IndyCar CEO ready to slay sacred cows

July 6, 2010
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In the world of Randy Bernard, the former head of the Pro Bull Riders circuit, there are no sacred cows. That’s because the IndyCar Series CEO can’t afford any.

In the wake of the July 4 Watkins Glen race, there’s talk that the open-wheel series may not return to the historic New York venue. I don’t think that’s a hollow threat from Bernard and his posse. I think it’s a smart realization by Bernard about how much things have to change for the IndyCar series to be viable long-term.

I was surprised to hear from series sources that Bernard is seeking higher sanctioning fees for IndyCar races going forward. I pondered how he might make that demand. But after considering the state of the series, I realized, Bernard has no choice.

He needs partners that are all in, and this is why. The IndyCar Series isn’t like stick-and-ball sports that enjoy numerous hometown fan bases across the country. It’s more like a traveling circus (no disrespect meant), and its success depends on the promotion of the owners and operators of the venues it visits.

If track owners aren’t willing to get behind the IndyCar Series 100 percent, Bernard can no longer afford to keep them on the slate, no matter how historic, or beloved by the racers or teams or the media.

Watkins Glen is a good example. The race drew a fair crowd last weekend, with lots of campers as usual. But it could have been better, and Bernard knows this. One of the chief complaints by IndyCar officials for several years is that Watkins Glen International doesn’t do enough to sell the event locally and regionally. That has to change.

And I know that there are team owners that are lobbying Bernard to put certain tracks on the slate for various reasons. In the end, I don't think Bernard makes those moves unless they make very good financial sense for the series.

Bernard knows that every single decision he makes has to be made with one thing in mind; gaining this series fans. From a business standpoint, that sounds like simple logic. But for far too long, this series has done things with team owners (and maybe sponsors) in mind first, with fans as an afterthought.

That’s the worst kind of wrong-headed logic. Even the part about putting sponsors’ interest before fans. Can’t do it. Won’t work. Hasn’t worked.

So when Bernard talks of increased sanctioning fees, his immediate concern isn’t cash into IndyCar Series coffers, although that demand will come. He’s looking for a commitment from track operators—financially, through manpower, whatever—to heavily promote the series and the local race in the weeks and months leading up to that event.

Simply put, Bernard needs to build the value of this enterprise’s properties. The IndyCar Series needs 17 or 18 strong races that have fan appeal and ticket-buying demand. That in turn, and it won’t happen overnight, will give him leverage to demand cash in addition to promotional muscle from track operators in the future.

Having committed track partners is the first baby step to building attendance and television ratings. And those are the numbers that will sell series and team sponsorships.

For many years, this series has operated under the false notion that the teams are the most important component of the series. Don’t get me wrong. The teams are important, but they’re not the singular element that will make this series go.

Series officials’ under Bernard’s leadership are realizing it’s the races that have to stand strong.

And everything else will follow.
 

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  • Grade
    Boy, now I bet Ropin Randy gets a B+

    He is the most interesting man in the world. He asks for higher fees and they gladly pay him - plus interest.

    "If he punched you in the face, you would have to fight off the strong urge to thank him"

    He is Randy Bernard
  • Letter grade
    You have to do more than make demands to move up a letter grade. You have to execute. And Randy Bernard's level of execution remains to be seen. But I think he's making a step in the right direction by demanding track operators' full commitment.
  • Randy's Right!!
    Excellent message from Randy. In order to make open-wheel a successful enterprize, it takes the fans, drivers, owners, and yes, the tracks to make it all work.

    And I do think that its important that the tracks have some significant "skin" in the game, and that they no longer serve in non-committed observer role. It will take all of the stakeholders to make Open Wheel succeed, but this appears to be a great first step. Randy is a sportsman, but appears to be a businessman first.
  • First Anthony you may want to check your attendance figures, the haters would have us think all that showed up were the teams and their families. Of course that is typical hater speak.

    I have no issue with kicking off tracks that do not go all out to sell tickets. It is like a traveling show, be it a circus or a broadway musical. If you do not have good advance advertisement, and lots of bells and whistles, your attendance is going to be subpar. NASCAR is starting to see this. American attention span is measured in seconds these days, and you better keep it, because if you lose it, there will be something else to hold it.

    Not being a fan of road and street courses I am not torn up about losing The Glen. Nice track, but it has to make sense. And if the IRL is still looking at a street or road race in the NYC area, Watkins Glen is less important.

    That brings up an interesting question. The IRL and Milwaukee have been talking about racing there again. The sticking point sounds like making sure the track has a solid promoter who won't crap out like the last time leaving NASCAR and IRL holding the bag. But if attendance is trumping historic interest, why Milwaukee? It is only a 40,000 seat venue, I would think if you are rebuilding the brand you would do it in markets with larger tracks.

  • This is UNBELIEVAble
    Anthony,

    I'm aghast that the IRL, Mr. Bernard in particular, is playing the "it's not me it's them" card.

    The IRL has been propped by free tix packages and free tix vouchers....most specifically at ISC tracks in the past several years. The net effect in all of this is NO ONE wants to pay for IRL tickets anymore.

    NO ONE was at Watkins Glen...the aerials from the ABC TV broadcast exist. The place was a ghost town.

    LOOK, the IRL needs to quit fooling itself..../the ontrack product is disgusting, both visually and in racing. 8 years old technology stinks and EVERYBODY BUT the IRL management knows it.

    This is why Bernard gets an "F" now from me (was an incomplete). He keeps tossing hoooey in the air and none of it is sticking EXCEPT to the pointy heads of IRL management.

