By AMANDA VINCENT
NASCAR industry members, specifically tracks that host NASCAR events, issued a joint statement on Thursday, taking a stance against the display of the Confederate flags at track events. The statement comes on the heels of a written statement released last week by NASCAR Chairman and CEO Brian France.
The statement from the race tracks on Thursday read as follows:
“As members of the NASCAR industry, we join NASCAR in the desire to make our events among the most fan-friendly, welcoming environments in all of sports and entertainment.
“To do that, we are asking our fans and partners to join us in a renewed effort to create an all-inclusive, even more welcoming atmosphere for all who attend our events. This will include the request to refrain from displaying the Confederate flag at our facilities and NASCAR events.
“We are committed to providing a welcoming atmosphere free of offensive symbols. This is an opportunity for NASCAR Nation to demonstrate its sense of mutual respect and acceptance for all who attend our events while collectively sharing the tremendous experience of NASCAR racing.”Listed as signatories on the statement were:
International Speedway Corporation tracks — Auto Club Speedway, Chicagoland Speedway, Darlington Raceway, Daytona International Speedway, Homestead-Miami Speedway, Kansas Speedway, Martinsville Speedway, Michigan International Speedway, Phoenix International Raceway, Richmond International Raceway, Route 66 Raceway, Talladega Superspeedway and Watkins Glen International.
Speedway Motorsports Inc. tracks — Atlanta Motor Speedway, Bristol Motor Speedway, Charlotte Motor Speedway, Kentucky Speedway, Las Vegas Motor Speedway, New Hampshire Motor Speedway, Sonoma Raceway and Texas Motor Speedway.
Others — Dover International Speedway, Indianapolis Motor Speedway, Pocono Raceway, Iowa Speedway, Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, Road America, Canadian Tire Motorsports Park, Eldora Speedway and Gateway Motorsports Park.
None of the tracks have announced specific plans to ban the display of the Confederate flag, but Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway, host to the Xfinity and Sprint Cup series this weekend, is conducting a flag exchange. Fans who show up to the track with Confederate flags have the opportunity to exchange those flags for American flags. As of Thursday afternoon, no Confederate flags had been exchanged. Also, there was only one report of a Confederate flag sighting in the track’s infield.
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