UPDATE (1:05 p.m. ET): Bellator amended its original press release to clarify it is “in talks” with Monster Energy about partnering with NASCAR.
If you’re a fan of both mixed martial arts and NASCAR, you probably were excited to find out the two sports were planning to join forces. It seems that might not be the case, though.
NASCAR officials have shot down reports the racing series will be partnering with promoter Bellator MMA to bring fights to four races during the 2017 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series, according to MMA Junkie.
“NASCAR does not have a partnership with Bellator,” NASCAR told USA TODAY Sports’ Brant James, via MMA Junkie.
Bellator, which has a preexisting relationship with Monster Energy, reportedly announced it had partnered with the Cup series on Monday morning.
Although NASCAR denies it, it’s the only party involved in the reported collaboration that’s doing so. Monster Energy’s vice president of sports marketing, Mitch Covington, expressed excitement to Motorsport.com on Monday.
“MMA is an exciting sport that appeals to a wide demographic,” Covington said. “By partnering with Bellator to bring mixed martial arts to NASCAR we are able to bring a fresh dynamic to the racetrack and a taste of what Monster Energy is into, allowing us all to connect with a new fan base in relevant and meaningful ways to further elevate the series.”
Since Monday morning, Bellator reportedly revised its press release to simply say more details about the supposed fights would be released soon.
Thumbnail photo via Jasen Vinlove/USA TODAY Sports Images