Brian France: 'Nothing to report' regarding a NASCAR sale

FILE – In this Nov. 20, 2016, file photo, NASCAR CEO and Chairman, Brian France, talks to reporters during a news conference before a NASCAR Sprint Cup auto race practice in Homestead, Fla. NASCAR President Brent Dewar has told employees the France family “remains dedicated to the long term growth of our sport.” The memo was sent to employees on Tuesday, May 8, 2018, one day after a media report said the France family was exploring the sale of its stake in the nation’s top auto racing series. (AP Photo/Alan Diaz, FIle)

Brian France said rumors are “seldom right” when the topic of a potential sale of NASCAR came up on SiriusXM on Wednesday.

The NASCAR chairman was on Tradin’ Paint Wednesday afternoon and was asked about a Reuters and CNBC report earlier this year that said the France family was exploring a partial sale of the sport.

“There’s nothing to report on that,” regarding a potential sale. “Rumors are always interesting, but they’re seldom right. The France family is locked and loaded in its dedication to NASCAR.”

It’s important to note that NASCAR did not shoot down the reports of a potential sale when they emerged in May. A NASCAR spokesperson told Reuters that the sport had nothing to add. That’s not a denial.

‘Points are going to play a bigger factor’

With Kevin Harvick, Kyle Busch and Martin Truex Jr. combining to win 15 of the season’s 20 races, there are just seven different winners through the first 20 races of the season. That means nine of the 16 playoff positions are currently filled via the points standings.

France said he liked the fact that points were at a premium.

“Points are going to play a bigger factor, looks like down the stretch,” France said. “That’s a good thing. So it puts more people in the mix.”

His comments are a contrast from what he said in 2014 when NASCAR introduced the 16-driver elimination playoff format.

“The avid fans like [the 16-driver playoff] because they don’t particularly care for points racing, even though they understand it,” France said in 2014 when it was introduced. “The casual fans don’t understand points racing, and they don’t even understand when we go into Richmond often, with all the mathematicals, you’ve got to have a computer next to you to figure out who is in and who is out at a given moment.

While it’s true NASCAR redid the points format in 2017 in adding stage points and playoff points, the win-and-in nature of the playoffs didn’t change. And by adding more points to races and point carryover throughout the playoffs, NASCAR’s move in 2017 meant more of the thing France derided in 2014 — math.

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Nick Bromberg is a writer for Yahoo Sports.

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