Thursday, February 24, 2011

Evernham Sues Gillett For $19.1 Million

Ray Evernham has filed suit against former partner George Gillett, Jr., alleging he is owed $19.3 millon from the recent sale of Richard Petty Motorsports.

In a lawsuit filed Tuesday in North Carolina Superior Court, Evernham claims that Gillett’s Booth Creek Management and Gillett GEMS, LLC failed to pay him the final 20 percent of the purchase price for Evernham Motorsports in 2007. The team later became Gillett Evernham Motorsports and is now known as Richard Petty Motorsports. Evernham retained a 20 percent ownership stake in both Gillett Evernham Motorsports and Richard Petty Motorsports, and claims he received none of what he was due late last year when a financially strapped Gillett sold the team to NASCAR Hall of Famer Richard Petty and two other financial partners.

"We were unable to come to a fair resolution for the amounts due to me related to my sale of the previous RPM race team,” said Evernham in a statement Wednesday. He alleged that creditors of the old Richard Petty Motorsports have been told there are insufficient funds to allow payment for past-due bills. “Like many other vendors and creditors, my claims have been left unpaid,” said Evernham. “We have diligently worked to resolve this matter in good faith without resorting to legal action. This matter has been pending for a period of time and we did not want to disrupt… the beginning of the race season with this unfortunate situation.”

The complaint alleges that the sale of RPM triggered clauses in Evernham’s agreement with Gillett that require full payment of the $19,183,203 he is owed.

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