    Seriously....the product they have is virtually UNMARKETABLE...they've been trying for 15 years and the 20 or so tracks that dumped the IRL (aka "didn't want to pay higher sanction fees") knew the IRL stunk. Nothing has changed as of today.

    Change everything and accuse everyone else EXCEPT the all perfect, all knowing, all everythings coming up roses...IRL. Truely a pathetic situation. But we AOW fans see right through the IMS smokescreen.

    Bottomline for IRL brass: after 15 years you STILL have no fanbase. YOU SUCK...just admit it.
  • Chief the adults are talking here, if you have nothing but blather to offer, then go back to the little kids table (IndyStar Forums). Does anyone wonder why I call them haters? Nothing constructive, very little basis of fact and a good dose of hatred born, in my humble opinion, from losing their job somehow related to the split. You can critique something, but a certain level of maturity helps where you are not being insulting.

    By the way Chief, did you find the article on the tracks that "dumped" the IRL?
  • Bernard
    Chief - you're dead on. We need some stewardship from Andrew Craig? I think I saw him behind the counter at 7-11 making a slurpee in a Tony Kannan mug. I would put a bug in his ear to see if can spare time from his Papa John's weekend gig.


  • It's us
    Chief, I don't think Randy Bernard is necessarily playing the "it's not me it's them" card. I think he's saying it will take an effort from "us" to make this series successful.
  • Here is an idea...
    Promoters can pay the higher sanctioning fee by recycling all the empty aluminum. What's it get a pound these days? There is the funding source, at least for one season, to pay Randy's higher fees. Watkins this past Sunday would have taken truckloads.
  • Here is an idea...
    How about all the unemployed champ car employees and teams pick up aluminum cans to recycle and by a ticket to come watch the "Fastest Drivers In The World" race?
  • Really Brew?
    You think champ car guys would go watch NHRA? That's interesting. Hmmmmm....
  • Really Brew?
    Sure - What else do that have to do??? Waiting for the mothership to take them home?
  • terry angstadt sucks
    dropping any road racing is good news for indycar
  • Can you imagine
    If Watkins Glen actually left the front-straight and between t1 and t2 grandstands erected....WOW, that would be lots of aluminum. Fortunately the IRL was spared the further embarassment of not having them occupied.

    Anthony: I know for a fact the Glen race was pumped locally from Buffalo through Syracuse. Local media TV and radio....I'm telling you, they tried to pump this race. Seriously, they couldn't GIVE IRL tix away. The hype of the "apology" from Randy has netted NOTHING. What is the status of that and the official burial of the IRL? Is there timeline that Randy expects to get this done? It is essential for US to work together to help heal this sport.
  • terry sucks
    2 race in toronto area thats really dumb i hope get rid toronto too and replace it with canadian motor speedway
  • track is from past
    track is middle of no were even nascar soon drop the glen race is on 4th of july burger cost a lot of money
  • I See The Kids Are Out Again
    I see any Anthony Schoettle Indy Car blog draws out the hateful children that like to shout anyone and everyone with sense down with their flawed, immature â??views.â?? The insecure head of these darkly retarded cretins, Chief, chimed in right on queue:

    â??I'm aghast that the IRL, Mr. Bernard in particular, is playing the "it's not me it's them" card.â?? He is? How? All he is saying is pay what we say it is worth, then promote events as if they are. Seems pretty logical to me.

    â??The IRL has been propped by free tix packages and free tix vouchers....most specifically at ISC tracks in the past several years. The net effect in all of this is NO ONE wants to pay for IRL tickets anymore.â?? This is another laughable work of fiction. Marlboro used to give away a block of tickets at most tracks. They donâ??t any more. So the simplistic Indy Car-obsessed haters naturally assume free tickets went to everyone, and now no one buys them. That sort of thinking is what causes adults to laugh at these imbeciles.

    â??NO ONE was at Watkins Glen...the aerials from the ABC TV broadcast exist. The place was a ghost town.â?? Again, factually incorrect. The ABC aerial shots showed pretty good crowds in the stands at the start and hardly any at the end. Why? Probably because those of us who were there attended with high temperatures and no shade on the aluminum grandstands. Saying â??No ONEâ?? is telling of an obvious absence of firing synapses.

    â??LOOK, the IRL needs to quit fooling itself..../the ontrack product is disgusting, both visually and in racing. 8 years old technology stinks and EVERYBODY BUT the IRL management knows it.â?? Actually, the only â??peopleâ?? who feel that way are disenfranchised cart enthusiasts still trying to fight a war they lost. Twice. The sport would be better off without this group.

    â??This is why Bernard gets an "F" now from me (was an incomplete). He keeps tossing hoooey in the air and none of it is sticking EXCEPT to the pointy heads of IRL management.â?? You make Anthony Schoettle look objective, and that is saying something.

    â??Seriously....the product they have is virtually UNMARKETABLE...they've been trying for 15 years and the 20 or so tracks that dumped the IRL (aka "didn't want to pay higher sanction fees") knew the IRL stunk. Nothing has changed as of today.â?? Oddly, then, that blue chip sponsors keep signing on with increasing frequency.

    â??Change everything and accuse everyone else EXCEPT the all perfect, all knowing, all everythings coming up roses...IRL. Truely a pathetic situation. But we AOW fans see right through the IMS smokescreen.â?? Actually, again, a handful of bleating chicken littles still peeved because their favorite series self immolated themselves, twice, believes this dark little fantasy their youthful minds have concocted, but as your words consistently show, your opinions are without any merit.

