Jump to content


Photo
- - - - -

How to get IndyCar stronger again


  • Please log in to reply
91 replies to this topic

#51 Ross Stonefeld

Ross Stonefeld
  • Member

  • 56,824 posts
  • Joined: August 99

Posted 29 December 2013 - 22:55

On average I think the street races put on a 'better race' than the road courses. I'm far more entertained by them.



Advertisement

#52 917k

917k
  • Member

  • 2,570 posts
  • Joined: April 01

Posted 29 December 2013 - 23:21

On average I think the street races put on a 'better race' than the road courses. I'm far more entertained by them.

How many have remained viable though? Long Beach and.............

 

I can list 20 + CART / Champcar / Indycar failures -seems the wrong model to try to follow, IMO.



#53 Prost1997T

Prost1997T
  • Member

  • 1,780 posts
  • Joined: July 11

Posted 30 December 2013 - 00:01

Toronto's been on the schedule a long time as well (mid 80s). Detroit had a couple of gaps, but it's been around a while in some guise or another for 20+ years (starting with the F1 race). Of course Indy and Milwaukee have been around longer, and Texas Motor Speedway is getting up there in years as well.

 

You may as well ask why F1 went to Korea or is trying to get into New Jersey or Thailand or random Middle Eastern country.


Edited by Prost1997T, 30 December 2013 - 00:02.


#54 teejay

teejay
  • Member

  • 3,578 posts
  • Joined: May 09

Posted 30 December 2013 - 00:09

The thing is I suspect that these cars would put on AWESOME racing at Road America - truly one of the worlds greatest tracks.

 

So why dont they go back?



#55 HaydenFan

HaydenFan
  • Member

  • 2,038 posts
  • Joined: February 09

Posted 30 December 2013 - 01:28

The thing is I suspect that these cars would put on AWESOME racing at Road America - truly one of the worlds greatest tracks.

 

So why dont they go back?

 

I think the series has burned bridges with many race circuits. Road America has said or IndyCar has said (cannot recall who said what) they want a race to happen, but nothing is working out. 



#56 Ross Stonefeld

Ross Stonefeld
  • Member

  • 56,824 posts
  • Joined: August 99

Posted 30 December 2013 - 02:21

Not enough people attend to make the races worth it.



#57 DanicaFan

DanicaFan
  • Member

  • 686 posts
  • Joined: June 10

Posted 30 December 2013 - 02:24

Some things they need to do are...

 

Lose the overseas international races idea. This is NOT financially feasible with the state the series is currently in.

They need more oval races here in the states.

They need more household or well-known names in the series.

 

 



#58 917k

917k
  • Member

  • 2,570 posts
  • Joined: April 01

Posted 30 December 2013 - 02:56

Toronto's been on the schedule a long time as well (mid 80s). Detroit had a couple of gaps, but it's been around a while in some guise or another for 20+ years (starting with the F1 race). Of course Indy and Milwaukee have been around longer, and Texas Motor Speedway is getting up there in years as well.

 

You may as well ask why F1 went to Korea or is trying to get into New Jersey or Thailand or random Middle Eastern country.

 

Street races can work with big subsidies or lucrative title sponsorships. IndyCar can't really muster those at the moment. There is a reason that the 2014 schedule has a record low number of venues [and 3 double-headers], no one is wiling to pay the sanction fee at the moment.

 

I'm sure if COTA, Road America or any other venue could make money on the deal, they would jump at it, as would the series. Right now, they ask for too much with too little in return.



#59 boyRacer

boyRacer
  • Member

  • 641 posts
  • Joined: September 03

Posted 30 December 2013 - 03:18

Indycars make F1 cars look beautiful... which is quite a feat.

 

Just rewind 18 years or so...

 

http://www.youtube.c...h?v=NGuE-iwJljQ



Advertisement

#60 PayasYouRace

PayasYouRace
  • Member

  • 7,035 posts
  • Joined: January 10

Posted 30 December 2013 - 09:55

Yes yes, Indycar was superb back in the pre-split CART days. That doesn't help us now.

