Three owners at Altamont Motorsports Park are negotiating with Riverside Motorsports Park CEO John Condren to buy him out of Altamont, one of the racetrack's owners confirmed this week.
The Altamont Motorsports Park, a small oval track near Tracy, is billed as the sister track to the massive, yet-to-be-built Riverside Motorsports Park.
Three of RMP's investors bought Altamont two years ago. They hired Condren's RMP to manage the track and gave Condren a small ownership stake.
This week one of those investors, Neal Sebbard, confirmed that he and his partners have held discussions with Condren to buy his stake in Altamont, though no agreement has been reached.
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Sebbard described the discussions as "casual and amicable." He said Altamont is considering the split to concentrate Condren's efforts on RMP.
"We want to empower John to focus his attention and his resources on Riverside," Sebbard said. "Everyone who is an owner in Altamont has a financial stake in Riverside, so we have an interest in Riverside's success."
Sebbard dismissed speculation that disagreements between Condren and his partners underlie the negotiations.
"This is not contentious," Sebbard said. "We're all on the same team."
Condren did not return phone calls, but issued a written statement in response to the Sun-Star's inquiries late Wednesday. The statement said Condren is negotiating to sell the company that operates Altamont to the track's owners, along with his ownership stake.
"I need to shift my complete focus, exclusively, toward the construction of Riverside Motorsports Park, soon to be the world's premier motorsports facility. ... This is the right time to make that transition," Condren said in the statement.
He said the deal would probably close before the start of Altamont's third race season this spring.
Once an agreement is reached, it would, in effect, legally remove Condren from Altamont. Condren gave up his management duties at the track last year, but even if he's bought out, he may remain connected to Altamont, Sebbard said.
"He might still race here, and we could certainly still look to him for advice," he added.
Altamont's two other owners, Steve Nasser and Melvin Andrews, did not return calls this week.
Sebbard wouldn't say how much of a stake Condren now has in Altamont.
RMP says it will break ground this year and that once it's complete, the park will be the world's largest motorsports facility.