    â??Bottomline for IRL brass: after 15 years you STILL have no fanbase. YOU SUCK...just admit it.â?? Another characteristic of this fringe group of children is their lack of maturity. Chief, you and your little friends give the sport a bad name. Grow up.
  • See Anthony, Chief who hates the racing series knows personally that the Glen did everything it could to sell tickets from Buffalo to Syracuse. So we must all believe the guy who rarely gets a prediction right has the inside knowledge that the press doesn't.

    and there is Chief asking again for an apology and the official burial of the IRL name. Again for someone who does not care about the series, he sure seems to have some very personal feelings about needing that apology.

  • aah, who cares
    apparently the family that was carrying the bankrupt league for 15 years has decided to no longer waste their money

    where's TOney George these daze?
  • Reality
    [quote] He needs partners that are all in, and this is why... If track owners arenâ??t willing to get behind the IndyCar Series 100 percent, Bernard can no longer afford to keep them on the slate, no matter how historic, or beloved by the racers or teams or the media. [/quote]

    So, does IZOD need to do more to increae the lousy TV numbers? Is Randy going to chuck them under the bus too?
    IZOD appears to be all in. Hell, they're drinking the Kool-Aid by the barrel and they can't seem to get the TV ratings up.
    They can't get people in their nice air conditioned houses, sitting in their EZ chairs to press a button on the remote to watch the IRL.
    But Randy expects the promoters to spend big $$$ to try and get people to spend their own hard earned $$$ on IRL tickets, and pack the grandstands, in the heat and bugs and stink???

    That just doesn't sound realistic to me.
    BTW, can you ask Randy if they still expect to turn a profit next year? That doesn't sound realistic either...
  • Otto in running for the 2010 Gomerton Cup
    I vote for Otto Bock as the Mid-Season Gomerton champ, but that is if the season ended now. Plenty of Izod Car apologists can pass him by and get those coveted points with some major league excuse making and steel the milk-filled trophy right out of Otto's lubed-up hands.

    But he does get Post of the Week for the hot weather excuse! Classic! It is either too hot, too cold, too wet, barometric pressue is too low, winds out of the Southwest 15 to 20, too dusty, there is a strong coastal eddy, volcanic ash is in the air, the humdity to too much, it is too dry a heat, the moon is only at three-quarter, the seats are aluminum, the seats are plastic, the seats do not have backrests, the traffic is rough because it is holiday, the race isn't on a good holiday, it is too close to Easter, it ain't during Oktoberfest, the autumnal equinox is taking place, the Spring/Fall time change is never a good weekend, and Oh My God! There's no shade! Otto, you are not a Packers fan are ya? Consider my can gassed. You're good.
  • The Gap
    How is it that objective thought is so compromised here? IF Watkins Glen was successful it wouldn't be met by declining attendance and TV ratings in the toilet.

    Why after 5 years has the IRL not captured the imagination of AOW fans in NY State? Too much heat? Too little promotion by PARTNER ISC?

    The IRL has been rejected by:

    -Nazareth
    -Atlanta
    -Charlotte
    -New Hampshire
    -Milwaukee
    -St. Louis
    -Dover Delaware
    -Richmond
    -Toronto
    -Fontana
    -Michigan
    -Kansas
    -Kentucky
    -Pikes Peak
    -Nashville
    -Walt Disney World
    -Australia
    -Las Vegas
    -Phoenix
    -Milwaukee

    And potential low performers:
    -Homestead
    -Kansas
    -Watkins Glen
    -Toronto
    -Edmonton

    AND just about every other IRL race....

    The problem is not tracks....it's the series that parades about like it's the pinnacle of motorsports in this country. ISC/NASCAR put forth tremendous effort to allow the IRL a chance (and every other track/community that gave it a chance).

    The IRL concept has FAILED. Is that not enough to convince ANYONE of the mistake the IRL's creation OR continued clodding about the land is doing to this AOW landscape?

    Friends....whether AVIS or IZOD sponsor is IRRELEVANT. What is relevant is how the series (the IRL) is perceived. And, if we are going to blame track promoters we MUST realize there MUST be be a product to MARKET.

    That understood (and I doubt IRL bootlickers will be able to follow along), ALL FACTS....WHY should anyone want to BACK this piece of crap still labeled as the IRL?

    OK, let's develop NEW MARKETS! Well...it's all the same market and they don't like the IRL.

    WHY is this so hard to understand by the IRL brass? SERIOUSLY, ANTHONY, this is the reality. HOW CAN THEY (the IRL) continue to ignore or act about (like Terry Angstadt) that they are going to correct this fallacy????

    RESIGN Terry. RESIGN everybody....even bootlickers are jumping the IRL-believing ship. EVEN Jack Arute, the uber-IRL bootlicker, is gagging. Friends of the IRL....this is trouble.

    The gang that can't shoot straight is shooting their limbs off. COME ON, we all remember the Monty Python film, HOLY GRAIL, where the soldier is getting his appendages cut off and he's standing there with nothing but stumps and his mouth is still running.

    That is what the IRL is now....an armless, legless, other-appendageless thing that no one wants or responds to.

    The IRL was a mistake..... once the speedway takes responsibility for this mess and puts the IRL to DEATH, THEN we can all become US. Let's get it done Mr. Bernard, and STOP stomping about acting like something you're not. I knew AOW racing, and Mr. Bernard this crap you are promoting is not it.

    AND....I will go to Watkins Glen again when the IRL is gone. THAT will tell you something.....or maybe not if your head is in the sand like all the Humanites that parade NOTHING around here, like DEFENDER...errr OTTO BOCK.

