Disciple of INDYCAR Weblog

September 8, 2010

IZOD Indy Car for 2011: Pack Your Bags and Bring More Money Next Year. You’ll Need It.

Filed under: The Disciple Blogs — Disciple of INDYCAR @ 12:01 am

Note to IZOD Indy Car fans…we’ll know what travel arrangements to make after Friday at 11. That’s when Randy and crew are making the 2011 schedule announcement. The ‘where’ is what is interesting. The Milwaukee Mile. Guess that means there will be a race there after all. Add that to about 16 others, and what we have is probably:

-St. Pete


-Long Beach









-Sears Point




-Las Vegas

Initial observations: Looks like ISC has been told to take a hike. It’s about time, but losing Chicago, Michigan and Richmond along the way (not to mention PPIR and Phoenix) really blows.

Uh, Randy….there is NOT a 50/50 mix of ovals and non-ovals, and we need to have AT LEAST that. The current count is:

-8 ovals

-3 natural terrain road courses

-6 idiotic temporary abominations

How about an oval like Nashville to bring the count back up? What about Andy Hillenburg’s Rockingham track? How about both?

Looks like the Indy Car season will cost my party more to attend races next year. Milwaukee will have to be a two-overnight stay now to take the place of Chicago. Las Vegas will be a plane ride with a hotel and a rental car. I know some people are not going to make the traditional races next year. Two are still across an ocean so those are most likely out.

Looks like a festive bunch….the only question is how spread out they will be.



  1. I kind of figured Milwaukee was coming back when I noticed that the Texas double-header was scheduled for two weeks after Indy, although that doesn’t mean the Milwaukee race will necessarily be on the traditional date… I was even more certain when Curt Cavin reported that it seemed to be between Milwaukee and Chicagoland, as Bernard supposedly said that either one or the other would be on the schedule, and it seemed like Chicago was gone for some time. If it’s between those two, I infinitely prefer Milwaukee for so many reasons, mainly because it’s much more organic than the plate-style cookie-cutter racing, although Chicagoland is a loss as it was one of the best tracks for that (while Homestead was the worst).

    To me, Chicagoland, Watkins Glen, Michigan, Phoenix, and Pikes Peak are the losses. I never liked Kansas or Homestead for any kind of car. A bit TOO generic… A lot of people liked Richmond for open wheel, but I don’t think it worked that well; there were way too many crashes like the early-IRL Dover races. With regard to Richmond, I feel that a track is best suited for the cars it’s designed for. The modern-day cookie cutters were probably designed more for the open wheel cars so have better races there, while Southern short tracks were designed more for NASCAR and have better NASCAR than open wheel races there. I don’t think Richmond/IndyCar was really a match. I think there are too many street courses and it should be reduced to Long Beach, Toronto, and Brazil (and the only reason I list Brazil is because of how much they’re paying), so I see Watkins Glen as a bigger loss than Kansas or Homestead in that sense, as the road/street balance goes way out of whack, even moreso in my opinion than the oval/road balance. I’m excited about Milwaukee and Loudon. I do like races where drivers have to lift and where the result isn’t decided by horsepower 100%, and having half the ovals be “driver’s ovals” is a MAJOR improvement. If you think this conflicts with my Richmond stance, the difference is that Milwaukee was designed for open-wheel and Loudon was designed for both stock cars and open-wheel. I’m happy to exchange some cookie-cutters for them…

    I kind of knew there would be one more road/street course than oval too when they announced the Texas doubleheader. I thought the point of that was so the number of oval races and road/street races would be the same, even if the number of oval circuits and road/street circuits was not. When I first heard that announced, that was my initial thought…that the ISC fallout was causing there to be one fewer oval so they were going to try to compensate that way…

    Comment by Sean — September 8, 2010 @ 7:27 am | Reply

  2. considering the loss of all the N-car ovals, I think Bernard had to hustle just to keep the oval count as high as it is.

    I think a race at Rockingham would be a great idea, but isn’t that track out in the middle of nowhere?

    Editor’s Note: So’s Iowa. And Kentucky.

    Comment by redd — September 8, 2010 @ 1:35 pm | Reply

  3. I thinks it’s a shame to lose the Chicago race, but the bottom line is, they don’t want an IndyCar race there. Same for Richmond.

    To have 8 ovals and be done with ISC is a heck of a job by Randy Benard. ISC is not IndyCar’s friend. Cudos to him for making it happen. And having the announcement in Milwaukee is brilliant!! This shows the fans of Wisconsin that it’s not just about Indiana, and to be the only race held there for the year, it’s going to be a good crowd.

    Yes, bring back Nashville or talk with Rockingham. It can’t hurt.

    Comment by M. Miller — September 8, 2010 @ 2:40 pm | Reply

  4. I doubt if Nashville will come back, Miller. I heard repeated complaints from the drivers that it was too hard to pass (nothing new there), but that it was basically a one-groove track regardless of how the cars are set up. I don’t think IndyCar misses that one.

    Comment by DOUG — September 9, 2010 @ 3:41 pm | Reply

  5. This year saw the introduction of the Mario Andretti and A.J. Foyt trophies which perhaps is the beginning of a split in the IRL series into 2 schedules, one for road and one for oval races. This seems to mimic the time when USAC ran the Indy cars most always on ovals and the SCCA ran Formula 5000 on road courses. Formula 5000 had road course specialists but also had the use of Indy drivers including the Unsers. Maybe this would be the way to go now and the fans of both types of tracks would have series to follow.

    Comment by J T STEIN — September 11, 2010 @ 4:37 am | Reply

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