IndyCar Series readies to raise curtain on new era

February 13, 2012
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I’ve never subscribed to the notion of putting the death of someone close to you in your rearview mirror.

But at some point, you have to move forward.

Today is that day for the IndyCar Series.

The open-wheel series was brought to its knees last fall when two-time Indianapolis 500 winner Dan Wheldon was killed in a crash at the season finale in Las Vegas. With its investigation into the crash concluded, the series must now lay out a growth map for its teams, suppliers, participating tracks and the series itself. It won’t be easy.

At 5:30 this afternoon at Hilbert Circle Theatre, IndyCar Series CEO Randy Bernard will give his annual State of IndyCar address.

Bernard will have much to discuss.

The series is coming off a year when it saw a 28-percent increase in its television ratings and is going into a year that is bringing a new engine and chassis formula and two new engine suppliers.

Bernard recently installed Marc Koretzky as president of the series' commercial division replacing Terry Angstadt and Beaux Barfield as Brian Barnhart's replacement as race director. In the weeks since his hire, Barfield has already unveiled a new rulebook.

Now, those associated with the series are waiting to see what Koretzky will do that Angstadt could not, namely expand into untapped markets and lift the financial fortunes of the series and its teams.

If all goes as planned, there will be more full-time cars on the track this year than last, which is a major accomplishment considering the investment it takes to outfit a team with all new equipment to meet the new chassis and engine specifications.

While many teams are revving and ready to go, others are scrambling to put together engine deals and sponsorship packages.

Today, Bernard will announce a much-needed oval race to the 2012 calendar. While the addition of the Milwaukee Mile on the IndyCar circuit is good news on a number of levels, the fact that races are being added so late is a sign of the series’ flux. And though Bernard has offered assurances that the 2012 calendar is stable, there are questions about still other races, including the financially troubled Baltimore event.

Bernard has taken important steps to assure short-term growth. Now he must convert that into long-term viability. The first step will be making the series profitable—something that hasn’t been done since it launched in 1996.

And while the TV ratings improvement in 2011 is good news, Bernard and other series officials still need to raise TV viewership and race attendance to assure the series and its teams stay strong long-term.

Bernard’s most difficult task might be assuring the series has the speed and excitement needed to entice fans and sponsors back in big numbers while implementing the safety enhancements series officials promised in the wake of Wheldon’s death.

While achieving new track records was once mission critical for Bernard, he may now realize the series can't take another blow like it did last fall without seriously jeopardizing its growth plans going forward.

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  • IndyCar's Future
    Formula One has grown by matching up one country against another in sponsorships and drivers.

    The NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL match up cities against one another.

    Why couldn't Indy Car do the same with states or cities?

    Sponsoring an IndyCar team would be a lot cheaper than fielding a NFL or NBA team.

    City or states could choose technology like chassis/engines and driver/crew with sponsors from each locale.

    This could be huge!!!
  • Anthony, please highlight Safety Enhancements
    What are the "safety enhancements series officials promised in the wake of Wheldon’s death" ???

    Foam around the cockpit (sides and under seat) combined with carbon fiber "bumpers" in the rear were designed previous to Mr. Wheldon's death.

    Can any one please provide a comprehensive list? Thanks...
  • I am thinking we could wrap the driver in bubble wrap and encase the cars in packing peanuts, and it would still not be perfectly safe.

    The new cars address many of the safety concerns, and the league is still addressing ovals with multiple driving lines.

    Indycar is the safest series out there and spends more time, money and energy making racing safer, not just for Indycar, but for all series. Many of the safety advancements in other series were pioneered in Indycar.
  • great points Iman
    What safety concerns, Iman? Dan Wheldon hit his head on a fencepost and was killed, if I recall the investigation correctly.

    What has changed? What's going to change? here's one thing i know changed...they named the the new car after Dan, the DW12. That's it....explain to me where I'm wrong?

    So, in essence, Indycar has done NOTHING. That's what i see...and they want to forge on with the new season and new car full speed ahead...with Randy gettin all huffy with the media. What's changed?
  • The safety concern of an open wheel car going airborne when the tires touch. Which is why Wheldon contacted the fence post. It is an issue that has been around as long as the 500. The skirts on the new car are designed to reduce the chance of wheels touching.

    Come on son, stay with the discussion.
  • Wrong o' pal
    Side skirts were in place BEFORE Wheldon got killed. So were carbon fiber bumpers.

    Follow along here Indyman....here's what Anthony said "...implementing the safety enhancements series officials promised in the wake of Wheldon’s death."

    What were these safety enhancements? IF I understand correctly, "in the wake of" means AFTER Dan had passed. What changes have been implemented? Please elaborate, thanks.
  • It is good to see that you are still complaining about commas and missing the discussion. I do not profess to know all that Indycar has implemented after the Wheldon crash. I do know that they are taking closer looks at ovals with multiple driving lines. that has been reiterated over and over. That did happen in the wake of the crash. Technically the new car and its safety features was released to the teams after the wreck, so it came after the wreck.

    You need to get over this extreme hatred of Indycar. I am sure the job you lost when Cart/ccws/owrs folded or whatever reason you really hate Indycar and feel Tony George owes you a personal apology is long gone and it is time for you to get on with your life. If you hate Indycar, watch NASCAR or F1 or IMSA. But get over the Indycar thing. Everyone else has, now you need to man up and grow up.
  • Again, wrong
    I want to know the safety enhancements promised since Dan was killed and the investigation completed.