    Heed the waring...DEATHBLOW 2010 is upon you all. And I ain't got nothing to do with it....EXCEPT I will NEVER spend my $thousands EVER on the IRL.
  • Chief...
    As soon as you get warmed up, get on here and share your opinions about the Izod Car Series League Beta by Avis thing, car club, open racing Indy thing league.
  • Chief...The Truth...The FACTS...
    Days of IRL existence: 5,282 days and counting
    Days since Champ Car flatlined: 793 days and counting
  • lame
    Stop it you are killing me....I need to run off and watch Keith Olbermann. Just kidding you Hulmanites....bwahahahahahha.

    R3member...the IRL (apparently) is a successor to the CART crown.

    A POOR successor...by any way you measure it EXCEPT if you measure by gross attendance or TV ratings or gross sponsorship $$$. Then the IRL has a great GAP or AVIS......


    A·vis
    â?? â??/Ë?eɪvɪs/ Show Spelled[ey-vis] Show IPA
    â??noun
    a female given name: from a Latin word meaning â??bird.â??
  • lame
    Stop it you are killing me....I need to run off and watch Keith Olbermann. Just kidding you Hulmanites....bwahahahahahha.

    R3member...the IRL (apparently) is a successor to the CART crown.

    A POOR successor...by any way you measure it EXCEPT if you measure by gross attendance or TV ratings or gross sponsorship $$$. Then the IRL has a great GAP or AVIS......


    A·vis
    â?? â??/Ë?eɪvɪs/ Show Spelled[ey-vis] Show IPA
    â??noun
    a female given name: from a Latin word meaning â??bird.â??
  • Words From an Adult
    Just when I think the loudest of the kids canâ??t get louder or more desperate in their quaint little bleating they surprise me.

    â??IF Watkins Glen was successful it wouldn't be met by declining attendance and TV ratings in the toilet.â??
    Hmmm. Thatâ??s odd. Those who actually attended and those who run the track claim crowds were steady or up. They must be lying, huh? Have any of the Indy Car obsessed television executives seen the numbers for the race?

    â??Why after 5 years has the IRL not captured the imagination of AOW fans in NY State? Too much heat? Too little promotion by PARTNER ISC?â??
    Itâ??s an ISC track. Those who actually use their heads for something other than wearing a hat backwards can do that particular math.

    â??The IRL has been rejected by:

    -Nazarethâ??
    Hmmm. Thatâ??s odd. Was that before or after they tore the track down?

    â??-Atlantaâ??
    Canâ??t sell out NFL playoff games. Have you checked their NASCAR crowds? Why would Indy Car want to go to a market that does not even attend successful local teams?

    â??-Charlotteâ??
    The management is still a bit nervous after three fans died when their safety systems failed. Thank goodness there was no bridge collapse.

    â??-New Hampshireâ??
    Hmmm. Thatâ??s odd. The last time I checked New Hampshire got back onto the Indy Car schedule after trying to make that deal for three years.

    â??-Milwaukeeâ??
    Hmmm. Thatâ??s odd. Wonder if the story would be different if that venue paid their bills?

    â??-St. Louisâ??
    Seriously, have you seen that track?

    â??-Dover Delawareâ??
    Run by the same group that runs St. Louis.

    â??-Richmondâ??
    Sponsor poaching.

    â??-Torontoâ??
    Hmmm. Thatâ??s odd. Toronto is on the Indy Car schedule again this year.

    â??-Fontanaâ??
    Not many attend any event at that track.

    â??-Michiganâ??
    ISCâ?¦not many attend any races there anymore.

    â??-Kansasâ??
    ISCâ?¦not officially excluded by the Indy Car Series yet.

    â??-Kentuckyâ??
    Hmmm. Thatâ??s odd. Indy Car has had several successful events there and is preparing for another this season.

    â??-Pikes Peak â??
    Hmmm. Thatâ??s odd. It is pretty hard to race a track ISC closed.

    â??-Nashvilleâ??
    See Dover Downs.

    â??-Walt Disney Worldâ??
    Date conflicts.

    â??-Australiaâ??
    Seriously, who gives a crap? Realisticallyâ?¦.scheduling conflict.

    â??-Las Vegasâ??
    Back on the schedule soon.

    â??-Phoenixâ??
    See iSC,

    â??-Milwaukeeâ??
    You already included that venue above.

    â??And potential low performers:
    -Homestead
    -Kansas
    -Watkins Glen
    -Toronto
    -Edmontonâ??
    All but Edmonton already taunted.

    â??AND just about every other IRL race.... â??
    What other ones are there, kid?

    â??The problem is not tracks....it's the series that parades about like it's the pinnacle of motorsports in this country. ISC/NASCAR put forth tremendous effort to allow the IRL a chance (and every other track/community that gave it a chance).â??
    Are you legally blind or just clinically insane?

    â??The IRL concept has FAILED. Is that not enough to convince ANYONE of the mistake the IRL's creation OR continued clodding about the land is doing to this AOW landscape? â??
    It certainly draws a lot of attention by those who say they dislike it. Hypocrites.

    â??Friends....whether AVIS or IZOD sponsor is IRRELEVANT. What is relevant is how the series (the IRL) is perceived. And, if we are going to blame track promoters we MUST realize there MUST be be a product to MARKET.â??
    It does not really matter how Indy Car is perceived by the handful of cart enthusiasts stuck in 1995. They are not relevant.

    â??That understood (and I doubt IRL bootlickers will be able to follow along), ALL FACTS....WHY should anyone want to BACK this piece of crap still labeled as the IRL?â??
    Just to piss you off probably. Bootlickers?

