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For Immediate Release: 

May 12, 2014 

Richard Petty Driving Experience to Partner with SPARC 

Columbus (OH) Arshot Investment Corporation (“Arshot”) is pleased to welcome the Richard Petty Driving Experience (Richard Petty) as the newest partner in its automotive themed SPARC (Sports Pavilion and Automotive Research Center) near downtown Columbus. Under the terms of the partnership, Richard Petty Driving Experience will establish and operate a full spectrum Driving Experience Academy designed to leverage SPARC’s motorsports and other facilities. As one of the most experienced and recognizable national operators of driving experiences throughout the U.S., Richard Petty Driving Experience joins Michael Waltrip Racing and a growing stable of strategic partners aiming to capitalize on the newly designed facilities and innovative opportunities created by SPARC.

Bill Schottenstein, principal of Arshot, said “Since the beginning of this Project, it has been our intention to foster a synergistic environment for all of SPARC’s constituents by partnering with the best-of-breed partners in every aspect. We definitely accomplished this in bringing Michael Waltrip Racing into SPARC. Now, with the addition of Richard Petty Driving Experience, SPARC will be able to offer the highest quality in name brand driving instruction and recreation – from driver safety courses for newly licensed teenage drivers to advanced racing techniques for automotive enthusiasts. The possibilities are plentiful, and we couldn’t be more thrilled for such a proven and well respected partner in Richard Petty to help bring them to fruition.”

Brian Flynn, CEO of Petty Holdings, LLC, cited SPARC’s visibility and vicinity and accessibility to downtown Columbus and surrounding areas as an opportunity to reach a large and attractive demographic which is not currently being serviced in Ohio. “We view SPARC’s location on I-70 near its intersection with I-71, in the heart of Central Ohio, as an ideal place to showcase the various motorsports and performance driving programs. Being situated in the middle of almost 2.4 million people, this highly visible location with nearly 100 million people driving by the site annually is ideally suited to draw tens of thousands of visitors who are seeking to satisfy their need for speed. We look forward to serving this marketplace for many years with an array of motorsports and performance driving programs.”

About Richard Petty Driving Experience

Owned and operated by Petty Holdings, LLC, Richard Petty Driving Experience is the world-wide leader in NASCAR stock car drive and ride entertainment, with locations at major speedways throughout the U.S., including Las Vegas, Orlando, Daytona, Charlotte and Kansas City. Richard Petty Driving Experience maintains a broad range of product and service offerings, including auto manufacturer drive and ride programs, safe driving programs, mobile marketing events and motorsports-related production services for the television and film industry. Visit DrivePetty.com or call 1.800.237.3889 for track locations, dates of operation, or to book an experience. On Social Media, Like Richard Petty Driving Experience on Facebook and Follow on Twitter at @DrivePetty.


About Petty Holdings, LLC

Headquartered in Concord, NC, Petty Holdings, LLC owns and operates Richard Petty Driving Experience, Exotic Driving Experience and American Muscle Car Challenge, and markets related branded and licensed ventures including Richard Petty’s Driver Search, Petty Safe Driving and Richard Petty Fantasy Racing Camp. In addition, Petty Holdings, LLC provides motorsports support services to the commercial and film industries, mobile marketing event services and designs and executes performance ride and drive events and transportation and logistics for automobile manufacturers. Petty Holdings, LLC is a portfolio company of BV Investment Partners, a leading middle-market private equity firm specializing in the information and business services, communications, and media sectors.


Located within one mile of Columbus’s Central Business District, SPARC is an automotive themed multi-venue project featuring a paved half-mile race / test track, an automotive research and technical training center, automotive retail space, on-site lodging facilities, conference centers and exhibition spaces, and restaurants. In addition to promoting and facilitating automotive research and development, motorsports events and driver training programs, SPARC supports a diverse array of corporate and community activities including educational programs, exhibitions, concerts, group/corporate functions, motocross, BMX, action sports events and more. For more information, visit sparcohio.com.

About Michael Waltrip Racing (MWR)

Michael Waltrip Racing, co-owned by two-time Daytona 500 champion Michael Waltrip and Rob Kauffman, fields Toyota Camrys in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series for No.15 5-hour ENERGY driver Clint Bowyer, No. 55 Aaron’s Dream Machine driver Brian Vickers and the No. 66 Camry driven on a part-time basis by Jeff Burton and Waltrip. In 2007, MWR began fielding fulltime Sprint Cup entries as the flagship team for Toyota Racing Development, USA. MWR owns seven Sprint Cup victories and has placed cars in NASCAR’s Chase for the Sprint Cup two consecutive years. For more information about Michael Waltrip Racing, please visit www.michaelwaltripracing.com.