 

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and I don't think I'm alone in liking the DW12's looks, at least over most modern F1 cars. Yes, most racing cars in the early 90s looked very nice, because of the state of aerodynamic knowledge at the time. We can't undo that.

 

So can we please look to the future, at least in this thread which is supposed to be on that topic.

 

I loved CART back then, but it won't just magically come back, and certainly not by just making the cars look the same as they did.



#61 djparky

djparky
  • Member

  • 161 posts
  • Joined: May 12

Posted 30 December 2013 - 10:34

Racing- I didn't see much of 2013 as it they shifted it to ESPN in the UK (which I don't get) but what I saw the racing was as good as the height of the CART years in the mid-late 90's- there's nothing wrong with the actual product

 

TV- it gets abysmal TV ratings in the US- and that directly affects the weatlh of the series- a legacy of the TV deal from the TG era. Additionally they need to get it back on Eurosport for the Euro coverage- yes I know it was sometimes rage inducing when they overran Under 15's Tiddly Winks but it built the series up across Europe- and it is a pan Europe TV network. Alas the bran trust doesn't seem to have a clue

 

Schedule- get a stable schedule and stick with it- NASCAR's schedule has barely changed in decades- you can depend on it. IndyCar's changes from year to year as races comes and go therefore it doesn't build up any momentum anywhere- again in the good old days you knew that Milwaukee was the weekend after the Indy 500

 

Tracks- get back to Road America, Cleveland, Phoenix (oval) and maybe Surfers Paradise- pre split these events were hugely successful

 

Marketing- does Joe Average know who Ryan Hunter Reay is??? probably- sponsors and series need to get there drivers on the TV.



#62 GSiebert

GSiebert
  • Member

  • 1,854 posts
  • Joined: November 07

Posted 30 December 2013 - 10:56

Indycars make F1 cars look beautiful... which is quite a feat.

 

Just rewind 18 years or so...

 

http://www.youtube.c...h?v=NGuE-iwJljQ

 

The cars were beautiful, the liveries too  :love:



#63 Prost1997T

Prost1997T
  • Member

  • 1,780 posts
  • Joined: July 11

Posted 30 December 2013 - 16:59

 

I'm sure if COTA, Road America or any other venue could make money on the deal, they would jump at it, as would the series. Right now, they ask for too much with too little in return.

 

$1.5 million is a tiny fraction compared to what F1 gets from COTA...

 

As for your comment about TV ads, there have been some before (and IIRC Will Power still features regularly in Verizon commercials, for example). It's strange that the likes of DHL pay good money to be on RHR's car but don't use him in any form of publicity...


Edited by Prost1997T, 30 December 2013 - 17:01.


#64 Ross Stonefeld

Ross Stonefeld
  • Member

  • 56,824 posts
  • Joined: August 99

Posted 30 December 2013 - 17:07

Yeah but try selling Indycar tickets at F1 prices and tell me how many people show up.



#65 Prost1997T

Prost1997T
  • Member

  • 1,780 posts
  • Joined: July 11

Posted 30 December 2013 - 17:26

Yeah but try selling Indycar tickets at F1 prices and tell me how many people show up.

 

They're about as cheap as they'll get. I can get unprecedented levels of paddock access for about 50-75 bucks. Something that just doesn't happen in Nascar and F1. I think that's about the best compromise we'll see from the tracks.

 

If there's anything I've learned in business over the last decade, it's that marketing trumps a good product most of the time.


Edited by Prost1997T, 30 December 2013 - 17:27.


#66 Ross Stonefeld

Ross Stonefeld
  • Member

  • 56,824 posts
  • Joined: August 99

Posted 30 December 2013 - 17:31

I think it's hard to attract new fans even at 50-75. Because that's per person and then there's concessions and etc. And you can go to Monster Trucks for like 25. And I gotta say, it was pretty damn entertaining. 

 

So within it's price range there's a lot of entertainment competition.



