Alfa-Romeo ponders joining IndyCar, new sponsors jump in

November 16, 2010
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It’s a big day for the IndyCar Series.

According to series officials, it’s been a big year. But how big? Well, that depends on who you ask.

This much we know: Dallara, the series’ chassis maker, is breaking ground today on a $7 million facility in downtown Speedway. It is the company’s first location outside Italy, and it’s being designed to be a tourist attraction as well as manufacturing plant.

But that’s not all IndyCar officials are crowing about these days. Last week, they announced the addition of Chevrolet as the series’ second engine supplier in 2012. And motorsports insiders are chattering ever louder that Alfa-Romeo is seriously considering joining Honda and Chevy as the open-wheel series’ third engine maker. That’s not likely to happen until 2013, but sources said series leaders are still holding out hope Alfa-Romeo could join in 2012.

If that comes to fruition, it will be a stunning development for a series that could muster little interest from suppliers in recent years. But that was before the board of directors hired Randy Bernard away from the Professional Bull Riders in February. He took the IndyCar CEO post March 1.

In the spring, Bernard didn’t know much about motorsports, but he sure knows how to get up to speed.

Yes, he’s made missteps, including a near-mutiny among team owners over his ICONIC Committee’s decision on a new chassis for 2012. A few owners even favored restoring Tony George to power. That commotion seems to have subsided, but Bernard learned the hard way how political and volatile this sport can be—off the track.

There have been other bumps in the road, too, like losing the series’ 2011 race in Edmonton. And challenges remain, including attracting top American drivers. I assume Bernard is well acquainted with the likes of Conor Daly.

Television viewership is up, though the numbers are still too small to get a sniff from the types of big-name sponsors Bernard needs to push this sport back in the fast lane. Still, Chevy officials were especially stoked about a 40 percent increase in younger viewers this year over last.

One thing that might have caught some people by surprise is the fact that the IndyCar Series has added 14 new sponsors in the last year. I scratched my head at that one, too. So I asked IndyCar officials for a list. The list shows how far the series has come—and in some ways, how far it has to go.

For those as curious as I am, here are the new sponsors and the categories they fit in:
—Larsens, promotional partner
—Magnum, promotional partner
—Philips, official health care equipment
—Safefreight, official mobile security supplier
—Sunoco, official fuel retailer
—Z-Line, official home office and entertainment furniture company
—Verizon, official wireless partner—Global Corporate Alliance, official insurance program
—Cenveo, official integrated print and visual solutions partner
—Just Pop In, specialty popcorn and other snacks
—Avis, official rental car company

IndyCar Series spokeswoman Amy Konrath said three new sponsors still have not been announced, but will be soon. Presumably, though, those deals are signed.

This fall, the IndyCar Series also announced a deal with Cafes do Brasil, which did not make the list provided to me by series officials. So maybe that’s No. 12. Or maybe since that deal is an outgrowth of the series’ Apex deal, that doesn’t count.

And I haven’t forgotten that Terry Angstadt, president of the series’ commercial division, in late September said that I should expect a major sponsorship announcement within a few weeks.

“It will be a category-exclusive deal with mega activation,” Angstadt told IBJ. “It will rival the [promotion] done by our series title sponsor, Izod. So it’s very exciting.”
 

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  • Groundbreaking Was Great
    ...although chilly. A new era dawned in Speedway today. Congratulations to the town, IMS, Indy Car, Dallara and racing fans everywhere.
  • I did ask how your Italian is doing. There is also still the rumors about a Fiat deal, either Dodge or Ferrari making an engine. The Italians are really hot to make a splash in the American market as we exit the recession.

    I have got to guess the haters are besides themselves as to how to spin this info. While not a done deal, these rumors are fascinating and do not forget the Chevy deal was a rumor a few weeks ago.

    As the economy recovers and many sponsors are either squeezed out of NASCAR or tire of its soap opera status, expect to see more heading over to the IRL. Couple that with the next several years of the Century celebration, and this may be what catapults the IRL forward.