Arshot Investment Corporation has announced that Michael Waltrip Racing (MWR) will partner with the company on its redevelopment of the Cooper Stadium site in Columbus, Ohio. Members of the NASCAR team, led by two-time Daytona 500 champion and broadcast analyst Michael Waltrip, will serve as public ambassadors of the Sports Pavilion & Automotive Research Complex, or SPARC.

SPARC will feature a paved half-mile track, with preserved grandstand seating, and will be anchored by an automotive research and technical training center. MWR will consult with Arshot on design and operation of the track and will make use of SPARC facilities for testing team cars and conducting various team events.

“We are thrilled to have this opportunity to participate in the SPARC project,” Waltrip said. “Michael Waltrip Racing prides itself on being innovative and forward-thinking, which is why we were so attracted to the SPARC concept when first approached by Arshot. We think its unique combination of uses — particularly its emphasis on automotive research — is perfect for the site and makes it unlike any other track facility in the nation.”

Waltrip also indicated SPARC’s location in Columbus was important to MWR. “Being located in the heart of Ohio, a market largely untapped by NASCAR, will provide MWR and its sponsors with high-impact exposure to millions of current and new racing fans,” Waltrip said. “We can’t think of a better way to cap the most successful season in our team’s history.”

MWR recently completed its sixth full year of NASCAR Sprint Cup competition. The team is comprised of Clint Bowyer’s No. 15 5-Hour Energy Toyota, Martin Truex Jr.’s No. 56 NAPA Auto Parts Toyota, and the No. 55 Aaron’s Dream Machine Toyota (driven by Mark Martin, Brian Vickers and Waltrip). In 2012, both Bowyer and Truex were one of twelve drivers who earned a berth in the Chase for the Sprint Cup, with Bowyer eventually finishing second in overall points. Meanwhile, the entire team was featured in the Speed Channel’s two-part series “Inside Michael Waltrip Racing: A Championship Quest.”

Bill Schottenstein, a principal of Arshot, echoed Waltrip’s enthusiasm for the partnership. “Michael Waltrip and his team are an ideal fit for SPARC,” Schottenstein said. “They have a genuine appreciation for our vision of creating a vibrant community of automotive researchers, retailers and enthusiasts.”

Schottenstein has indicated during the planning process that SPARC would become not only a Midwest leader, but a national mecca for automotive research and sports entertainment.

With the addition of MWR, the project takes on true national significance. NASCAR fans everywhere will view Columbus, Ohio as the second home of Michael Waltrip Racing. We are elated to have them as a partner.”


Waltrip and Schottenstein also agree on the transformational effect SPARC is expected to have on neighborhoods surrounding the Cooper Stadium site. “One of the things that most excites us about the project is the potential to bring economic development to some areas of the community that can use a jumpstart,” stated Waltrip. “I’ve toured these neighborhoods with Bill and his team, and I share their belief that SPARC will help to revitalize the area. I was also impressed by the commitments Arshot has made to the folks who live there.”

Arshot entered into a Good Neighbor Agreement during the project planning process which provides for establishment of a charitable foundation to be funded from ticket sales at the new venue. The primary purpose of the foundation will be to provide academic scholarships, vocational training and other educational opportunities to residents of the Southwest and Franklinton Areas of Columbus. Under the agreement, qualified residents and businesses will also be given first consideration for purposes of hiring employees and purchasing materials and services.

“Having Michael Waltrip Racing as a partner, with the benefit of Michael’s expertise, resources and national audience, will contribute greatly toward the project’s success,” Schottenstein said. “Most importantly, however, is the fact that our success will contribute directly to the success of the surrounding area.”

Automotive research & technology is widely seen by city leaders as a vehicle to continue to grow Columbus’ economy. “Ohio is already a leader in the automotive manufacturing industry,” said Columbus Council President Andrew J. Ginther. “Soon, with the help of SPARC and MWR, Columbus will be leading the country in automotive research and technology – and benefiting from the high paying jobs associated with this growing sector of the industry.”

Linda Logan, executive director of the Greater Columbus Sports Commission said, “Columbus is proud to make Michael Waltrip Racing a part of our growing sports community. Arshot’s vision for SPARC has great momentum, and we look forward to continuing to work with Bill Schottenstein and his team to bring more sports offerings to Columbus.”