Monday, March 04, 2013

Texas Announces NRA Race Sponsorship

Texas Motor Speedway and the National Rifle Association have signed a one-year agreement with a renewal option for America's oldest civil rights and sportsmen's group to serve as the title sponsor for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race on April 13, speedway president Eddie Gossage announced Monday. 

The annual spring NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Texas Motor Speedway will be retitled the "NRA 500" and serve as the first prime-time Saturday evening race of this season. The NRA replaces Samsung Mobile, which had served as the title sponsor of this race since 2002. Gossage made the announcement and unveiled the race logo during Texas Motor Speedway's annual Media Day held in the Grand Ballroom of The Speedway Club. 

"The NRA has been involved in the sport for several years and a partner of Speedway Motorsports, Inc. for many years in various aspects, and this race entitlement is just another extension of that business relationship," Gossage said. "We look forward to another successful partnership with the NRA for our April race week of activities." 

The NRA has had a relationship with the NASCAR industry for more than a decade on a variety of platforms. The organization continues to be a generous supporter of SMI's Speedway Children's Charities and its fund-raising events since 2000. The NRA has contributed more than $500,000 to the Texas Chapter of SCC at Texas Motor Speedway alone. 

NRA's most recent race entitlement in the sport came last season when the organization was the title sponsor for the NASCAR Nationwide Series race known as the "NRA American Warrior 300" that was held Sept. 1 at Atlanta Motor Speedway. NASCAR owner Richard Childress is a current NRA board member and team owners and drivers have donated sponsor space on their cars to support the NRA in the past. 

NRA Executive Vice President and CEO Wayne LaPierre was unable to attend the event in person, but did provide a video message for the Media Day audience.
"The NRA 500 is the latest announcement in the long history of a growing partnership between the NRA, Speedway Motorsports and the NASCAR community," LaPierre said. "NRA members and NASCAR fans love their country and everything that is good and right about America. We salute our flag ... volunteer in our churches and communities ... cherish our families ... and WE LOVE RACING! On April 13, we'll all come together at Texas Motor Speedway."


  1. Manitoba_jay3:06 PM

    It's great to see that organizations want to sponser our races.I personally don't have any issue with the NRA but a lot of people do.I am really on the fence on this,the NRA donates tons of money to good causes but is a political organization and could we ostracize fans who have different ideals?The worst case for me would be anti-gun protesters at the race.I understand the NRA has sponsored races in the past but Sprint Cup in todays political climate would receive a ton of media attention.

  2. Anonymous3:25 PM

    I do not personally have an issue with the NRA or what it stands for. The thing I am concerned about is the timing. With gun control in the news daily, this may not be the right time for Nascar and The NRA. I know Texas is a little easier to obtain guns. I wonder how many protesters will show up

  3. Anonymous3:39 PM

    I'm an NRA member and supporter, but I have to agree with both above, NASCAR may be shooting themselves in the foot with this one.

  4. If we only accept sponsorship from organizations EVERYONE agrees with, we will accept no sponsorship at all. It's not about whether you agree or disagree with the NRA, anymore than Cargill Beef should be prevented from sponsoring Trevor Bayne's Nationwide car to avoid offending the vegetarians.

  5. Brandon, WV6:25 PM

    What if PETA wanted to sponsor a race? Should we not let them pay the money to keep the sport going? I despise PETA, but if they want to sponsor a 500 mile race, so be it.