Defender of IndyCar

cart ‘Fans’ – Still Thin of Skin and Vociferously Defensive Fifteen Years Later

AngrierUsually people who respond to my ramblings do so with sportsmanship and couth. Some others…not so much. I am not intentionally singling out the words of any one person offering comments; I merely cite words that are typical of that ilk.

‘Typical clown response from you.’

I always know I am in for a doozy when something like that is the first sentence.

‘ You know damn well why they are gone and your boy Tony G. was partly responsible for putting them in the grave and like I told you before….CART made damn sure to finish off what Tony started and killed themselves.’

Is this the same Tony G. people have called stupid and incompetent for the last fifteen years? How could he have gotten smart enough to ‘help’ kill cart? Here is how cart killed themselves:

  1. They boycotted Indy.
  2. The stupidly thought they could survive sans Indy.
  3. They scorched the earth then stupidly blamed the fire and resultant damage  on Tony George.

Do any of these cart apologists understand how easily and inexpensively the nascent IRL could have been killed with just one or two intelligent moves? That is what happens when egos and arrogance get in the way of common sense.

Pissed‘Regardless of that, only a kool-aid drinking fool with an agenda could deny that CART was successful in the late 80’s and for most of the 90’s.’

How quaint. Comparing a race fan to a cult suicide victim from Jonestown in 1979. That will win some credibility points all right. Where have I ever denied cart’s success in the 80’s and 90’s? I was a cart fan. They were the evolutionary torch bearers for their period. They could have continued had they not killed themselves. The day they hatched the ill fated US 500 is the very day I began actively working to wipe them from existence because they no longer deserved to exist and became a cancerous blight to the sport.

‘Yes they did die in the end but they had a good run…..certainly a better run than the IRL has ever had (that is unless you call barely surviving a success) Many long standing successful companies eventually crash and burn, sometimes due to their own making and sometimes because of things they can’t control. Look at Mervyn’s and Circuit City.’

Mervyn’s sold their souls to ethics deprived opportunists. Circuit City is a better analogy because in the end what did them in was horrible management.

‘While CART had a lot of success and then ultimately failed….the IRL was never successful.’

Keep trying to convince yourself of that. Projection of cart failure onto the now mature IRL will not fly. Do you realize the IRL has now been around almost as long as cart was? It shows no real signs of diminishing other than in the twisted wet dream fantasies of those unable to discover the sportsmanship necessary to actually be racing fans.

‘However the IRL could only dream of getting the ratings, sponsorship, manufacturer support, and cash-flow that CART had in the 90’s.’

cart could get reconstituted exactly as they were in 1995 and they would get worse ratings than Indy Car. The world is a vastly different place than it was when cart began their tragic road to self immolation. Cash flow was mainly the type of creative accounting that people get thrown in jail for today.

‘I guess they figure it’s better to go with a formula from the past that worked and hope it works today…..than to continue to stick with a failed formula.’

A Typical cart Fan Prepares to Post
A Typical cart Fan Prepares to Post

Not one major road racing series has ever stuck around for the long term in the United States. My recommendation of 65% oval and 35% non oval is diverse enough. There are quality ovals of less than a mile, a mile or a little more, 1.5 milers, 2 milers and the big 2.5 miler. That is five types of tracks. A street circuit like Long Beach, a wide open airport circuit like Cleveland, a legendary road course like Watkins Glen, and a spectacular new facility like Barber will make for a very challenging, diverse schedule. It’s easy. The majority of racing fans in this country attend and watch oval races. The IRL must re-perfect its package (think Texas or Chicagoland in the early part of the present decade or Kentucky a couple of weeks ago) and figure out how to effectively market it. Attempting to be the cart of old means they will end up like the cart of old. Dead with a bunch hysterical enthusiasts unable to let go of the past and unwilling to evolve.

4 replies to “cart ‘Fans’ – Still Thin of Skin and Vociferously Defensive Fifteen Years Later

  1. As with the recent IRL declaration of Scott Dixon as the driver with the most wins this opinionated article does nothing but poke CART/Champ Car fans with a sharp stick. Why not admit that the past is the past. Today is what it is. Why not take advantage of both series’ shared history. The problem is that in the not too recent past of open wheel racing in the United States there was success and glory years. It too late now to play the blame game no matter which side your on. What we need to do is truly unify the series under one banner. “IndyCar”. Relegate CART, USAC, IRL, Champ Car, to the trash can of history and forge ahead with a shared history. Until the IRL management wakes up and articles like yours jabbing at fans open wheel racing will forever languish in metiocrity.
    Editor’s note: I agree with most of your sentiment. Dixon is talented but he has a long way to go to catch a lot of people who raced under whatever Indy Car banner flew at the time. I look at the history of the sport as more than just 1996 or 1979. It goes back a lot further. IRL people who foist the Scott Dixon as the guy with the most wins really do need to acknowledge history with more respect.

  2. Bill – agreed…it is history. As open wheel fans, we need to stop the bickering about what was better, who caused what, etc. Let’s face it, both sides had some success. Both sides have had some failures. And frankly, both sides have done damage to the sport. Shoot, we could all sit here and argue about how AAA was better than USAC. It just does not matter. Let’s be race fans and try to figure out how to make the sport better.

  3. It’s the fans and certain members of the media that are tearing the sport apart. Either you’re for it or against it.

  4. Dear IRL Defender:

    This is a good forum and I appreciate your comments and commitment to the IRL and American Open Wheel in general…about the 65% oval mix, I support what I consider ‘competitive’ ovals such as Indy, Fontana, Michigan and the like…as for the 1.5 milers and less than one mile ovals, I am still not convinced these are the right way to go…I have attended Homestead every year since the track opened in ’96 and except for the last several years since ISC added some serious banking, the racing at this facility was boring and predictable despite its nickname as the ‘little Indy’ for its equal dimensions…as for Richmond, I attended last year’s event and I say ‘good riddance’ because this track was simply too short to accommodate multiple lines which is what I consider necessary for an oval to succeed.

    I am glad that you see some value in road and street courses…let’s be honest, street racing lacks passing and this degrades the quality of racing but the draw of attracting large numbers of fans, especially casual fans who would not otherwise travel to an oval, helps the series maintain a prominence in the wider world of sports but the mix of short ovals, superspeedways, natural road courses and street circuits must be preserved to keep our sport unique.

Leave a Reply to Some guy Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this:
close-alt close collapse comment ellipsis expand gallery heart lock menu next pinned previous reply search share star