    It seems such a simple request, I hope the management at 16th and Georgetown is prepared to respond because MAJOR media outlets were horrified by the death of Mr. Wheldon and the subsequent fallout from it.

    Do you think for one moment that some savy not-on-Hulman-dole reporter might have an angle on the do-nothingness of these supposed "safety enhancements"?

    Hatred of the sport? No, I'm merely trying to protect it with the TRUTH....something which escapes ALL Indy fans. You want to change perception of the sport for the better, but you can't do it with smoke and mirrors, like IMS is doing right now with this safety enhancement crap.
  • Still Obsessed, I See
    "I want to know the safety enhancements promised since Dan was killed and the investigation completed."

    Why? What specific purpose would your knowing serve? Are you able to A) Read, and B) Comprehend what you read? If so, you will understand the ramifications of changes to not only the car but of race control. Here's a news flash? The message section of a column is probably not the best place to get such information. Here's another news flash: Auto racing is more dangerous than other sports. The only way to guarantee cars will not touch at high speed is to race separately against a clock, and even then stuff happens. Ask Mr. DaMatta. If the do-gooders attempt to sanitize auto racing to a no-accident state, the sport might as well be eliminated.

    "It seems such a simple request, I hope the management at 16th and Georgetown is prepared to respond because MAJOR media outlets were horrified by the death of Mr. Wheldon and the subsequent fallout from it."

    Actually, IMS/IndyCar has responded. You have to be able to both read and comprehend the words. Most of the media that reported on Wheldon's death are largely ignorant of the sport and the Wheldon story led because it bled. That is how the TMZ-like mass media operates today.

    "Do you think for one moment that some savy not-on-Hulman-dole reporter might have an angle on the do-nothingness of these supposed "safety enhancements"?

    If so, where are they?

    "Hatred of the sport? No, I'm merely trying to protect it with the TRUTH....something which escapes ALL Indy fans. You want to change perception of the sport for the better, but you can't do it with smoke and mirrors, like IMS is doing right now with this safety enhancement crap."

    I would not call it 'hatred.' It seems more like sheer ignorance.
  • Thanks for proving my point
    The new car was designed to replace the old 8 year old car, NOT because Dan Wheldon was killed in a race. Nice try.

    And, if that's not true, then IMS is culpable in his death for racing at Las Vegas under the condition that ultimately led to his demise.

    IMS is making this forward approach to 2012 without addressing ANYTHING. What safety enhancements are coming in the wake of Mr. Wheldon's death???

    You can't answer that Indyman or Disciple because your and the speedway are using answers that existed before Dan left us. Keep lying on behalf of the speedway, fellas.

    • Evidently, The Ability (or Choice) To Read is Elusive To Some
      Once again, a fundamental question: Are you able to read? If so, the results of the investigation have been released. Safety enhancements remain a continuously evolving tenet in IndyCar, which usually leads the way. If you still have angst, why not sue? Internet pontificating is amusing, but if you want a crusade why not get an attorney involved? That is a case that would not see the slamming of a gavel, son.
    • Have another tenderloin
      Indycar is the safest series out there. Maybe the most ridiculous statement ever written on the internet. When was the last NASCAR or F-1 fatality?

      But hey the DW12 (RIP Dan) was lapping Fontana at 210 MPH, nevermind the track record is 241 mph. That's close right? LOL.

      #vision


    • Chief doesn't worry about reading or comprehending if it gets in the way of his one man crusade to get a personal apology out of George and Indycar. He doesn't care about safety, or competitive racing or any such thing. He has a grudge and is not happy unless he is complaining about the "injustices" committed against him.
    • Your defend of the series is sickening
      Neither of you IRL insiders can come up with any safety enhancements the IRl put in place SINCE the death of Dan.

      The "continuously evolving tenet in IndyCar" is putting their drivers in danger...with crap equipment and questionable safety practices, but because racing is dangerous, they will always have an out...even in a court of law.

      Interesting, 210 mph at Fontana in the 2012 car...that's at least 15 mph SLOWER than the old IRL car. Must be that "safety enhancement, (complete with chassis flex) thats keeping the speeds down. Riveting performance by the crap series, again and always.
    • In One Ear And Out The Other
      "Neither of you IRL insiders can come up with any safety enhancements the IRl put in place SINCE the death of Dan."

      By 'IR1,' do you actually mean the IZOD IndyCar Series? If so (assuming the obvious reading and comprehension challenges will remain unchanged) give us unenlightened IndyCar fans the scenario in which Indy Cars will be completely safe; i.e., if Randy called and put you in charge what would you do out of the gate to appease your obsessive angst?

      "The 'continuously evolving tenet in IndyCar' is putting their drivers in danger...with crap equipment and questionable safety practices, but because racing is dangerous, they will always have an out...even in a court of law."

      So when, by God, will they get sued for their 'negligence?' LOL.

      "Interesting, 210 mph at Fontana in the 2012 car...that's at least 15 mph SLOWER than the old IRL car. Must be that "safety enhancement, (complete with chassis flex) thats keeping the speeds down. Riveting performance by the crap series, again and always."

