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  • Affordability

    "I'll post this here, because the other thread referenced is really more of a technical fantasy exercise, but every time we talk about big changes or mandates in car design and even participation by those less accustomed to the high speed open wheel oval challenge, I'm also reminded of the unintended consequence of the big bump in frequency and severity of driver injuries during the early days of the IRL. And that those numbers seem to have improved (knock wood)."

    I've taken part of your response from the front engined revisited thread because it applies here too.

    While I have made some proposals for front engined cars, the location of the engine is not the key factor. I would be perfectly happy with not making big changes or mandates in car design or participation by those less accustomed to the high speed open wheel oval challenge.

    I would be perfectly happy with cars that look and run exactly or nearly exactly as what we have now. I personally would prefer a car more like the previous generation IRL car. And I would contend that what we have now actually encourages participation by those without proper experience for those challenges.

    But I also question the legitimacy of your claim of a "big bump in frequency and severity of driver injuries during the early IRL days on a couple of levels.

    1. Do you have actual statistics that would bear out your claim or are you going by anedotal evidence. If you are going by anedotal evidence, do you remember that many of those type of claims were actively pushed by those opposed the anything/everything IRL? Do you remember the internet wars by those on each side who would take any negative whether real or perceived and use it as "proof" that the IRL or CART was (fill in the blank with any or all negative terms you can think of and even make up a few new ones while you are at it."? The fact that there were any injuries/fatalities is enough to warrant trying to improve the breed, but I contend that you'll not have actual statistical evidence of accidents being more frequent or more severe. Please correct me if I am wrong.

    2. Do you not agree that the real intention of most R&D is done to make the cars faster and if that comes with more safety then it's a good thing and will almost surely be tauted as the underlyling reason for the "technical advance" whether it actually was or not?

    3. And would you not also agree that ANY money spent on R&D in order to make the cars faster is a complete waste of time and money since any gains realized will only be taken away by rules changes designed to keep the speeds within a certain range?
    Some people will do nearly anything in order to be able to not do anything.

  • #2
    Originally posted by Lucky161
    1. Do you have actual statistics that would bear out your claim or are you going by anecdotal evidence.
    I think the stats bear this out - I will see if I can pull some you would trust. It's easier for me to research in the evening.
    2. Do you not agree that the real intention of most R&D is done to make the cars faster and if that comes with more safety then it's a good thing and will almost surely be tauted as the underlyling reason for the "technical advance" whether it actually was or not?
    No, I think the IRL itself has spent more on safety research and development than they have on speed. I think speed is up to the teams.
    3. And would you not also agree that ANY money spent on R&D in order to make the cars faster is a complete waste of time and money since any gains realized will only be taken away by rules changes designed to keep the speeds within a certain range?
    No, because how they find that speed keeps changing and makes it interesting. The speed is one thing, yes, and Indy Car is more interesting to me because it's so much faster than the others. But the quest for speed is another element altogether, and I like that competition.

    But, that's just me. I don't care about car counts as much as what kind of cars they are and how fast they are. Adding more back-of-the-packers isn't always a big positive, for me, unless I know somebody or make the rare discovery of a talent that moves up. It can even make it an annoying negative, to me, as a spectator, especially if they make mistakes or just fall too far off the pace.
    "Each day well lived makes every yesterday a dream of happiness and every tomorrow a vision of hope. Look well therefore to this one day for it, and it alone, is life"
    ~ Sanskrit poem attributed to Kalidasa, "Salutation to the Dawn"


    Brian's Wish

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    • #3
      Let's look at Walker Racing, they were being handed a free Dallara, a $1.2 million payment plan to pay for their Honda engine lease and Firestone tire buy and they still can't get enough funding together to go racing.

      Or look at long time Indycar teams like Panther Racing and Rahal Letterman. They have all the equipment to run 2 cars but are both only single car efforts as of today.

      So if teams with all of their equipment paid for and trained personnel in house can't muster a car or extra car on the grid how is a cheaper car going to help them?

      I think you either have to look at increasing sponsor value to attract sponsors willing to pay more or you have to look at cutting all team costs including number of personnel, types of testing allowed (or ban all testing), engine lease or purchase cost, etc, etc.

      The DP01 was supposed to herald a new era of cost effective racing and CCWS still folded because the teams and venues just didn't bring in enough revenue to keep going.
      Thanks Downforce!

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Qdoba Addict
        Let's look at Walker Racing, they were being handed a free Dallara, a $1.2 million payment plan to pay for their Honda engine lease and Firestone tire buy and they still can't get enough funding together to go racing.

        Or look at long time Indycar teams like Panther Racing and Rahal Letterman. They have all the equipment to run 2 cars but are both only single car efforts as of today.

        So if teams with all of their equipment paid for and trained personnel in house can't muster a car or extra car on the grid how is a cheaper car going to help them?

        I think you either have to look at increasing sponsor value to attract sponsors willing to pay more or you have to look at cutting all team costs including number of personnel, types of testing allowed (or ban all testing), engine lease or purchase cost, etc, etc.