  • Trouble is...
    ...hardly anybody is watching, hardly anybody cares. Indyman, Defender, quickly now, please provide a listing tomorrow of the non-Indianapolis national media that covers these events today. And I don't mean motorsports websites. It is a small, niche sport with a tiny following, no two ways about that. Car sport for car people these days. Defender, how is that assignment coming along? A detailed listing please of the 1 million plus in attendace this season. Minor, minor, minor league sport. A listing tomorrow, guys. Sports talk shows on radio, not of the Cavin variety, for bonus points! Have at it, guys! Best! Burl.
  • Indiana tax dollars at work
    Economic development...err tax dollars, being used to build this facility. NICE!

    What are they going to build? Any kickbacks to the Speedway? Gotta be....
  • where are the big activators
    It sounds like a solid few months for the series, but that list of sponsors is not exactly full of big, national or global firms that are apt to do much activation and promotion of this series. I hope series officials aren't wasting too much time crowing and are busy selling. Because they need more sponsors, but more importantly bigger sponsors with a bigger megaphone to scream the series' message through.
    • How feeble, I expected better from you to. burl with the tired old no one is watching that multi billion dollar companies are making multi million dollar deals witht the IRL and Chief all of a sudden becoming a Libertarian concerned about tax dollars going to support economic development.

      Burl do I need to wait until tomorrow, or can I post today?

      http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/40218070

    • Does anyone else...
      ...feel sorry for 'Burl', as I do?

      What a sad, bitter, pathetic person (s)he must be.

      Sad, especially as we near the holidays.
    • Not good Indyman
      You know better. That came from WTHR as a pick up. I said no Indy media. When MSNBC puts their own staff on the story, maybe some light-hearted banter on Morning Joe for example, you have something. Keep trying, though.

      Small, insignificant sport, these days, this Indy Izod thing. Small indeed.
    • NICE!
      Must be some feed MSNBC has! This GROUNDBREAKING news is sandwiched between Prince William's wedding announcement photos and this, Truck Crashes Into Building At Buckeye & Division in Seattle, Wa.!

      http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/40218068

      http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/40218069

      http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/40218070

      http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/40218071

      NOW that's SOME great placement for IRL groundbreaking news!!!
    • Burl you said "provide a listing tomorrow of the non-Indianapolis national media". It was from the MSNBC website. That is non indianapolis and definitely national. You never said it could not be a pick up. Rare is the non NY, DC, Chicago, LA story that rates actual national reporters. Most stories are just that, pickups and drop ins from the local affilitates.

      Keep spinning, I am waiting for you guys to tell us Alfa Romeo is not a well known car maker. You might as well start prepping for how to counter that announcement.
    • I Actually Attended The Groundbreaking
      ...and noticed most of the television stations in the region, ABC, ESPN, Speed, numerous print representatives, and others. You know, the exact same press corps that cover news stories in NASCAR, F-1 and other major series. It was a festive event. Several national news organizations now have it up on their sites and it has been on all local newscasts already.

      If you are awaiting coverage, say, on a network you may be out of luck. Usually someone has to die before they bother.

      Important takeway: BIG news for motor sports, IMS, Indy Car, the town of Speedway and Dallara. Fantastic, actually.
    • Sponsors
      Not entirely correct, Matt. Have you seen the Verizon ads? Those are the kinds of ads the series needs to be promoted nationally. I have seen them on mainstream network broadcasts and in Motortrend. This is certainly a good step forward.
    • Better hurry up...
      Imaginary manufacturer deadline ahead! Tonite at MIDNITE is cutoff for 2012.

      Who will jump in? Alfa, Toyota, everyone? This is so exciting!

      Defender, I was there too! But, I didn't see you...
    • I haven't seen those ads
      Honestly, no, I haven't seen the Verizon ads. And I watch quite a bit of TV. I can recite to you by heart sports related ads involving Nike, GoDaddy and Wrangler, but I've never seen the Verizon ads. But who knows, maybe I'm just missing them.
    • Defender and Indyman have it right
      Rare do the major markets cover the sport. Why? Because it is not major.
    • Chief, who hates the series went to the ground breaking? Ok, does anyone else feel this is odd?

