NASCAR owner ordered to pay up after botched auction


NASCAR owner Gene Haas could be out for nearly $2 million after winning an auction for a pair of mansions in Golden Beach but falling short of signing a contract.

Haas, 60, made a fortune in the machine trade before partnering with NASCAR driver Tony Stewart, whose win at Homestead-Miami Speedway’s Ford 400 earned Stewart-Haas Racing a Sprint Cup Championship, just days before the 2011 auction.

Rather than personally attend the unusual auction, held in the living room of one of the properties, Haas sent Lake Worth developer Albert Wadsworth, who won the pair with a $12.4 million bid, the Miami Herald reported.

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However, Wadsworth never signed the paperwork. The properties’ owners, brothers Robert and Steven Fox, sued Haas’ company for breach of contact, demanding the $1 million deposit that Haas placed in escrow ahead of the auction.

Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Beth Boom ruled in the brothers’ favor, and ordered Haas to turn over the deposit along with about $87,000 in interest, the Herald said.

Haas plans to appeal the decision, according to the report. [Miami Herald]Emily Schmall