Disciple of INDYCAR Weblog

September 16, 2009

An Indy Car Potpourri

Filed under: The Disciple Blogs — Disciple of INDYCAR @ 1:24 am

Pardon the day delay in the ‘ol blog. I am commuting to New York about once a week, and in a meeting today with representatives of a couple of big sports leagues (involving balls, not engines) I learned that even the biggest are worried about the effect the continuing sour economy will have on their bottom lines over the next two years. A side conversation with a couple of folks indicated smaller leagues had the best chance of improvement, including major league soccer and Indy Car.

Its All DownI know the tendency of the current management of Indy Car is to eschew ovals at all cost in order to extract ‘easy’ millions from gullible street ‘racing’ marks willing to buy into the voodoo economics associated with such farcical perversions of the sport. This is further proven by the fact that NASCAR has its truck and B-team races scheduled there again in 2010. Earlier they announced no racing until they got paid. They must have gotten paid. Did the IRL? If they did will they return (as they should)? Here is hoping common sense prevails.

Comcast BlowsI am looking forward to the Japan Indy Car event on Versus this weekend in the wee hours. I would have thought DirecTV and Comcast would have worked something out by now. It looks like the IRL will have many fewer million potential households, and fans will continue getting screwed. Hey DirecTV and Comcast, here is a great suggestion. Submit to arbitration from a neutral arbitrator. You both have a point, but that does not stop fans from being screwed. Paying customers are your first responsibility, and you have forgotten that. Fix this situation NOW.

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3 Comments »

  1. I’m not necessarily a huge “stick and ball guy”, but I do check headlines, standings and a few podcasts from time to time. Big, bad things are afoot for most of the major league sports. You think that IndyCar racing is an untenable business plan? Try employing a dozen or more multi-millionaire players while paying gigantic leases on new or like-new stadiums, while fans start to come out less and less. The NBA is likely facing a lockout in the next couple of years. The NFL is going to have to slash the salary cap and find new streams of revenue for its teams. MLB is not exactly rolling in dough anymore, like it was 20+ years ago. I can’t say that I necessarily thought of it before this post, but it makes sense that when the big guys struggle, people look for other stuff to do. If IndyCar can find ways to draw in new fans (see this week’s Marshall Pruett Triple Stint on SpeedTV.com for this), they stand to gain big time. If corporations find that hundreds of millions of dollars for naming rights to sports stadiums are not very good value, perhaps they can be convinced that $5-10 million for a two car IndyCar team isn’t too bad? Or possibly half a million to sponsor a race?

    Things are not great right now, but it’s not over. Not by a long shot.

    Comment by The Speedgeek — September 16, 2009 @ 6:15 pm | Reply

  2. I assume that in paragraph two you are referring to the Milwaukee Mile?

    I too certainly hope that the IRL returns to the Mile. Not only has it been one of the best races on the schedule, but it is virtually right in my back yard. Unlike the cookie-cutter 1.5-mile speedways (built with NASCAR in mind), the Mile is a relatively flat one-mile oval (a smaller version of IMS) and is a “driver’s track” — something of which the series needs more.

    Comment by delta3 — September 17, 2009 @ 3:07 am | Reply

  3. Milwaukee a smaller version of Indy? Er, well… but I take your point. And did NASCAR really put Milwaukee back on the schedule, or are they just holding the date? Going to check Jayski… I don’t know; it sounds like NASCAR is just holding the date. They have not yet been paid, according to Jayski. I note something else over there… Reed Sorenson is not being paid by RPM. At all. Nothing. Nada. Zip. Reed is racing for free in order to keep his face visible at the track. Not all is well in River City.

    Dear Comcast: I think you’ve done a pretty good job of developing Versus up to this point. However, back in June, when I said “Versus will be the next ESPN someday”, by “someday”, I did not mean “two months from now”. Please check your current market penetration rate and get back to me on that.

    Comment by Dave Cornutt — September 19, 2009 @ 1:34 am | Reply


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