      Doubt Toyota, they have issues in NASCAR and still having quality issues with their passenger cars. As Anthony put in his blog, probably 2013 start date. Bernard was quoted as saying he thinks there may be a couple of more engine manufacturers for 2013. Read that to be Alfa, one of the Fiat stable and possibly a German brand, something from the VW stable perhaps? With this many engine manufacturers it is starting to feel like the 80's again. Will Chief wear his parachute pants and hyper shirt to the track next year? Hell, he may have worn those to the groundbreaking today.

      By the way, love the new Dodge commercial touting Indy as the birthplace of the Cummins Diesel. How many people watching that were shocked. All part of the legend that is Indy.

      So how exactly is the engine deadline date artificial? It is the date the IRL set so that they know who is in for that season and the manufacturers have time to develop their engines. Silly Chief, you do not wear envy well, stick with the parachute pants.
    • Why is that odd?
      What's odd is Defender went to the groundbreaking...he's like a living, walking version of the song "Your So Vain". He prolly flew to Indy after the Redskins got pummeled which included a quick stop at his homes in New England and on the gulf coast. Probably took in a total eclipse of the sun somewhere too on a friends Lear Jet, while only tossing in a buck fifty for jet fuel. (the ULTIMATE insider he is).

      Or, maybe he was just signing in from his mom's basement in Lafayette. Who knows...Greg and Fred and Terry have him on speed dial. Yowsah!
    • Some interesting comments in this ESPN article on the return of Chevy to Indy.

      http://sports.espn.go.com/rpm/racing/indycar/columns/story?columnist=oreovicz_john&id=5805495

      "The importance of the Chevrolet-to-IndyCar deal cannot be overstated."

      I had not heard this before
      "Indy Racing League founder Tony George, the man Bernard replaced after a revolt within the Hulman-George family over the past two years, was present at the Chevrolet announcement, but he stood stone-faced at the side, quietly watching the proceedings." Interesting.

      "But under Randy Bernard's leadership, the future finally looks bright for Indy car racing. Sunny days like Friday at the Brickyard are clear evidence that IndyCar is on the comeback trail, and the 2012 season can't get here soon enough."

      I agree, lets get to racing.


    • Tony George in the house
      Indyman, you must not follow The Score's Twitter account, where it was reported that Tony George was in the house at the Chevy announcement. Interesting, indeed. But remember, he's still a potential team owner if he can get the sponsorship bucks to get back on the track. With most of his equipment gone and his shop now occupied by SSM, though, that may be a long shot.
      • Burl & Chief
        I suggest following something you enjoy rather than trying to spoil things others enjoy.
      • Bravo ALFA
        If Alfa-Romeo does return to the Indy series, I _may_ even start watching again -- though it will still be the same old boring "round racing".
      • Mr. Miller
        Thanks for your concern. I have a keen interest in the future of AOW racing. The addition of Chevy, Dallara and the holograms will go along way to help improve the sport.

        But, mark my words, I will be a watchdog over not only the sport but the gang that can't shoot straight at 16th and Georgetown. Too long they have misled the consumer, Mr. Bernard's feet are to the fire.

        So, don't hide the facts....and we'll all become one happy family again! After all, Penske and Ganassi either run or control just about everything, even the ugly trophy.
      • Who Was There and Who Was Not
        Anthony Schoettle wrote: 'Indyman, you must not follow The Score's Twitter account, where it was reported that Tony George was in the house at the Chevy announcement. Interesting, indeed. But remember, he's still a potential team owner if he can get the sponsorship bucks to get back on the track. With most of his equipment gone and his shop now occupied by SSM, though, that may be a long shot.'

        Thanks for the reminder about twitter. I may have to check that out. Anyone got any sinister, cockamamie conspiracy theories about Barnhart or Angstadt or Anton not being in attendance this morning? I did not see any of them. Saw the sisters, though. Any team aspirations Tony has will probably take the form of a partnership, as he did with Panther this past season.
      • Fuzzy's
        Who'll get the coveted FUZZY'S VODKA sponsorship now that Special Ed and ToNee are gone? Defender, you are tight with Fuz, what's the deal? Inquiring minds etc...that picture of you in front of gaping wide open empty grandstands at Chicagoland this year was compelling.
      • Good news keeps coming
        It takes critical mass to move the meters of public interest. You have to give Randy and the IndyCar group big props for continuing the positive news towards next season.
      • Anthony,

        Not a fan of Twitter. So I keep up on your website.

