As the country gears up for the presidential election in 2016, the Race Team Alliance (RTA) is doing its part to help register race fans to vote.
Former U.S. Congressmen Heath Shuler (D-NC) and Connie Mack (R-Fla) joined RTA chairman Rob Kauffman Friday at Indianapolis Motor Speedway to announce the partnership with Rev the Vote.
According to the Rev the Vote statistics, there are eight million self-proclaimed NASCAR fans who are not registered to vote. By utilizing the social and digital media assets of the race teams, the hope is to spread the word and register those fans to vote.
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"The original idea of the Race Team Alliance was to take the principle that any one team individually wouldn't have the same collective voice all together, and that is precisely what Rev the Vote is all about," said Kauffman, co-owner of Michael Waltrip Racing.
By partnering with the RTA, Rev the Vote will essentially serve as an associate sponsor to all member teams. The Rev the Vote campaign is non-partisan, and will not focus on particular issues, instead focusing primarily on registering people to vote.
"Our goal is to register passionate NASCAR fans about getting the vote out," Kauffman added.
For the former politicians, the partnership with the RTA has provided an avenue to reach a large portion of the American population.
"In all of sports, there are no bigger fans that are more dedicated to the sport than the NASCAR fans are. They truly are very dedicated," said Shuler. "We want to take that same approach and make their voices heard, whether it's in Washington or in their local town and community."
"I think this alliance between the RTA and Rev the Vote will go a long way at delivering a message of the importance of registering to vote," said Mack.
The partnership with Rev the Vote marks the second major partnership the RTA has signed this month. On July 2, the RTA announced a deal with DraftKings to help promote the NASCAR fantasy racing game.
For Kauffman, these partnerships are exactly why the RTA was created.
"This is precisely one of the ideas in forming the Race Team Alliance. (It) was to be able to take all the collective assets of the teams to promote the sport, grow, get some more interest in what the teams are doing," he said. "This is exactly the sort of thing we want to do. We recently came out and announced the partnership with DraftKings, so that is off and running. This is the second major deal with Rev the Vote. Hopefully there's a good pipeline of things to come and as we demonstrate that we can provide value to our partners, we're hopefully attract more partners. That's overall growing the pie for everybody."
Kauffman maintained the relationship between the RTA and NASCAR is a good one, with the sanctioning body fully aware and supportive of the partnership with Rev the Vote.
Kauffman would not go into further details about the future plans of the RTA or discuss any 'Silly Season' rumors about MWR.