BRISTOL, TENNESSEE – JULY 15: Fans wearing face masks shop for memorabilia prior to the NASCAR race … [+]
In the early days of NASCAR, if fans wanted any souvenirs or collectibles, they had to go out on the track and hope that their favorite driver would sell t-shirts or hand out hero cards with their picture on them. However, in the 1990s, when the legendary Dale Earnhardt Sr. became known, he began to take control of his wares, which licensed his likeness, car number and even his signature. It created a source of income for him and soon others became aware of it.
By the turn of the century, the NASCAR merchandise market had exploded and fans could buy everything from hats to die-cast cars, cooking utensils, cooking aprons, Christmas decorations, toys and of course T-shirts. With the advent of e-commerce, fans can now buy their favorite driver merchandise online or on the racetrack on a huge track filled with goods vans representing almost every driver, team, and manufacturer.
As everything in the world evolves, so does NASCAR. The sport is now taking its first cautious steps into the world of the non-fungible token, or NFT. The popularity of NFT has increased recently as it has become a way for buyers to purchase digital artwork. Most of the time, NFTs are bought with cryptocurrency, but unlike cryptocurrency, an NFT has a unique digital signature, which means it cannot be exchanged for one like Bitcoin.
The NFT is a digital collector’s item (e.g. an image or video) that is officially licensed and recorded on the blockchain for proof of ownership. An NFT is created from a digital object that represents an item. Major sports leagues like the NBA, NFL and the NHL have jumped on the NFT bandwagon and are selling the tokens for merchandise, video clips and more.
Speedway Motorsports is offering fans 10,000 NFT commemorative tickets.
Speedway Motorsports, which owns eight tracks, seven of which host NASCAR races, announced this week that they are entering the world of NFT. In partnership with GigLabs, Speedway Motorsports created RaceDayNFT.com, which will sell NASCAR-themed NFTs. The new marketplace will launch with a commemorative collection of 10,000 Ticket NFTs, including 500 randomly selected Golden Ticket NFTs for the upcoming race at Bristol Motor Speedway, one of the tracks in Speedway Motorsports’ portfolio. In a press release, Speedway Motorsports emphasized that the commemorative tickets are not suitable for admission to the race on September 18, but a digital object that fans will own.
The first of the commemorative tickets will be available for free, with additional works of art to be offered shortly after the platform’s debut on Monday. These added NFTs are available for sale and include a limited edition by NFT fans to buy. There will also be an At The Track NFT that fans can claim on the property during the Bristol race weekend. Finally, after the race, two collector’s NFTs “Winners Editon” will be released: One for the race winner and an identical version that will be auctioned.
Could the NASCAR NFTs released by Speedway Motorsports not only create a new source of income, but be absorbed by the rest of the sport?
Top Shot of the NBA is the platform on which the league markets its NFTs. During the beta phase, the platform had more than three million transactions and revenues of $ 460 million.
Fanatics, a sports merchandising company that owns the rights to the NBA, NFL, and the NHL merchandising, formed an NFT company called Candy Digital earlier this year. Fanatics also owns the majority of the NASCAR merchandise on the market. If Speedway Motorsports NFTs are as successful as they are in other sports, it would be no surprise if they soon become the norm at NASCAR.
No doubt Dale Earnhardt Sr. would agree.