        Looks like Chief is starting to crack a little. First he admits that the IRL will be around for years to come and now he is seeing hopeful signs and has taken the role of faithful watch dog. Well ol' dog, glad to have you aboard.
      • Race Car Factories
        I do not see any race car production facilities being constructed down the block from any other major race track. Not Daytona. Not Spa. Not anywhere. Nowhere except the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Welcome Dallara. This is a major step forward for Indy Car.
      • Keep up?
        Oman...we'll keep u updated! Wouldn't want u making stuff up! Stuff happens fast in the IRL!
      • Defender is right....
        No one is desperate enough to have to rely on taxpayer money to build Italian chassis facility for the Indy Car Leegue by Izod. So, I guess you are correct Defender...betcha they don't need that in Daytona or whereever North Carolina. Score one the Izod Leegue Series.
      • Give us competition!
        Alfa Romeo should absolutely fully engage in Indy car! What better way ti re-introduce themselves to the US. Not only Alfa but other chassis manufactures as well. Panos made the last Champ car chassis and they too should be involved. March, Lola, Mc Laren, everyone...as many as possible. It's time for real racing, manufactures of engines, chassis, teams and drivers.
        I haven't watched Indy cars since Honda became the only engine suppier and Delara the only chassis, instead I went to Coney Island here in Brooklyn, New York to drive the go-karts. They were all the same except for the body colors and stickers.
      • Defender
        one of the many reason 99.9 percent of America boycotts the IRL
      • Kind of ironic that Chief is concerned about me making things up when I am the one provides links to my info. It's ok Chief, you can quit lashing out. We know that is all you can do. Let the anger go, let the hatred go. Its ok.

        Carlo, agree with what you say, but when it comes to spec racing you are in the minority in the US. Our most popular form of racing is pure spec racing. That said, I am glad to see multiple engine manufacturers. As far as chassis, even in the 80's and 90's, most people could not tell or care about the differences between a March and a Penske and a Lola. With the new Mr. Potato Head car (still love that) people will see major differences and it comes where it matters most, in the body style design. That is where people will see the biggest difference and it will make the biggest difference on the track.

        Very interested to see who the new major sponsor is.
        • Baloney
          You are full of hooey Iman. If the irl or izod series thinks as you do you are sadly mistaken. To make such a statement is foolish....

          If the IRL failed to capture interest previously WITH multi-manufacturers, with INDY as centerpiece, what on EARTH make you think 2012 is gonna do it?

          You all need to take your lithium again. What is different now? IRL has chased away ALL fans from both sides of the split, and is dumping ovals like hot coals. Some future ahead.
        • that guy who write the story is a idoit
          it allways great news when snoozer road track is drop the series is american racing hello ovalllllllllllllllllllllllllllll
        • Word out of Indy today
          No other engine manufacturers made the cut for 2012.

          Alpha-Romeo OUT.
        • Did you read Anthony's blog? He said 2013 with an outside chance at 2012. Of course I am sure if Alfa wanted in for 2012 I am sure that "artificial" deadline could be waived. So did you sit around the computer at midnight praying there would be no more announcements?

          Notice that Fiat is unveiling a bunch of new dealerships in America? I would expect at least one of Fiats stable to make an appearance at Indy in '13 or '14.

          Chief it is ok. You started to make the move to the IRL, it is ok, you can give up the hatred.
        • Big sponsorship ANNOUNCEMENT
          In two weeks is now SIX weeks late. It's ok, there are no deadlines in the IRL, just "artificial" ones. So, Fiat is coming onboard and so is Mercedes and Rolls ROyce and BMW. They just haven't announced it yet, right 0man?

          FIAT? At Indy? Give me a break....Indy has an identity problem so bring on any Italian manufacturer. Whatever happened to the FALCON? Stillborn IRL failure.
        • The Desperation of These Children is Absolutely Stunning
          Tomorrow. 5pm. Hold onto your socks.
        • Why Desperation?
          So an hour ago Curt tweets the announcement is tomorrow. You gonna be there? Maybe you should fly out in yer buddys lear jet.
        • Chief,
          Reading is fundamental. Even Shaq knows that. How many times do people have to explain things you should have read and understood?

