Grand Prix of Indianapolis wins local TV ratings race, less impressive nationally

May 12, 2014
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Was the inaugural Grand Prix of Indianapolis a success?

That depends on whom you ask.

If you are a traditionalist, it probably wasn’t. Seeing Indy cars go the wrong way down the front stretch on Saturday was probably just too much. If you were expecting to see full grandstands and a huge economic impact from the event, you were probably disappointed.

If you are Mark Miles, CEO of IndyCar parent Hulman & Co., you likely have a few reasons to smile.

While attendance Saturday didn’t beat the 40,000 bodies Miles wanted by much, if at all, attendance was certainly higher than any opening day at the track in well over a decade. Long-time motorsports journalist Robin Miller estimated Saturday’s crowd at 25,000 to 30,000. I would guess it to be a little higher than that, but probably not near 50,000.

Most in attendance raved about the race and the course. Some of those I interviewed went as far as to say the revamped road course was the nicest road course in North America. Folks in Austin and Birmingham might beg to differ.

Either way, the GP of Indianapolis seemed to accomplish its main objective, which was to build momentum for the rest of May at the Speedway.

While the race’s highlights didn’t exactly lead ESPN’s SportsCenter on Saturday night and Sunday morning, it did warrant a mention, which is more than opening day at the track has garnered in a very long time. A handful of national journalists made their way to the Speedway on Saturday, and the race aired live on ABC. All that media attention has to help the IndyCar Series and its crown jewel race on Memorial Day weekend.

Getting more IndyCar races and events on network television has been a big objective for Miles, and the impact of getting the open-wheel series front and center on ABC for three consecutive weekends culminating in the Indy 500 can’t be underemphasized.

In Indianapolis, the race was the highest-rated TV show all day on Saturday, according to officials for ABC affiliate WRTV-TV Channel 6. The live broadcast of the race scored a 9.1 rating (98,000 households) in the central Indiana market, according to New York-based Nielsen Media research.

“That’s a really big number, especially for a Saturday afternoon,” said WRTV spokesman Paul Montgomery.

Indianapolis by far had the most people watching of any market nationally.  The next two highest-rated stations for the race were WFTS-TV in Tampa, which earned a 1.6 rating, and WHAS-TV in Louisville, which registered a 1.5, according to Nielsen.

Overall, the national rating for the race was 0.9, which means about 1 million households tuned in to the broadcast, according to Nielsen.

While those numbers a long way off what an NFL game or NBA playoff game would tally (and one-third to one-fourth what the Indy 500 earns), they’re a lot stronger than a normal opening weekend at the IMS would have brought in.


