Ivor Wigham’s European Rally School and Motorsport Park (ERS), located in North Central Florida, a 430 acre full-service motorsports and special events facility and home to one of the top performance rally training schools in North America, has been acquired by investment firm The Strategic Group of Gainesville, Florida. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
For nearly 15 years, ERS has provided high-performance driver training and motorsport training, test facilities, and more for motorsport enthusiasts, professional drivers and teams, Hollywood stunt drivers, US-Military Special Forces units and major automotive and aftermarket equipment manufacturers.
The Florida International Rally & Motorsport Park (The FIRM), a 430-acre, full-service motorsports and special events facility and home to one of the top performance driving and rally training schools in North America, is now under new ownership and management. Major improvements will make The FIRM the most diverse motorsports and outdoor event facility in Florida and the adult alternative to youth-oriented theme parks in the area. (Photo: Business Wire)
“We are excited about taking the motorsport park, school and facility to the next level, and have already embarked on several improvements including track modifications, private garages and an updated rally school fleet.” said Robert Bunn, general counsel of The Strategic Group (TSG). “We have big plans for the facility and are committed to building the most diverse and exciting motorsports and special events facility in Florida.” Bunn and The Strategic Group investment team identified the benefit that capital infusion and outside management could bring to the park, and after years of on-and-off discussions with Ivor Wigham, the former owner, earlier this year a deal was made.
According to Bunn, the school and the facility has been renamed as The Florida International Rally and Motorsport Park. A brand makeover is underway and the facility will be known as “The FIRM.” Facilities and services offered include the RallyPro Performance Driving School, an exotic car experience, the International Security Academy and a full-service special events facility for private and corporate functions. The FIRM also offers open-to-the-public track days for automotive and motorcycle enthusiasts every month.
“I am happy to hand over the reigns of the school and the facility we’ve built over the last fifteen years to the great team at The Strategic Group,” said Wigham. The TSG transition team includes Kurt Spitzner a well-known rally and motorsports industry professional and who was largely responsible for developing wider public recognition of the sport of rally in the United States while serving as Director of the SCCA Pro Rally championship—now Rally America. “The FIRM is a first-class motorsport facility and the new owners and management team are committed to continued expansion and improvements to the facility and the school,” explained Wigham, who will move on to pursue other interests.
About The FIRM
The Florida International Rally and Motorsport Park (The FIRM) is located in Starke, Florida and is the most unique, diverse and challenging action and motorsports facility in Florida. Offering professional rally-based driver training, security training, track rentals and full-service special events, The FIRM is the action-sports, adult alternative to Florida’s youth-oriented theme parks. Visit www.gorally.com for more information.
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