The announcer’s comments were broadcast on FloRacing, which provides livestreams of racing events. FloRacing said in a statement Thursday that it had removed the event broadcast and that the announcer's “opinions and language do not reflect our core values or have a place on our platform.”
In video posted Thursday on Twitter, the announcer told the crowd he wanted to make "a social service announcement" before the national anthem. He condemned those who "won't stand for our flag" or who "take a knee" during the anthem.
“I’ve got four words for you: Find a different country if you won’t do it,” he said. “Get the hell out of dodge.”
Cheers in the crowd can be heard at that point. The announcer added that he was outraged that the NFL is considering playing the Black national anthem before games this season "for those folks, I guess the darker toned skin color, I'll just say, Blacks."
“They want a different national anthem and the NFL is thinking about doing it,” he said. “I just say shut the TVs off and let them play in front of nobody.”
The speedway didn’t name the announcer or respond to a request for his name. But Fairmont Raceway in Fairmont, Minnesota, identified him on its Facebook page as its longtime track announcer, Lon Oelke.
Fairmont Raceway promoter Jon McCorkell wrote that Oelke would “absolutely be announcing” races Friday night and would receive a standing ovation before the national anthem. McCorkell added that he agreed “with all of Lon’s comments and opinions” and several commenters chimed in with praise for Oelke.
A listed phone number for Oelke was disconnected, and he didn’t immediately respond to an inquiry sent through Facebook Messenger.