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Superspeedway switching hands

Caitlin Rickard crickard@lebanondemocrat.com • Updated May 30, 2014 at 11:53 AM

Dover Motorsports, Inc. has come to an agreement with the Nashville-based NeXovation, Inc., to sell the Nashville Superspeedway facility, which has been closed to competitive racing for nearly three years.

NeXovation, a global innovation company and current highest bidder for the Nurburgring racetrack in Germany, said Thursday it has entered into a “definitive agreement” to acquire the Nashville Superspeedway in Lebanon from Dover Motorsports. 

Under the terms of the agreements, Dover Motorsports and its wholly-owned subsidiary, Nashville Speedway U.S.A., Inc., will sell the Nashville Superspeedway facility, along with some related equipment and assets for $27 million in cash and the assumption by NeXovation of obligations of Dover Motorsports under certain Variable Rate Tax Exempt Infrastructure Revenue Bonds.

The bonds are the obligation of the Sports Authority of the County of Wilson and were issued by the Sports Authority in 1999 in order to build certain infrastructure improvements benefiting the speedway. Debt service on the bonds, which have a remaining principal balance of $18.8 million, is payable from property and sales taxes generated by the facility. Principal and interest on the bonds are secured by a letter of credit provided by Dover Motorsports, which will be replaced by a letter of credit provided by NeXovation.

“This is a great deal for all concerned insofar as we can transfer an under-utilized, high quality asset to NeXovation, who will create and implement a new business model and re-activate Nashville Superspeedway for the benefit of everyone in the area,” said Dover Motorsports CEO Denis McGlynn. “We wish them the best, and we thank all those in middle Tennessee who made us feel welcome during our time there.”

Closing is expected to take place in the third quarter of 2014 and is subject to customary closing conditions.

“With our unique business model, passion for automotive technology and motor sports, and a tremendous market right in our own backyard, the Nashville Superspeedway is the perfect complement to our innovative and technological focus,” said Robert Sexton, CEO of NeXovation. “After creating and developing this opportunity within NeXovation for nearly two years, we are excited about implementing a completely new business model that we believe will transform this complex into a fully immersive experience in the world of high performance motor sport, automotive technology and experiential venues.”

Nashville Superspeedway previously opened in 2001 and closed just 10 years later in 2011. 

The facility is situated on 1,400 acres of land just outside of Nashville in Lebanon and the 1.33-mile concrete superspeedway has a permanent seating capacity of 25,000, as well as lighting for nighttime events.

According to Sexton, NeXovation “is committed to sustaining and enhancing the world-class facility built by Dover Motorsports as an important part of the Nashville and Middle Tennessee communities into the future.” He said the desire to protect and improve “iconic” motor sports facilities with a new, innovative, cooperative business model was the basis for the company’s bid for the Nurburgring in Germany and its purchase of the Nashville Superspeedway.

Officials with NeXovation said upcoming plans for the Nashville Superspeedway are “proprietary” but would be available “in the near future.”

“Details of NeXovation’s future plans for the Nashville Superspeedway are currently being finalized, but will be announced to the public this summer,” said Chris Goodrich, a spokesman for NeXovation. 

For more information on NeXovation, visit NeXovation.com.

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