          I said one of Fiat's stable. Fiat owns, Chrysler and Ferrari in addition to their own line. As VW owns Audi, Lambo, Bentley, Bugatti, and is controlled by Porsche. So when I say a a car from VW's stable could appear, I am not talking a Bug, an engine from one of the companies involved. Remember both Audi and Porsche have shown interest in Indy.

          Chief please read and understand posts before you post. It will save us all a lot of time.
        • Indyman
          Mr. Potato head car...ha, that's great; love it.
        • Long Live the Brickyard
          Why on earth would people who clearly do not like this sport, spend so much effort commenting on a story about it. Go gripe about something useful.
          Forbes picked up the press release.
          http://www.forbes.com/feeds/businesswire/2010/11/16/businesswire148712797.html

          I suspect it will take a while before the national/world press talk about it, probably closer to the centennial race, when the world is watching.
        • It Appears The IZOD Indy Car Series WON'T Be Going Out Of Business
          ...any time soon. Looks like the obsessed handful of critics who tend to OCD these Anthony Schoettle comment sections in desperation every day are wrong. Again.

          Too funny.
        • I LANDED LOTUS!!!!
          I am KING of all things Indy...as they say "ANOTHER NAIL FOR CRAPWAGON.COM"

          BAAWWWWBAAAWWW
        • Lotus....duh, I can't believe I missed that one. Of course they were involved in the IRL last season. Loved the paint scheme. Well good. So three engine manufacturers for 2012. Chevy, Honda and Lotus. Three continents Love it.

          Curious to see if this does not lock in Alfa or Ferrari. Still expecting the Italian connection.

          Ok haters explain how horrible of a company Lotus is.
        • Lotus
          It has been reported that Lotus is coming out with 5 new cars, buying into Renault F1, running in GP2 and GP3, Starting a sports car series in India and coming to the .1RL.
          Don't count your chickens before they're hatched there, RR...
        • Almost forgot, Burl is Forbes posting an AP article non racing, non local enough?

          http://www.forbes.com/feeds/ap/2010/11/12/business-specialized-consumer-services-financial-impact-car-irl-chevy-returns_8101036.html

          This is just not your guy week.
        • EVEN Forbes refers to the dead series as IRL
          Geez, no respect for the leegZUe! Forbes refers to it as 'IRL" in 0man's link above.

          Won't it be funny if dozens of aero bits constructors and several engine manufacturers do not generate enough interest to get 0.30's on VerSURS?
        • It goes to show the brand identity created by the IRL. How many years has it taken for people to quit calling it Busch Series Racing and Winston Cup? IRL, Indycar etc....are all recognizable because they bring to mind the greatest race course in the world. That is why cart tried to use Indycar after the split, they knew the brand identity was important.

          It doesn't matter what you call it, what is important is the momentum the league is building. As you guys have pointed out, when the IRL goes from the sports section and auto blogs to mainstream media like MSNBC and Forbes, it gets peoples attention. It is good for the league and it is good for the sport.
        • no doubt
          And that's the reason they had to KILL the IRL moniker. If Indy had any chance to survive, the IRL vision and name had to go. Bravo for getting THAT done.

          Unfortunately, the lingering effects will NOT go away, no matter how much financial/investment interests come and go with the series. The only thing that will change that is on track action, and not the variety of a chick finishing 4th either.

          HUGE image problems remain for the IRL...err. Izod car series. AAND, 2011 is the lame duck season with the same 9 year old cars etc...we all must be realists.
        • Thanks For Watching
          We know you will be. Every second. The IZOD Indy Car Series/IRL thanks you very much. It is all about Indy. Always has been. Always will be.
        • Watch me today
          at 5:00 EST - The King of all things INDY, will be sporting a new announcement that ensures 15 more years (at a minimum) for Chief and his minions.

          God, it's good to be the King!
        • Cable TV shut offs
          Folks are rejecting cable tv by the millions. Good thing everything is focused on 'connections' these days instead of TV ratings and attendance. Pretty soon the pool is gonna dry up. Keep focusing your myopia on the target with your one good eye.
        • Those of Us in the Biz Have a Slightly More Adult Perspective
          The relative power Comcast will hold in terms of content and distribution, particularly after their acquisition of NBC/Universal is completed, will be unparalleled. They will be perfectly positioned to evolve content distribution. The IZOD Indy Car Series is now actively engaged in exploiting new distribution channels and technologies. The world is evolving, and though most smart people are not yet ready to pronounce cable or broadcast television dinosaurs, that day lies ahead. Technology is evolving at a rapid pace, and IndyCar and its partners are well positioned for the future.

          Again, those with even minimal synaptic activity understand that. Haters will keep on hating, mostly in the most ignorant way possible.
        • Wow
          Maybe you should change your name to 'DEFENSIVE'?

          It's amazing you even have time for us 'Hoi polloi' with that elitest INDY attitude.

          You are haunted by the question: CAN the IZOD car Series DELIVER? Aren't you? The possibility will always exist that the AOW horse left the barn 15 years ago.
        • Focus, Chief. Focus.
          I got it. You are distressed about the IZOD Indy Car Series cable television deal. If Randy Bernard came up to you and asked (based upon your obvious intelligence) to formulate an alternative strategy, what, specifically, would you do?
        • First...
          I like to know where he suggests I can get a Lotus. Then, I would suggest he jettison Bob Jenkins from the already unwatchable Versus station. Then I'd suggest he throwout Marty Reid too and Scoot Goodyear...two doofuses so divorced from anything that had anything to do with the AOW sport ever. Personally, I'd use cloning technology and get a bunch of Paul Page's ready to assume control because the voice(s) of IRL stink to the high heavens. Does Randy know how important continuity is? Dang, the more things change, the more IMS makes them stink.

          Then, I'd suggest he appeal to former AOW fans to get goodwill back, but apparently that'll never happen so I guess that goodwill is gone. Then, I'd BUY TV time on a real network, like OTA or something that appears in the lower 900 or so channels. Heck, with all this new sponsorship dollars and massive activation spend, the REAL right thing to do is GET THEM ON A STATION WHERE FOLKS CAN SEE EM.

          Then, I'd start offering ALL practice/qualifying/race/post race on INTERNET, a reliable connection so people can get there to see it. Not that rinky dink POS they have now. I estimate 75% of internet watchers GIVE UP because the IMS it too cheap to have good server technology. Go ask 'em at Trackforum.

          Then, I'd have IMS/Randy find a way to have your moniker OFFICIALLY eliminated, or at least publicly tell the world you are insane. If we have to PAY media outlets to do it, well, it would be the best thing IRL ever could have thought of outside of offing Tony George and renaming this entire conglomeration CART, again. Not that they haven't thought of it though, I'm sure.
        • That's A Little Better, Kemosabe
          Chief, you are advocating turning back the clock to 1995. That will never work. It is now 2010 going on 2011. The entire world has changed in fundamental ways. The way we entertain ourselves and communicate is radically different than 1995. With what part of the general concept of evolution are you having difficulty wrapping your brain around?

          "I like to know where he suggests I can get a Lotus." Well, first, you would have to fly to Kuala Lumpur or some other city in Malaysia where Protons are sold. That is assuming you could afford one. Where can I buy an Ilmor? A Cosworth? Predictably, you are missing a much larger point.

          "Then, I would suggest he jettison Bob Jenkins from the already unwatchable Versus station." You need to make up your mind. Can you watch Versus or not? Depending on the slam, you position Versus as the most inaccessible channel on cable. In actual reality, it is now available in almost 80 million homes domestically, and that number is increasing. Assuming you CAN get it, what makes it 'unwatchable?' Bob Jenkins?

          "Then I'd suggest he throwout Marty Reid too and Scoot Goodyear...two doofuses so divorced from anything that had anything to do with the AOW sport ever." On this point I actually agree, although not in as crudely stated, immature terms. Both are awful, as is the family of networks that employ them. I cringe whenever I hear an IZOD IndyCar official tout how 'good' that relationship is. To me it is 'good' in a violently expressed prison marriage kind of way. The fact that the 100th anniversary will be on ABC greatly distresses me. Given the fact they have been complicit in attempting to kill the brand over the past few years, they are pretty distant from deserving the right to cover the 100th anniversary.