      You are aware that the Fontana test is what is referred to as a 'test.' Not a race. And that the weather is bad, including high winds. And that the cars have excessive downforce built in this week. Speed is pretty far from the goal. No one wants wrecked cars in a test. The program remains in the midst of exhaustive TESTS. 'Test' being the key word. Perhaps we should refrain from knee jerking until the cars participate in what actual sports fans refer to a 'race.'

      But by all means keep up the humor. It is a welcome respite from actual intelligence.
    • h
      He's got a point Disciple, there are no safety enhancements. At least ones you can provide.
    • I think a lot have...
      So the always entertaining Indyman posts:

      "If you hate Indycar, watch NASCAR or F1 or IMSA. But get over the Indycar thing. Everyone else has, now you need to man up and grow up."

      You couldn't be more correct. It does seem everyone has decided to move on. Well, maybe not everyone...there are the excuse makers and acceptors of anything "indy" aren't there?

      You know what is fun? Indyman and Disciple can't seem to ignore Chief either? You say he drives you nutty in a way, but every single time you respond back.

      Maybe ol' Chief was right, you two may just be paid propagandists. You sure do come off that way.

      Will you answer a question I have for you?

      Why can't someone that loved a sport all his life be upset with the way things turned out with the split and be hopeful that someone in the future gets a clue and rediscovers what is needed to make the change that might bring a lot of the people that have in deed moved on...come back?

      Are both of you saying that because Chief isn't a fan of the current series direction, he is not a fan of open wheel racing at all?

      You both couldn't be more wrong. So asking him to leave is wrong. He is as passionate as you, maybe more so.

      And maybe that bit of pigheadedness to admit there are more than one Chief out there is just as much a turn-off for the ex-fans, and even some of the current fans that have some of the same concerns but are willing to watch knowing things could be a lot better.

      Plus, once again, it is an open comment section that Anthony provides and Chief is entitled to say what ever he wants. His responses and questions are no more repetitive and tedious than the same answers you both always give back.

      Maybe some others need a bit of growing up too.

      Me, I find a lot of this kind of response comedy. It helps me laugh off the fact that I too liked the sport a whole lot more then than I do now. I don't watch, but I have some hope there is a change ahead somewhere...so call me a fan in waiting or in limbo, or just turned off. But by God, I still have a right to voice it...as do others, and they are still fans.

      You two just want everyone to shut up and accept it. How do things ever change or change back if there is not criticism?
    • From a Real Racing Fan
      I disagree. Characters like 'Chief' are far from being a race fans. They and their act constitute an affront to the dignity of the sport. The sport would be much better off without the classless behavior of that ilk.

      IMHO.
    • Place fan
      A real racing fan who has been kicked off nearly every racing forum on the net for his behavior. But don't the facts get in the way. LOL
    • Affront to the dignity of the sport?
      Disciple and Indyman, you have had 4 days to respond to my request for "safety enhancements" SINCE Dan Wheldon was sacrificed. And, you want to accuse me of an affront on the dignity of the sport?

      You two, by the sheer obstinate ignorance which the both of you respond, only solidifies my argument. There are NO SAFETY ENHANCEMENTS that have evolved since the tragic events of October 16, 2011.

      The only way this series will ever have change is if MORE people get killed. I know that is a shocking reality but it is the reality. And I get attacked for bringing that simple fact to light, as an "affront to the dignity of the sport".

      If that's such an affront, let's do away with HANS, SAFER Barriers, 50G impact lights, catch fencing/fence posts...and go with the Sam Posey inspired "head first" car designs of the 80's. Yeah, I'm sure you'd be all for it if it somehow could benefit your masters at 16th and Jonestown.
    • Classy, As Usual
      We should slow this down in what is probably a futile attempt to match the mental dexterity of the taunters:
      -There is a brand new car. This brand new car features several safety related enhancements.
      -Three more inches of foam in the cockpit.
      -Additional foam under the seat.
      -New intrusion panel on the right side,
      -Rear wheel pods to minimize wheel-to-wheel contact.
      -Double file restarts are on the way out.
      -1.5 mile ovals seem to be a thing of the past except Texas.

      Tony Kanaan, who is more intelligent that column comment contributors (and has more at stake) likes the direction and says: 'It's an ongoing process and you're not going to fix everything overnight.'

      Hopefully no one ever gets killed again. Auto racing, however, remains a sport with risks, and the only 100% way to prevent accidents, injury and occasional death is to do away with the sport. I am not willing to do that.

      Example of an affront to the dignity of the sport:

      '...masters at 16th and Jonestown.' So you believe it is appropriate or mature to try and make some sort of point by citing the mass suicide/murder of hundreds of people?

      That type of classless delinquency renders anything you say without merit.
    • Such brave evolution
      So, since Dan's death the IRL has:

      1. Double file restarts are on the way out.
      2. 1.5 mile ovals are a thing of the past, except Texas.

      WOW, aren't those two important ingredients that were purposely combined in 2011 to create the "perfect storm" for the tragic season ender at Las Vegas??

      OK, thanks Disciple for the comprehensive list. Looks like they've done nothing, doesn't it? You see, that's an affront (to me and many others) on the dignity of the sport AND Dan Wheldon's memory.

