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Chip Ganassi Racing in Shambles


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#51 Ross Stonefeld

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Posted 02 July 2008 - 14:06

I thought Franchitti got taken out at the start in 1997.

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#52 red stick

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Posted 02 July 2008 - 14:07

Curt Cavin on Dario returning to IndyCar. Not gonna happen.

http://blogs.indysta...n_and_dani.html


Incidently, if you're an IndyCar fan you should check Cavin out once a week or so. The blog is pretty good.

#53 BMW_F1

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Posted 02 July 2008 - 14:16

I just found out John Fernandez, ex-Managing Director at CGR, was one of the 70 employees who got the boot.
Apparently it came as a surprise to him..

#54 Flat Black

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Posted 02 July 2008 - 14:28

Cavin supplies the what, but not the why on that question. What I want to know is why Dario will not return to Indycars. Is it really because they frighten him, as some in this thread have implied?

#55 MacFan

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Posted 02 July 2008 - 14:29

Originally posted by Dmitriy_Guller

You're going to need a lot more than that. His long-term record is in Indycars, not NASCAR, so it doesn't do much to prove that he doesn't suck in NASCAR, which is what the discussion was about.


Nice attempt at revising what you said, which was "But you're ignoring the fact that Franchitti really sucks." No NASCAR in that sentence.

And speaking of his long-term record, it is not particularly impressive given that he spent ten years in top of the line teams. Yes, he was a good driver in Indycars, but was never the top dog. His long-term record suggests that while he may perform well if the stars are aligned, Dario is definitely not the quickest driver on his feet in challenging situations. He's David Coulthard of Indycar.


Dude - you do know he won the Indy 500 & the IRL last year? He also tied for the CART championship in 1999 (3rd year in the series), only losing on a win countback, he was often faster than Schneider in DTM/WTC in 1995/1996, despite having no previous tin-top experience. If it hadn't been for injuries at unfortunate times in 2000 & 2003 he could have had a couple more titles, he may not have been quite as good as Montoya in single seaters, but I can't think of anybody in IRL or CART/Champcar who's demonstrably better.

I don't know how much testing he's had in a Sprint Cup car, but given that the sponsorship money fell through pretty early on in the deal, I wouldn't imagine he's had a fair crack at it.

#56 McGuire

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Posted 02 July 2008 - 14:43

Originally posted by BMW_F1
I just found out John Fernandez, ex-Managing Director at CGR, was one of the 70 employees who got the boot.
Apparently it came as a surprise to him..


yep, I like John but I found his quote a bit amazing... to the effect that he knew the Dario car had sponsorship issues, but he didn't think things were THAT bad. If Chip reads that item -- and I know he will -- first, smoke is going to come out of his ears; and second, he is going to decide he made the right call.

#57 F1Fanatic.co.uk

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Posted 02 July 2008 - 14:55

Originally posted by red stick
Curt Cavin on Dario returning to IndyCar. Not gonna happen.

A pity but not a surprise.

#58 Dmitriy_Guller

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Posted 03 July 2008 - 00:11

Originally posted by MacFan


Nice attempt at revising what you said, which was "But you're ignoring the fact that Franchitti really sucks." No NASCAR in that sentence.

Are you trying to pick a fight or something? I didn't feel like I needed to specify that I was talking about Dario's stock car abilities, as we were discussing the possibility of him getting the Childress ride. Since Childress races in NASCAR, and NASCAR is a stock car racing series, it's Dario's stock car skills which are relevant for the discussion. I didn't foresee the possibility of someone inserting themselves into the discussion trying to nitpick my posts and reading my mind, and for that I take full blame.

#59 F1Fanatic.co.uk

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Posted 03 July 2008 - 08:24

Ganassi offers Franchitti Indy Car return

He's got his choice. If he wants to drive the Nationwide car to get some more experience and maybe we'll get a sponsor for next year, or whether he wants to go back to the IRL, is up to Dario - he has a contract and we intend to honour it [...] At the end of the day I think he will get in the Nationwide car, he needs more seat time anyway.



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#60 Denier

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Posted 03 July 2008 - 10:22

Franchitti's thoughts:

"This is not a decision he made lightly, and it shows how bad the economy is," Franchitti told The Associated Press. "And you certainly never want to see all those people lose their jobs. I know for certain Chip struggled with that -- I didn't even recognize his voice when he called me to tell me what he had to do. But the decision has been made and now I'll sit with Chip next week and decide what we're going to do going forward."

Ganassi's got sponsorship on his Nationwide Series car, and has offered Franchitti that seat going forward. Ganassi also has successful teams in the IRL and Grand Am Series. Franchitti wasn't sure Wednesday what he'll do next. "Let's see what the future holds. I really just need to sit with Chip and see where his head is," he said. "But NASCAR is where I want to be. I want to be successful here and I certainly don't want it to end like this. I made a big commitment coming over here and I'd like to get in an opportunity to be successful."

Franchitti said he'll skip Saturday night's race in Daytona and, after briefly considering returning to England to watch the British Grand Prix, decided to stay at his Nashville, Tenn., home this weekend clearing his head.