          "Personally, I'd use cloning technology and get a bunch of Paul Page's ready to assume control because the voice(s) of IRL stink to the high heavens." Wait a second. You advocate getting rid of Bob Jenkins but want to clone Paul Page? Are you serious? I enjoy Paul's current role as an emeritus sort of presence on the radio network, but again, 1995 is in the distant past. You are probably one of those flat earth clowns who believe using the Delta Force theme is the way to go as well, eh? That is also one of the most colossally stupid ideas anyone has come up with in recent memory.

          "Does Randy know how important continuity is? Dang, the more things change, the more IMS makes them stink." Actually, I believe the job performance of Mr. Bernard thus far exceeds by a significant margin all expectations anyone had of him. He is forging a new identity and has opened the sport up to everyone. If cart apologists still lodged in 1995 refuse to advance themselves, the sport does not really need them and should eviscerate that particular cancer.

          "Then, I'd suggest he appeal to former AOW fans to get goodwill back, but apparently that'll never happen so I guess that goodwill is gone." Again, the manner in which the sport has been made accessible to everyone has been made abundantly clear. Groveling after cart-centric idiots is counterproductive. If they are adult enough to support the sport, they are welcome to participate. If they still stupidly want to fight a war, then they should not bother and should wallow in their own self pity/loathing. Those are people who do not deserve the honor of being called racing fans. If I were Randy and those people were STILL pining for 'goodwill' or other such stroking, I would tell them to get with the program or kiss my backside. Life is too short for that type of immaturity.

          "Then, I'd BUY TV time on a real network, like OTA or something that appears in the lower 900 or so channels." Chief, how did that simplistic strategy work out for the series that killed itself, twice? I much prefer a paid long term deal with a burgeoning media behemoth that will have a distinct advantage in content ownership and distribution channels. In actual fact, nearly one third of IZOD IndyCar events will be on an OTA network, with a substantial amount of ancillary programming on Versus and several other distribution channels.

          "Heck, with all this new sponsorship dollars and massive activation spend, the REAL right thing to do is GET THEM ON A STATION WHERE FOLKS CAN SEE EM." If you examine the media mix of the IZOD IndyCar Series with objectivity and intelligence (in your case I will not hold my breath), you might begin to understand to potential of the current mix. It is, in fact, ahead of its time.

          "Then, I'd start offering ALL practice/qualifying/race/post race on INTERNET, a reliable connection so people can get there to see it. Not that rinky dink POS they have now. I estimate 75% of internet watchers GIVE UP because the IMS it too cheap to have good server technology. Go ask 'em at Trackforum." I tend to discount banter on Internet forums. Too many idiots devoid of points, not to mention really awful spelling and grammar. That said, my sources inside the IZOD Indy Car Series have informed me the several changes are afoot with regard to Internet content delivery of the IndyCar product offerings. Frankly, I am very excited about the 2011 season going forward.

          "Then, I'd have IMS/Randy find a way to have your moniker OFFICIALLY eliminated, or at least publicly tell the world you are insane." Now, now...that is not very mature, is it? My sole purpose as an unwavering IndyCar fan since 1959 is to happily celebrate the sheer joy the sport has brought my way for decades.

          "If we have to PAY media outlets to do it, well, it would be the best thing IRL ever could have thought of outside of offing Tony George and renaming this entire conglomeration CART, again. Not that they haven't thought of it though, I'm sure." Paying media outlets is a consistently bad idea. A better strategy is to own your own network, as many major sports teams have done. IMS was once involved in media ownership, but I would create a network if I were them. Lord knows there is enough content to support it. Also, any attachment to cart, a series that killed itself, twice, is also a really bad idea. 1995 is now fifteen years behind us. We all need to continue evolving forward. Not backward. Capisce?
        • I wonder
          You do know, the first things Randy did were to explicitly state they wanted to be like the great sport BEFORE the IRL, right? So, the building blocks to revival were based on the CART formula. Even it's promotional materials used to attract new tracks is based on CART data. Capche?
        • cart is DEAD. Twice.
          The brand being marketed is IndyCar. Specifically, the IZOD IndyCar Series. Any tie-in to the twice-defunct cart series is a mostly concocted fantasy borne of simple minded apologists lodged in 1995.
        • So why...
          Why does the IRL utilize 20 year old data in their recruiting of street circuits? Isn't that misleading....you see the bait-and-switch IS the brand marketed THEN was the Indycar World Series, the successful series run by CART (twice dead).