      AS it stands today (combined with Sarah Fisher being denied engines), the whole IRL concept will always be deemed a failure....from 1.5 cookie cutter ovals with the IRL signature side-by-side faux-racing, to engine lease deals now.

      This is why the Indycar Series SUCKS now. They've done nothing about everything since 2008. Again, you've illustrated all my points with astonishing clarity. Thanks.
    • Work in progress
      1.5 miles ovals almost gone and Sarah Fisher not answering the bell are two positives. The ICS has made great progess in the last couple of years with the firing of Tony George and Brian Barnhart, a new turbo charged car, and more road/street courses and less ovals. The CARTization of the ICS is almost complete.
    • Just ask yourself this...
      ....outside of the posters at Trackforum, and maybe a baker's dozen here, and half a loaf over there, and the guy from Pacoima and his cousin Jimmy from St. Louis, does anybody, ANYBODY at ALL, care about IndyCar racing? And I am not talking about the Indy 500. That is a race that is an iconic event where even Speedway officials have said ans suggest maybe 1/3 of those attending are actual Indy car fans. No, I am talking about the IndyCar Series Mr. Bernard so eagerly defends.

      NOBODY outside the small, VERY small, group of hardcore followers even is aware the sport exists.

      Now add ugly cars driven by foreigners hardly any average American on the street has ever heard of, and a race schedule seemingly the polar opposite of the sports heritage, and it is the perfect storm for self-destruction. And it will happen no matter how much annoying pontificating the should-be-fired Mr. Bernard does.

      The sport is all but dead. Not even the sandwhich-sounding Rubens Barrichelo can save it. Dario says mega positives about the sandwhich coming into the series. Too funny. So Dario. Nobody in this country even knows who the sandwhich is. I'll have a Rubens Barrichelo wiht a side-order of Dario and a cold Helio. Too funny.

      Let's face it. The series is geeky and unpopular.
    • Sure Draws A Lot of Attention For Being So Unpopular
      If you kids keep on deluding yourselves into trying to believe your quaint little notions, never backed with any sort of fact or quantification, I'll keep on laughing at your obsessed desperation. Deal? LOL.
    • Shows how out of touch Defenseless Disciple is...
      ....thinks the series "draws a lot of attention." Draws a fair share at places like IBJ, IndyStar, the local radio stations, and a bit of attention on sport-specific websites like Racer and Speed. But not nearly as much as NASCAR or other forms of racing. So, tiny niche outlets or local media.

      Ask yourself Defenseless, when was the last time ESPN led with all the excitement about the sandwhich coming to IndyCars? When was the last time the Today show did a feature on the exciting new uglymobile? Charlie Rose interviewing Helio? Anderson Cooper talking about all the excitement surrounding Katherine Legge in the series? All the talk about Dario versus Will around the water cooler, on the street, the subway, the bus? MMMMMMMMMhhhhhhhmmmmmmmmmmm, Defensless. Thought so. Tiny, niche, minor league series of little interest to all but a small, small crowd of 300,000 or so nationwide according to various sources we have have read and heard. Robin says 350,000. Whatever. Tiny.

      The cowboy needs to be terminated for making an already inconsequential series even more well, inconsequeuntial, adding an ugly car with akward and bulbous appendages, driven by a cast of foreign nobodies, and all wrapped up into a insecurity/inferiority complex geekdom stance. Too funny.
    • What were the "Drivers Association" safety demands?
      I found a video of Dario explaining that the Drivers Association (formed in August 2010) has made safety demands in the wake of Dan Wheldon's death. One of the demands were to have tracks that have currently have FENCEPOSTS on the inside of the fence (like Las Vegas) change that configuration to fencepost OUTSIDE of the fence.

      Dario also stated that 2 promoters were NOT cooperating with that request....one of them has a track on the current 2012 Indycar schedule, and guess what, it's an oval.

      What's going to be done about this? Randy? Anthony?

      Also, what were these demands an why are they not public?????
    • The Obsessed Ranting Continues Unabated
      "....thinks the series 'draws a lot of attention.' Draws a fair share at places like IBJ, IndyStar, the local radio stations, and a bit of attention on sport-specific websites like Racer and Speed. But not nearly as much as NASCAR or other forms of racing. So, tiny niche outlets or local media."
      NASCAR. Duh. Still, only about 5% of the general population pays attention to NASCAR, and most of that is because of Danica. With regard to Indy Car, the attention it draws has remained consistent for 100 years. And please spare me the nonsense fantasy about Indy Car being so much more popular during the cart years. That hype remains nothing more than stanky hot air and never actually considers the evolutionary state of the planet then.

      "Ask yourself Defenseless, when was the last time ESPN led with all the excitement about the sandwhich coming to IndyCars?"
      'Sandwhich?' I've heard of 'sand' and I've heard of 'which,' but never together. By 'sandwhich' do you actually mean, like, meat between two slices of bread? If so, your obtuse and barely literate variance from the actual topic is even more creepy.