    â??Heed the waring...DEATHBLOW 2010 is upon you all. And I ain't got nothing to do with it....EXCEPT I will NEVER spend my $thousands EVER on the IRL.â??
    When will your quaint little angst about it extend to a cessation of pointless flooding of blog comment sections by the hundreds? Certainly anyone who is not a hypocrite might stumble onto that degree of maturity. This deathblow 2010â?¦does that mean Indy Car is preparing to meet the same sort of death that cart did? Twice? Go ahead and give me a date.
  • Hi Otto Bock...Defender...Actual Adult
    WOW...that's the kind of arrogance that got us in this mess and will continue sink the IRL ship.

    Keep ignoring the signals IRL dolts. I'm not sure where you are going to go where the word "IRL" isn't tainted. Market cultivation has FAILED miserably in every geographic area and it's always the tracks fault.

    See what I mean Anthony? How can Randy and IMS ignore what has taken place in AOW marketplace....that the IRL is responsible for? I think it's a mistake for them to not address this.
  • From a former fan
    I used to attend 2-3 CART/Champ Car races per year, and would never miss a race broadcast. I also supported race sponsors, and wrote many letters of "thanks" to those sponsors. Also I PAID for race tickets, and never received freebees.

    I'm exactly the involved, supportive fan the IRL needs. However, since the demise of Champ Car, I have completely lost any interest in this form of racing and no longer attend. I gave the IRL a chance on TV, but haven't watched a race since Indy 2009.

    This isn't because I hate Tony George, Brian Barnhardt, or anyone else. It's because THE RACES ARE DULL! The cars are ugly, engines awful sounding, and the results are too predictable. Why waste time with this crap?

    If the IRL wants my business again, they need to fix what you have ruined since 1996. Bring back turbos, multiple chassis manufacturers, Road America, Cleveland, Portland, Laguna Seca and Mt. Tremblant. Cut out the phony racing, and make the series great again.

    Then I'll be back!
  • No More
    I used to care, but things have changed.
  • and there goes Chief ignoring the fact that at least half the tracks he listed, not counting duplicates, no longer host any races due to closuure.

    And where is the links to the stories documenting the reasons? Thats right, because they do not exist. Chief is just making up his facts again.
  • WHO FREAKING CARES
    Cowboy boy wants to go BACK to 11 am. Ha. Every major event in the world is in prime time. No one outside of indy cares about this circuit. When Robin Miller dies this IRL will die. No one cares. Close it up and put up an amusement park. Randy was a his hire. Robin is his guy. Robin is calling the shots. And it's a loooooooosssssssing battle. WHO CARES? No one!
  • Not economically viable
    The 'league' is not viable as a going concern. They've openly admitted that it never has been, and the only reason for its unfortunate miserable continued existence is the Hulman trust.

    The sooner they cease operations permanently, the better.

    code = c4fyc
  • From a Former Cart\Nascar fan
    I used to attend 2-3 CART/Champ Car races per year back in the 80's, and would never miss a race broadcast. I also supported race sponsors, and wrote many letters of "thanks" to those sponsors. Also I PAID for race tickets, and never received freebees.

    I'm exactly the involved, supportive fan the Indycar needed. However, in the 90's the owners took over and I left. Went to Nascar like many...millions of fans were on their way to going.

    since the demise of Champ Car, I have completely gained my interest back in this form of racing and I;m back to attending races and writing letters to sponsors. I gave Nascar another chance on TV (can't find Champcar), but haven't watched a race since Brickyard 2001.

    This isn't because I hate the France Famliy , Andrew Craig, or the Chief. It's because THE RACES ARE DULL! The cars are ugly, engines awful sounding, and the results are too predictable. Why waste time with this crap when I have the Indy Car Series?!!
  • Tuck
    I'm sure the IRL owners, management, teams and sponsors, all appreciate everything the dedicated fans like you, do for the "sport". Why if it weren't for fans like you, they couldn't brag about the super 0.2 TV ratings and tons of empty stands at every race.

    Yes, it's dedicated fans like you, that make the IRL the success that it is today. Give yourself a round of applause...
  • THANKS!
    I appreciate it. There is just something about having something that somebody else wants but they can't have it. 0.2???, but it's my 0.2 and come hell or high water there will be a Indy 500 in 2011, 2021, 2031 and 2041 that would make my about 75 so a lot of good years ahead. I hope we are still using the Dallara and Ropin CEO bull Randy is still hanging with us and enjoy the ride. Please hang around, I will need the bitterness to keep me grounded.
  • ToNy's mANtrA
    Iman...you gots issues. When Tony George started the IRL the BS was these oval tracks needed races.....the IRL couldn't do their part in keeping fans interest and some went belly up.

    IRL FAILURE again. I know, next you'll blame the tracks for being built.

    If the IRL could make money at ANY of those tracks, the IRL would still BE THERE. And, so would those tracks.

    It didn't and they don't. OW market destroyed...again. Cumulative effects need to be ignored again and again...Thanks to the IRL.

    Off to MCL's.....
  • H8 & Resentment
    There is alot of H8 & resentment going on here. Considering that the George family lost the most and gave the most, it seems that now the team owners have to man-up, everyone is complaining because there is only money to be made and the cost increases. when the announcement is made that the new dallara will continue with Honda what will happen? Maybe the Georges will decide that the fan base is too much of a pain. Then the H8 campaigne will continue. Honda and Dallara maybe getting old in this American economy wher people are tired on the weekends and they want to redefine American Culture in any way they can, maybe that is what NASCAR is offering. Give the George Family some credit for trying because many folks would have already said SIONARA...Don't blame the messenger when the expected news comes on July 14th. Also, next year they need to update "the fastest drivers in the world" at least.
  • DWC
    Not Down
    Tuck&Friends,
    Well, I guess you're not down with the clown. I guess you're just a normal person, or not. I don't really know. All I know is you ain't down with the clown. Still, MCL Homie~
  • Give the family credit?
    Props to the Hulman family? Are you kidding?