#67 paulb

paulb
  • Member

  • 2,472 posts
  • Joined: June 00

Posted 30 December 2013 - 17:53

I think it's hard to attract new fans even at 50-75. Because that's per person and then there's concessions and etc. And you can go to Monster Trucks for like 25. And I gotta say, it was pretty damn entertaining. 

 

So within it's price range there's a lot of entertainment competition.

It has to be far cheaper to run a Monster Truck event (1 or 2 days in a stadium) than an IndyCar event.  I also suspect that beer sales are more impressive at a truck event.   :p

 

Whenever I go to Long Beach, I am amazed at the number of families I see that I would not have guessed would be racing fans.


Edited by paulb, 30 December 2013 - 17:57.


#68 HaydenFan

HaydenFan
  • Member

  • 2,038 posts
  • Joined: February 09

Posted 30 December 2013 - 18:18

It has to be far cheaper to run a Monster Truck event (1 or 2 days in a stadium) than an IndyCar event.  I also suspect that beer sales are more impressive at a truck event.   :p

 

Whenever I go to Long Beach, I am amazed at the number of families I see that I would not have guessed would be racing fans.

 

Long Beach really isn't about the race though. It is a gathering. A guy was going to take his wife and kids to Disneyland, but the LBGP was half the price, and you can drink beer. 



#69 SonnyViceR

SonnyViceR
  • Member

  • 1,387 posts
  • Joined: October 09

Posted 30 December 2013 - 18:21

Not enough people attend to make the races worth it.

 

There would be enough people to attend Road America if ICS partnered with USCC and CTSCC for that event. That relationship has worked very well on non-street circuits as well, like at Mid-Ohio



#70 HistoryFan

HistoryFan
  • Member

  • 2,534 posts
  • Joined: November 07

Posted 30 December 2013 - 21:56

what I do not understand: In NASCAR the technic is very limited, the cars and engines are fix. So for what have the big teams such great budgets?



#71 Prost1997T

Prost1997T
  • Member

  • 1,780 posts
  • Joined: July 11

Posted 30 December 2013 - 21:59

what I do not understand: In NASCAR the technic is very limited, the cars and engines are fix. So for what have the big teams such great budgets?

 

They build their own engines, for one thing. They'll have multiple chassis for different track types (eg superspeedway, intermediate, road course, short oval). Small details are important because one tenth on most Nascar tracks is an eternity. 36 races that are often 400-500 miles in length mean greater costs in general.


Edited by Prost1997T, 30 December 2013 - 22:00.


#72 Ross Stonefeld

Ross Stonefeld
  • Member

  • 56,824 posts
  • Joined: August 99

Posted 30 December 2013 - 22:24

I don't understand that either. Because the cars dont change that much outside the major rule changes, so after a few seasons shouldnt everyone have the cars perfectly figured out? What gains are there to be found? Yet they always seem to find 'something'.



#73 Prost1997T

Prost1997T
  • Member

  • 1,780 posts
  • Joined: July 11

Posted 30 December 2013 - 22:26

I don't understand that either. Because the cars dont change that much outside the major rule changes, so after a few seasons shouldnt everyone have the cars perfectly figured out? What gains are there to be found? Yet they always seem to find 'something'.

 

Well, you're better off asking the likes of Chad Knaus, who've made a healthy living from exploiting grey areas and maximising equipment potential  ;)



#74 billm99uk

billm99uk
  • Member

  • 2,840 posts
  • Joined: February 05

Posted 31 December 2013 - 13:49

Some things they need to do are...

 

They need more household or well-known names in the series.

 

Chicken and egg situation. Series isn't seen by enough people now to grow its own names (e.g. RHR), or lucrative enough to attract better known names from other series. If it does (e.g. JPM or di Resta) they're largely seen as 'washouts' from a more successful series.



#75 HaydenFan

HaydenFan
  • Member

  • 2,038 posts
  • Joined: February 09

Posted 31 December 2013 - 15:39

Well, you're better off asking the likes of Chad Knaus, who've made a healthy living from exploiting grey areas and maximising equipment potential  ;)

 

Yeah, the grey area in NASCAR is pretty big. And tens of millions are invested by the top teams in finding where it becomes illegal, or how to hide the questionable parts. Or maybe (conspiracy theory here, buying off tech inspectors). 