        The DP01 was supposed to herald a new era of cost effective racing and CCWS still folded because the teams and venues just didn't bring in enough revenue to keep going.
        It's because car costs and engine costs are just part of the equation and as high as they are they are no longer the most expensive part. But the high cost of cars and engines is what drove the other part to be so expensive. What's that other part? Employees and expenses for employees. So if you bring down the car costs and engine costs it will be much harder to justify those kind of personel costs. The fact that Walker was offered an expensive car for free is only a one time savings that does nothing to adjust those other costs.

        If the DP01 even at it's lower cost is still so expensive that the teams cannot generate enough revenue to keep going then their costs are still too high. Anyone that is happy with the pathetic fields that open wheel has been offering up for the last few years as top level racing should probably be happy with the way things are.
        Some people will do nearly anything in order to be able to not do anything.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Turn13
          I think the stats bear this out - I will see if I can pull some you would trust. It's easier for me to research in the evening.No, I think the IRL itself has spent more on safety research and development than they have on speed. I think speed is up to the teams.No, because how they find that speed keeps changing and makes it interesting. The speed is one thing, yes, and Indy Car is more interesting to me because it's so much faster than the others. But the quest for speed is another element altogether, and I like that competition.

          But, that's just me. I don't care about car counts as much as what kind of cars they are and how fast they are. Adding more back-of-the-packers isn't always a big positive, for me, unless I know somebody or make the rare discovery of a talent that moves up. It can even make it an annoying negative, to me, as a spectator, especially if they make mistakes or just fall too far off the pace.
          1. Don't bother. Since you answered no to 2 and 3, it doesn't matter what you find.

          2. Ok that's just you. You are happy with small fields and senseless ( to me) R&D. We don't have anything else to discuss on this topic. Have a nice day.
          Some people will do nearly anything in order to be able to not do anything.

          Comment


          • #6
            I'm not convinced there is a direct correlation between car cost and team size at this level of racing. If you called up Penske, Ganassi and Andretti and told them their $450k Dallaras were being replaced with $80k brand X cars I doubt they'd fire a single person if the rulebook remained the same. In fact they might hire even more people to ramp up R&D on the new cars.

            Now if you are proposing say banning all forms of off track testing such as wind tunnel, shaker rig and shock dyno that might cause a reduction in force at the teams. Make everybody use a spec gearbox would save money for teams. Mandating all sponsor logos be stickers instead of painted on could cut down on a painter. Not allowing any changes to body work such as the trick mirrors that got developed a couple of years back would be a cost cutter as well.

            But what exactly happened that caused engine leases to enter the series in the first place? I'm a new fan and a bit fuzzy on that.
            Thanks Downforce!

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Qdoba Addict
              But what exactly happened that caused engine leases to enter the series in the first place? I'm a new fan and a bit fuzzy on that.
              Owners like Carl Haas who'd rather win by making a back room deal than on the track got control of the sport. Basically, CART happened.
              I wish I knew - Dennis "Cutty" Wise

              When its game time, it's pain time! - Terrible Terry Tate

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Qdoba Addict
                ...

                But what exactly happened that caused engine leases to enter the series in the first place? I'm a new fan and a bit fuzzy on that.
                The only way Toyota or Honda would enter the series was if they could institute their proprietary engine leasing deals they had run within the CART series.

                The cause and effect of the decision to let them in went something like this:

                T and H engine lease deals were more expensive than the Chevy motors but the Chevy motors turned out to be slugs right out of the box.

                There was no incentive programs back then so several teams faded and others cut back cars.

                A few of the Chevy teams didn't add cars to their Indy effort. IIRC, Menard complained that there was no point in running additional cars for the 500 when they'd be back markers anyway with the Chevy HP disadvantage.

                On the plus side, in exchange for T & H involvement, they both agreed to pour vast amounts of money into marketing for the series. It didn't do a whole lotta good.

                By mid season, Chevy was forced to save face by badging the Cosworth version of the IRL engine. Known commonly as the Chevworth.

                Even if T & H had never entered the series in 2003, there was a real question as to how many IRL teams from the 2002 season were financially healthy enough to buy the new generation equipment required for 2003. It's quite possible that had Tony not relaxed the rules as they pertained to leasing, that he would've had to prop up the car count out of his own pocket. T & H and the ex-CART teams on their financial tits eliminated that scenario.
                Trump, he's one of the nicest, most decent human beings possibly ever to walk the planet..

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Indyknut
                  On the plus side, in exchange for T & H involvement, they both agreed to pour vast amounts of money into marketing for the series. It didn't do a whole lotta good.
                  Seven million isn't exactly a "vast amount" and Chevy signed on the dotted line also.

                  Even if T & H had never entered the series in 2003, there was a real question as to how many IRL teams from the 2002 season were financially healthy enough to buy the new generation equipment required for 2003.
                  Funny how all those teams managed to show up before costly engine leases.

