RCR

Court rules against Richard Childress Racing in lawsuit vs. former team engineer Matt McCall

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Richard Childress Racing has lost its bid to prevent former team engineer Matt McCall from becoming crew chief for Sprint Cup driver Jamie McMurray.

According to CourthouseNews.com, RCR filed suit last month against McCall in North Carolina Business Court in Davidson County (North Carolina), claiming breach of contract and misappropriation of trade secrets.

On Dec. 3, according to CourthouseNews.com, RCR also sought a temporary restraining order preventing McCall from working for Ganassi or any other competing NASCAR team.

RCR claimed in its filing that even though he was employed as a team engineer, McCall had “routinely performed the tasks of the crew chief (and complained about doing so).”

Having served as team engineer on the No. 31 RCR Chevrolet for both Jeff Burton and, most recently, Ryan Newman, McCall had reportedly sought to become a crew chief in the Sprint Cup Series.

When no position was available with RCR, the organization reportedly offered him a crew chief role with one of its Nationwide Series teams, according to CourthouseNews.com, but McCall resigned from the organization at the end of the 2014 season.

He was hired two days later by Chip Ganassi Racing to serve as McMurray’s new crew chief for 2015.

RCR claimed McCall’s contract included a clause that he could not work for a competitor in a similar capacity for 12 months. RCR further claimed that even though McCall was a team engineer, some of his duties past and present included crew chief-like responsibilities at times.

The North Carolina Business Court ruled against RCR’s claims.

In its Dec. 19 ruling, the Court said:

“Plaintiff has not shown, at this time, a likelihood of success on its claim that by accepting a crew chief position with Ganassi, Defendant has become employed in a ‘capacity identical or similar to that in which he participated while employed by (plaintiff) and therefore as breached the employment contract,” Judge Louis Bledsoe III wrote in the court’s decision.

The Court also found that RCR had not proven that McCall had or would disclose trade secrets to his new employer.

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