Sports

NASCAR driver wants Let’s Go Brandon to be a positive message

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NASCAR Xfinity Series driver Brandon Brown.

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Brandon Brown posted a statement on social media Thursday evening with the intention to “clear the air on some things” regarding a controversial sponsor rollout for the 2022 NASCAR season.

Brown is the driver at the center of a political and cultural clash playing out in the NASCAR world, as his name inspired the viral right-wing “Let’s Go Brandon” chant that’s covert criticism of President Joe Biden.

In a lengthy, four-paragraph statement Brown posted on Twitter, he dispelled the notion that sponsors dropped him after his Xfinity win at Talladega last year and subsequent events that thrust him into the national spotlight. (The “Let’s Go Brandon” chant originated following the race when a reporter suggested on-air that fans were cheering for Brown, although the crowd was actually chanting “F— Joe Biden.”)

He also said that he aimed to make a version of the phrase, LGB, “positive and constructive” and “not divisive.”

“For me, a big goal was and still is to change the narrative of what LGB means,” Brown’s statement read. “I would like it to become a constructive voice for those like myself, who land somewhere in the middle and have views that align with both sides. I want it to become something positive and constructive, not divisive.”

Brown said that he had no sponsorship deals lined up heading into the 2022 season because the contracts had not been crafted rather than previous sponsors shying away in the wake of the rise of “Let’s Go Brandon.”

In his statement, he also addressed why he more recently chose to partner with LGBcoin, a cryptocurrency company whose first three letters reference the slogan and aim to capitalize on its popularity. NASCAR last week formally denied a request by Brown’s Brandonbilt Motorsports team to feature the sponsor on its car as its primary partner for the full 2022 season. Brown, in turn, signed a personal endorsement deal with LGBcoin that includes his “participation in publicity events, videos, crypto conferences, racing-related events and more, though won’t include car decals.”

“For anyone that knew how close we came to closing our doors at the beginning of the 2021 season, this was an opportunity of a lifetime,” Brown wrote of LGBcoin’s “dream come true offer.”

“The partnership opportunity that LGBcoin.io has provided myself and BMS now gives us the capital to expand our organization, better our equipment, centralize our organization to one race shop located in the heart of motorsports, and relieve the worry that many of us have asked from time to time, which is, ‘Are we all going to be employed for the whole season.’”

In the final paragraph, Brown offered an apology to his team’s past and present partners.

“I would like to apologize and accept responsibility for the way this offseason’s transition (has) been handled. I’ve been overwhelmed with every emotion possible throughout the month of December and my neglect to properly inform each of you of our 2022 plans is inexcusable.”

Brown thanked those same sponsors in the final lines of his statement.

This story was originally published January 13, 2022 7:42 PM.

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NASCAR and Charlotte FC beat reporter Alex Andrejev joined The Observer in January 2020 following an internship at The Washington Post. She played Division I volleyball at Columbia University before earning her master’s degree at the University of Southern California.
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