  • fail
    Did you all see the stands during this race? I've seen more fans at a HS wrestling match. Speedway needs to work on returning the 500 to the event it was for 90 years, instead of diluting the month of may (IMHO). Nope, I have no idea how to accomplish that, but its not with a second race during the month of may. Tony Hulman, Wilbur Shaw, Eddie Rickenbacker, and Carl Fisher must be turning over in their graves.
    • Stuck in reverse
      The trolls stuck in reverse are about to come out. I saw the stands in the race and the stands where you want to watch a road course race were full. The viewing mounds were packed and hard to find space. My son and I went to three different viewing mounds and they were packed. My three kids are still talking about the Grand Prix and several people in my office were talking about the race this morning. It is a great way to kick off May and generate interest for the race. A super first step.
    • In Indy, maybe
      It is great that people are talking about the race and that the mounds were full, but nationally it didn't move the needle. That will be a problem for sponsors. It is about national ratings and exposure. That is how the networks recoup their money and if the ratings aren't going to be there nationally, then sponsors won't pay the networks. Then the networks lose interest and there goes the series.
    • There was a Grand Prix?
      On Los Angeles TV stations, the second largest media market in the USA, there was no local sport broadcast coverage of the event at all on the evening news. None. At least the three channels I watched. There may have been one in there but I doubt it. It was as though the event didn;pt happen at all. And the Sunday L.A. Times ran a small, three or four paragraph article underneath the NASCAR article and several pages in. One would actively have to search for Indy Car news, and search hard, to find anything on it. All the empty grandstands around IMS gave the impression the event was some sort of reverse, practice sesssion. It was odd. Akward. Perception is EVERYTHING. And the perception was this is a practice/exhibition special thingy and hardly anybody is there and the cars are slow and the driers can't race like they do in F1. Perception-wise: A disaster. Only hardcores would get this race. A casual observer would think the Indy 500 had been changed into some sort of F1-thingy and hardly anybody goes anymore. At IMS, their biggest problem, is not understanding percpetion. And the perception of this with a casual observer was: Hey, it's the Indy 500! Wow! It's different now! Where is everybody?
    • Larry Illiteration
      Can't you use alliteration and rhyming at the same time? LA, the city that can't support an NFL franchise. It was a great day, great crowd and three good races. A lot of access to the Pro Mazda and Indy Lights drivers. This race will grow with time. Having close to 1 million viewers for an event with little national build-up is a good start. The past 20 years won't be fixed over night but there are good things going on.
    • Nice to see .1rl ratings being discussed again.
      But, I hear attendance was a bigger joke than the tv viewership. Apparently, according to RACER, they got 21,700 for an inaugural hulmancar fest at the greatest of all motor racing facilities in all of the world. How many showed for the first F1 race? How many showed for the last F1 race? It's the difference between top tier and laughably bad clown cars.
        I had an absolute blast at the Grand Prix race. It was the first time I attended, but I will definitely be back for more action for the Indy 500! I also noticed a lot of the stands were empty, but honestly, the track has wayyy too many seats. It already felt super crowded when I was there. I am sure it was a success locally.
      • Anyone saying that the race drew 21,000 is an out and out liar. Anyone saying the stands were empty and therefore the race was a failure doesn't know road courses. The viewing mounds were indeed full. They made an announcement that they were opening main straight stands to accomodate the larger crowd. From my seats in the Stand E Penthouse, I could see a large crowd filling the northwest stands, the mounds I could see were full and even directly across from the start finish line had a couple of full sections. It was a good crowd, probably 40,000+ and it was a great race. I am not a fan of road racing, but this was interesting and the new turn 12-14 had some good action.
      • Attendance and the delusional
        Miller says 25k. Racer says 21.7k. Lets split the difference and say 23k. Indyman can claim another 23k hiding under the stands, as it was overbearingly hot/moist/noisy/smelly/ugly/insert lame excuse here as to why rabid clown car fans would hang out under stands rather than watch race from good vantage point. Happy now? :roll:
      • 2+ Hours in Race Traffic
