You don't have to be a NASCAR fan to bemoan the latest reports that Petty Enterprises is closing down. The team is one of the oldest and best known racing outfits in stock car racing, or in any other type of racing for that matter. Lee Petty, winner of the very first Daytona 500 in 1959, was its founder, and his son Richard Petty became the best-known driver in the sport's history, wracking up a record 200 victories. But after 60 years in operation, Petty Enterprise is shutting down.

Reports indicate that a deal was reached on Christmas Eve to have the team merge with rival team Gillett Evernham Motorsports. When the deal is officially announced, the new team may very well carry over the Petty name, but it's bad news for the company's staff who will, for the most part, be left without jobs in the new year.


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