Nascar has acknowledged that RJR
The five choices were an automotive-related company, a beer company, a clothing company, a restaurant chain or a soft-drink company.
RJR has sponsored Nascar's Winston Cup since 1971 and last year signed a five-year extension to its deal. But in a statement issued last week, RJR said, "Our business dynamics have changed dramatically." RJR lost almost $60 million in the fourth quarter of 2002.
RJR and Winston have contributed more than $100 million to Nascar during its partnership. Its first Winston Cup points championship totaled $100,000 in 1971; last year, champion Tony Stewart took home $3.75 million of the $14 million purse. Winston announced earlier this year the total purse for 2003 would be $17 million.