NASCAR »

RPM assets sold, Richard Petty takes control


The racing assets of Richard Petty Motorsports have been sold to an investment group consisting of Richard Petty and two investment groups, Medallion Financial Corporation and DGB Investments, finally securing the team's survival into 2011.
"Today is a great day for me, my family, our fans and our wonderful sponsors," Petty said in a statement.

Richard Petty Motorsports had been ailing during the 2010 season after the majority owner of RPM, George Gillett Jr., became embroiled in financial problems. Gillett was co-owner of debt-laden Liverpool Football Club that was recently sold over his and co-owner Tom Hick's objections, and Gillett is being sued by a US hedge fund over $117m debt they allege he had mounted up with his investment in LFC. Gillett's holdings in the Montreal Canadiens ice hockey franchise has proved an additional drain.

Petty himself had only a small share of RPM, which was formed from the merger of Petty Enterprises and Gillett-Evernham Motorsports at the start of 2009 to keep both struggling NASCAR operations afloat. This year the seven-times NASCAR champion has appeared little more than a figurehead at the team that carried his name, with the Gillett family in actual control.

The buy-out will put Petty firmly back in control of the team. Brian Moffitt and Robbie Loomis, RPM's vice presidents of marketing and racing operations respectively, will continue in their roles and will now report to Petty himself. The transfer has been "in the works" for several weeks, according to today's reports, while other suggest that Moffitt was first in contact with Medallion as little as three weeks ago as RPM's financial troubles gathered terminal velocity.

VeriFone Systems CEO Douglas Bergeron's DGB Investments is one of the new investors. "With Richard Petty's unmatched name and reputation in the motorsports industry, I know this investment is well-timed to succeed," Bergeron said.

Medallion Financial, which boasts baseball great Hank Aaron and former New York governor Mario Cuomo on its board, is the other key investor in the deal. "Ample working capital has been invested in the company to ensure this great team and legend will not only continue to perform, but will thrive and be back in the winner's circle," said Medallion president Andrew Murstein, an avid sports fan whose family business is based on taxi cabs rather than race cars, the 'medallion' originally referring to taxi licences. "I looked at a lot of sports teams over the years and to me, this is a great brand in sports," he continued, adding: "It's like the Boston Celtics or the New York Yankees."

As previously announced, the team will field two cars in the 2011 season that will be driven by AJ Allmendinger and Marcos Ambrose, rather than four cars as RPM had in 2010. However, Murstein is said to be keen to restore the team's four-car line-up in the future and says he's currently reviewing drivers who will be free agents at the end of the 2011 season, while adding assurances that day-to-day operations would be left in Richard Petty's hands.

"The people that know the most about this business and are the best at it, like Richard Petty, make the decisions," Murstein said. "My role for Richard Petty is to give him the money that he needs and the sponsorship that he needs and stay out of his way."

The current RPM team claimed 4th and fifth place at the final race of this year's season at Homestead, with stand-in driver Aric Almirola coming in just ahead of Allmendinger with the team's strongest result of the year.



Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Richard Petty at the Hall of Fame Induction
Aric Almirola, driver of the #43 Richard Petty Motorsports Ford, and Ricky Stenhouse Jr. in the #17 Roush Fenway Racing Ford tangle during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Bojangles` Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway on April 12, 2014 in Darlington, South Carolina. (Photo Credit: NASCAR Via Getty Images)
Aric Almirola, driver of the #43 Farmland Ford, and Brian Scott, driver of the #33 Whitetail Chevrolet, are involved in an on-track incident during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Auto Club 400 at Auto Club Speedway on March 23, 2014 in Fontana, California. (Photo Credit: Kevork Djansezian/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Parker Kligerman, driver of the #58 BRG Motorsports Toyota, Darrell Wallace Jr., driver of the #54 ToyotaCare Toyota, Johnny Sauter, driver of the #98 Nextant Aerospace/Curb Records Toyota, and Mason Mingus, driver of the #35 MadVapes/811 Call Before You Dig Toyota, are involved in an incident during the Camping World Truck Series NextEra Energy Resources 250 at Daytona International Speedway on February 21, 2014 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo Credit: Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images)
Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Lowe`s Chevrolet SS is with his crew chief Chad Knaus, left, and Rick Hendrick, owner of Hendrick Motorsports, center. Johnson won the 2013 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Championship Sunday, November 17, 2013 during the final race of the season at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Homestead, Florida. Johnson secured his title with a 9th place finish. This is the sixth career championship for Johnson. (Photo Credit: HHP/Harold Hinson for Chevrolet)
Austin Dillon, driver of the #3 AdvoCare Chevrolet Camaro, celebrates winnning the 2013 NASCAR Nationwide Series championship with a 12th place finish in the season-ending race Saturday, November 16, 2013 at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Homestead, Florida. His title, the first for Dillon and fourth for team owner Richard Childress, marks Chevrolet’s 17th Driver’s Championship since the inception of the series in 1982. (Photo Credit: Rusty Jarrett/HHP for Chevrolet)
Austin Dillon, driver of the #3 AdvoCare Chevrolet Camaro, celebrates winning the 2013 NASCAR Nationwide Series championship with a 12th place finish in the season-ending race Saturday, November 16, 2013 at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Homestead, Florida. His title, the first for Dillon and fourth for team owner Richard Childress, marks Chevrolet’s 17th Driver’s Championship since the inception of the series in 1982. (Photo Credit: Harold Hinson/HHP for Chevrolet)
Austin Dillon (right), driver of the #3 AdvoCare Chevrolet Camaro, celebrates winning the 2013 NASCAR Nationwide Series championship with a 12th place finish in the season-ending race Saturday, November 16, 2013 at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Homestead, Florida. His title, the first for Dillon and fourth for team owner Richard Childress (left), marks Chevrolet’s 17th Driver’s Championship since the inception of the series in 1982. (Photo Credit: Harold Hinson/HHP for Chevrolet)
Austin Dillon, driver of the #3 AdvoCare Chevrolet Camaro, celebrates winning the 2013 NASCAR Nationwide Series championship with a 12th place finish in the season-ending race Saturday, November 16, 2013 at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Homestead, Florida. His title, the first for Dillon and fourth for team owner Richard Childress, marks Chevrolet’s 17th Driver’s Championship since the inception of the series in 1982. (Photo Credit: Brian Lawdermilk/HHP for Chevrolet)
Team owner Richard Childress celebrates with Austin Dillon, driver of the #3 AdvoCare Chevrolet, after winning the series championship after the NASCAR Nationwide Series Ford EcoBoost 300 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 16, 2013 in Homestead, Florida. (Photo Credit: NASCAR via Getty Images)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the NASCAR Sprint Cup #29 Budweiser Chevrolet SS celebrates his win Sunday, November 10, 2013 in the Advocare 500 at Phoenix International Speedway in Avondale, Arizona. This was Harvick`s 4th win of the season. He is 3rd in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) standings. (Photo Credit: HHP/Rusty Jarrett for Chevrolet)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #29 Budweiser Chevrolet, celebrates in victory lane with team owner Richard Childress and the team after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series AdvoCare 500 at Phoenix International Raceway on November 10, 2013 in Avondale, Arizona. (Photo Credit: Jennifer Stewart/Getty Images)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #29 Budweiser Chevrolet, celebrates in victory lane with team owner Richard Childress and the team after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series AdvoCare 500 at Phoenix International Raceway on November 10, 2013 in Avondale, Arizona. (Photo Credit: Rainier Ehrhardt/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Ricky Stenhouse Jr., driver of the #17 Ford EcoBoost Ford, leads Marcos Ambrose, driver of the #9 MAC Tools Ford, and Kevin Harvick, driver of the #29 Budweiser Chevrolet, during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series AAA Texas 500 at Texas Motor Speedway on November 3, 2013 in Fort Worth, Texas. (Photo Credit: Robert Laberge/Getty Images for Texas Motor Speedway)
Marcos Ambrose, driver of the #9 DeWalt Ford, Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Lowe`s Chevrolet, and Carl Edwards, driver of the #99 Subway Ford, lead a pack of cars during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Camping World RV Sales 500 at Talladega Superspeedway on October 20, 2013 in Talladega, Alabama. (Photo Credit: NASCAR via Getty Images)
Aric Almirola, driver of the #43 Charter Ford, leads the field to the green flag to start the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Camping World RV Sales 500 at Talladega Superspeedway on October 20, 2013 in Talladega, Alabama. (Photo Credit: NASCAR via Getty Images)
Jeb Burton, driver of the #4 Arrowhead / Kangaroo Express Dodge, and Max Gresham, driver of the #8 MRD Motorsports Chevrolet, lead the field at the start of the Camping World Truck Series Fred`s 250 Powered By Coca-Cola at Talladega Superspeedway on October 19, 2013 in Talladega, Alabama. (Photo Credit: NASCAR Via Getty Images)
Aric Almirola, driver of the #43 Charter Ford, celebrates with the Food Giant Foodland Qualifying Day Award after being awarded the pole position for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series 45th Annual Camping World RV Sales 500 at Talladega Superspeedway on October 19, 2013 in Talladega, Alabama. Qualifying was cancelled due to rain and Almirola was awarded the pole position with the fastest time in the first Sprint Cup practice. (Photo Credit: NASCAR via Getty Images)

Start the conversation - Add your comment

Please login or register before adding your comments.

Although the administrators and moderators of this website will attempt to keep all objectionable comments off these pages, it is impossible for us to review all messages. All messages express the views of the poster, and neither Crash Media Group nor Crash.Net will be held responsible for the content of any message. We do not vouch for or warrant the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any message, and are not responsible for the contents of any message. If you find a message objectionable, please contact us and inform us of the problem or use the [report] function next to the offending post. Any message that does not conform with the policy of this service can be edited or removed with immediate effect.




© 1999 - 2014 Crash Media Group

The total or partial reproduction of text, photographs or illustrations is not permitted in any form.