Bruton Smith, above, had a 50-year rivalry with the France family. But on Wednesday afternoon, before 57 hall of fame voters cast their ballots in Charlotte, current NASCAR CEO Brian France spoke positively about Smith and said he deserved to be in the hall of fame.
Bruton Smith, above, had a 50-year rivalry with the France family. But on Wednesday afternoon, before 57 hall of fame voters cast their ballots in Charlotte, current NASCAR CEO Brian France spoke positively about Smith and said he deserved to be in the hall of fame. Ronald Martinez Getty Images for Texas Motor Speedway
Bruton Smith, above, had a 50-year rivalry with the France family. But on Wednesday afternoon, before 57 hall of fame voters cast their ballots in Charlotte, current NASCAR CEO Brian France spoke positively about Smith and said he deserved to be in the hall of fame. Ronald Martinez Getty Images for Texas Motor Speedway

Brian France speaks up for rival Bruton Smith before NASCAR vote

May 20, 2015 10:19 PM

UPDATED May 20, 2015 10:42 PM

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Scott Fowler is a national award-winning sports columnist for The Charlotte Observer. Email Scott at sfowler@charlotteobserver.com or call him at 704-358-5140