Bull-riding CEO mulling offer to lead IRL

January 28, 2010

The Indy Racing League board of directors has offered Randy Bernard, CEO of the Professional Bull Riders Association, its vacant CEO position.

The IRL position became open when Tony George was dismissed by the board last summer as boss of Indianapolis Motor Speedway and declined an offer to remain as CEO of the IRL.

Although series officials declined to comment, Bernard confirmed today that he has been offered the job, and is still mulling the offer. If he takes the job, he would answer directly to Jeff Belskus, whom the IMS/IRL board tapped last year to replace George.

Bernard, who resides in Los Angeles, has been CEO of the Professional Bull Riders Association since it launched in 1995.

In April 2007, Bernard executed a merger between Professional Bull Riders Inc. and Spire Capital Partners, a New York-based private equity firm.

The merger allowed the founding members and other bull-riding shareholders to grow their venture while maintaining a significant equity stake in the organization.

Bernard attended Cal Poly San Luis Obispo and spent six years in the marketing and entertainment department of the California Mid State Fair prior to joining the PBR.

Belskus also talked to Just Marketing International CEO Zak Brown and Central Indiana Corporate Partnership CEO Mark Miles about the opening. Both said they weren’t interested.

Visit IBJ's sports-business blog The Score to weigh in on the IRL's choice for CEO.


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