          What are you, a hypocrite? The IRL can use CART data (when HUGE crowds and high Tv ratings existed) yet YOU refuse to acknowledge CART's contributions to the sport?

          Frankly, this is childish Defender. You have no respect for the past, only the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Shame upon you.
        • More Pointless Time Wasting
          "Why does the IRL utilize 20 year old data in their recruiting of street circuits?"

          They don't. Are you legitimately stupid enough to believe such a fantasy? You need help, boy.

          "What are you, a hypocrite? The IRL can use CART data (when HUGE crowds and high Tv ratings existed) yet YOU refuse to acknowledge CART's contributions to the sport?"

          cart was fine while it lasted. My support of the Indy-centered sport never wavered, even after their post-1979 occupation of Indy. That is how most real racing fans behave. But cart is long DEAD. They are no longer relevant, except for history books and memories. That is where they belong, and that is where their place is. It is secure. Why make them something they are not? It is 2010 going on 2011. The sport is now headlined by the IZOD Indy Car Series. get with the program.

          "Frankly, this is childish Defender. You have no respect for the past, only the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Shame upon you."

          Actually, those who know me understand the deep respect I have for Indy Car racing. My personal attendance history goes all the way back to 1959. I have attended races of all disciplines all over North and South America as well as Europe and Asia. My preference is Indy Racing, and I see what is obvious: The heart and soul of the sport is the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Those who fight that fact are doomed to fail. It is just that simple. If you are unable to accept that you are the one with the problem.

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        1. Why not take some time to do some research before traveling to that Indiana town or city, and find the ones that are no smoking either inside, or have a patio? People like yourself are just being selfish, and unnecessarily trying to take away all indoor venues that smokers can enjoy themselves at. Last time I checked, it is still a free country, and businesses do respond to market pressure and will ban smoking, if there's enough demand by customers for it(i.e. Linebacker Lounge in South Bend, and Rack and Helen's in New Haven, IN, outside of Fort Wayne). Indiana law already unnecessarily forced restaurants with a bar area to be no smoking, so why not support those restaurants that were forced to ban smoking against their will? Also, I'm always surprised at the number of bars that chose to ban smoking on their own, in non-ban parts of Indiana I'll sometimes travel into. Whiting, IN(just southeast of Chicago) has at least a few bars that went no smoking on their own accord, and despite no selfish government ban forcing those bars to make that move against their will! I'd much rather have a balance of both smoking and non-smoking bars, rather than a complete bar smoking ban that'll only force more bars to close their doors. And besides IMO, there are much worser things to worry about, than cigarette smoke inside a bar. If you feel a bar is too smoky, then simply walk out and take your business to a different bar!

        2. As other states are realizing the harm in jailing offenders of marijuana...Indiana steps backwards into the script of Reefer Madness. Well...you guys voted for your Gov...up to you to vote him out. Signed, Citizen of Florida...the next state to have medical marijuana.

        3. It's empowering for this niche community to know that they have an advocate on their side in case things go awry. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lrst9VXVKfE

        4. Apparently the settlement over Angie's List "bundling" charges hasn't stopped the practice! My membership is up for renewal, and I'm on my third email trying to get a "basic" membership rather than the "bundled" version they're trying to charge me for. Frustrating!!

        5. Well....as a vendor to both of these builders I guess I have the right to comment. Davis closed his doors with integrity.He paid me every penny he owed me. Estridge,STILL owes me thousands and thousands of dollars. The last few years of my life have been spent working 2 jobs, paying off the suppliers I used to work on Estridge jobs and just struggling to survive. Shame on you Paul...and shame on you IBJ! Maybe you should have contacted the hundreds of vendors that Paul stiffed. I'm sure your "rises from the ashes" spin on reporting would have contained true stories of real people who have struggled to find work and pay of their debts (something that Paul didn't even attempt to do).

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