      "When was the last time the Today show did a feature on the exciting new uglymobile? Charlie Rose interviewing Helio? Anderson Cooper talking about all the excitement surrounding Katherine Legge in the series? All the talk about Dario versus Will around the water cooler, on the street, the subway, the bus? MMMMMMMMMhhhhhhhmmmmmmmmmmm, Defensless. Thought so. Tiny, niche, minor league series of little interest to all but a small, small crowd of 300,000 or so nationwide according to various sources we have have read and heard. Robin says 350,000. Whatever. Tiny."
      When was the last time the Today Show did a feature on the NASCAR template? Or the new truly ugly F-1 cars? When was the last time Charlie Rose interviewed Jeff Gordon or Michael Schumacher? When was the last time Anderson Cooper interviewed girls like the Cope twins or Lewis Hamilton? Where was all the talk about Tony Stewart and Carl Edwards around the water cooler, on the street, the subway, the bus? MMMMMMMMmhhhhmmmmmmmm, kid. Thought so. Niche series of little interest to over 95% of the general population. Robin? Let me get this straight...he's a source for your obsessive ranting? LOL.

      "The cowboy needs to be terminated for making an already inconsequential series even more well, inconsequeuntial, adding an ugly car with akward and bulbous appendages, driven by a cast of foreign nobodies, and all wrapped up into a insecurity/inferiority complex geekdom stance. Too funny"
      By ‘the cowboy’ I am assuming you mean Randy Bernard. I know your little kiddie klatch likes to make up cutesy names instead of acting like actual adults. Your literacy seems to remain severely lacking as well with ransom-note spelling of words like 'inconsequeuntial' and 'akward' not to mention crudely invented words like 'geekdom.' Speaking of ugly cars with 'akward' and bulbous appendages driven by a cast of foreign nobodies, what are your thoughts about the Formula One crop o' cars for 2012, li'l Mr. Selective Judgment? LOL

      "I found a video of Dario explaining that the Drivers Association (formed in August 2010) has made safety demands in the wake of Dan Wheldon's death. One of the demands were to have tracks that have currently have FENCEPOSTS on the inside of the fence (like Las Vegas) change that configuration to fencepost OUTSIDE of the fence. Dario also stated that 2 promoters were NOT cooperating with that request....one of them has a track on the current 2012 Indycar schedule, and guess what, it's an oval. What's going to be done about this? Randy? Anthony? Also, what were these demands an why are they not public?????"
      Fantastic. Another whacko conspiracy theory. If I was Randy and Dario actually was pulling that nonsense, this would be my message to Dario: Pull your panties up, shut up and race. He has two choices: Race or retire. Of course that assumes Dario actually said something like that, which, as you have indicated, has only been 'reported' by the quaint li’l kiddie klatch and not by any mainstream media. Keep on obsessing, kids. Indy Car appreciates your support.
    • DUMP Texas Immediately.
      Here's to all the Disciples and Indymen out there:

      Texas is balking at changing their fencing. Dario sez so. Also, Helio sez unfortunately Dan had to be sacrificed for change. Will sez this year will be real racing. Drivers association making progress into changing sport FOR THE BETTER! I applaud their efforts because IMS/IRL/Indycar has known for 12 years the dangers of those 1.5 mile ovals but DID NOTHING to correct it. FINALLY something to restore the integrity of the sport! Tony K, Justin W, and Dario Judd are the reps...it's all in this report by WRTV 6 in Indianapolis...prolly just another wacko conspiracy theory, right Defender...err, Disciple. NOT. Meet the new boss old man...

      http://www.theindychannel.com/video/30497778/index.html
    • HAy, big D
      You want Eddie Gossage to not fix the fence, right? YOU want them to race there because racing is dangerous, right big fella?

    • Chief Pollution Continues Unabated
      Incorrect again, kid. And the poles at Texas are in the inside of the mesh. If the older drivers do not want to race there, they are welcome to retire. Until 'unification' no one associated with Indy Car had any problem racing there and routinely putting on some of the most compelling racing ever seen. And the drivers who drove then were capable of meeting the challenge professionally and without complaint. If some of the drivers today spout 'danger' to mask fear, perhaps they should find another line of work. I am tired of their griping as well as the fear mongering of their sycophant groupies.
    • You response shocks me
      Known safety enhancements requested by the drivers association, REJECTED by you the great disciple. And, apparently Eddie Gossage.

      If they race at Texas, without these safety enhancements, and a serious incident occurs...who gets the blame? The fencepost, again? I know you'd be happy if that occurred.





    • The Chief Nonsense Pump is Set to Maximum
      No, I wouldn't. And if they race like professionals they won't have to worry. And, if their quaint li'l angst reaches a fever pitch like yours, they could always retire. Texas has become an Indy Car staple, and any effort to eliminate constitutes an act of war to real fans, and we are happy to fight such a war.
    • Credence
      I am considerably flattered that once again I was able to provide topic matter to your 500 hit-a-day blog.

      You can't stand it when I offer facts to backup my claims, can you? What is left of this series except panty-wearing Euros dictating what the series will do? this is what your leaders at 16th and Georgetown have concocted for you in the everlasting evolution you so desperately cling to.

      Maybe it's time for YOU to step away from the IRl once and for all?
    • One More For The Hit Count
      Why? I have actually been attending events since 1959. You? I will be happily attending my 48th Indy 500 this May. You? Last year I made 75% of the schedule in person. You?

      Thanks for reading my blog. I appreciate the support.

      As for IndyCar, my support has rarely wavered in any evolutionary period. When I see the sport jeopardized by stupidity, however, I rarely keep my feelings quiet. That's what being a passionate fan is all about.
      • So Dan wasn't a professional???
        So Disciple (of the Indy Taliban) says:

        "And if they race like professionals they won't have to worry"

        So, what are we to gain from that gem?