        My son & I drove from Tennessee to see the Indy Grand Prix races--they were awesome! The mounds were so full, IMS provided additional seating behind pits. It took us over 2 hours to get out off speedway property, and there were still a ton of cars waiting to get out behind us. No doubt, over 40,000.
      • crowd
        Jim must be telling the truth because Robin Miller says so, and he keeps saying clown car. For those living in the real world, I went to every mound and they were packed except for the one between turns 10 and 11. Stands H, J and the NW Vista were full. E was full. There penthouses were full. Easily more than 40,000 to watch an entertaining race.
      • Sections
        Most sections were not available for ticket sales anyway. Only those with good viewpoints for the road course were for sale. The areas that were available appear to have sold fairly well. Most road racing fans know that the ticket to have is general admission and wander the infield, not just sit in a seat all day.
      • HoHumm
        Meanwhile, back at the ranch.... Sunday had about two to four thousand show for opening oval day. Monday maybe 50 people. Tuesday about 50 until rains washed it all away. Wednesday, ZERO in rain attendance. It's all meaningless anyway because all that matters is how much the 21.7K or 40+K impact the taxpayer owned Marion County 500. The IRL is all about cheap quick fixes and the GP was just another one. If seated attendance drops below 200K (which it already has with removal of grandstands etc.), the GP already has impacted the bottom line by shifting interest and revenue from the former greatest spectacle to a road course race that former oval stalwarts once hated but now champion (to the tune of $6MILLION). You Speedtucky inhabitants are a fickle breed. Too bad the cars are the ugliest 3/4 open wheel cars around, more people might like them. The Indy greats are now Ray Harroun, Jimmy Johnson and Simon Pagenaud. In fact, Simon Pagenaud is the Ray Harroun of his generation. You all must be so proud!
      • A Grand Time at the Grand Prix
        Geez, everyone is so hung up on how many were at the inaugural Indy Grand Prix. How about those of us who were there had a great time, the racing was competitive and the price of admission was very reasonable.
      • Good Day at Indy GP
        There is some merit in all the comments. I was surprised at the number and estimated it to be 40-50 K. J was packed, NW vista was packed and the mounds I could see looked jammed. That being said, the cars are not the prettiest and no the attendance was not F-1. Indy Car must immediately find a marketing team to sell this product. They have a tons of resources available but rest on the Indy 500 laurels. Get out to the top 30 cities with in 250 miles and market the dog crap out of this sport and then dump the duals and temporary street course crap, Long Beach does work though and has for many years.
      • Attendace Figures
        IMS could save themselves a lot of grief and publish the attendance. If the IRS wants to know they will figure it out.
      • Distress
        I see the spec Indy cars going the wrong way at IMS being somewhat akin to flying Old Glory upside down. IndyCar is desperate.
      • Ford says there's no crowd @ .1rl events
        And Ford motors will not be powering clown cars while Edsel Ford II is breathing.... [quote] His reasoning is simple: “No one in the stands. The General Motors guys would like us there and Honda would like us there, but there’s just no value in it. [/quote]-------- so there you go Koolaid drinkers. Top corporate management have seen the bare aluminum showing at events and the lousy Nielsen ratings and concluded there's no ROI from clown car racing. -----Source: ------------------ BTW, didn't Honda say that they needed another engine supplier to come in, or they were gonna bail? :lol:
      • @jim
        I heard some yuropeen nancy boy engine maker was going,,,,what? they what? they've already been here and left? nevermind
      • Shutting Down
        I’ve struggled with writing this since before Long Beach, and the words don’t seem to be coming any easier today than they did a few weeks ago. Effective today, I am shuttering IndyCar Advocate. The site will remain up, but as of now, there are no plans at present for additional articles or content to be posted. Hummmm, never knew it existed. Like 99.8% of Americans and IRLcar.
      • @jim
      • Factual Commentary From An Adult
        Key criteria that were met: 1) The crowd exceeded the expectations of IMS. Anyone who estimates less than 40K (particularly those who were not there) is displaying colossal ignorance. 40K was the goal, and the goal was exceeded. 2) IMS also wanted national television coverage for opening weekend. They received that, something they have not received on opening weekend for decades. Therefore, any rating is a good rating, because the event was televised nationally. Although road racing in May is creepy, it attracted a bigger crowd than otherwise, and having that event on Saturday is smart.
