OK, I promise I won't be too long. This is getting ridiculous, all this posting about the whole IndyCar Board of Directors thing. BUT, a couple articles I read yesterday I think need to be shared. So grab a mug-o-energy and chillax before you have 219 "fun sized" candies tonight while handing them out to the little goblins. One for you, one for me ... Halloween is a festival of body fat and job security for dentists. I gain three pounds, minimum.
ANYWHO, let's talk about a two topics that don't get anyone fired up*, Tony George and a strictly theoretical NASCAR/IndyCar alliance (*denotes sarcasm).
Turns out that, at least according to the offer submitted to the IndyCar Board of Directors, an actual copy of which Jenna obtained because using her journalistic skills, Tony did not propose to run IndyCar as CEO. (Read the story here.) In the story he lists a management team that includes some serious business people and identifies who would be CEO and who would be president of the new IndyCar, and neither of them are Tony George.
As Jenna writes: "Tony George was not trying to regain control of IndyCar for himself in his recent attempt to purchase the series, but rather bring in a new management team to replace the current board of directors, according to a copy of his proposal obtained Monday by The Associated Press."
To me, this information makes a HUGE difference in how I perceive George's attempt, especially given the keystone cop-like operations of the current board, at least as evidenced by the sacking Randy Bernard PR debacle.
Of course the George haters, and they are legion, will say that everyone listed in the management group would be a puppet for Tony, who allegedly wants to regain his fiefdom and gratify his all-consuming lust for power.
For the millionth time, George could soooooooo help his own cause if he would just speak publicly about things. I know for a fact that Jenna Fryer tried hard to get George on record during this whole deal. I'm not sure if it's some sense of propriety (as in "it's not proper for me to discuss a private offer to the board") or contempt for the media or extreme introversion or thinking nobody cars or what that keeps George silent as a sphinx at all times.
But I am sure that when it comes to a sport with lots of super-passionate fans, the silent act is like bringing a knife to a gunfight. And it's tragically horrid public relations. Unfortunate, because I think (based on what his kids, Ed Carpenter and Lauren George say) if Tony George would speak to the media or even do a blog or something to put things in his own words, people's perception of him would change dramatically.
NASCAR & IndyCar, Together for Survival? -- Nate Ryan of USA Today floated out an intriguing idea yesterday -- that NASCAR and IndyCar should consider merging, or as he put it "find relevance together." (Read it here.) Definitely worth a read.
I share Nate's central point that racing's appeal with modern sports fan is eroding, just at different rates in IndyCar and NASCAR. The chorus of "we need a caution" that rise after 35 green-flag laps in NASCAR is a symptom of what Nate is talking about. I previously thought there was no upside at all for NASCAR buying IndyCar and, in fact, that having IndyCar extinct would benefit NASCAR. Nate makes some strong arguments to the contrary. Give it a look.
So there you go. Short(er) and sweet(er). Happy Halloween.