December 31, 2008

Report: Petty, Evernham to merge next week

The deal finalizing the merger between Petty Enterprises with Gillett Evernham Motorsports will be announced next week, Fox Sports reported Wednesday.

Multiple sources beyond Fox also confirmed the merger, including the Greensboro (N.C.) Record on New Years Eve.

It would combine two of NASCAR's most visible entities, but no details about the new company's name were made available.

It comes one week after cash-strapped Petty Enterprises agreed to merge with Gillett Evernham Motorsports.

Late Wednesday, the Charlotte Observer reported that all people employed by Petty Enterprises have received their final check with that company.

The Petty family, led by NASCAR legend Richard, has been a part of the auto racing series since 1949, when it was founded by patriarch Lee Petty, but went winless in the 2008 Sprint Cup season.

Whispers of a possible merger developed earlier this month when driver Bobby Labonte was released from his contract.