        Dan Wheldon wasn't a professional?

        The rest of the drivers were not professional?

        That whole sad affair at Vegas wasn't professional?

        I guess many of the indycar detractors were right. Either the series isn't professional or their fans will argue any point no matter how outlandish the argument.

        Disciple...Defender...Indy Taliban...Indeed!

        I guess it is sad Dan won't get that chance to retire.

        And, would it surprise anyone if Chief was actually as old or older than Disciple? Would it as surprise anyone if Chief attended as many races over those years as Disciple?

        "Kid" eh? I guess that is another demonstration of maturity...or do as I say and not as I do.

        What a joke(r)!

        Some day indycar will wake up and find that fans like the Indy Taliban are no help to the series at all.
      • We're both passionate fans
        We only differ in that I want IMS held responsible for it's destructive effect on the AOW sport these past 20 years. Disciple thinks that whatever IMS wants to do is ok with him....even if it includes sacrificing drivers due to the inept 1950's mentality of AOW safety, just as long as Indy 500 is the center of the universe and everything revolves around it.

        Evolution (in his eyes) equates to progress....in my eyes it's resulted in failure, destruction, death. One common thread is IMS is at the center of it all.

        IF IMS was at the center of "let's fix the fenceposts" it would be trumpeted far and wide as a great safety enhancement THEY developed. But, because it's from the Driver Association, Disciple angrily defends IMS/Indycar (and promoter) and implicates the drivers as panty-wearing Euros who can find employment elsewhere....even though he knows it's for the good of the sport overall.

        THAT is his ignorant viewpoint, and I'm glad we are 100% opposite.
      • Obsession Takes Many Forms
        "So Disciple (of the Indy Taliban) says:"
        I see the emotional age of the taunters remains at elementary school levels. Let me guess...references to '16th & Jonestown' are not impactful enough. Classy.

        "And if they race like professionals they won't have to worry. So, what are we to gain from that gem? Dan Wheldon wasn't a professional?"
        Incorrect. Dan Wheldon was one of the professionals brave enough to tackle the challenge without whining. It is too bad he got killed in a one-in-a-million freak accident that caused selective critics to seize the opportunity caused by his untimely passing to darkly rail on the series to which they remain rabidly obsessed, using fence posts as subterfuge for their narrow agenda.

        "The rest of the drivers were not professional?"
        Many of them were not. Many were ride buyers. All were warned about driving dangerously repeatedly before the event began.

        "That whole sad affair at Vegas wasn't professional?"
        As professional as it gets. The fan friendliness and lead-up were things of beauty. Other than the accident events that led up to the race were commendable.

        "I guess many of the indycar detractors were right. Either the series isn't professional or their fans will argue any point no matter how outlandish the argument."
        IndyCar detractors are what they always have been. Arrogant, obsessed and largely clueless. That rarely stops them from running their yaps incoherently.

        "Disciple...Defender...Indy Taliban...Indeed!"
        Classy. Mature as well.

        "I guess it is sad Dan won't get that chance to retire."
        You bet. It's also a shame that neither will Jeff Krosnoff or Greg Moore.

        "And, would it surprise anyone if Chief was actually as old or older than Disciple? Would it as surprise anyone if Chief attended as many races over those years as Disciple? Kid eh? I guess that is another demonstration of maturity...or do as I say and not as I do. What a joke(r)!"
        The behavior of Chief and the six or so like-minded youngsters who continue to pollute public forums on which they are allowed indicates an emotional age far younger than claimed physical age. That is obvious to mature adults.

        "We only differ in that I want IMS held responsible for it's destructive effect on the AOW sport these past 20 years. Disciple thinks that whatever IMS wants to do is ok with him....even if it includes sacrificing drivers due to the inept 1950's mentality of AOW safety, just as long as Indy 500 is the center of the universe and everything revolves around it."
        As usual, Chief refuses to comprehend facts and simply concocts fiction to suit an agenda. In actual fact, IMS has led (and paid for) the most significant safety enhancements in the sport.

        "Evolution (in his eyes) equates to progress....in my eyes it's resulted in failure, destruction, death. One common thread is IMS is at the center of it all."
        The sport is inherently filled with danger and risk, and the only way to eliminate that risk is to do away with the sport. I am unwilling to see that happen.

        "IF IMS was at the center of "let's fix the fenceposts" it would be trumpeted far and wide as a great safety enhancement THEY developed. But, because it's from the Driver Association, Disciple angrily defends IMS/Indycar (and promoter) and implicates the drivers as panty-wearing Euros who can find employment elsewhere....even though he knows it's for the good of the sport overall."
        It may surprise the ignorant to realize IMS has been actively investigating alternative systems for the past decade. Once a viable, cost effective alternative is perfected, IMS will no doubt be the first track to install such a system. Spending millions to prevent freak accidents is pretty pointless.

        "THAT is his ignorant viewpoint, and I'm glad we are 100% opposite."
        I enjoy high speed oval racing and am willing to accept the risks. You are cordially invited to watch something else.
      • I enjoy high speed ovals too
        However, as evidenced in the video of the drivers talking at the State Of event last week, THE DRIVERS and the ENTIRE world identified a safety hazard PUBLICLY that needs correcting. WHAT is IMS going to do about it?

