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Bubba the Love Sponge's Tampa studio and Ocala racetrack face foreclosure

Bubba “The Love Sponge” Clem laughs runs his radio show at his studios Sept. 4, 2018 in Tampa. (CHRIS URSO | Times)
Published May 10

TAMPA — Radio talk show host Bubba the Love Sponge faces foreclosure on his Tampa broadcast studio and a racetrack he owns in Ocala.

In a suit filed April 16 in Marion County, Valley National Bank says Bubba Clem, as he is legally known, and Bubba Raceway Park, LLC, owe a total of $94,373. That includes nearly $3,000 to cover property taxes that have not been paid for 2017 and 2018.

Related: What happened to Bubba the Love Sponge?

Related: Bubba the Love Sponge sues Cox Radio and Mike Calta

In a separate suit filed the same day in Hillsborough County, Valley is foreclosing on the studio near Tampa International Airport owned by Clem, BRN Studios, LLC and Bubba Radio Network. That action stems from a $77,510 judgment filed against Clem last year for defaulting on a line of credit.

Clem did not respond to a text request for comment.

Once among the nation's best-known shock jocks, Clem has indicated he is in financial straits. Earlier this year, he sued a former employer, Cox Media Group, claiming it had tried to destroy him professionally and personally after he left one of its stations to join a rival. The alleged actions by Cox and two of its employees damaged Clem's reputation and caused him to sustain "losses in the tens of millions,'' the suit said.

Clem has been involved in many controversies over the years, including the leak of a tape showing wrestler Hulk Hogan having sex with Clem's then-wife at Clem's Pinellas County home. Excerpts were published by Gawker.com and the Enquirer, leading to a lawsuit by Hogan, whose real name is Terry Bollea. That effectively put Gawker out of business.

Once syndicated on multiple stations across the country, Clem has aired his show on WHBO-AM 1040 Sports Talk Florida since February. He also broadcasts via Twitch, an online streaming service.

Clem's studio is on West Nassau Road in Tampa's Westshore area. His Bubba Raceway Park in Ocala is a three-eighths of a mile car racing track that opened in 1952, making it the longest continuously operating track in Florida, its website says. It also has been known as the Ocala Speedway, Zuber Speedway, Marion Speedway and Lightning Speedway.

Times staff writer Christopher Spata contributed to this report. Contact Susan Taylor Martin at smartin@tampabay.com or (727) 893-8642. Follow @susanskate.

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