      • Question
        How were the new pork tenderloins...tasty, huh? What's with all the rust stained barren concrete that used to hold full grandstands at Indy? Where'd they all go? Have they saved our track yet? How's the ADA compliance dealeo going? And the ticket and concession prices...aren't they just fine! Yup, hand picked Hulman hoosiers taking the fans to the cleaners. All at the expense of the once great Indy 500, which is just another of about 15 races at the worlds greatest race corpse.
      • Where'd they all go
        where'd them hunnert thousand real IRL fans who were at the track on Saturday go? Don't they know something special used to happen at the end Of May?
      • Ahead of the Evolution
        Let me get all this Month of May rearrangement straight. I’m sure the big supporters of IMS and the 500, like Disciple and Indyman can clear this all up. Tony George was concerned CART was deemphasizing the Month of May when they suggested IMS could cut the 500 race down to a couple weeks so another event could be added to May. Is that generally accepted by the supporters? Disciple is often writing that things change, which he calls evolution. So, I would imagine adding the new Grand Prix of Indianapolis road race and cutting the 500 back to a couple of weeks is an example of that evolution. So, to summarize: Another race has been added to the month of May, and the 500 has been cut down to a couple of weeks. Would that make those evil CART owners prophetic and actually ahead of the curve on IMS eventual evolution to arrive at the same place? Dang, those boys in CART were smarter than even Disciple and Indyman could have imagined! They were almost a full 20 years ahead in thinking. Now, what was all the split and war stuff all about, and was it even needed especially considering the damage it did to IMS and Indycar racing overall? Oh yeah, one more point. If you use the added race in May as an excuse based on the fact that CART never said they would add another race to the month AT INDY it falls short. You do not know that. Heck, they may have been open to that idea, but we will never know. Let me get all this Month of May rearrangement straight. I’m sure the big supporters of IMS and the 500, like Disciple and Indyman can clear this all up for me. Tony George was concerned CART was deemphasizing the Month of May when they suggested IMS could cut the 500 race down to a couple weeks so another event could be added to May. Is that generally accepted history by the supporters? Disciple is often writing that things change, which he refers to as evolution. So, I would imagine adding the new Grand Prix of Indianapolis and cutting the 500 back to a couple of weeks is an example of that evolution. So, to summarize: Another race has been added to the month of May, and the 500 has been cut down to a couple of weeks. Would that make the CART owners prophetic and actually ahead of the curve compared to IMS and Hulman Racing eventually evolving to arrive at the same place? Dang, those boys in CART were smarter than even Disciple and Indyman could have imagined! They were almost a full 20 years ahead in thinking. Now, what was all the split and war stuff all about, and was it even needed especially considering the damage it did to IMS and Indycar racing overall? Oh yeah, one more point. If you use the added race in May as an excuse based on the fact that CART never said they would add another race to the month AT INDY it falls short. You do not know that. Heck, they may have been open to that idea, but we will never know. And no this is not about the split. Clearly it is in now extremely evident the split was never needed. Well, that is if you ever believed it was about saving the full month of May.
      • Sorry.
        I'm not sure what the heck happened with my duplicating some of my comment. This blog interface is weird. I wish you could edit the comment once something like that happens. I guess that is what I get for coming back and posting.
      • .9 = good?
        Isn't a .9 rating on broadcast tv pretty much as low as it can get? 9.0 in central Indiana and 0.9 in the rest of the country would say to me that Indy is a big deal in Indiana but that's about it. Sorry Dipsicle, any way you try and spin this just makes you look pathetic. 2/10th of a point above a test pattern is not a win.
        • Check the '13 ratings
          Northern Fan, I would tend to agree with your statement... the ratings for IndyCar last year for the network TV broadcasts were around a .6 rating... I believe two races earned over a 1.0, which was Indy 500 at a 2.8 and the Mid-Ohio race at a 1.1.... You can check the facts, I am just going off of memory right now, but regardless, the ratings are so low, it would be tough for any sponsor to justify ROI on this stuff, unless their Marketing Boss or Owner was a bigtime race fan and cant afford Nascar or F1.... sad really, what has become of even the once great month of May spectacle.
