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NASCAR completes TV package with Fox Sports

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) —áNASCARácompleted its $8.2 billion television package Thursday by adding two years to its deal with Fox Sports and setting a schedule that gives the network the first 16 Sprint Cup races beginning in 2015.

Fox Sports last year signed a deal for the first 13 Cup races beginning with the 2015 season and the latest deal gives the network three more Cup races to go with the first 14 Nationwide Series races. Fox Sports also extended the contract it had signed last year by two years, so it now runs through 2024 and is the same length as the deal NBC Sports signed last week.

“Fox Sports has been an outstanding partner foráNASCARáand we could not be more pleased with the additional commitment they are making to our sport and the fans,”áNASCARáChairman Brian France said. “Fox Sports has delivered for our fans a number of innovations that have changed how our sport is presented, and our entire industry has now come to expect excellence fromáNASCARáon Fox. We believe this new agreement underscores our shared commitment to the fans over the next decade.”

NBC Sports paid $4.4 billion for its rights, which begin in 2015, and the Fox Sports deal is now worth $3.8 billion with Thursday’s additions. It putsáNASCARáat $820 million a year for the length of the 10-year contracts.

Fox Sports will air nine Cup races on its network. The other seven will air on the Fox Sports 1 cable channel.

NBC Sports said last week seven of its 20 races would air on NBC. Coupled with Fox’s broadcast races,NASCARáin 2015 will have 16 total races on a network broadcast — the same number as this year.

The first 14 Nationwide Series race and the entire Truck Series schedule will air on Fox Sports 1, the all-sports network that launches this month. The Truck Series race from Michigan International Speedway on Aug. 17 will be the network’s first live event, andáNASCARáwill be an anchor property for Fox Sports 1.

Fox Sports began broadcasting liveáNASCARáraces in 2001, and had the Nationwide Series as part of that original television package.