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NASCAR (CHARLOTTE, NC.) - Enhanced Official NASCAR Hologram Program Introduced

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The NASCAR industry will introduce a new hologram on all officially licensed merchandise product in 2008 to aid in the enforcement of counterfeit merchandise. The new and improved hologram, designed to more effectively protect fans who are purchasing and retailers who are selling NASCAR licensed merchandise, features the “Track and Trace” enforcement system produced by DuPont Authentication Systems.

DuPont’s new enforcement system will allow NASCAR and its licensees to equip ICE (Immigration & Custom Enforcement) officials and other agencies to track serial numbers on the holograms, more easily discover counterfeit holograms, prevent affiliated merchandise from entering the country and investigate bogus products sold in foreign countries.

In 2005, NASCAR began requiring all licensees producing NASCAR-licensed merchandise to affix a specially designed hologram to the merchandise to demonstrate its authenticity. The hologram contains serialized numbers to track the distribution and sale of the products. The enhanced program will allow the serial number on all officially licensed merchandise to be checked at any time – during distribution, at trackside events and in retail settings – using a computer or handheld device.

“Our enhanced hologram program lets fans know they’ve purchased high-quality, authentic NASCAR-licensed merchandise that supports their favorite drivers and teams,” said Blake Davidson, managing director of licensing at NASCAR. “The improved tracking system will bolster enforcement efforts domestically and abroad, particularly as knock-off goods proliferate.”

Plans to support the Official NASCAR Hologram program will be visible through an extensive advertising campaign reaching fans in 2008. Television, radio, print, and online ads will communicate the purpose of the program and ask fans for their help in policing knock-off goods. Fans who come across product suspected to be counterfeit are encouraged to e-mail

"We are committed to ensuring that fans of Dale Earnhardt Jr. receive authentic merchandise. This new hologram is another important step that we can take toward making this happen," said Joe Mattes, vice president, licensing at JR Motorsports.

“Making it easy to identify and track counterfeit goods helps protect NASCAR drivers, teams and licensees,” said Mark Dyer, president of Motorsports Authentics, NASCAR’s largest licensee. “Fans deserve to know they’re purchasing authentic, high-quality merchandise, and this new system helps us do that even better.”

"The hologram, and NASCAR's aggressive enforcement program, is an effective way for EA to protect the public from the purchase of counterfeit games,” said Tom Goedde, director of marketing for EA Sports. "This, coupled by the anti-counterfeit measures taken by gaming hardware manufacturers ensures that the consumer experiences a genuine and authentic experience every time they pick up a controller."

“VF Imagewear clearly recognizes the value that holograms provide for NASCAR and all of our sports properties. We support this enhanced program for protecting all licensed merchandise,” said Ed Doran, president of VF Imagewear, a NASCAR licensee in the apparel category.

ABOUT NASCAR Licensing The National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing, NASCAR, is the sanctioning body for one of America’s premier sports, which is the second highest-rated regular sport on television and has the most corporate involvement of any major sport. The licensing division of NASCAR, based in Charlotte, N.C., works with more than 200 licensees nationwide. Overall, NASCAR fans purchased approximately $2 billion in NASCAR-licensed merchandise in 2006. Headquartered in Daytona Beach, Fla., NASCAR also has offices in Bentonville, Ark., Concord, N.C., Los Angeles, New York, Mexico City, and Toronto.