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  • History repeating itself...

    I realize there are extremely divergent opinions amongst the posters on this board re: what's right and what's wrong with IndyCar, and each person is entitled to their opinions.

    If Randy is paying attention (which it doesn't appear that he really is), he'd reflect about what transpired with CART and the IRL - the series with all ovals triumphed (admittedly a bit of an overstatement) over the mostly road/street series. And, where are we now headed??

    Key points that really need to be addressed going forward:

    - oval races need to be at least 400 miles (at the 1.5 mile and larger tracks) - not enough fans will take the better part of a day and the cost to go see an event that only lasts 90 minutes. At the shorter ovals, make them 300 milers, or whatever works out to be a 2.5-3.0 hour event - MAKE IT WORTH THE TROUBLE TO ATTEND!!! For crying out loud, with the cost, parking hassles, and departure hassles at most tracks, who the heck is gonna go for a 90-120 minute event??? From the looks of the grandstands, not many!
    - the triple crown of three 500 miles needs to be reinstated - it will generate interest, guaranteed
    - the formula must be addressed to create the ability to pass on high speed ovals - the cars are so underpowered it's a joke (ala, Danica's struggle to get past TK - while that was fun to watch, it shows how restricted the cars are). Less downforce would put it more in the drivers hands as well.
    - natural roads courses (a few of them) would be fine for the schedule, but the street courses that are simply parades (or a wreck waiting to happen whenever anybody tries to make a pass) hold very little interest - I can't sit there and watch the boredom - and now there are way too many of them... great way to drive away the casual fan - why would a casual fan watch something with no competition for the lead - no passing? Those passes for the lead in the pits are oh so compelling!! NOT!
    - Get the SPEED back into IndyCar!! Nothing would do more for IndyCar than a new track record at Indianapolis. Yeah, the whiny drivers today are too scared (why do so many of them profess their love for road/street courses - less speed, less chance to be injured - but given the opportunity there would be a breed of driver that would jump at the chance. Those kind of guys are the ones who were the heroes of the 50s-60s-70s-80s that people still idolize - and who falls into that category now, I ask...? And sure, there's a bit more risk that comes with a few more mph - but quite frankly they go fast enough now that the same thing could happen - it just hasn't yet. But Mario could have easily gotten over the fence with his practice fiasco several years ago.
    - well, enough venting from me - I know none of this will happen.

    I've attended every Indy 500 from 1967 til this year, many Kentucky races, and a couple of Michigan 500's. I've maintained a sense of optimism that IndyCar would eventually regain a lot of its prior popularity, but through this year, and now looking to next year and beyond, I have finally gotten to the point where I think it's just a matter of time before it all ends in some fashion. A race series can't continue to race on an obscure network in front of nearly empty grandstands forever - and that's where it now is, and it looks like it's getting much worse...

    Sorry to be doom and gloom but I've been reasonably optimistic since 1996, but the optimism has about dried up....

  • #2
    To expound upon what you've stated.

    I agree with the oval suggestions. I've also attended many races at Indy, Michigan, Chicago and Kentucky and have to admit that 90-120 minute events are just too darn short. Used to love the 500 miler at Michigan. Gauranteed 3 hour event with great racing. I realize TV has some influence on race lengths but come on, we're talking Versus here.

    If Street events are necessary, then limit those to the 90-120 minute window. Street races are popular because they are an event, not so much a race.

    At the short ovals, more support races prior to the main event would make it worth the price of admission.

    Comment


    • #3
      The IRL was far from an all ovals series in 2008. Get a clue.

      Randy IS and has PROVEN that he is listening to fans. The current situation has NOTHING to do with CART, and frankly not much with Tony George anymore.

      Time to move on.

      Comment


      • #4
        Here we go again.......

        Comment


        • #5
          It seems to me that IndyCar is just about to kill itself completely. Think about this:

          Nascar does not want ANY competition. Speed channel is essentially "Nascarvision". They employ RM - who hates TG with a passion ( and TG's IRL ). RM wants to wipe the world clean of the memory of the IRL. Randy is listenig to RM and remaking IndyCar in RM's vision of the failed CART. There is NO WAY Randy should have hired Cotman. He should also dispatch BB. We need a new fresh start with new people. Cotman has already turned this into CART - push to pass, red tires, and now we'll get standing starts !!! Its just so exciting !!!( sarcasm ). And lets not forget that pathetic shootout for the pole they gave us in May. With real speed this would not be needed.

