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NASCAR tracks ask fans to refrain from flying Confederate flag

NASCAR hasn't banned the Confederate flag, but its tracks have united in requesting that race fans not display the controversial banner.

On Thursday, International Speedway Corp. and Speedway Motorsports Inc. joined with 30 motorsport tracks in requesting fans "refrain from displaying the Confederate Flag at our facilities and NASCAR events."

"As members of the NASCAR industry, we join NASCAR in the desire to make our events among the most fan-friendly, welcoming environments in all of sports and entertainment," the groups said in a joint statement. "To do that, we are asking our fans and partners to join us in a renewed effort to create an all-inclusive, even more welcoming atmosphere for all who attend our events."

NASCAR drivers Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Jeff Gordon have also come out against the flag.

Retailers Wal-Mart, Amazon, Sears and EBay have announced plans to stop selling the Confederate flag, which has drawn intense criticism in recent days following the killings of nine African Americans in a Charleston, S.C., church. 

This weekend at Daytona International Speedway, which is also among the signees, NASCAR fans will be offered an opportunity to trade in Confederate banners for U.S. flags at the Coke-Zero 400.

Follow Matt Wilhalme on Twitter @mattwilhalme

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