AAA, Firestone sign multiyear deals

Updated: March 1, 2010, 5:42 PM ET
By Richard Durrett | ESPNDallas.com

FORT WORTH, Texas -- Texas Motor Speedway announced Monday that it has title sponsor agreements with AAA Texas for the November NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race and with Firestone for the June IZOD IndyCar Series race.

The track has a five-year contract with Irving-based AAA Texas, which takes it through the 2014 fall race. The event, now known as the AAA Texas 500, is the eighth race in the 10-race Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup this season. AAA Texas replaces Dickies, who was the title sponsor since the race's inception in 2005.

AAA-sponsored driver Sam Hornish Jr. was at TMS on Monday for the announcement and unveiled the race logo, even shooting off confetti in the process.

Bridgestone Americas Tire Operations, the parent company of the Firestone brand, has a two-year agreement with options with TMS to take over the previously named Bombardier Learjet 550k, which is now renamed the Firestone 550k. Bombardier had been the sponsor since 2003. The race, set for June 5, is under the lights and has a history of tight finishes.

"It was critical for us to get these deals done," TMS president Eddie Gossage said. "It shows the vitality of NASCAR and what we're doing here at TMS."

The sponsorship packages include more than just the name of the race. The companies receive, among other things, signage around the track, tickets, suite availability, the chance to give the command to start the engines, and various programs and opportunities to reward employees and constituents.

Richard Durrett covers motorsports for ESPN Dallas. You can follow him on Twitter; or leave a question for his weekly mailbag.

Richard Durrett joined ESPNDallas.com in September 2009. He writes about colleges, the Dallas Stars and the Texas Rangers. Richard spent nine years at The Dallas Morning News covering the Rangers, Stars, colleges, motorsports and high schools.

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