IndyCar – Simona on the Sidelines as Stargate Worlds Goes Bankrupt

In an article by, we find out that the game development company, Cheyenne Mountain Entertainment, filed for bankruptcy in Arizona’s Maricopa County Court. While the company is still up and running for now, they’re certainly not in a position to fork out the $3M+ that it would take to sponsor Simona di Silvestro in an IZOD IndyCar Series ride, or even the lesser level of sponsorship that it would take to place her in the Firestone Indy Lights series. Tough break for HVM since Simona had a fantastic test with the team earlier in the year.

Cheyenne Mountain’s problems aren’t linked with the Global Economic Crisis (insert thunderclap and screaming masses here), but with the shady actions of its CEO, Gary Whiting.

The Company also became aware a few months ago that Mr. Whiting, was named in a complaint filed in Utah County, Utah, (Case No. Civil 0904022438), and that he has caused the Company to be named in that same lawsuit, and he has allegedly obligated the Company for monies paid to Garvick Properties, LLC, a limited liability company controlled by Mr. Whiting (“Garvick”).

Mr. Whiting and Garvick purchased various securities from the Company and its subsidiaries and has failed to honor the terms of these purchases and has failed to pay the payments when due; therefore, the Company and its subsidiaries have foreclosed on the collateral securing Mr. Whiting’s and Garvick’s obligations including all shares and units owned by Garvick and Garrick Enterprises, LLC.

The shareholders and board of the Company have removed Mr. Whiting as a board member and as an officer and terminated his employment with the Company and any of its subsidiaries. The Company has joined the litigation against Mr. Whiting for alleged wrongdoing. —

We certainly hope that Simona will be able to find replacement funds and secure a ride somewhere this season. She has certainly shown in the last couple of seasons in the Atlantics Championship that she has serious driving talent and belongs at the next level of open-wheel racing.

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5 Thoughts to “IndyCar – Simona on the Sidelines as Stargate Worlds Goes Bankrupt

  1. I have to say I am not surprised to see this potential sponsor fall to the wayside. “Stargate Worlds” was to be an MMORPG based in the Stargate universe from the Stargate movie and it’s TV series spinoffs Stargate SG-1, Atlantis and Universe. Regardless of the shady dealings of the CEO, I don’t think that Stargate Worlds would have been able to generate enough interest to gain any foothold in a market dominated by World of Warcraft.

    Too bad though. I am a bit of a Stargate fanboy. It looks like the game hasn’t even gone to beta yet. This news may jeopardize the project. Further, I thought the livery on Simona’s car was spectacular!

  2. WOW doesn’t have a lock on the MMORPG market. There’s LOTS of room in that genre, believe me. Stargate Renegade didn’t fare so well, but SGW had potential to carve out a nice little niche community of players. They may be able to emerge ok from these proceedings, and they claim to be pushing on with development, but I think we’ll see the sponsorship spending eliminated until after all of the legal work is done at least.

  3. Alan Turner

    For what it’s worth, while all of you are most likely correct in that no money will be available for sponsorship, bankruptcy proceedings do not necessarily mean that there will not be.

    While Stargate Worlds is not GM or Chrysler those or just two recent examples of money being made available for “advertising” during bankruptcy proceedings. Does the BOD see this sponsorship as a critical piece of it’s advertising and marketing? If so, they could persuade the court appointed custodian (or the Judge) of this and if they do and it is critical to the restructuring and the success of the company post filing it’s possible…… Remember, if the SGW is “still up and running” then they have to “keep the lights on” and pay salaries etc as well as things that are necessary to make the company viable later. IF the bankruptcy is a restructuring and not a liquidation.

    I would venture to guess though that at this stage of the proceedings that SGW will not be willing to write a check for that kind of money and run the risk of rising the ire of the court later in the proceedings.

    I’m not an attorney but, unfortunately, I do have some experience regarding these types of situations. 🙁

  4. […] HVM car features the familiar #78 with a TBA note next to it.  Doug Patterson of has his doubts about Simona’s presence […]

  5. Alan, you’re right of course that a company can certainly see value in a media spend even during bankruptcy. You bring up the example of GM, and I immediately thought of various airlines throughout the past who did the same. This is a small software development company whose first title release in the Stargate universe was a flop. With no serious revenue coming in from that particular facet of their company, and given the nature of how they arrived at this dire situation in the first place, I have a hard time seeing how they would justify an ad expenditure on a low-profile motorsports sponsorship when that same money could probably be better leveraged with ads on Gamasutra, IGN, and other such sites and targeted magazines.

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