Former 500cc world champion in bitter dispute with Circuit Of The Americas
KEVIN Schwantz has filed a lawsuit against Circuit Of The Americas, the race track that will host the Texas MotoGP in 2013.
Schwantz was planning to promote the MotoGP race at the circuit through his company, 3fourTexasMGP LLC. Schwantz claims an agreement running from 2013 to 2022 had been in place since 2011.
However, Circuit Of The Americas claim Schwantz has no contract to promote a MotoGP race in Texas.
Schwantz issued legal proceedings, alleging that COTA is trying to sideline him and deal directly with MotoGP rights-holder Dorna.
Schwantz said: "I have devoted over 25 years of my life to MotoGP, the premier motorcycle road racing world championship. I spent four of those years bringing MotoGP to Texas, my home state. As a result, MotoGP agreed in 2011 to host an annual race at Austin's Circuit of the Americas (COTA) track.
"I'm sorry to say that COTA is now attempting to unlawfully force me out of this project. I believe COTA has committed fraud in doing so. Earlier today, I took legal action against COTA. I was forced to file this lawsuit in order to protect my rights, my reputation, and MotoGP itself. I want to see MotoGP come to Texas, but I cannot allow COTA to take advantage of me. More important, I will not sit idly by while a newcomer to racing discredits the sport I love."
COTA issued a statement saying that Schwantz's claims had no grounds.
Julie Loignon, spokesperson for COTA, said: "It makes no sense for Mr Schwantz to pursue legal action in this matter. We were informed by Dorna, the organisation that holds the rights for the MotoGP racing series, that Mr Schwantz has no contract to promote a MotoGP race in Texas.
"To be clear, Mr Schwantz never had an agreement to conduct a MotoGP race at Circuit of the Americas, and to our knowledge, he has no agreement to conduct an event at any Texas racetrack. Perhaps, that is why he is reacting this way, out of embarrassment, and is making false claims to the court and media.
"We know race fans would love to see a MotoGP event at the circuit, and it is good to know that the door is open to make that happen at our new world-class venue in Austin."
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