Deadline comes and goes, Rockingham Speedway still in limbo

Attorneys ended 2014 seeking to strike agreement

By Kevin Spradlin
PeeDeePost.com

Previous coverage:
* Sept. 18: Bank seeks to take over track
* Sept. 25: Deal in the works?
* Dec. 26: Speedway most-read Post story of the year
* Dec. 30: Richmond County’s Stories of the Year

ROCKINGHAM — The Jan. 1 deadline in a judge’s consent order has come and gone, and to date there is no known agreement to sell, auction or otherwise make right the $4.5 million-plus owed to the bank that holds the loan for Rockingham Speedway.

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com A Jan. 1 deadline set by a Richmond County Superior Court judge for attorneys for a bank and the track owners to reach an agreement has expired.

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com
A Jan. 1 deadline set by a Richmond County Superior Court judge for attorneys for a bank and the track owners to reach an agreement has expired.

Richmond County Superior Court Judge W. David Lee signed a consent order on Oct. 8 that allowed attorneys representing Farmers and Merchants Bank, Salisbury, and those for track owners Andy Dillenburg and Bill Silas to come to terms on how to meet their obligations to pay off the $4,532,796.23 (as of Aug. 8) owed.

Efforts to reach an attorney for Farmers and Merchants Bank on Friday were not immediately successful.

The consent order states that by Jan. 1, 2015, Silas and Dillenburg shall “enter into a binding agreement with a third party for the sale or other disposition of the subject property, on terms and conditions acceptable to the plaintiff …”

Further: “For the sake of clarity (the defendant) may satisfy its obligations under this … if it has entered into an auction agreement with an auctioneer mutually acceptable to the parties to this case by Jan. 1, 2015, with such auction thereunder to be held and concluded by March 15, 2015.

If Hillenburg and Silas, as the joint defendant, “breach its obligations … the defendants shall not oppose, shall not cooperate with any person or entity and shall not cause any person or entity acting in concert with them to oppose the plaintiff’s renewal or refiling of any request for the appointment of a receiver …”

It’s not the first time a deadline set by Lee has passed. On Sept. 25, Lee told attorneys for both sides they had until the end of the business day to file a motion that would stave off putting the track into receivership. The Finley Group was set to take over ownership and liquidate the assets of Rockingham Racing Park LLC, a joint venture by Silas and Hillenburg, that same day. Nearly two weeks passed before any action was taken.

Regardless of how much time passes or what happens next, the case belongs to Lee indefinitely. In December, North Carolina Supreme Court Chief Justice granted a request to designate this as an “exceptional case.” The request came from Richmond County Superior Court Senior Resident Judge Tanya T. Wallace, who receive da joint motion for the designation from attorneys for both sides. The designation means Lee will preside over any and all hearings related to Rockingham Speedway.

The speedway, located at 2152 U.S. Highway 1 North north of Rockingham, is situated on 244.24 acres. The land alone is valued at about $2.5 million.

Hillenburg and Silas purchased the track for $4 million in 2007 from Speedway Motorsports Inc. at an auction that had fewer than 10 bidders. Hillenburg worked as the on-site manager to build and promote the sport of racing. The track last hosted a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race in 2004.

 

Filed in: Business, Featured News, Latest Headlines, News, Outdoors, Rockingham, Sports

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