Athletics: Elite Racing Sold To Falconhead Capital

Athletics: Elite Racing Sold To Falconhead Capital 
By David Monti for Race Results Weekly

1/8/08 - Elite Racing, the San Diego event management company which founded the Rock 'N' Roll Marathon series, has been sold to Falconhead Capital, LLC, a private equity firm which specializes in investments in sports, leisure, lifestyle, and media-focused businesses. Terms were not disclosed. 

Falconhead's purchase of Elite was part of a larger transaction, amalgamating Elite with Triathlete and Competitor magazines. These three businesses will now operate under the name of Competitor Group, Inc. (CGI). 

"At inception, CGI owns and operates endurance and fitness events in 16 major cities with more than 150,000 annual participants; consumer magazines with about 500,000 total monthly circulation; specialty publications such as race programs, buyer’s guides, and endurance events books; multiple leading websites; and a weekly radio show," said David S. Moross, chairman and chief executive officer of Falconhead Capital through a media release. 

Peter Englehart, 55, will be the chief executive officer of CGI, and is moving to San Diego to run the company. He was previously founder and president of the Convention & Trade Show Television Network, LLC (CTS-TV); senior vice president of programming and production for the Outdoor Life Network (OLN); and director of program planning at ESPN. 

Elite Racing is the largest for-profit manager of road races in the United States, including five Rock 'N' Roll-branded marathons and half-marathons in Phoenix, San Antonio, San Diego, San Jose and Virginia Beach. The also own and operate the Country Music Marathon and Half-Marathon in Nashville, the Philadelphia Distance Run half-marathon, and the Carlsbad 5000. In 2007 these events recorded more than 110,000 finishers. 

There is little question that this business will be a formidable player in the field of endurance sports. What remains to be seen is how Elite, Triathlete and Competitor will change under Falconhead's ownership. 

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