    They started the IRL....the worst thing to happen to AOW in it's entire history.

    Now, they want to cover-up the past like it never happened and you want AOW fans to give them CREDIT?

    Here's the credit they deserve: IRL blew the popularity of this sport AWAY in a spoiled rich-kid control rant, all in all spending HUNEDREDS and HUNEDREDS of millions to do it. How do you like it now? AOW markets destroyed, fans hating the IRL, 8 year old foreign cars, foreign engine leases, ride buyers, abandonment of ovals in USA, street racing. Utter crap Italian chassis. Broken backs and flying cars.

    Frankly, if I come across as ungrateful I apologize. But I do give the Hulman-George's all the credit for accomplishing all those feats...and in just 15 years. Good job Hulman-George's!
  • reality
    More Americans tuned in to see adults stuff dozens of water-soaked hot dogs down their throats than did last year. Nathan's Hot Dog Eating Contest (ESPN), a July 4 tradition aired from Coney Island, was viewed in 847,000 U.S. households, a 21% jump.

    And what did TOneys' Invisible Racing Leeg draw?

    CART dead twice still has more fans than the Immitation Racing leeg will ever have...and that's the truth
  • Send in the clowns
    Isn't it rich?
    Isn't it queer,
    Losing my timing this late
    In my career?
    And where are the clowns?
    There ought to be clowns.
    Well, maybe next year...

    Just a thought-
    Randy has a great connection to the Rodeo
  • The Past
    The chickens have come home to roost,
    my friends,
    qui sème le vent récolte la tempête
    (sow the wind and reap the whirlwind.
  • WOW
    Condemned to suffer?
    I'm suffering alright, suffering from emotional preteens blogging out from their behind the wall playgrounds."

    Don't shoot the messenger is all.
  • And the winner is...
    In the July 4th sports TV rating runoffs....we declare NATHAN'S HOTDOG EATING CONTEST (ESPN) the WINNER over the hapless IRL Series at Watkins Glen (ABC). Final ratings are emerging but rating overnights are almost in a dead heat.

    Congratulations go out to the entire IRL crew for another OUTSTANDING performance!
  • Fanbase
    The IRL fan base is kind of in the mire always talking about immodium and their allergic rashes. Some of them don't even like their own drivers. No loyalty like the NASCAR fans, who actually buy merchandise and support their favorite sponsors. The preppy style and imported Walmart cultural clash is fun to watch though. Brand confusion reigns but some people like their M&M's & pretzels with their 7-11 slurpee. Live and let live, Randy is all about Hard Work and that is new for some of these old boys-
    All the potty talking, with the"I-Chief" is pretty funny sometimes.
    Some of these fans actually expect randy to pay them, now that is funny! When you have to pay your fan base and give them promos on T.V. the end is near.
  • aah, who cares
    Imagine the TV numbers without the TK/DP feud in full swing and the huge bump from the AVIS announcement.

    Speaking of TK,,,he goes from 1st place to last place in the span of 1 race,,,,I guess 7-11 made its decision to split,,,and TK was expecting that Honda Special two weekends in a row
  • Trying to revise history again Chief? When Tony started the IRL, it was in part to keep ovals in the racing series as cart was slowly phasing them out. Again that was part of why. It was never to keep oval tracks in business.


    More than half of the tracks you listed ran NASCAR at the same time as IRL. So you are saying the IRL was to save the tracks that NASCAR was running on? Who would save the tracks NASCAR abandoned?

    It is nice to know that cart always ran on the same tracks through their existence.
  • u were dropped at birth
    The IRL was created to destroy AOW. It's been in the red for 15 years. What successes is the IRL known for?

    Indyman, you can paint the picture anyway you like but the TRUTH is the TRUTH. IRL is DEAD in just about EVERY market it's ever been in. Of course, now they're starting to return to their own destructed former tracks because they've exhausted the supply of tracks everywhere else. FACT...and it's TRUE.

  • The IRL was created to preserve oval racing and the opportunity for American drivers to have a chance to race. Two things that cart was moving away with. To say otherwise is more of your revisionist history.

    The only thing that is dead is cart, it killed itself. You said it yourself. if not for the IRL, open wheel racing would have died with it. Well correction, cart killed itself multiple times while taking investors money with it.

    You would not know a fact or the truth if it bit you. That is proven by your repeated story changes and failure to provide links to your accusations.
  • Sideshow
    Immodiuman is getting all twiswted up in the game here. What is goingto happen to the fan base when the 14th comes around and the expected changes are a dissapointment. Blame Randy? Better stock up I-man, Immodium is the drug of choice for the Inidy fans this year. Rather dismal but fun to watch as a sport in itself is the fan melt down on the I-blogasphere. Maybe Immodium-man is glib an inarticulate but very appropriate humar for all the others watching? Hard to say what the Immodium-man really wants but it is entertaining. Just don't blame Randy, he's a hired hand and he is a fantastic personality for this sport...Along with Jack and Lindy. Very fun sideshow to watch. Randy is very deserving of respect because he has done more in 4 months than all the rest. Great Hire for the girls team. Would go to a race just to see him in action,,
  • cart's died a long time ago
    Even DEAD it owns what the IRL wanted to become....but never will. Ropin' Randy said it himself.

    Iman, you can't un-kill the sport which the IRL is on record as doing. FACT.

    IRL has been tossed off most of the oval tracks they try while on this preservation joint. American drivers were down to THREE in the latest AMERICAN race at Watkins Glen with the LOWEST attendance and TV rating.

