The King just headed down to Sin City to embrace a business partnership. Richard Petty got the VIP treatment at Allegiant Stadium while watching the Las Vegas Raiders play the Washington Football Team.
The Richard Petty Motorsports account showed the seven-time NASCAR Cup Series champion making the rounds on Sunday, December 5. The King posed in front of a massive tribute to late owner Al Davis, he held up a custom Allegiant Stadium, and he watched pre-game warmups. Petty also took time to speak to Washington Football Team quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick, who is currently on Injured Reserve with a hip injury.
The trip to Las Vegas follows some significant news that shook up the NASCAR Cup Series. GMS Racing, the championship-winning Truck Series team owned by Allegiant CEO Maury Gallagher, purchased a controlling interest in Richard Petty Motorsports from Medallion Financial. This $19.1 million transaction also included two Cup Series charters, one of which will go to the No. 94 Chevrolet Camaro that Ty Dillon drives during the 2022 Cup Series season.
A Bidding War Took Place for the Majority Stake
The two organizations surprised many on December 2 by releasing a simple statement announcing the transaction. GMS Racing and RPM confirmed that a deal was in place and added that there would be more details provided on Tuesday, December 7.
Adam Stern of the Sports Business Journal provided some detail of his own on Twitter. The motorsports insider reported that GMS Racing had paid “about $19 million” for the controlling interest. He also dropped the news that a bidding war took place for the majority stake and the two charters.
According to Stern, there were five interested parties that placed bids for the majority stake, with RPM making the winning bid. He did not reveal their identities, but FOX Sports reporter Bob Pockrass noted that Spire Motorsports and a private equity firm had both explored the potential deal.
GMS Racing & RPM Have to Provide More Updates
When RPM and GMS Racing meet with the media to discuss the transaction, they will inevitably face several questions about the future. Specifically, will there be a name change for RPM and will Erik Jones continue to drive the No. 43 Chevrolet?
The Michigan native announced on August 22 that he had signed a deal to return to RPM for the 2022 season and usher in the Next Gen era of the team. Now there are questions about GMS Racing’s purchase of the majority stake and whether Jones will return as planned.
The current expectation is that Jones drives the No. 43 during the 2022 season and pursues his third career win. He has two victories from his time with Joe Gibbs Racing (2018-2020), but he has yet to reach Victory Lane with RPM.
Another question pertains to Dillon and the No. 94 Chevrolet. Will the team run as GMS Racing, or will they put Dillon under the RPM banner? The likely answer is that Dillon will have the GMS orange on his stock car during the 2022 Cup Series season, his first full-time run since the 2020 season.
RPM and GMS should provide these answers and more during the press conference. They will meet with media members on Tuesday, December 7, and discuss the significant transaction.