This advice is offered in the most heartfelt manner possible. The feelings of many legacy racing fans about temporary circuit racing, particularly on streets, are very well known. It is not racing. It is mostly an abomination. It is a twisted perversion of the purity of the sport. So why are such feelings being ignored?
It has been proven multiple times that the economics of temporary circuit street racing simply do not add up. Cities nearly always end up feeling as if their coffers and taxpayers got fleeced. All you need to do is look at the list of failed venues, including Denver (twice), San Jose and Houston, to understand. How can someone as normally bright as Randy Bernard NOT get this? Why ruin the reputation of INDYCAR by becoming some needless vagabond gypsy carnival as cart and champcar did?
Edmonton has been on shaky ground all year and Baltimore talks a good game, but is finding out the hard way how much it REALLY costs. Enough is enough. Why can’t Long Beach be INDYCAR’s Monaco and let it go at that? The only reason that is successful long term is because the management of it knows what they are doing. St. Pete has never been known as profitable.
Here is a suggestion for dealing with requests from cities who want races. Be like Bernie. Make them build tracks to exact specifications like he is doing in Austin and just like he has done with every other newer F1 venue. Houston is a top 10 market. They need to build a proper track. City streets are not race tracks. Baltimore ought to knock down blighted neighborhoods (no shortage of them) then gentrify with a sports complex that includes a nice permanent race track. That would be money far better spent.
So what is Bernard doing? Meeting with city officials, touring Reliant Park and glad handing. Houston is geographically perfect for a new permanent race track. Why not talk city leaders into building one? How about finding a rich oil man to do it?
Enough with temporary circuits. Cotman, Bernard and crew need to pay more attention to the purity of the sport and forget street racing nonsense once and for all. It is INDYCAR racing. Not some damned circus.