The Monster Energy Girls are freaking out NASCAR fans on social media, days before Sunday’s Daytona 500, the racing association’s biggest event.
Monster Energy is the new sponsor of the NASCAR Cup Series and the women – dressed in knee-high boots and corset-style shirts – appeared last Sunday as official on-track ambassadors, said USA Today’s blog For The Win. Monster paid $20 million for the title sponsorship.
#NASCAR Fans Approve or No #MonsterEnergyGirls #MonsterEnergy Results Read on Air Tonight @WBLZSports pic.twitter.com/ejaGlZ5lYD
The backlash on social media among fans was quick.
.@NASCAR Monster Energy girls are great way to lose 50% of fan base. Offensive, demeaning, bad image to give young female fans and racers.
These Monster Energy girls are going to be far more obnoxious than the Sprint girls. Oy. #NASCAR
@ForTheWin just another story of females using their bodies for attention
Jamie McMurray, the 2010 Daytona 500 winner, said he wasn’t surprised by the controversy because of the divided opinions many have in politics.
“We live in a society where half of us think one way and half of us think another way – for the most part – about everything,” McMurray said. “I’m not shocked at all that half the people didn’t like something about that and that the other half did.”
Mitch Covington, Monster Energy’s vice president of sports marketing, told ESPN on Wednesday the company has no plans on changing the Monster Energy Girls outfits.
“Monster has always been about racing and girls, and that won’t change,” Covington told ESPN. “When we first started in NASCAR with Robby Gordon in 2009, our models today were conservatively dressed compared to what they had on back then.”
NASCAR driver Brad Keselowski, offered a different perspective, based on being a new parent of a young daughter, noted For The Win.
“When you have kids and you start to see the world through their eyes because you’e raising them, you see how much differently we all look at the world,” Keselowski said. “Because my daughter doesn’t see a scantily clad model – she just sees another person who’s wearing black or whatever colors or a lot of leather. She doesn’t see sex appeal.