NASCAR driver Corey LaJoie’s No. 32 racecar is getting a new look. Starting Sunday, the car will debut a patriotic color scheme emblazoned with a political message: Trump 2020.
LaJoie's team, Go Fas Racing, announced a partnership with the pro-Trump Patriots of America PAC on Wednesday. The design will premiere at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and be used in the following eight races throughout the remainder of the season. LaJoie’s car previously sported a smaller “Trump 2020” logo on the rear of his car.
"Our mission is to get voters registered and to the polls in November,” said Jeff Whaley, a spokesman for the organization. “We feel this partnership is the best way to help us communicate this message to the NASCAR community and encourage all Americans to do their part by heading to the polls."
The announcement comes just a week after an FBI investigation found that the noose NASCAR driver Bubba Wallace found in his garage was not, in fact, a noose. LaJoie and Wallace will be racing against each other on Sunday.
Predictably, the social media lashing has been swift, with Twitter users calling LaJoie “racist” and hoping someone would “wreck his car on the first lap.” Others wondered where he would “hang the noose.”
But there’s a twist: LaJoie is close friends with Bubba Wallace. The two attended the same high school and have participated in philanthropic projects together. In the midst of the noose controversy, LaJoie expressed his solidarity with Wallace in an Instagram post saying, “This is my brother carrying a burden in a way most will never know. It’s time to pick a side, to love or to hate. There is no middle ground…@bubbawallace is leading this charge and we are behind you ready and willing to fight for what is right.” When Wallace’s car ran out of gas in the final laps of a race last week, LaJoie maneuvered his car behind his teammate to give his vehicle the extra boost he needed to reach the pit lane, a move Insider hailed as “a stunning display of sportsmanship.”
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This is bigger than racing guys. This is my brother carrying a burden in a way most will never know. It’s time to pick a side, to love or to hate. There is no middle ground. To those who choose the latter, I hope the door hits you in the ass on the way out. @bubbawallace is leading this charge and we are behind you ready and willing to fight for what is right. #IstandwithBubba
While it’s unclear how much say LaJoie had in the decision to display the campaign emblem, he said he hopes the new design reminds fans to register to vote.
“When they see the car, hopefully it makes them race to the polls in November," LaJoie said in a statement.
For his part, team owner Archie St. Hilaire is all-in for Trump.
"I am honored to be part of the President's re-election campaign through the Patriots of America PAC,” he said. “As a Trump 2020 supporter, this team will do everything possible to secure victory on and off the track electing President Donald Trump to a second term. Let us bring this country back and Keep America Great!"