                  It's quite possible that had Tony not relaxed the rules as they pertained to leasing, that he would've had to prop up the car count out of his own pocket. T & H and the ex-CART teams on their financial tits eliminated that scenario.
                  No rules were "relaxed" or changed.
                  I wish I knew - Dennis "Cutty" Wise

                  When its game time, it's pain time! - Terrible Terry Tate

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    1. T and H engine lease deals were more expensive than the Chevy motors but the Chevy motors turned out to be slugs right out of the box.

                    2. Menard complained that there was no point in running additional cars for the 500 when they'd be back markers anyway with the Chevy HP disadvantage.

                    3. On the plus side, in exchange for T & H involvement, they both agreed to pour vast amounts of money into marketing for the series. It didn't do a whole lotta good.

                    4. Even if T & H had never entered the series in 2003, there was a real question as to how many IRL teams from the 2002 season were financially healthy enough to buy the new generation equipment required for 2003
                    1. No, Chevy made the engines like the IRL originally wanted them to. When Toyota and Honda, predictably, blew the roof off the price ceiling, Chevy was left with a dog engine. It was also about this time, that people like Herb Porter and John Menard were squeezed out, leaving Chevy to fend for themselves. And, Chevy will never beat Honda and Toyota in that kind of "fight".

                    2. He was right. Plus, the REAL IRL, as Menard and others had known it was gone anyway. No need to keep wasting money on a series that was catering to others.

                    3. Its hard to polish (or market) a terd.

                    4. Yes. So instead, Honda and Toyota helped run off several teams/drivers/sponsors, with their CART-like prices, and ended up getting the numbers down to the numbers, both full-time and at Indy, that benefitted their company, teams and drivers. Same basic thing happened in CART.
                    IRL 2009: "Cars you can't see, driven by drivers you have never heard of, on a network you don't get"

                    "I'd hire your grandmother, if she brought a budget"- Bankrupt Indy Car team owner Tyler Tadevic, to Curt Cavin in December, on the tough standards he looks for when "hiring" driver talent.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Sorry Lucky161 for derailing your thread so badly with the question about engine leases. Thanks guys for more information on the situation.
                      Thanks Downforce!

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by don7031
                        .

                        No rules were "relaxed" or changed.
                        The IRL never enforced their rule about a manufacturer having two developmental teams. Honda had AGR (HPD) and Penske ran his (Illmor) built Toyota exclusively. They further bent rules when a single Chevworth was rolled out for a couple of races.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I'll try not to further derail Lucky161's thread, but what I see above is distortions of the truth and just more partisan rhetoric.

                          3. And would you not also agree that ANY money spent on R&D in order to make the cars faster is a complete waste of time and money since any gains realized will only be taken away by rules changes designed to keep the speeds within a certain range?
                          If that R&D gets a team more wins than other teams, the money spent is certainly NOT a waste of time (at least to that team). The basic premise of racing is to go faster than the other guys, and that includes equipment, driver and tactics.

                          The only way to STOP the R&D is for the series to completely own and maintain the cars, and hand them out by random draw at each event, a la the late IROC. No suspension adjustment allowed, everybody gets the same and the individual teams can't even adjust toe.

                          Of course, even that won't stop it as the teams would do R&D to figure out how to make quicker pitstops.

                          The amount of money spent on R&D is largely determined by sponsorship, which in turn is determined by the sponsors' perceived ROI. And the real way to make the series grow is concentrate primarily on increasing ROI, not decreasing costs..spending all your effort on decreasing costs is a good short term survival strategy, but won't grow the series long term (racing ain't like your normal for profit business). You want low costs....heck put 'em all in Star Pro Mazdas...and watch the series sink into oblivion...but you'll have low costs)
                          BAN SHREDDED CHEESE! MAKE AMERICA GRATE AGAIN!

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Jimmy Hendricks
                            When Toyota and Honda, predictably, blew the roof off the price ceiling...

                            ...people like Herb Porter and John Menard were squeezed out...
                            Can you post anything to support either of these, a quote or an article or something?

                            Blew the price ceiling?

                            Squeezed out?

                            Thanks!
                            "Each day well lived makes every yesterday a dream of happiness and every tomorrow a vision of hope. Look well therefore to this one day for it, and it alone, is life"
                            ~ Sanskrit poem attributed to Kalidasa, "Salutation to the Dawn"


                            Brian's Wish

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Turn13
                              Can you post anything to support either of these, a quote or an article or something?

                              Blew the price ceiling?

                              Squeezed out?

                              Thanks!
                              2002 1st IRL race- 26 entries
                              2003 1st IRL race- 21 entries

                              2002 Indy 500- 42 car/driver combos
                              2003 Indy 500- 33 car/driver combos
                              IRL 2009: "Cars you can't see, driven by drivers you have never heard of, on a network you don't get"

                              "I'd hire your grandmother, if she brought a budget"- Bankrupt Indy Car team owner Tyler Tadevic, to Curt Cavin in December, on the tough standards he looks for when "hiring" driver talent.

                              Comment

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