Carolina RailHawks to play in North American Soccer League in 2011 Under New Ownership
Carolina RailHawks to play in North American Soccer League
Courtesy of North American Soccer League
February 4, 2010- Miami, Florida- Traffic Sports USA announced today that they have acquired the rights to the Carolina RailHawks brand and that the RailHawks will compete in the North American Soccer League (NASL) in 2011 and beyond. Singh Holdings LLC, the investment vehicle of Cary resident Paul Singh will be a local minority partner of the team. Singh Holdings LLC was also a minority owner in the former ownership group led by Selby Wellman. The new ownership group acquired the rights to the Carolina RailHawks brand at public auction.
The team management will be led by new team President, Curt Johnson, a Raleigh native, former captain of Raleigh-based North Carolina State University, a product of local standout youth club, CASL, and former General Manager of the Kansas City Wizards where he led the Wizards to their only MLS Cup title. Johnson’s involvement with soccer in the United States dates back over two decades at all levels of the game. Martin Rennie, who successfully led the RailHawks to the playoffs each of the past two seasons, will lead the new team as Head Coach.
"Traffic Sports is excited about the new Carolina RailHawks. We believe that the Triangle area is a great market and that the Carolina RailHawks will be one of the model teams of the NASL,” said Enrique Sanz, Vice President of Traffic Sports. “We look forward to continuing the winning tradition of the RailHawks on the field and to taking the commercial operation to that same championship level. And with the hiring of Curt Johnson returning home to guide this team and Martin Rennie, considered one of the top young coaches in the United States, we believe we are well on our way to building an all-around championship team.”
“On behalf of the NASL, we are thankful and thrilled that Traffic and Singh Holdings have stepped up to continue professional soccer in the Triangle area. We were always confident that we would find a way to continue professional soccer in Carolina, especially considering their success on the field and the sponsorship support they have received. However the fact that they were able to acquire the RailHawks name in an auction this past weekend makes it even sweeter, It’s very fitting that we will officially launch the new NASL with the new Carolina RailHawks hosting a rematch of last year’s championship against the Puerto Rico Islanders, one of the top teams in the Concacaf region.”
A press conference is being scheduled and will be announced in the coming days.
The RailHawks’ season opener will take place on April 9 at 7:00PM and feature a rematch against 2010 League Champions, Puerto Rico Islanders. For schedule and ticket information visit carolinarailhawks.com or call 919-859-5425.
About Traffic Sports
Traffic Sports is one of the leading sports event and management companies in the world with its primary focus being soccer. Traffic Sports was founded in São Paulo, Brazil 30 years ago and continues to be headquartered there. Traffic has regional offices in Miami (Traffic Sports USA), Amsterdam, the Netherlands and Lisbon, Portugal. Over the past three decades, Traffic has organized and/or commercialized most of the official international soccer events in the Americas including for example: Copa America, Copa Libertadores, Copa Sudamericana, Gold Cup, CONMEBOL World Cup Qualifying, CONCACAF World Cup Qualifying and the FIFA Club World Championship 2000. In 2005 Traffic established its team, academy and player division which currently includes Miami FC (Member of the new North Amercan Soccer League – NASL), Desportivo Brasil (Team and Academy located in the state of São Paulo, Brazil; Affiliated with Manchester United) and Estoril (Team is Located in Portugal and currently plays in “Liga Vitalis”). Traffic Sports is part of the Traffic Group, a diverse group of companies specialized in sports and entertainment including Rede Globo affiliates in Brazil, a network of newspapers in Brazil (Bom Dia), a television production facility (TV7), a stadium management company (Traffic Arenas), a social media company (M Traffic) and a music event company (Plan Music). For more information, visit www.TRAFFICSPORTS.com.br
NASL member teams include: Atlanta Silverbacks, Carolina, FC Edmonton, FC Tampa Bay, Miami FC (Strikers 2011), NSC Minnesota Stars, Montreal Impact (joining MLS in 2012), Puerto Rico Islanders and San Antonio Scorpions FC (beginning play in 2012). The NASL and its member teams are committed to building on their long tradition of providing a high level of soccer to fans across the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico.