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Problems at RPM make waves throughout NASCAR

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Blue_Tires Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-27-10 08:58 PM
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Problems at RPM make waves throughout NASCAR
The ongoing saga of Richard Petty Motorsports appears a long way from any finalization. The team's financial disarray has caused more turmoil with the team leaving a number of principal players as well as hundreds of employees concerned about their futures.

Team owner George Gillett sold several assets this week in hopes of raising capital to infuse into the struggling race team. But it is still unclear if the reported $63 million Gillett received after selling ski resort properties will be enough to keep RPM afloat beyond this weekend's race at Talladega.

Gillett is just one of the players involved in this tumultuous story that has a lot on the line in its ultimate resolution:
George Gillett

Unless the sometimes controversial businessman can salvage the sinking RPM ship, he will add his name to the infamous list of NASCAR owners such as J.D. Stacy, Bobby Ginn and Alex Meshkin who came into the sport with high promises only to leave with hat in hand. Gillett does not have a solid track record in dealing with sports properties as is evident with his involvement with the Montreal Canadians and the Liverpool soccer team. It's do or die time for Gillett who must find a way to bring more money to the organization or face a possible complete shutdown before this season even ends.

Richard Petty

Although his name is on the front door, in reality Petty owns a mere 4 percent of RPM. "The King" has never been involved in the true day-to-day operation of the team and has been primarily kept in the role as spokesman and, of course, a priceless marketing and promotional entity. However, these recent developments may change things and Petty vowed last weekend to actively pursue additional investors and capital to ensure RPM's door not only stays open but that the team be competitive. "I've been here since '49, I ain't going nowhere," Petty told reporters last weekend in Martinsville. Despite the icon's positive attitude, the possibility of the Sprint Cup Series not having a team owned by a member of the Petty family for the first time in NASCAR history remains very real.
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