        • Still Here, Part 1
          Normally I do not bother addressing the sheer lunacy that pollutes the comment sections of any and every IndyCar-related Schoettle blog, but the OCD-like desperation (typical every May) of the obsessed youthful moths drawn to this particular flame who choose to squat here deserve at least an actual adult point of view. One recurring theme among the willfully ignorant deals with attendance. It is common knowledge that attendance for the vast majority of sports and entertainment offerings has decreased across the board over the past few decades. Hardly anything is immune. Ask NASCAR, for example. With regard to the Indianapolis 500, hundreds of thousands are expected again on race day, as has been expected every other race day. Carb Day has assumed the big attendance mantle formerly associated with Pole Day, which still draws tens of thousands. Opening day this year far exceeded those of many recent years. The kids can screech doom until the cows come home but the only thing that really matters is how IMS feels about it. So far they seem pleased. Other oft-straw-manned taunts ask 'where did they all go,' or 'has the track been saved?' Mostly folks have taken to computers, mobile devices and hundreds of other diversions unavailable in the utopia the critics have created in their small minds.
        • Still Here, Part II
          Track 'saved?' Why would it need to be 'saved?' From what? The track has been here since before all of us were born and it will be here until after all of us are dead. That is just common sense. Ticket and concession prices up? It is surprising they did not do so years ago. Probably no one likes it but dollar for dollar it remains among the best bargains in sports and entertainment. If you do not want to pay big bucks for a gourmet tenderloin you are welcome to bring not only your own beverages but your own food as well. Your choice. Those options are unavailable at the majority of other venues. Facility improvements? Improvements have taken place all over the grounds. There are still numerous areas showing their age, but the process has begun and those of us who actually see the whole place in person have noticed progress. All good things take time except in the whacko alternate universe of the kids.
        • Still Here, Part III
          Other popular yelps that consistently work their way into any otherwise polite, intelligent conversation regardless of actual topic is the 'split.' Tony George as Lucifer. cart as the martyred victim. You have heard all such nonsense before. The goofy linear cause and effect path charted by squatters remains the single most ignorant/insane theory passed off as gospel in the entire recorded history of sport. Those who spout that brand of utter nonsense clearly do not understand the first thing about either IMS or Indy Car. They are merely enthusiasts of an evolutionary niche that failed twice by their own device. Tony George had little or nothing to do with that and in fact bailed out the twice failed remnants. No one deserves an apology from him. He is owed a debt of gratitude from those who fancy themselves actual fans. From a fan standpoint the cart years were as good as any evolutionary era that preceded or followed it. Part of the nutjob mythology that causes such cart-centric folks to spout off, especially during May, is indicative in many cases of their relative youth. Most were born after they actually split the sport in 1979. Those who were not failed to develop maturity required to reason with sense. It is ironic that the exact same kind of smug arrogance that caused cart to kill itself twice parallels that of those who taunt here. Only with less literacy. The 'split' was not needed? That is true. So why did cart force the sport into it and subsequently drive themselves into nonexistence? Again, without IMS there is no sport. It is far from perfect but it beats the alternative. Twice. Another aspect of wading through the pointless meandering is dealing with the laughable phenomenon of the ITE. Internet Television Executive. These are the kids who obsess about 12+ overnight audience estimates as if the numbers mean life and death. The point of Schoettle's piece, in fact, is to opine how 'low' the grand prix overnights are. Here is a question: What is better, a national telecast on an OTA network with a .9 estimate or an opening day with no television of any kind and therefore no ratings? The ratings for IndyCar on OTA or cable actually exceed most ratings for sporting events on television. Historically IndyCar ratings have been roughly the same proportionate to most everything else. It might surprise the ITEs to note that there exist several entire well known sports oriented cable channels that have no rated programming, yet earn millions of dollars derived of ad sales every month. If there is, as purported, a direct cause/effect between IndyCar ratings and lack of sponsorship/ROI why has a blue chip like Verizon not only consistently increased their involvement but is now the title sponsor? Why are most teams sponsored with multiple entities? Obviously they are more intelligent than ITEs. Finally, the month of May at IMS remains great for actual racing fans who recognize the sport would not exist without it. To deny that is declare abject ignorance, as evidenced by some of the fourth grade level comments through which those with brains must wade.
