Disciple of INDYCAR Weblog

July 19, 2010

Indy Car (and NASCAR) Racing Weekend….and ESPN on ABC is Finally Done for 2010.

Filed under: The Disciple Blogs — Disciple of INDYCAR @ 11:58 am

Yo, Mr. Davis. Are the folks who run ESPN aware of widespread discontent about the way that family of channels treats some of its partners and millions of its customers? There are relevant threads on TrackForum.com: http://www.trackforum.com/forums/showthread.php?139806-The-ESPN-hate….appears-to-be-growing-outside-of-IndyCar-nation/page2 or http://www.trackforum.com/forums/showthread.php?139873-Dumb-and-Dumber!!!-Featuring-Scott-Goodyear-and-Marty-Reid. Too funny.

If those of us who watch get a response, it is likely to be arrogant. Business as usual. The group I was with yesterday to watch the Toronto event applauded when Marty indicated on air that this was the final Indy Car race of the year on ABC. That is pretty sad. In prior years I could not imagine applauding not being on national television on an OTA network. That is what happens when the life gets sucked out of a franchise by a distribution partner who is ambivalent and does not understand it anyway.

I hope and pray Versus emerges as the first widely distributed, credible threat to what is essentially a sports television monopoly. ESPN must be knocked from their throne, IMHO.

The race in Toronto turned out to be a crashfest as the supposedly best drivers in the world consistently took turns running out of talent. And this was AFTER they pulled Milka off the course. That is another reason why street ‘racing’ has very little place on the Indy Car schedule. It remains a twisted perversion of the purity of the sport. It is an abomination. It also appears based on crowd shots the people of Toronto don’t care either. Hey, and what do you know…Penske and Ganassi finished 1-2. There are rumors a Penske cheating scandal is about to break, and that will be fun to digest. Perhaps ESPN could break it, but that is highly unlikely.

A note to Randy Bernard: Do what you can with ESPN/ABC. The way they treat the Indy Car Series is not acceptable. Second, stop bending over for whiny cart apologists. Your statement about the toxicity of the IRL acronym and name is insulting to those of us who have spent thousands of dollars supporting Indy Car since well before even cart was formed. It has always been Indy Car Racing to me. The term ‘Indy Racing League’ has never bothered me. Neither did the term ‘cart.’ The hypersensitivity of those who it does bother is worthy of scorn and ridicule. My advice to such people is to get over it and grow up.  This ‘war’ you are worried about cleaning up after was forced by the ego and arrogance of the crowd that is now whining. Screw them and their agenda. Move the series forward by forging a NEW direction. Resist the temptation to revert to one evolutionary period that failed. Twice. Someone needs to maintain the courage to keep mutinous boycotters in their place.

In other racing news, Carl Edwards tried to murder Brad Keselowski again on Saturday night. I have come to the conclusion that Edwards is mentally unbalanced and not fit to race professionally. Hopefully someone will hook up with him in back of a trailer out of the reach of NASCAR and cameras and knock some sense into that thick skull of his. Keselowski’s father was prepared to go all Sam Hornish Sr. on Carl’s rear end. Someone needs to.

Speaking of slower, heavier ‘stock’ cars…I’ll see you at the BY400 in less than a week!

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10 Comments »

  1. I came down on the IRL side of things back when we all had to make a choice. But that was long ago, and now I think we open-wheel fans all need to grow up when it comes (as it usually does) down to bickering about the split. If a name change makes some slighted folks feel just a little bit better (not sure it will) then why not go for it? Anyway, I like the Indycar name better anyway. And where the series is headed is just as much inspired by CART as it is the IRL–like it or not.

    I also thought ABC/ESPN performed better at Toronto than previous races. And they advertised the race quite a bit during the British Open coverage. But in spite of that, I’m really looking forward to watching Versus again.

    Comment by redd — July 19, 2010 @ 1:51 pm | Reply

  2. Wow, you have link to a thread on an IRL site that points to a thread where a few track and field fans were upset at espn cutting away to show a no-hitter. I don’t think that shows where masses of people hate espn.

    Editor’s Note: Critical points…

    1. Use of the initials ‘IRL’ is verboten. Randy Bernard says so.
    2. I linked more than one thread. Discontent with ESPN is a little more than widespread.

    You’re welcome, and thanks for reading.

    Comment by TroyM — July 19, 2010 @ 2:27 pm | Reply

  3. Yup, after the WWF-type event at Toronto, open-wheel racing, in the words of Scott Goodyear, has truly become a “contact sport”. And is the IndyCar series really so strapped for cash that they have to let someone as incompetent as Milka Duno on its tracks? Sponsorship dollars or no sponsorship dollars, I’d rather see the sport abolished than allow such ineptness to exist. The old timers–Foyt, the Unsers, Rutherford, Mario Andretti, Johncock, et al.–are probably shaking their heads in disbelief that their sport has come to this. But, it’s probably no different than NASCAR’S idiotic policy of Start and Park. All the same……

    Comment by DOUG — July 19, 2010 @ 2:49 pm | Reply

  4. “first off defender, not all that long ago, the race in toronto was packed. stating the people of toronto do not care for the current product because street races are a “twisted perversion of the purity of the sport”, is pure and utter BS on your part. what the lack of attendance does say, not just here in toronto either, is that the fans are sick of this inferior product we are being force fed by this current league, which has yet to be renamed. what makes the poor attendance even more alarming, is when you factor in how many grandstand seats have been chopped since andretti and savoree took over the race. there are even grandstands that have been completely abolished. no photo pass either, coupled with hardly any vendors. stating a fact here…the last few years champ car was in toronto, there were more people on the friday’s alone, than on race day for this league which has yet to be renamed.”

