Disciple of INDYCAR Weblog

November 17, 2008

Let’s Make Racing Recession Proof

Filed under: The Disciple Blogs — Disciple of INDYCAR @ 1:09 pm

Other than the Baja 1000 and a few winter series involving motors and wheels, the season is now over. The buzzwords going into 2009 include ‘cost containment’ and ‘downsizing.’ Whether anyone in racing will admit it or not the current recession could take a huge bite out of the sport.


Team personnel in NASCAR are being laid off at astounding rates. The costs of fielding a team have skyrocketed as the biggest teams attempt to outspend their competition. It’s a far cry from 1992 when Alan Kulwicki ran the season and won the championship with $2 million.


Indy Racing is particularly vulnerable because they do not have the dedicated partner or attention that NASCAR does. NASCAR’s partner is willing to lose millions to carry them. Recent television features produced by the usual ex-cart-employee suspects always have the same themes:


-We need turbos

-We need more power

-Ovals are dangerous


All we get from the cart crowd is whining, then more whining. We should be longing for something worth reviving.



I believe the IRL must look to the past for direction through the current economic crisis. The best racing in Indy Car history occurred just before the cart crowd ended their boycott of Indy Racing. If you ever have a chance to watch most races between, say, 1998 and 2002, never pass it up. It is simply amazing. It cost less, too.



  1. The racing in those years was clearly off-the-chart awesome, but for goodness sakes – did you have to pick the ugliest Menards car ever? No offense to Greg Ray, but that green-on-green madness was a total eyesore compared to the other Menards schemes.

    Comment by My Name Is IRL — November 17, 2008 @ 6:32 pm | Reply

  2. So, that’s a “no” on the whole “take a break from calling ex-CART people whiners” idea, then?

    Comment by The Speedgeek — November 17, 2008 @ 8:31 pm | Reply

  3. This was the great Indy racing era of my adult life. It helped that I finally had some free time and disposable income concurrently and was able to attend many races all over the country with my best friend (or occassionally my wife). Regardless, the racing was outstanding. The teams sometimes ran on beans it seemed, they owned their engines and they had their own cams ground. More hard-running, hard-luck racers, too. Buddy Lazier, Sammy in the early years, Sarah, Eddie Cheever. No whining four-car teams. I can’t understand why so many people complain about this era. I loved it.

    Also, I’m glad you gave the Mickyard some respect. I liked that track. I was there a for two or three of those races. It was a tough track. I remember seeing Robbie Buhl getting a win there (in D&R’s first race, I think).

    The series seems almost too polished now. I still love it anyway.

    Comment by Ted T — November 18, 2008 @ 3:41 am | Reply

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