        • So sad
 You're like a dull knife You just ain't cuttin' You're just talkin' loud Ain't sayin nothin'
        • Having a Great Time Every Day at the Track
          "Save our track are your own words from right here at IBJ because the museum parking lot had potholes, yet IMS felt the need to repave the road course." Ooooh. Incorrect again. The words 'save our track' were actually penned by Anthony Schoettle, who cited my concerns about ghetto-like conditions on three sides of IMS in a July 10, 2013 blog. "The difference between us is WE have opinions and you are two faced when it come to the speedway. Your facts contain none, they are merely delusional whims created from your 1950s Indy 500 memories." And your ability to comprehend the written word is nil. My only direct 1950s Indy 500 memory was pole weekend in 1959. I was 5, the emotional age of many comment contributors here. That said, my firsthand experience that began then continued unabated through the 60s, 70s, 80s, 90s, 00s and today. As an actual paying customer I failed to pick one favorite era, plant a flag, then pine for it like a junkie after a fix as many of your yelping kind have. It’s all good. "It's a 3 sided ghetto with less grandstands, rapidly rising ticket and concession prices, and rusted antiquated facilities." Yes to the three sided ghetto. The town of Speedway is doing a good job in their gentrification of the area, with IMS support. The ticket and concession prices remain below nation averages. Those of us who engage in activities such as actually going to the track see progress in the refreshment of the 105 year old facility. Perhaps you should get out from behind the keyboard and see for yourself. "The lack of ADA compliance that stimulated the $100million cash grab is just the cream of the crop. Carl Fisher hisownself wanted a road course originally. The cars are ugly, the Indy lights are more appealing except there's only 9 of them who usually crash on the first lap anyway. TV ratings at a 18 year all time low. That's how the fan sees the waste dump of AOW racing." I disagree. Someone who is actually a fan is generally not subjectively ignorant and possesses basic literacy skills. "Indy has become the canary in the coal mine and Tweety is breathless and laying at the bottom of the cage. But it's ok because NASCARs canary still sings. You can't face the truth that Hulman Racing has destroyed it all." This is why your desperate May yelping cannot be taken seriously by adults. It makes no sense. Nothing is destroyed. If it 'all' was destroyed there would not be hundreds of thousands visiting IMS again this month, a place where I actually am every day the facility is open. Perhaps you should orient yourself in actual reality.
        • A little less every year
          Give it up D-man, every year things slip a little lower, every year fewer and fewer bother to watch or show up. Every year we hear how golf or basketball or hockey has killed the rating on a given weekend. Now we are told that a future race is at a club track, seats are being ripped out and track workers spend more time covering seats with giant tarps then cutting the grass, putting on a little fresh paint or heaven forbid fix up the bathrooms. How's that museum parking lot looking these days??? Keep ranting Johnny, we all know that even you are seeing the end in sight, other wise you wouldn't be trying so hard to tell us everything is better than ever. Glad the Hulman-Georges "fixed" it for us.
        • Liar
          That's not what your blog sez.
        • American Hiros
          Martin Plowman and Takuma Sato. Brought to you by none other than AJ Foyt. Indy hypocrites.
        • Burl here...
 tell it like it is. Disciple is in a deep desperation at the moment. Well, he has been for some time, but it is a DEEP, DEEP desperation now. So that explains the long, incoherent, rambling posts, describing a Month of May experience only he can see. What I see is a nearly empty speedway, void of all but a couple hundred, middle-aged, pot-bellied, headset wearing, Gomers and the usual school bus full of kids on the annual fieldtrip. And the question begs? Why on earth would teachers still take kids out to see this wretched mess? But I digress. Empty seats abound. National media is almost non-existent, and even the local media is greatly diminished. Thousands and thousands of seats are available still for race day, and now 33 gunners will shoot it out for 33 starting spots to make the field of 33! And they will go out over and over and over again and patiently wait to be told by IndyCar officials, ok, you are in. That's good. Bbbbbwwwwwwwwaaaaaaaahhhaaaaaaa!!!!!!!! Unless somebody gets kilt manana or Sunday in a desperate attempt to start 22nd instead of 25th, nobody around America will even know about it all. Now that is a bbbbbbwwwwwwaaaaahhhaaaaaaa!!!!!!! Call it dead. Two more years of this nonesense after this and call it an even 100 and end this isery.
