GMS Racing has yet to even run a NASCAR Cup Series race, yet the team has already made massive waves in the industry. On Wednesday, Richard Petty Motorsports announced they have sold their two charters to GMS owner Maury Gallagher Jr., who also gains a majority stake in RPM.
“Richard Petty Motorsports has agreed to sell a majority interest to Maury Gallagher, owner of GMS Racing,” read a joint statement from the two parties. “Two charters are included in the agreement and will be operated during the 2022 NASCAR Cup Series season. This is a special moment for both organisations, as the Next Gen car allows a new chapter to be written.”
Before anyone hits the panic button regarding the fate of the Petty name in NASCAR, Adam Stern of the Sports Business Journal reported that Gallagher purchased the stake from RPM co-owner Medallion Financial Corp. Medallion, which is run by Andrew Murstein, joined RPM in 2010. In May 2020, Murstein said in a company call that although the team was not for sale, he would be open for the right offer.
A perusal of RPM’s financial details, which have been available in Medallion’s Securities and Exchange Commission reports since 2019, by FOX Sports’ Bob Pockrass revealed that the team lost $2.148 million through 30 September 2021, while also owing $7.442 million with interest to a trust operated by Petty. Despite the Petty legacy, the team has struggled with funding and sponsorship since its predecessor Petty Enterprises’ demise in 2008, which sparked rumours about a potential merger or sale. For 2022, RPM’s #43 received a massive monetary boost when brain health supplement FOCUSfactor came aboard as a primary sponsor for twenty-six races.
According to Stern, GMS beat out four undisclosed groups for the RPM charters. One will remain with the #43 of Erik Jones, which many have speculated will continue to operate under the RPM banner for name recognition. The other charter came from a partnership between Petty and Rick Ware Racing called Petty Ware Racing, which was fully fielded by RWR in the form of the #51, and will head to the GMS #94 for Ty Dillon.
GMS is primarily a Camping World Truck Series operation, having won two driver championships in 2016 and 2020. 2022 will mark the team’s first season at the top level.
The news marks the second major ownership change ahead of the 2022 season. Chip Ganassi Racing, also a longtime face in NASCAR that contemplated a merger with Petty Enterprises in 2008, was sold to Trackhouse Racing Team in June.