MBNA Corp., which issues affinity credit cards for Nascar and other motor sports organizations, has signed a multiyear agreement to become a principal sponsor of the Joe Gibbs auto racing team and its various members.

Starting in 1999, MBNA will be the primary sponsor of Bobby Labonte and J.D. Gibbs in the Nascar Busch Series, Cory McClenathan's NHRA Top Fuel dragster, and Coy Gibbs' Nascar All Pro Series.

"This partnership with Joe Gibbs Racing gives MBNA a tremendous opportunity to increase our presence in all forms of racing," said K. David Elgena, senior executive vice president and director of MBNA Motorsports. "We feel we have underscored our stature as the motor sports credit card company."

MBNA has issued more than 400,000 Nascar cards, which can be customized with pictures of any of 46 drivers, and it has more than 300 group endorsements in the motor sports sector.

MBNA is also the official credit card issuer of the National Football League, National Hockey League, Major League Baseball, and more than 600 other sports organizations.

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