Disciple of INDYCAR Weblog

March 16, 2015

The Disciple Consulting Group for the Indianapolis Motor Speedway: Catching Up To The 21st Century

Filed under: The Disciple Blogs — Disciple of INDYCAR @ 1:25 pm
BCG Cartoons

BCG Cartoons

Attention IMS Management: Please think of the following suggestions as The Boston Consulting Group only without all the pointless graphics and getting fleeced for millions of dollars for no apparent reason.

One of the primary initiatives on Doug Boles’ plate is the long term care and modernization of the 106 year old Indianapolis Motor Speedway. That is a huge challenge. In a previous blog I urged Boles and crew to use a combination of historic IMS photographs and modern retro baseball stadiums as template guides. The biggest aesthetic to retain is the ‘tunnel’ characteristic of turn one with multi-level covered grandstands. At a minimum seats need to be wider and spaced further apart to justify what have become annual increases in price. I wish I could get paid millions of dollars by advising event venue hosts to raise seat prices every year.

Once paying fans have begun occupying the newly spacious and dramatically more expensive seats the next order of business is creature comfort for their increasingly bulbous backsides. Conveniently located concessions and restrooms are really important. Perhaps the most vital aspect of attending fan comfort is integration of technology. Since everyone has a



smart device Verizon is an ideal partner because they can help enable hundreds of thousands of smart devices inside the facility. Ideally IMS should want short attention span attendees paying attention to what is on the track.

That is why a news blurb from Derrick Walker last week is so compelling. Walker alluded to the testing of a 9” X 4” ‘frame’ on every car behind the roll hoop that is integrated to timing and scoring that can show running order, fuel status, color coding (like when a yellow is thrown), etc. That is fascinating and long overdue.

IMS ought to consider taking the LED technology to the next level. It would not have to be Eddie Gossage ‘Big Hoss’ level. At IMS it is better to employ several small displays due to sheer facility size. My grand ideas include:

159332236CC00012_NRA_500-Run a stream of LED elements all the way around the track on both the inside and outside at track level. Primary uses might be for qualifications. When a driver took the green the LED displays would also turn green and circle the track. When a car was on its run the green LED display could trail the car all the way around the track at the same speed as the car. Such technology would be helpful for yellow flags and others; e.g., passing flag approaching start/finish.

-Inside all four turns, embedded into the ground (think of embedded floor TVs at some Red Robin restaurants only modern) would be large HD displays. During the same qualification runs the displays would show trap speed, current lap speed, the average speed of the run and where the car is in the grid. Monitors attached to outside stands and visible from inside seating or grass would carry the same information.

-When not used for statistics video of the runs would be displayed.

-Randy Bernard got it right when he took the visuals on the road. If IMS can figure out a way to do it efficiently and effectively it makes a huge difference at other venues.

-Paying for such technology? Advertising/Sponsorship, of course.

These ideas are merely starting points for a lot of creative uses of new technology. I need to find Doug in the next few months for a brief chat ;-).



  1. (Four instances of nearly identical inane, off topic commentary relocated to comment section of 12/19/13 blog)

    Comment by Olderfan — March 16, 2015 @ 6:41 pm | Reply

  2. (Two instances of off topic commentary relocated to comment section of 12/19/13 blog)

    Comment by Youowemeabeerasshole — March 20, 2015 @ 12:23 am | Reply

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