Disciple of INDYCAR Weblog

November 23, 2009

Indy Car: The Most Wonderful Time of the Year?

Filed under: The Disciple Blogs — Disciple of INDYCAR @ 7:46 pm

The NASCAR season mercifully wound down for a couple of months yesterday, and the reliable former off-road racer who made good in ‘stock’ cars did it again. For the fourth time in a row.  I wonder whether we will hear the same type of incessant cackling about the same winner over and over and over and over again as we endure when folks chide Penske and Ganassi in IndyCar? The most entertainment yesterday was on-track fighting between two former IRL drivers…Tony Stewart and Juan Montoya.

In any event, congratulations to our funny talking southern racing brethren for another season. Evidently Daytona tickets are not selling quickly as evidenced by the bombardment of ads throughout the race. Speaking of activation, I have a question for the IndyCar folks in that area who are still there with jobs intact. Is Hotwheels a promotional partner or not? It says they are on the web page. As we dive headlong into the post-Thanksgiving free-for-all known as ‘black Friday’ and beyond (where people are usually anything but cordial) are there ANY Indy-themed Hotwheels out there anywhere? As I was doing my grocery shopping yesterday, I noticed an entire aisle section that featured Hotwheels as gifts in the temporary toy aisle. There was NOT ONE Indy themed model. There was everything else imaginable (including what looked like a ‘stock’ car) but no IndyCar.

Giving the benefit of doubt, I subsequently visited a toy store and three department stores in two states. Same story. Lots and lots of themes, but no IndyCar. Here is my suggestion for the remaining IndyCar employees responsible for this sort of thing: It is the holiday gift giving season. Would it not be prudent to actually have IndyCar Hotwheels up for sale now? I saw a Hotwheels show car at one event this past year. Where are the IndyCar diecasts?



  1. They actually have them although the only place I’ve actually seen them at is the gift shops at the IMS museum…

    Comment by Corey A — November 23, 2009 @ 9:07 pm | Reply

  2. As I have said before, Defender, I commend you for your passion and admire your unwavering support for this dying series but I attended the Sprint Cup finale yesterday at Homestead Miami and the stands were about 90% full…that equals approximately 80K fans…a far cry from the maybe 20K of us who attended the IRL finale last month…face it, Defender, but NASCAR is still king and the IRL continues to lag far behind…I am a staunch Open Wheel adherent and I found the NASCAR race slow and boring (except for Montoya and T. Stewart scrapping on track) but the IRL needs to jettison the dead weight (including Brian Barnhart) and focus on what will get this series back in the national spotlight…racing at NASCAR owned tracks is not the way to go…bring back the independents such as Vegas and Loudon and lose the empty ovals…just my perspective

    Comment by Neil Rubin — November 23, 2009 @ 9:44 pm | Reply

    • “dying” is a harsh word. As a matter of fact, the IndyCar series seems to be on a upswing when others such as NASCAR are on the way down. NASCAR has become to big and Kings eventually fall.

      The NASCAR races are slow and boring and littered with false cautions for the sake of race management. And as far as the crowd is concerned, there’s a demographic issue to conisder which does not bode well for CUP.

      Comment by Mike Miller — November 24, 2009 @ 12:54 pm | Reply

      • Mike, as Jay-Z said Sunday night at the American Music Awards, men lie, women lie but numbers don’t lie and the IRL’s dismal attendance and TV viewing figures continue to make this series a tough sell to advertisers and sponsors…bringing Izod on board is an amazing feat but we still have too many cars with no sponsorship at all…empty side-pods give the impression that the series is second rate and NASCAR does not have this problem even if NASCAR’s ratings and attendance figures are down.

        Comment by Neil Rubin — November 24, 2009 @ 9:27 pm

  3. For most the season Meijer had an end cap wing for the Meijer sponsored cars. At one particular location I saw a fine collection of Marco Diecasts and one single lonely Dan Wheldon Die cast. Target had a pretty good spread a month and a half ago including several teams and drivers (it was funny seeing a Meijer car at target). On a recent visit though one particular store had a fine selection of only Tony Kanaan diecasts. Perhaps IICS is running out of the 2009 versions??? Not sure if the target distribution is regional or not. If so the holidays might be a good time to do a special commemorative run featuring a 500 and Series champion packaging.

    Comment by JP — November 23, 2009 @ 9:46 pm | Reply

  4. Wow am I incoherent – perhaps its time to leave the work desk behind…

    Comment by JP — November 23, 2009 @ 9:48 pm | Reply

  5. I read that Homestead was 65K capacity…was that figure incorrect? If so, there were an awful lot more than 20K at Homestead for the ICS race. We were sitting in grandstands that were about half full, and that’s how it appeared on the rebroadcast as well.

    Comment by Andy Bernstein — November 24, 2009 @ 12:51 am | Reply

    • Hey, Andy, I attend the Indy Car race at Homestead every year and I can attest that the stands were as empty as ever this year…and this race was the ‘championship’ season finale…65K? this total is an exaggeration (as is many of the crowd totals published by the IRL) and you could actually take a seat anywhere you wanted at last month’s race at Homestead…you could not say this about Sunday’s NASCAR race even though the IRL race was as thrilling as any I have seen with no cautions!

      Comment by Neil Rubin — November 24, 2009 @ 9:24 pm | Reply

  6. I’m an Indycar fan first, but also like to watch Nascar. Especially on the smaller, more traditional tracks and the road races. Needless to say, I’m a big Stewart fan, but admire Johnson who is a pretty amazing driver.

    Comment by redd — November 24, 2009 @ 1:48 am | Reply

  7. Had you pegged as the kinda guy cruising the big boxes looking for GI JOES all these years.

    My apologies for being wrong.


    Comment by Sam Ackfarim — November 24, 2009 @ 12:27 pm | Reply

  8. At Target, as recent as two months ago, I saw these hotwheels: Dan Wheldon (national guard car), marco (meijer livery), Danica (in the blue and black), TK (you know what that looked like), and Dixon. They also had larger scale versions of Danica and Wheldon.

    Comment by The American Mutt — November 24, 2009 @ 4:26 pm | Reply

  9. It’s not up to Hot Wheels where the cars are sold. If the buyer for that particular company doesn’t want to carry the IRL cars Hot wheels can’t force them.

    Comment by Tim — November 24, 2009 @ 4:56 pm | Reply

  10. I am glad that my interest in open wheel racing is getting like Obama’s performance rating, lower each and every week.

    Comment by Rosco — November 25, 2009 @ 6:20 am | Reply

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