          If you look at the interviews after the Chicago race, RHR and others were frightened. He does not belong in an IndyCar. The RC drivers are scared to death of speed, and have no interest in chasing real speed. Indycar racing was built on chasing speed. So without that element you simply have an exhibition. And that will NOT draw newer fans.

          We need more SPEED. I agree we need more ovals - bigger tracks with longer races. I think we got screwed on the Texas race next year. We used to have 2 amazing races each year, then we only had one. Now they have cut that in half and are counting it as 2 !! You have to be kidding me ! And that triple crown needs to return and be legitimate (not the I500 and a RC and a SC ), three large long ovals. You are right, who wants to drive 2+ hours there and another 2+ back to watch a 90 minute race ? It makes no sense.

          Comment


          • #6
            wonder if randy has ever considered if the biggest problem indycar has is the "fans"
            http://danwheldon.shutterfly.com/

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by 9rows View Post
              wonder if randy has ever considered if the biggest problem indycar has is the "fans"
              yups that's the biggest problem those gosh dang fans don't know what good is... just force feed them this gunk until they love it.
              that's the ticket..
              returning to the days of ignorant bliss..

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by andyville99 View Post
                I've attended every Indy 500 from 1967 til this year, many Kentucky races, and a couple of Michigan 500's. I've maintained a sense of optimism that IndyCar would eventually regain a lot of its prior popularity, but through this year, and now looking to next year and beyond, I have finally gotten to the point where I think it's just a matter of time before it all ends in some fashion. A race series can't continue to race on an obscure network in front of nearly empty grandstands forever - and that's where it now is, and it looks like it's getting much worse...
                I don't agree with your suggested fixes, but I do agree with your final assessment.

                A problem with your analysis is that the ovals (with the exception of Indy) are generally the worst attended and least watched. As odd as this seems, I'd limit the ovals to Indy, Texas, Iowa, and possibly Milwaukee (add Motegi if Honda is paying the way). After that I'd go where people will watch. That likely means all street and road courses - Barber, Long Beach, St. Pete, Rio, etc.

                Unfortunately, I expect New Hampshire and Las Vegas/Fontana to be complete flops. I think Nascar has won the oval war.
                Indy, Cleveland, Mid-Ohio, Pocono, Michigan, Long Beach, Watkins Glen, Kentucky, Milwaukee, Road America, Iowa, Gateway, IRP - 70

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by andyville99 View Post

                  the series with all ovals triumphed (admittedly a bit of an overstatement) over the mostly road/street series. ..
                  I understand that everyone is entitled to an opinion, but nobody "triumphed" over anyone.

                  We all lost , a lot. There's no case to be made that anyone triumphed.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by andyville99 View Post
                    - Get the SPEED back into IndyCar!! Nothing would do more for IndyCar than a new track record at Indianapolis.
                    ...
                    Not gonna happen, and several Indianapolis 500 winners disagree with you.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by R22 View Post
                      yups that's the biggest problem those gosh dang fans don't know what good is... just force feed them this gunk until they love it.
                      that's the ticket..
                      I think 9rows point is well taken, perhaps not presented the way I would have.

                      The fact is ..a MAJOR company chose not to invest and spend a TON of money in the IndyCar Series due to the "fractured fan base not knowing what they want".

                      It really is time for people to get over the ridiculous and unnecessary split and either try and advance the ball or punt.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by andyville99 View Post
                        I realize there are extremely divergent opinions amongst the posters on this board re: what's right and what's wrong with IndyCar, and each person is entitled to their opinions.

                        If Randy is paying attention (which it doesn't appear that he really is), he'd reflect about what transpired with CART and the IRL - the series with all ovals triumphed (admittedly a bit of an overstatement) over the mostly road/street series. And, where are we now headed??

                        Key points that really need to be addressed going forward:

                        - oval races need to be at least 400 miles (at the 1.5 mile and larger tracks) - not enough fans will take the better part of a day and the cost to go see an event that only lasts 90 minutes. At the shorter ovals, make them 300 milers, or whatever works out to be a 2.5-3.0 hour event - MAKE IT WORTH THE TROUBLE TO ATTEND!!! For crying out loud, with the cost, parking hassles, and departure hassles at most tracks, who the heck is gonna go for a 90-120 minute event??? From the looks of the grandstands, not many!
                        - the triple crown of three 500 miles needs to be reinstated - it will generate interest, guaranteed
                        - the formula must be addressed to create the ability to pass on high speed ovals - the cars are so underpowered it's a joke (ala, Danica's struggle to get past TK - while that was fun to watch, it shows how restricted the cars are). Less downforce would put it more in the drivers hands as well.
                        - natural roads courses (a few of them) would be fine for the schedule, but the street courses that are simply parades (or a wreck waiting to happen whenever anybody tries to make a pass) hold very little interest - I can't sit there and watch the boredom - and now there are way too many of them... great way to drive away the casual fan - why would a casual fan watch something with no competition for the lead - no passing? Those passes for the lead in the pits are oh so compelling!! NOT!
                        - Get the SPEED back into IndyCar!! Nothing would do more for IndyCar than a new track record at Indianapolis. Yeah, the whiny drivers today are too scared (why do so many of them profess their love for road/street courses - less speed, less chance to be injured - but given the opportunity there would be a breed of driver that would jump at the chance. Those kind of guys are the ones who were the heroes of the 50s-60s-70s-80s that people still idolize - and who falls into that category now, I ask...? And sure, there's a bit more risk that comes with a few more mph - but quite frankly they go fast enough now that the same thing could happen - it just hasn't yet. But Mario could have easily gotten over the fence with his practice fiasco several years ago.
                        - well, enough venting from me - I know none of this will happen.

                        I've attended every Indy 500 from 1967 til this year, many Kentucky races, and a couple of Michigan 500's. I've maintained a sense of optimism that IndyCar would eventually regain a lot of its prior popularity, but through this year, and now looking to next year and beyond, I have finally gotten to the point where I think it's just a matter of time before it all ends in some fashion. A race series can't continue to race on an obscure network in front of nearly empty grandstands forever - and that's where it now is, and it looks like it's getting much worse...

                        Sorry to be doom and gloom but I've been reasonably optimistic since 1996, but the optimism has about dried up....

                        And by the way, no, history is not repeating itself currently. Right now you don't have two sides so arrogant that they can't come to an agreement gearing up for a silly and unnecessary war/split.

                        It took 15 plus years to damage IndyCar racing. It's gonna take a few to repair it.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          About the only thing that has not been discussed recently that is valid, imo, is the length of the races. Certainly, I think there could be some discussions there about getting some longer events. But keep in mind that those decisions cannot happen in a vacuum. It will have to involve TV, Honda, and Firestone plus the teams to find if there is something they can tweak without increasing costs, or at what price the change incurs.

                          The complaints about the speeds, raceability, and operational costs are hopefully already being addressed by the 2012 car. It is way too early to say whether or not it will work, but I cannot agree with any statement that says they are at least attempting to address that combination of issues.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Since83 View Post
                            A problem with your analysis is that the ovals (with the exception of Indy) are generally the worst attended and least watched.
                            That could be because that is where the desired target is missed by the widest margin.

                            Maybe the road races (and perhaps most expecially the street races) are not as far from being acceptable - the teams and talent being more appropriate or at least not as unappealing to road and street fans as the oval races are to oval fans. Street fans just want a DP01, and that's about it, oval fans want a whole new ethos

                            Making overtures to the oval racing crowd back in '96 definitely drew an audience that added to the stats for attendance that CART was achieving. This documented fact* is accompanied by overwhelming anecdotal evidence on the forums. That it wasn't sustained I suspect was more attributable to the overall atmosphere of the Split - the same thing happened to CART during the same time frame. Even though they were each appealing to their niche audiences, the overall popular public appeal was lost due to the perception of politics and the uncertainty among sponsors, manufacturers, venues, and other constituents. Understandably so.

                            I suspect the key is, as it was pre-Split, to re-connect the teams and their talent, as well as the venues and specs, to that which has the most popular appeal, and to "bite the bullet", so to speak, on accepting the various subsidies that may serve very short-term needs of individual teams or persons or events.

                            Might as well. How much worse can it get? I don't see the current efforts surviving the Centennial celebrations. Hopefully, it will work out better this time without the two split series acrimony and confusion. We "existing" faithful fans need to be sure to appreciate what we can get, and not antagonize the "other side", because right now we need all we can get from both. It's triage, not cosmetic surgery

                            *Search my user name + "Goodyear stats" for the link
                            "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 lotuspoweredbyford View Post
                              And by the way, no, history is not repeating itself currently. Right now you don't have two sides so arrogant that they can't come to an agreement gearing up for a silly and unnecessary war/split.

                              It took 15 plus years to damage IndyCar racing. It's gonna take a few to repair it.
                              I've said that myself several times and I wish more people would understand that. It going to take time, a sold plan, and good leadership. I believe we have all 3 right now and now the fans have to show some patience.
                              I'd rather have 10% of the world interested in the ICS than 50% of US that NASCAR currently has

                              Comment

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