NASCAR is reviewing a deal calling for a "Let's go Brandon" paint scheme on a car in its Xfinity Series, USA Today reported Friday.
Driver Brandon Brown's owner, Brandonbilt Motorsports, and a cryptocurrency coin named after the "Let's go Brandon" meme announced a sponsorship deal Thursday.
The phrase gained prominence after an NBC reporter incorrectly attributed the chant to a NASCAR crowd while interviewing Brown on Oct. 3 at Talladega Superspeedway. The crowd was really saying ''F**k Joe Biden.''
Max Marcucci, a public relations strategist representing Brandonbilt Motorsports, said NASCAR had provided written approval of the car's paint scheme and sponsorship.
"We didn't freelance this," Marcucci told USA Today.
James Koutoulas, a leading holder of LGBcoin, said stock car racing's governing body approved the sponsorship deal contingent on the use of the LGB acronym, rather than spelling out "Let's go Brandon," on Brown's car.
Marcucci told USA Today he could not confirm Koutoulas' claim because he was not involved in those discussions.
After the sponsorship agreement was announced via a news release, NASCAR informed Brown's team it was reviewing the details, Marcucci told USA Today.
NASCAR said the deal had not been approved and Brown's team "jumped the gun" in publicizing the deal, Motorsport.com reported.
Video and photos of Brown standing in front of his No. 68 Chevrolet Camaro show the red-white-and-blue paint scheme that includes "LGBcoin.io," across the rear quarter-panel, USA Today said.
NASCAR in November renounced its association with the "Let's go Brandon" phrase.
"Do we like the fact that it kind of started with NASCAR and then is gaining ground elsewhere?'" NASCAR president Steve Phelps said, USA Today reported. "No, we're not happy about that. But we will continue to make sure that we have respect for the office of the president."
Although Brandon Brown previously said that association with the phrase potentially had damaged his appeal to corporate sponsors, Marcucci said the driver's father and team owner, Jerry Brown, secured the deal with LGBcoin.
The victory at Talladega was the first in Brown's NASCAR career.
The Xfinity Series is NASCAR's second tier, under the Cup Series.
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