 

Also, NASCAR is more like F1 than IndyCar. The car is almost entirely built in house. And that requires a hefty workforce. You could run an Indycar teams on 15-20 full time people (which many of the small teams do). All IndyCar teams do is pull parts from crates and piece them together. Likes of Penske and Ganassi have been rumored to craft their own pieces (like the rear wings that Penske made that failed greatly at Milwaukee '07). 



#76 loki

loki
  • Member

  • 1,946 posts
  • Joined: May 02

Posted 01 January 2014 - 04:43

I think it's hard to attract new fans even at 50-75. Because that's per person and then there's concessions and etc. And you can go to Monster Trucks for like 25. And I gotta say, it was pretty damn entertaining. 

 

So within it's price range there's a lot of entertainment competition.

The Monster Truck/ Monster Jam brand is owned by Feld. The motorsport group from the same people that bring us Ringling Bros Circus and a variety of ice shows and themed entertainment. They control all the aspects of the event including owning most of the vehicles and the Grave Digger brand as well as Supercross, Arenacross and Nuclear Cowboys.  They've got a lot of juice when it comes to negociating with venues.



#77 loki

loki
  • Member

  • 1,946 posts
  • Joined: May 02

Posted 01 January 2014 - 04:51

Racing- I didn't see much of 2013 as it they shifted it to ESPN in the UK (which I don't get) but what I saw the racing was as good as the height of the CART years in the mid-late 90's- there's nothing wrong with the actual product

 

TV- it gets abysmal TV ratings in the US- and that directly affects the weatlh of the series- a legacy of the TV deal from the TG era. Additionally they need to get it back on Eurosport for the Euro coverage- yes I know it was sometimes rage inducing when they overran Under 15's Tiddly Winks but it built the series up across Europe- and it is a pan Europe TV network. Alas the bran trust doesn't seem to have a clue

 

Schedule- get a stable schedule and stick with it- NASCAR's schedule has barely changed in decades- you can depend on it. IndyCar's changes from year to year as races comes and go therefore it doesn't build up any momentum anywhere- again in the good old days you knew that Milwaukee was the weekend after the Indy 500

 

Tracks- get back to Road America, Cleveland, Phoenix (oval) and maybe Surfers Paradise- pre split these events were hugely successful

 

Marketing- does Joe Average know who Ryan Hunter Reay is??? probably- sponsors and series need to get there drivers on the TV.

 

There's not a better TV deal to be had where TV is willing to pay instead of being paid to broadcast.   It's not 1994 it's 2014 and much has changed and would have changed regardless of the split or not.  They are marketing a product that many are not interested in these days. Auto racing is down in general, the Indycar fan base has grayed or passed away and there aren't the number of young people tuning into auto racing these days as there were in my generation.  I enjoy the racing, we go to two or three a year and the fans that do attend are very passionate which is what helps them retain what sponsors they have.



#78 chumma

chumma
  • Member

  • 937 posts
  • Joined: January 13

Posted 01 January 2014 - 12:43

The cars look like crap and sound even worse, maybe start there.



#79 Amphicar

Amphicar
  • Member

  • 1,855 posts
  • Joined: December 10

Posted 01 January 2014 - 13:29

There's not a better TV deal to be had where TV is willing to pay instead of being paid to broadcast.   It's not 1994 it's 2014 and much has changed and would have changed regardless of the split or not.  They are marketing a product that many are not interested in these days. Auto racing is down in general, the Indycar fan base has grayed or passed away and there aren't the number of young people tuning into auto racing these days as there were in my generation.  I enjoy the racing, we go to two or three a year and the fans that do attend are very passionate which is what helps them retain what sponsors they have.

