Palou Requests Venue Change


As reported earlier in the week, Chip Ganassi Racing (CCR) has sued Alex Palou for breach of contract. While the suit has been ongoing, Palou has continued to race for CGR, including racing at Indianapolis Motor Speedway this past weekend at the Gallagher Grand Prix, finishing 10th. Palou has tried to remain civil about the conflict when speaking to the media. In an interview with Jenna Fryer, Palou stated, "I'm not a lawyer. I'm just a racing driver."


While Palou and Ganassi have been on the track, their lawyers have been hard at work. It has been reported that Palou's attorneys have asked the suit to be moved from Marion County, Indiana, to federal court. According to the IndyStar, Palou's legal team argued the change of venue was needed due to "… "diversity of citizenship" and the "amount in controversy." (IndyStar) Palou's legal team states that Palou is a resident of Spain and is only living in the United States temporarily on a work visa. ALPA Racing, also named as a defendant, is registered and incorporated in Spain. Palou's legal team has argued that due to all parties not sharing common state citizenship with the state of Indiana, the case needs to be moved to federal court. Regarding the amount in the controversy claim, Palou's team argues that the money lost by Palou having to stay with Ganassi instead of moving to McLaren in 2023 would exceed $75,000 and thus would typically be the federal court's jurisdiction.


At the end of the notice, Palou's legal team states plans for a countersuit, "Defendants currently anticipate asserting non-contractual counterclaims, including at least for defamation. The damages Defendants will seek on these counterclaims will exceed $75,000."


A potential countersuit, as well as a venue change, is sure to spice up this already intense conflict. This issue is nowhere near being over, and it is only a matter of time until the troubles in the courtroom spill onto the track.


Jack Bradley is currently a Law school student at Duquesne Univesity School of Law and alum of Georgetown University (MPS) and Penn State University (BA). Jack is also the Co-founder and President of Poppy Packs a 501c3 charity and former Head of Marketing and Communications for Norm Benning Racing.


Sources

Brown, N. (2022, August 1). Alex Palou's lawyers seek to move Chip Ganassi's lawsuit to Federal Court, plan countersuit. The Indianapolis Star. Retrieved August 1, 2022, from https://www.indystar.com/story/sports/motor/2022/08/01/alex-palou-lawyers-motion-move-chip-ganassi-racing-lawsuit-to-federal-court-plan-for-countersuit/65388612007/


Fryer, Jenna (@JennaFryer) I'm not a lawyer. I'm just a racing driver." https://twitter.com/JennaFryer/status/1552724879400640512