    Editor’s Note: Typically brilliant, mature observations, Mr. Ishmyknob. BUT, I have some points that sailed right over your astute li’l head. I actually attended both cart and champcar versions of the Toronto event, and I can tell you with precision this attendance slide that has your angst level pegged began long before the Indy Car Series arrived. The dying days of champcar, for example, were no better than what you saw yesterday. In a larger sense, attendance for the vast majority of sports and entertainment venues is down. For proof look no further than this weekend’s NASCAR race in Indy. That will not hold a candle to attendance at that same race in the mid 1990s. Is that the fault of the IRL too? You kids seem to have convinced yourselves that attendance that was good before cart killed itself, twice, but is bad now is completely the fault of, or some gratuitously perceived inferiority of the Indy Car Series. That tells me only that idiots who make this claim are a few firing synapses short of complete thought. Unsurprising given the childish defensiveness of your predictable lunatic responses.

    “you also state the league should stop bending over for whiny cart apologists…how is that possible when cart is no longer buddy? penske, ganassi and andretti basically run this league from the owner’s side, and they have been associated long enough with the former irl and indy car series, that your statements reek of pure desperation. even a complete newbie to the sports, randy bernard, did not take long to come in and see the obvious problems. that in itself, is a pretty damning statement of the league.”

    Editor’s Note: Randy Bernard needs to listen to all sides, of course, but has gone way overboard in his reconciliation efforts. If he takes the best ideas from teh old cart series without any attached agendas he will be fine. He needs to watch his ass 24/7/365, however. The former cart contingent are the least trustworthy group of self interested egomaniacs in all of sport.

    “i will assume you heard randy’s trackside interview from saturday (if you have not, head over the indycar.com and give it a listen), and it was very interesting, as well as revealing. i had the pleasure of meeting randy saturday night as well, and let’s just say he definitely does not share in your constant moaning and groaning of cart, nor does he think the series is on the upswing, as you try and tell the masses (errr, three or four people) that you claim read your blog. randy has his head screwed on just right, and hopefully he gets the chance to put in place some of his ideas.”

    Editor’s Note: Sorry. Whatever points you are attempting eludes my grasp. You are factually incorrect on a couple, but that’s OK. You are on an entertaining little roll. By the way, did you enjoy the race?

    “your agenda defender, seems to be to try and convince everyone that the cart apologists are the ones to blame for the current plight of this series, nice try! tony george wanted exactly what the league is right now, but stepped on one too many toes along the way. as usual, it is up to everyone else to clean up the mess now….it may be too late now.”

    Edior’s Note: I have no agenda. Tony George is deposed. The Indy Car Series is more like cart than ever before. What on God’s green earth do you people have left to bitch about? Even turbos are returning.

    “you are an old and tired troll, beating the same drum for so long, everyone has become oblivious to it. you talk of evolution, and of trying to grow the league, yet guys like you are the ones who help hold it back.”

    Editor’s Note: I wondered when the cutesy name calling would begin. If nothing else, your kind is predictable.

    Comment by paul ishmynob — July 19, 2010 @ 8:41 pm | Reply

    • That exchange explains my username here perfectly

      Comment by hates crappies hates gomers — July 20, 2010 @ 5:28 pm | Reply

  5. We wish our friends and partners at Versus only the best.

    Editor’s Note: What would be even better is substituting ‘Indy Car Series’ for ‘Versus’ in the sentiment above.

    Comment by K. Lee Davis — July 20, 2010 @ 3:58 am | Reply

  6. That goes without saying, Defender. Your “intentionally killing the brand” references are the most laughable things you post. And that’s saying an awful lot.

    Editor’s Note: Very well. So what steps, exactly, is ESPN planning for next season to:

    -Increase ratings for the series
    -Improve the on-air presentation
    -Upgrade the on-air talent
    -Cross-promote the series on all ESPN channels, on ESPN content web pages, in ESPN The Magazine, on ABC and in other forms of media not connected to ESPN/ABC?
    -Promote the 100th anniversary of the first 500?

    Comment by K. Lee Davis — July 20, 2010 @ 6:43 pm | Reply

  7. None of what you are asking falls under my purview. I am in charge of editorial content decisions for ESPN.com Motorsports. I come here from time to time to shed a little light in your dark corner of the racing universe. I’m in town by the way. Stop on by the Media Center sometime.

    Editor’s Note: How convenient. 😉 We’re glad to have you. Perhaps I’ll stop by…or I’ll buy you a beer and a tenderloin at Union Jacks or one of the other westside hangouts.

    Comment by K. Lee Davis — July 20, 2010 @ 9:31 pm | Reply

    • Why wouldn’t you get pizza at Union Jacks?

      Editor’s Note: They’re OK…but I’m a little burned out on it. They put in a nice new patio out back though.

      Comment by the american mutt — July 26, 2010 @ 7:25 pm | Reply

  8. Heading to Bourbon Street whatzit’s name in 15 minutes!

    Comment by K. Lee Davis — July 20, 2010 @ 10:15 pm | Reply


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