Speedway Motorsports Inc. purchased Kentucky Speedway, clearing the way for SMI owner Bruton Smith to try and bring a coveted NASCAR Sprint Cup race to the 1.5-mile tri-oval in Sparta, Ky.
The deal was finalized Wednesday, more than seven months after SMI agreed to buy the track from the speedway ownership group led by Jerry Carroll. According to papers filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Smith agreed to pay $78.3 million for the speedway that cost $152 million to build.
The track joins a growing portfolio for SMI, which owns seven other NASCAR-sanctioned facilities, including Texas Motor Speedway.
The former ownership group filed an antitrust lawsuit in 2005 against NASCAR and International Speedway, alleging they worked together to create an unfair monopoly and prevent Kentucky from securing a Cup race. The lawsuit was dismissed earlier this year but the case is on appeal.
Smith can not be part of the appeal under a settlement in a Texas-related antitrust lawsuit previously filed by an SMI shareholder against NASCAR and ISC.
-- The Associated Press