He doesn't regret leaving the IRL for NASCAR. "When I made the decision to come here, I wasn't going to do the IndyCar thing anymore so this isn't a case of missing out on what could have been in Indy cars," Franchitti said. "That just wasn't a direction I wanted to go in. Never say never, but it's unlikely I'll go back."

He's also not sure about moving to Grand-Am, where Ganassi drivers Memo Rojas and Scott Pruett are leading the standings.

For now, he's waiting to see what Ganassi has available for him and is hopeful something can be worked out in NASCAR.

Although the results don't show it, Franchitti and his team had made slow progress since he returned from his broken ankle four races ago. He started a career-best seventh last week in New Hampshire, but finished 38th.(Associated Press)(7-3-2008)



#61 MacFan

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Posted 03 July 2008 - 14:37

Originally posted by Dmitriy_Guller

Are you trying to pick a fight or something?


No, it just really annoys me when somebody says "Driver X sucks" when they quite clearly don't.

#62 McGuire

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Posted 03 July 2008 - 16:49

Originally posted by MacFan


No, it just really annoys me when somebody says "Driver X sucks" when they quite clearly don't.


Racer X does suck.

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#63 OfficeLinebacker

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Posted 03 July 2008 - 18:58

If Dario is really committed to staying in NASCAR, WTH is he doing staying at home for a race?

I don't get it--I imagine a really committed driver would still be at the track, sitting on a pit box, ready to sub in at a moment's notice.

#64 Spunout

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Posted 03 July 2008 - 19:00

Originally posted by OfficeLinebacker
If Dario is really committed to staying in NASCAR, WTH is he doing staying at home for a race?

I don't get it--I imagine a really committed driver would still be at the track, sitting on a pit box, ready to sub in at a moment's notice.


Let´s see. If Juan Pablo Montoya lost his ride, would he still be at the track...hanging around, sitting on a pit box, ready to sub in at moment´s notice?

#65 Nathan

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Posted 04 July 2008 - 00:56

Chip seems to be getting a hard time here. I don't think Dario went into this season not knowing the score himself.

#66 OfficeLinebacker

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Posted 04 July 2008 - 01:58

Originally posted by Spunout


Let´s see. If Juan Pablo Montoya lost his ride, would he still be at the track...hanging around, sitting on a pit box, ready to sub in at moment´s notice?


I don't know. Why do you ask?

#67 Denier

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Posted 04 July 2008 - 02:29

Lesson: you do not bring a driver into NASCAR and throw him directly into Sprint Cup.

When a driver takes his lumps in front of 20 million people who have barely heard of him, they think he sucks after one year, no sponsors will touch him, and he is done.

I have said it again and again. Scott Speed is doing this the RIGHT way. He is in ARCA and in Truck Series taking his lumps, winning some races and getting ready to impress. He is not in such a hurry that he is a going to destroy his future in NASCAR.

I think open-wheelers can transition to NASCAR without a doubt, but going straight to Cup is insanity. Chip does not understand how to develop drivers. He threw Reed Sorenson into Cup too quickly; he has done it again and again. I just do not think he knows how to manage a NASCAR team. Frankly, I think that if he was serious about NASCAR he would forget about IRL and the other series he bothers with. How many successful NASCAR teams have cars in other series? NASCAR is such a bigger deal than those series.... focus on stock cars or get lost. You can't be good at everything. Thinking, "I am good at one thing, therefore I can be good at everything" has led to the demise of several companies. Focus on what you are good at or die.

Actually, by that logic, Ganassi should pull out of NASCAR and just stick with dominating IRL. Maybe this is not a bad idea. I do think it is a bad idea to run both. Pick one. Focus all of your resources on it.

#68 Ross Stonefeld

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Posted 04 July 2008 - 04:14

They're not shit in NASCAR, it's just a very difficult series.

#69 OfficeLinebacker

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Posted 04 July 2008 - 05:41

It's possible to do both.

However I agree that perhaps Chip's management toolset isn't well suited to NASCAR. He'd do better to be a silent partner/absentee owner.

Look Richard Childress has been on a safari in Africa when one of his drivers won a Cup race.

There's got to be someone like a Ray Evernham that could just take over, competition wise. Chip can still be the mastermind/sponsor getter.

I agree, it's a VERY difficult series. It's really the cream of the cream of the crop of Yankee ingenuity. I would argue that NASCAR:F1 as USA:"the rest of the world." The absolute top of the food chain in terms of competitive effort and ability.

Not trying to take sides here, both have their merits, both are amazing showcases of the absolute desire for speed, and to win.

#70 whitewaterMkII

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Posted 04 July 2008 - 05:52

Originally posted by Ross Stonefeld
They're not shit in NASCAR, it's just a very difficult series.

Even Penske, while dominating USOW, has extreme diffuculty in NASCAR, and he even has Ilmor doing his engines.

#71 Ross Stonefeld

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Posted 04 July 2008 - 07:02

I think we need a different perspective on the 40 anyways. That car was dead in the water last summer. I think bringing Dario in was a shrewd but at the same time overly optimistic move on Chip's part. He didn't have a sponsor and he didn't have much in the way of results. Take a chance on a guy you know is good, who has a recogniseable CV, and a famous wife and hope you get lucky with sponsors and/or results.

It's not like the 40 was mis-managed into oblivion, they just tried a Hail Mary and it didn't work.