches are SOOO boring. Good on NASCAR being the grown-ups.

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