BROOKLYN, Mich. (AP) - Ford Motor Co. is extending its sponsorship agreement with Homestead-Miami Speedway at least through 2019, and track president Matt Becherer is optimistic the venue will remain the host of NASCAR's final weekend for the foreseeable future.
NASCAR's Sprint Cup, Nationwide and Truck champions are crowned at Homestead.
''We've spent the better part of a year renegotiating this extension and we would not have expended the time and energy that we did had we thought there was any chance that the championship could be leaving Miami in the near future,'' Becherer said.
''Now having said that, obviously there are a number of stakeholders that would have to weigh in to a decision of that magnitude. The loudest voice in that conversation is NASCAR's, but the reality is we would not have gone down the path we did if we thought there was a chance that it would leave - and frankly it shouldn't leave.''
The agreement includes an option to extend the sponsorship through 2024. Ford has been the official entitlement sponsor of Homestead-Miami Speedway since 2002.
Homestead hosts this year's Cup finale Nov. 16.
''When the concept of Ford Championship Weekend was originally conceived, there was no way anybody could have anticipated what's going to unfold at Homestead-Miami Speedway in November,'' Becherer said. ''This year is the 13th year of what has been an absolutely fantastic partnership.''