        I understand your simplistic logic...if they don't like it, don't race. Maybe that's what's going to be needed. BUT if someone gets in the fence again at that track or others like that, the culpability falls squarely on the sanction body/series owners for failing to act.

        That could destroy the sport forever. It's bad enough they've turned a cold shoulder to the problems of this series for the past 10 years and then losing Dan. His can't be a life that was sacrificed without action or change. HELIO himself said that in the video.

        Cancel TEXAS NOW. I fully understand the risks and danger involved in motorsports...but to IGNORE un-needed risk is to be ignorant, and that's what you propose they do. That is asinine.
      • Grpw Up, Chief
        Indy Car operated for 100 years before someone got killed by hitting their head on a fence (well, Jeff Krosnoff before that, but that was on a street circuit in a soon-to-be-dormant 'series'). It is likely to be another 100 years before another freak accident like that occurs again. Meantime, IMS has led the way in safety refinement for 100 years. The number of drivers who used to routinely die has been cut to almost nothing. You are asking pointless questions, son. What is IMS going to do about the fencing at Vegas? Nothing. They do not own that track. SMI does. The IMS series pulled out. Texas is a track that has never had an IndyCar fatality, and it has never ended a career.

        'Cancel Texas?' That is a war declaration. Over my dead body.
      • I Haven't Heard Anything About Indycar
        since they killed Dan Wheldon until I came here
      • Krosnoff?
        There you go again. They cut the trees down, moved fencing back from track as a "SAFETY ENHANCEMENT" in Toronto, a DIRECT result from the Krosnoff fatality.

        Fencepost > Wheldon = Fatality

        So what does Indycar do? They continue to race at TEXAS, where drivers recommend fenceposts be moved.

        Texas fenceposts = GOOD

        Las Vegas fenceposts = BAD

        Interesting. Stay after them Drivers Association...don't race their if they don't change for the better.
      • How About Something Productive?
        Moved to where, Einstein? Apply your decades of safety expertise to give some advice. Tell me how to prevent freak, one-in-a-million accidents in racing. The floor is yours, expert. LOL
      • Seems simple to me
        INDYCAR, the powerless entity needs to establish at the very least MINIMAL levels of safety, which I think it already does.

        It's a great first step by even having a DRIVERS ASSOCIATION because it's been proven, the Indycar series (and the IRL before it) can't be trusted to have the best interest of the fans and competitors in mind.

        So, if the drivers make a recommendation to fix the fences at certain tracks, then it's the series duty to GIT'ER DONE. Period...I don't think these drivers are being frivolous, they just don't want the increased risk if it's something simple to fix.

        And you know what? If the promoter or track doesn't want to fix the problem, then THEY (the series in total) SHOULDN'T RACE THERE. Calling them panty-wearing pussified Euro drivers scared to race isn't the answer. That's your approach BTW.

        That's it in a nutshell friend...even if it means we don't race on ovals anymore. Ignoring the problems of the past only come back to bite ya in the future. We owe it to Dan Wheldon to do the right thing.
      • Once Again, An Unanswered Query
        You still haven't laid out the steps necessary to 'fix' the fences. Until you do, you have no point. As usual.
      • The rocket scientist
        Geez, must be a tough day over at the cable installers shed, huh? Don't 'cha just unroll the fencing from behind the fenceposts, and put it in front of the fenceposts? (Highly simplified for even the most geriatric 1950's ticket buyers amongst us).

        That's all they are requesting....no need to BAN oval racing or go ballistic by declaring war over these simple safety enhancements.

        Bunch of crybabys who want their Sarah Maypo and their oval fences on the outside of the fenceposts. Sheesh.
      • Try Comprehending The Written Word For Once
        If that's all there is then the 'problem' is already solved. Once again, the mesh at Texas is on the outside of the poles. Don't believe me? Call Eddie Gossage.
      • possible boycott of Texas?
        Comprehend this:

        http://auto-racing.speedtv.com/article/indycar-drivers-quash-texas-boycott-rumors

        "Wilson said between flying cars and the resulting destruction of the cars in the fencing that pack racing cannot be allowed to continue. Texas and Las Vegas have the support posts of their fences in different places than most oval tracks.

        "We seem to fly a couple cars a year and that fencing is like a cheese grader," continued the 34-year-old Brit who resides in Colorado.
      • No One Forces Drivers To Drive
        He is welcome not to race. There are plenty of aspiring young racers ready to actually race.
      • Needs More
        Kenny Brack Texas experience
      • Point?
        Last time I checked Kenny Brack was walking around on both of his legs as healthy as a Swedish horse.
      • I applaud the Driver Association
        Good for them for doing exactly what they said they were going to do...MAKE THE SPORT SAFER.

        Some, like Disciple don't care if it's safer.

        If Indycar had any power, they'd get Sarah an engine and tell the owners to get new drivers that wanna die.

        I'd be very curious who'd win in a struggle over safety, IMS or Drivers. IMS has NO POWER, and they do nothing with the power they have....
      • Carnage
        http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/sport/motorsport/3880017/IndyCar-chief-Randy-Bernard-wanted-carnage.html

      • Bogus numbers
        "The series is coming off a year when it saw a 28-percent increase in its television ratings..."