        • Question
          I'm not a racing fan, so I ask forgiveness in advance for my ignorance. Was there a time at the Indy 500 when the cars were not all the same, and if so, did that contribute interest to the race as different technologies as well as drivers competed?
        • I'm SO done with this
          ESPN3? ARE YOU KIDDING ME? IMS can stream video ALL week of the empty grandstands and rain delays but can't do better than ESPN3 for Pole Day qualifications? You can stick your tenderloins where the sun don't shine I'm done with you IMS. Idiots.
          I just heard there is literally no one in the stands. LOL, qualifying on Pole Day has been reduced to meaningless IMS flagellation. I LOVE IT! Hulman Racing dilutes the product...yet charges more for it!!! I wish I could run my business (customers) off like this!!! I'm estimating the 21K sucked lotsa wind out of the 500's sails. DEATHBLOW 2014! WoOOOT!
        • Crankshafts
          There are a couple of crankshafts that fill this comment section with childish and immature rants. They just keep yelling louder and making less sense. My kids got past that at about 3 years old. They will only be happy with the death of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Too bad, but it isn't going to happen. Yep, they did better than ESPN3 and have two days on ABC with the second day being a lead in to a big NBA game. The concessions are good at the Speedway and if you don't like the prices, you can bring your own.
        • Hey JD
          Question for you, though. Where were the people today at IMS. You know the ones. The ones not playing IndyCar, Cavin, or a guy in a yellow shirt? Where were they? The place was a ghost town for the exciting new Qualifying format. Bbbwwwwwwaaaahaaaaaa!!!!! Done as a tenderloj, bud. Done as a tenderloin.
        • It's a NEW track RECORD!
          Robin Miller estimates Pole Day has been killed dead...only 2500 in attendance on Pole Day saturday. Hahahhahhahha! This is AWESOME! Great work done killed it dead.
          • No National Presence?
            I have listened to three Top of The Hour newscasts on sports radio this afternoon. Nada on Special Ed's Pole the Speedway assured. What happened?
          • TV
            Yes it did get mention on ESPN Sports Center but most of it was about the crash at teh start and other crashes. NOT what the series was wanting. While it may seem nice to have it as the highest rated show in Indianapolis. That means that there were thousands of people who chose to sit at hoe and watch it instead of actually attending. If they keep this event on the scedule then they need to move more events that will make it more of a deal for teh fans. Move the TUSC road race from th NASCAR weekend where they have to make modifications for practice session since they are using both the oval and road courses that weekend. To a completely road race event where the track configuration does not change and more actual track time for practice.
          • grandstands
            40,000 at Indy will look empty considering the number of permanent seating and the fact that road race fans usually sit along the course and not in main grand stand.
          • miller
            Robim Miller has done more to kill of Indy Car racing than anyone in series management. His scorched earth articles on IMS while a paid employee of CART did more damage to the sport than anyone involved in the sport want to admit. The casual fans who only tune in for Indy grew tired of his negative articles and said screw it. There has to be something better.
          • Same old trite
            A few commentators need to adjust their rabbit ears and realize the world has changed. Robin Miller has had zero credibility as a journalist for his entire career. The crowds were small but the weekend was entertaining and a good foundation is being laid. This is a new world and Indycar racing is generating a lot of Internet traffic and social media traffic. For those xenophobes that want some Americans. Carpentar, Hinchcliffe, Newgarden, Hildebrand, Andretti, Rahal, Karam. The few posters missing some chromosomes will spew childish trash, but the winds are blowing in the right direction. I'm glad you're gone.
          • All the rage...