    WOW....that's the successes of the IRL you don't want revisioning, is it?

    Best thing is to disolve and bury the IRL...and start fresh...with a new name, new everything because the IRL is tainted.

  • Lies lies lies yeah
    "When Tony started the IRL, it was in part to keep ovals in the racing series as cart was slowly phasing them out."

    That is false. You have no evidence of that, because it is completely untrue.

    "The IRL was created to preserve oval racing and the opportunity for American drivers to have a chance to race."

    That is also completely false. 'Anton's word' is not evidence.

    Stop lying. You disgust everyone with a brain by posting your delusional abject fiction.

    code = wex3b
  • Immodium-D
    Immodium-D will be in short supply next week.
    Code+wex3b-b= Your face.
  • American Opportunity
    What happened to American Opportunity? Even Patric Dempsey has moved on-
    This is a complete farce, co call in the Rodeo Clowns and just enjoy the rides while they last.
  • In a perfect world
    As Mr. Mellencamp once said:

    ...The money's good and the work is okay
    Looks like everything is rollin our way
    Til you gotta look the devil in the eye
    You know that bastard's one big lie....

    Those words are comin back to haunt IRL leadership everywhere. If that IRL musical MANTRA doesn't sum up the ill-begotten IRL today I don't know what does.

    BURY IT NOW. When I hear that song....it mean THE IRL SUCKS.
  • It is entertaining to watch the parade of haters come and go with a few that hang around because they like to post about a series they do not care about.

    The best part are the ones on here who smell blood in the water, trash the series, predict doom and gloom, and then good news comes along and they disappear for weeks or months.

    I also am getting a kick out of Stan saying that he knows the reason TG started the series in not really the reason he started the series. So now Stan is a mind reader. Hope that is working for you.

    Flip flop Chief is at it again. Are you related to John "I voted for it before I voted against it" Kerry? Cart killed itself. IRL killed cart. Cart killed OW and now you say "Iman, you can't un-kill the sport which the IRL is on record as doing. FACT." Which is it?


  • Dude, CART is long since dead, get over it already
    Iman....you keep saying the same things over and over.

    Dude, orient yourself to the current century. CART had full grandstands and great TV ratings...the IRL does not. CART is dead, the IRL is not.

    Stay focused....CART DEAD, IRL SUCKS.

    Prove to me the IRL doesn't suck...you can't, no matter what CART immolation analysis you spew forth.

    Great civilizations come and go all the time, the IRL just ain't one of them.

    But seriously, a 0.6 on ABC and a 0.2 on VeRSuS? Indy ratings lowest in HISTORY, attendance in the tank so much we're talking about slaying sacred cows...and you're talking about CART. COnstantly. Check in to Bellevue R-Wing man.
  • iman is onit
    even TOney GEorge left Fantasy island,,,,maybe iman was moroned there
  • Things Look Bleak. When Is The End?
    Given the credible, literate case against the Indy Car Series as a viable entity presented so articulately and objectively by its most obsessed fans, things look pretty bleak. When do these mature experts feel the series will cease operations and discontinue running races? Will they actually go out of business once, much less twice? Given the hopeless outlook here it can't be long, right?
  • Oh my....
    The IRL might NEVER cease operations! The HORROR of the IRL Zombie League stomping about in markets they already killed!!!! The "thing" might live forever!!!! Oh, the HORROR!

    Seems about right when you have the endless sources of $$$ like the Hulman-Georges do. For a series designed to be so different than the great one that came before it, the IRL looks very much like it. Everybody is SO happy, right Defender of the IRL (aka AlexHoppes, HooterMorgan, Shirley, and Iquisitive Potential pompous Whoopie Cushion)?
    • Keep Watching!
      Don't forget my personal favorite: Alexis Shorter. Enjoy the rest of the season and all the rest that will follow.
    • Hey, it's Defender!
      Big D, why are IRL TV ratings in the tank? Why did few bother with Watkins Glen or Kansas? Do you think Toronto will have a sellout this year?

      See everybody...the Big D is vile person. FACT. And he's the IRL's Number ONE fan! Check out his blog....then you'll know why too. He has issues..... :D
    • Izod IRLcar Series
      17 PAYING drivers, (18 this past weekend) keeping the car counts up.

      Lowest 500 ratings, ever.

      NO improvement in ABC ratings.

      We (teams, series officials) almost outnumberd the fans at the Glen!

      Several teams (raises hand) on the bubble for next year.

      Everything is grate Defender, Moe, Hooter, and whatever names you go by here
    • So When Does It Fold?
      Lots of doomsday scenarios. When will it actually cease to operate?
    • It's imminent
      It's very close to being over. Soon the IRL will be no more and the world will rejoice.

      A few failed self track promotions and key sponsor defections, PLUS the ill-fated ICONIC decision with manufacturers not seeing ROI in the series. It's coming, stay tuned.
    • Chief,

      you are complaining because someone keeps repeating the same thing over and over? Your mantra from day one is IRL sucks, IRL sucks, IRL sucks. Oh and the occasional " I hate the series so much i am going to spend hours telling you so"

      Talk about repeating yourself. At least I support something, instead of constantly trying to tear it down.
    • Wrong
      You and the speedway pretend everything is coming up roses. It ain't.

      You want to bury yourself in the fantasy of the VisIOns and the legacy of the 500. Well, I don't like having my head in the sand like that.

      The turd is being polished, the emperor has no clothes, etc etc etc.

      I'm calling crap when I see it and the health of the series is not good. Do you not find it interesting that the more promotion we see, the less it gains in ROI? There's a reason it's like that....but you are blind to it.
    • Cow slaying
      Any one even care about why cows are gonna be slaughtered in defense of the IRL?

