American hero Kevin Schwantz was treated atrociously by Circuit of The Americas’ personnel last week, apparently in retaliation for a lawsuit filed by the former 500cc world champ concerning promotion rights for the upcoming April 21 MotoGP debut race at the facility. As he explains in his statement below, he was at the track to coach Blake Young when he was thrown out and threatened with arrest if he returned. Here is the statement Kevin Schwantz issued:
“I have read several reports regarding my attendance at the MotoGP test last week in Austin. I would like to make this statement:
I had been in Switzerland over the weekend where I was the guest speaker at the St. Gallen University. I returned to Texas on Tuesday evening and on Thursday I was at CotA for the MotoGP test, with a proper credential supplied by the Attack team, to coach Blake Young. Additionally I was an invited guest of the LCR Honda team.
While there, CotA security informed me that CotA management requested I leave the track immediately and was not welcomed at the circuit. CotA’s security force also accused me of criminal trespass and warned I would be arrested the next time I entered the track.
This comes as a tremendous disappointment to Honda, Blake Young, and myself. Especially because I am single-handedly responsible for bringing MotoGP to Texas and for the initial design of the facility to accommodate MotoGP racing.”
Should Schwantz fans boycott the event? We understand legal disputes, but this seems uncalled for. In response to a request from MD for a statement, Ali Putnam, Media Relations Manager – Circuit of the Americas, sent the following email:
“It is well known that Kevin Schwantz filed suit against Circuit of The Americas last year, and that case is working its way through the legal system. The MotoGP test that was hosted by the Circuit last week was a private event, and open only to participating teams and invited media. Mr. Schwantz was not invited to attend the session by Circuit of The Americas, and as a private property owner, the Circuit determines who has access to its facility.
Mr. Schwantz does not have any relationship with Circuit of The Americas. He is not one of the investors who spent $400 million to design and build the facility.
Finally, Circuit of The Americas is the organization responsible for bringing MotoGP to Texas through its promotional agreement with the commercial rights holder Dorna.”