            ...JD, please provide the evidence the Indy 500 is tearing up the social media world. Please. I just talked with a kid in Munice this afternoon and the young Ball State lad asked when the Indy 500 is. I will all BS on you. Nobody cares. Less than 12,000 people over two full days of qualifying at IMS with the special special all worked up to bring the excitement. No media coverage on radio thsi afternoon. Nada. Indy is dead, bub. Time to make this a NASCAR-like three day race weekend and tear down about 25,000 more seats. Maybe 50,000. Thousands of tickets are still available and the race is a week away! Thousands are on sale. I could buy three rows deep, 50, 75 seats right now! Right now! Oh, I know, tall the social media rage will take care of that. All the kids are tweeting about Special Ed's pole win bbbwwwaaahhaaaa!!!!!!!!
          • Oversaturation
            Ed Carpenter even said it....only one day is needed to do Indy qualifying. Practice Friday, qualify Sunday and race Sunday. After all, all this evolution reduces this Indycar crap to just race five of the season. How come they couldnt just bump the boost so the cars could do 240mph? The cars are on rails....what was there 1 wall contact all week? The cars are ugly and look slow. Golf is more exciting by comparison. Indy is dead. Good job IMS. You did it all on your own.
          • Someone should have told
            my local ABC affiliate yesterday that there was something happening in Marion County that used to be significant
          • More Tradition Being Established
            Kurt Busch destroyed his car on Monday. Traditionally this would mean the car would start from the 33rd position or be withdrawn if it couldn't race. But, according to a new rule, Kurt goes to Marco Andretti's backup car and keeps his 12th starting spot. LOOK, another tradition gone EXTINCT. The Indy 500 is no longer the Indy 500. It sucks and is nothing but a gimmick. Great work Hulman Racing family!!! For a hunedred years the car was qualified, not the driver. Now that's all see those tarps and empty grandstands? When you increase prices, have ugly stupid cars, and change EVERYTHING that we loved about the race, the month (or even the mere hours of this month) you messed it all up. Chase your customers away by following the Boston Consulting Group suggestions. What good were those suggestions when you've diluted what made you what you are in the first place? Not worth the spit used to seal the envelope, thats what.
          • NASCAR Indy Car Series
            But Chief, doesn't Kurt get the new Past Champions provisional anyway? Bbbbwwwwwaaahhaaaaaa!!!!! 12th or 33rd,if he can walk and talk, he's in the race. Might as well start him up toward the front so the fans (the few who are left) are at least duped into thinking he has a chance. He WILL get a Special Ed under the cowling, so at least he has that. In fact, now that I think about it, maybe that is what bit him. Beside, you can't have Kurt start 33rd because if one of these high school kids or the female racer doing charity laps in the pink car wrecks on Friday, that is where Terry Labonte or Bill Elliott will start. BBbbbbbbwwwwaaaaahhhhaaaaaaa!!!!!!!!
          • Silence is deafening
            In one of the forums I frequent, a poster asked this question regarding the "Kurt Busch Rule": What does AJ Foyt have to say about this? Nothing has been heard. Where's the legend NOW when you need him stand up for the 500's institutional stature? I know where his is...ripping off his foreign ride-buyers for their YEN and EUROS. AJ is the biggest hypocrite of them all. I can see the snakes Ganassi and Penske, and the weasel Boy Andretti selling their souls, but AJ? The last bastion of Tony Hulman's influence and respect. NAAAAH, ol' AJ is just a bum like the rest of them.
          • Hey JD
            Hey JD, what part or 'Merica is Hinch from???? Is Ontario now a state? Must be Gomer geography, if it ain't Mexico and his name ain't Juan he must be 'Merican
          • Good Catch
            Good catch of the oversight on my part greatwhitenorth. O Canada.
          • HAy Defenderciple
            name one tardition you and TOney haven't demolished
          • Ticket sales poor
            I am reading and hearing the ticket sales for this year's race are well below normal.
          • Looks like TOney's and Defenderciple's
            plan to fix opened wheeled oval racin is working. Besides, dint they already runned it already this year. THe IRls' biggest fan doesn't care anymore
          • Quick Question
            Wonder whether the basement dwelling critics who pollute these comment sections have any idea how utterly foolish and out of touch they have exposed themselves to be considering increased crowds, ratings and reviews?
          • Momentum
            "I've been to 15 Daytona 500's, that many Brickyard 400's, but the Indy 500 will blow you away." Kurt Busch. Big crowds at the track, good reviews all around, ratings up, great race. A good step in the right direction for the best racing series.

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