      I beg to offer that the product being marketed stinks which is why the tracks and promoters can't (and won't) market it.

      Let's hear anyone else's take on this.....
    • reality
      TOneys first marketer told him the IRl was a product that probably couldn't be marketed. TOey fired him and hired someone like Iman and spent 600 million dollars to make it the success it is today
    • Bad economt
      600 million dollars was alot of money to have invested before this ecomony fell down. So why don't people get that that and stop the H8 and get real-
    • reality
      The IRLcar series sucked when the economy didn't
    • When have I ever said everything is coming up roses or even daffodils? Quite the contrary, and that means either you do not read what others post, or you cannot comprehend.

      I still am not sure what sacred cows Anthony was refering to. With the exception of IMS, what tracks are "sacred"?

      Watkins Glen is not like Rockingham or Darlington was to NASCAR.

      Keep hating, cart is still dead, and the IRL is rolling along. Boy, that really steams you guys, doesn't it?
    • Nope
      It doesn't steam us that CART is dead....it steams us that AOW is on it's deathbed under this CRAP called the IRL.

      IF the IRL was successful WE'd (the AOW fanbase) be happy. We are not, especially that you IRLer's parade around like the past 15 years didn't happen. OK, so you are trying to re-assemble Humpty Dumpty,,,we get that. But, to act like 15 years didn't take it's toll on the sport is assinine. AND, that's exactly how the speedway is handling it.

      So, each year you all put a new face on the sport...but we're not fools....you all think we are, BUT we are not.

      So, stop fooling yourselves that re-packaging the same crap that's been on the track for 8 years is gonna do it...it's not, and the attendance and ratings prove that.

      EMBRACE all sides of the splintered fanbase and move forward. Until the IRL is officially trashed....nothing will ever get fixed. THATS A FACT....so keep wasting markets and PR monies being foolish. Nothing is to be gained by using INDY or the IRL as the point anymore.
    • Blaaaah
      If the Indy 500 was strong enough...it would STILL be the pinnacle of the sport...it is not.

      All by the IRL's doing. Putting the IRL to rest is like watching the IRL HOLMATRO SAFETY crew put out a flaming wreck. Is that Simona Silvestro car still burning...it seems like it.

      KILL the IRl...then we'll talk. Until then, we move in separate directions while the stink permeates the AOW community. Oooooh, and it does stink....have you seen the attendance and TV ratings for that IRl roadkill at Wadkins and Kansas and Iowa, and Indy 500 ?
    • iman is onit
      what steams real open wheel race fans is people like you who claim there is any value in anything the IRL has ever done.


      What were your 10 favorite tracks the IRl has been kicked out of iman?
    • I am going to have to claim bull on that Chief. You are a cart supporter through and through. If the IRL was beating NASCAR, you would still be a hater. You hate it because even though you admit cart killed itself through bad management and bad business model, you blame the IRL for killing it. Once you admit that, the rest is easy.

    • Wrong
      As usual.

      Once you admit IRL is a cheap third rate imitation of nothing we'll be on the same page.

      Until IRL can get attendance and TV ratings higher than NASCAR it's a loser and so will Indy continue to be. FACT. Exactly as the world predicted in 1996.
    • And as soon as you admit cart is gone forever and ripping on the IRL will not bring it back, you will be on the same page as most people. You took a big step when you finally admitted cart killed itself. Finish up your rehab by admitting cart is not coming back.

      you want to provide a link to the "world's" 1996 prediction? I know just like everything else you post, it happened in your mind and there is no linking to that.

      You are starting to sound like Ricky Bobby. If you're not first you're last.

      Tell us again why you have nothing bette to do than to write how much you hate the IRL?
    • IRL SUCKS
      FACT. Your only comeback is "CARTs DEAD".

      Pathetic.

      Grace me with full IRL grandstands and TV ratings up the ying-yang. Until then Iman and the IRL have got nothing. Zip, Ziltch, ZERO.

      Enjoy the street race in TOronto you street race lubbber!

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    1. A Tilted Kilt at a water park themed hotel? Who planned that one? I guess the Dad's need something to do while the kids are on the water slides.

    2. Don't come down on the fair for offering drinks. This is a craft and certainly one that belongs in agriculture due to ingredients. And for those worrying about how much you can drink. I'm sure it's more to do with liability than anything else. They don't want people suing for being over served. If you want a buzz, do a little pre-drinking before you go.

    3. I don't drink but go into this "controlled area" so my friend can drink. They have their 3 drink limit and then I give my friend my 3 drink limit. How is the fair going to control this very likely situation????

    4. I feel the conditions of the alcohol sales are a bit heavy handed, but you need to realize this is the first year in quite some time that beer & wine will be sold at the fair. They're starting off slowly to get a gauge on how it will perform this year - I would assume if everything goes fine that they relax some of the limits in the next year or couple of years. That said, I think requiring the consumption of alcohol to only occur in the beer tent is a bit much. That is going to be an awkward situation for those with minors - "Honey, I'm getting a beer... Ok, sure go ahead... Alright see you in just a min- half an hour."

    5. This might be an effort on the part of the State Fair Board to manage the risk until they get a better feel for it. However, the blanket notion that alcohol should not be served at "family oriented" events is perhaps an oversimplification. and not too realistic. For 15 years, I was a volunteer at the Indianapolis Air Show, which was as family oriented an event as it gets. We sold beer donated by Monarch Beverage Company and served by licensed and trained employees of United Package Liquors who were unpaid volunteers. And where did that money go? To central Indiana children's charities, including Riley Hospital for Children! It's all about managing the risk.

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