        Got a source for that info Anthony? We used to be able to believe it when you talked about the ratings, but apparently you don't talk to Nielsen anymore. At least not when it comes to the .1rl anyway. I'd hate to think you're just parroting whatever the H/G clan puts in front of you...

        There's quite a bit of info out there to prove that ratings went down last year, at least on VS.

        autoracing1.com reported: IndyCar TV ratings on Versus down from 2010
        Through 11 events this year... Versus (has) a 0.35 average, down from last year’s 0.39 as it remains a noose around IndyCar’s neck.”

        Source: http://www.autoracing1.com/hotnews.asp?tid=55349

        The rest of the races and their ratings:

        12th NHMS on ABC - 0.9
        13th Sonoma on VS - 0.3
        Source: http://pressdog.typepad.com/dogblog/2011/08/indycar-at-sonoma-draws-03-tv-rating.html

        14th Baltimore on Vs - 0.6
        Pressdog uses .1rl for his source for this one, and it's quite suspect when compared to the autoracing1 info.
        Source: http://pressdog.typepad.com/dogblog/2011/09/indycar-race-at-baltimore-gets-060-tv-rating.html

        15th Japan on Vs - 0.1
        16th Kentucky on Vs - 0.1
        Source: http://pressdog.typepad.com/dogblog/2011/10/carpenters-underdog-victory-seen-by-188000-tv-viewers.html

        17th was death race 2011 from LVMS. I haven't seen any #s for it, but I'd assume they were high, as it was more of a news event rather than a .1rl race....

        Anyway, if the Vs # through 11 races was 0.35, then even if the 0.6 for Baltimore was real, through the last 4 races on Vs, the average rating FELL.

        In short, I call shenanigans on your ratings info.










        • The Way The Business Works
          Helpful suggestion: Dig into something other than 12+ overnight estimates from zap2it. Like the pros do.
        • Are they factual or not?
          Hey, paid IRL propagandist....so where exactly is the "28 percent" coming from? Why does the IRL use blanket TV ratings terminology to describe these supposed TV ratings, yet leave out the critical in-depth info you preach? Something stinks and it's not the info provided by jim. Care to explain? Anthony?
        • Let Me Get This Straight. AR1? LOL
          You really ought to take a deep dive into the data. The 12+ overnights from zap2it parroted by the Internet television executives are not actually used by the advertising community, so why not save the critical reviews until you actually do a deep dive into the numbers?
        • Source
          I asked Anthony for his source on the supposed 28% increase in TV ratings.
          I look forward to hearing from Anthony, and unless someone else knows the source of his info, I see no reason or way for you to try an answer my questions.

          Oh, BTW: Have fun on your next lunch date, cruising around the country in the private plane, with ole RB there, d. :lol:

          I
        • More ratings good news
          Just wanted to add the Nielsen reports that the Daytona 500 rain out drew a 4.5 overnight (and expected to rise) while the .1rl's 100th anniversary 500 could only manage a 4.3 overnight that dropped to a 4.0 final.

          Yes, watching NASCAR rain is more popular than the .irl's best of the best. :lol:
        • Wonder Whether Juan Pablo's Grandmother Would Have Hit a Jet Dryer Under Yellow?
          I see your fixation with 12+ overnights from zap2it and ignorance of anything else has emboldened you to the point of looking foolish to those actually conducting that type of commerce.

          Keep up the great work, son.
        • direct miss
          The object is to supply facts, which you can't do and neither has Anthony.

          So, unless proof is provided, the 28% increases equate to fiction. jim has provided evidence to support his case, wheres yours? Like the IRL, anyone can claim proof exists. You strive to disprove any negative against the series, even if you have to lie. Put up or admit you're full of poop.
        • The Simplistic Way In Which Your Minds Works Aside...
          "So, unless proof is provided, the 28% increases equate to fiction. jim has provided evidence to support his case, wheres yours?"

          Nielsen Media Research. If you have a few thousand dollars to give them they would be happy to share. Either that or you could:

          A) Work in the business for decades and assist either agencies or broadcasters with interpretation of the data.

          B) Get a job in which you work with the actual numbers.

          Jim's 'proof' are numbers not actually used in such commerce. If that proof is derived from AR1 it is even more laughable in terms of credibility.

          If you work hard enough you may find someone willing to share the actual numbers. But it will probably cost you money. If knowing the real numbers is that important to your little group, pool your money and buy them.

          Simple. Easy. Conclusive.
        • you forgot
          You forgot option C there, befuddled old d.

          C) Ask Anthony his source for the claimed 28% increase in television ratings.

          Perhaps his source is more dubious than the sourced overnight ratings I've linked...



        • IRL Press Releases
          maybe Anthony is reading off the prepared IRL press releases, or Randy's statement from the "State of Indycar" presser.

          There's more dung in that speech and presser than could possibly stick on a wall.

          Where's the 350% ROI claims this year? Where's the "most profitable year ever" justifications?

          Just because the IMS/IRL didn't loose as much $$$ in 2011 doesn't mean it was out of the RED. Haven't heard a peep out of IZOD since 350% lawsuits. ALSO, did we factor into the ratings the Las Vegas ratings? 20 laps of horror and the subsequent mourning on live TV. there's your 28% increase...for nothing.

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