Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Kentucky Speedway Lawsuit Will Continue

Like a character in a bad horror movie, the Kentucky Speedway lawsuit simply will not die.

Less than a week after former Kentucky Speedway Chairman Jerry Carroll said that he and his fellow former owners would abandon their four-year-old antitrust lawsuit against NASCAR and International Speedway Corporation, the Cincinnati Enquirer reports that a petition was filed yesterday in the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati requesting a rehearing.

On December 11, a three-judge appeals panel upheld an earlier ruling by the U.S. District Court, issuing a summary judgement in favor of NASCAR and ISC. In layman's terms, the ruling stated that the speedway’s former owners had not proven that NASCAR and ISC had colluded to deny them a spot on the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series schedule, and that there were no grounds for the case to continue. Now, however, the group has petitioned for a rehearing in front of the same panel of judges, or the full appeals court. Lawyers for the former owners contend that “the panel’s decision conflicts with established antitrust law in four fundamental respects,” and that the panel made “fundamental legal errors of antitrust analysis.”

Kentucky real estate developer Jerry Carroll has served as spokesman for the group from the beginning, and said after the second court ruling that he was not in favor of continuing the appeals process. Now, reports say that one of the partners has refused to drop the case. Carroll has confirmed as much, while declining to identify the partner by name. The former ownership group consists of Carroll, Churchill Downs board member Richard Duchossois, Cintas Chairman Richard Farmer, Outback Steakhouse co-founder Chris Sullivan and the estate of John Lindahl.

Carroll did not immediately respond to a request to appear on today's edition of Sirius Speedway. Reporter Kevin Kelly of the Cincinnati Enquirer will join us in the opening hour of tomorrow’s show with more on the story.

Sirius Speedway is a production of the Motor Racing Network; a subsidiary of International Speedway Corporation.

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