Yes - I've been thinking this for a while. Correct me if I'm wrong but it has always seemed to me that in the USA, professional car racing (USAC & NASCAR especially) is essentially a blue-collar sport. It was very different in the UK and Europe - perhaps due to the Brooklands "the right crowd and no crowding" ethos. I remember reading Anthony Sampson's "The Anatomy of Britain" and being struck by the contrast he drew between the young, upwardly mobile spectators at Brands Hatch and the (then) typical cloth cap and muffler crowd at football matches. Mind you, that has changed completely since 1962!

 

NASCAR seems to have recognised that its core spectator demographic of white, middle-aged, blue-collar men (the archetypal "NASCAR dads") is in decline and it has been attempting to increase its appeal to the fastest growing sector in US society - Hispanics. http://www.sportsbus...ies/NASCAR.aspx Anyone know how successful that has been?

 

If IndyCar can't make itself relevant and appealing to young, aspirational WASPs, perhaps it should take a leaf out of NASCAR's marketing strategy book: "Caballeros enciendan sus motores". If so, Montoya's move back to open-wheelers could be timely. 



Advertisement

#80 Ross Stonefeld

Ross Stonefeld
  • Member

  • 56,824 posts
  • Joined: August 99

Posted 01 January 2014 - 14:27

In my personal, anecdotal experience, bikes was much more blue collar in the UK. BTCC is aimed at that audience(smartly). 



#81 Risil

Risil
  • Member

  • 13,358 posts
  • Joined: February 07

Posted 01 January 2014 - 14:35

In my personal, anecdotal experience, bikes was much more blue collar in the UK. BTCC is aimed at that audience(smartly). 

 

A lot of the big BSB sponsors like Samsung, Milwaukee power tools, HM Plant/Hitachi and Wrigley's chewing gum wouldn't look out of place in NASCAR.



#82 jonpollak

jonpollak
  • Member

  • 13,103 posts
  • Joined: March 00

Posted 01 January 2014 - 15:19

They're about as cheap as they'll get.

 

Well..I'm about to find out seeing my meal ticket has been withdrawn.

Come to think of it I don't recall paying to get into an IndyCar race since like.... Ontario Motor Speedway   :drunk:

 

"Caballeros enciendan sus motores".

 

Es verdad..

Su observaciones es muy profundo.

 

Jp


Edited by jonpollak, 01 January 2014 - 15:20.


#83 Ross Stonefeld

Ross Stonefeld
  • Member

  • 56,824 posts
  • Joined: August 99

Posted 01 January 2014 - 15:29

Well..I'm about to find out seeing my meal ticket has been withdrawn.

 

 

I'm working on it, calm down.



#84 B Squared

B Squared
  • Member

  • 3,149 posts
  • Joined: September 08

Posted 01 January 2014 - 15:37

Well..I'm about to find out seeing my meal ticket has been withdrawn.


I wouldn't think that you'll be forgotten being that Dario is going to still be a part of the team. I doubt retirement is going to diminish his status. :)



#85 paulb

paulb
  • Member

  • 2,472 posts
  • Joined: June 00

Posted 01 January 2014 - 18:11

 

Come to think of it I don't recall paying to get into an IndyCar race since like.... Ontario Motor Speedway   :drunk:

 

Jp

Wow, that was not yesterday. You are a "classic" fan.

 

As far as the topic, with some others, I also think the appearance of the cars does not help the series.  To me, they do not look racey, but awkward.  While high-tech is not a selling point of IndyCar, the cars should fit the role of the top level of American motorsport.

 

I would also like to see less carnage in the races.  While some of the tracks, Baltimore, for example provide much wtf entertainment, I think in the end it hurts the series.  



#86 HaydenFan

HaydenFan
  • Member

  • 2,038 posts
  • Joined: February 09

Posted 01 January 2014 - 20:36

I would also like to see less carnage in the races.  While some of the tracks, Baltimore, for example provide much wtf entertainment, I think in the end it hurts the series.  

 

See, I agree, but it really isn't that bad. Some venues produce broken parts and retirements. That is like saying Monaco should be removed from the F1 schedule. Are there venues where even the underpowed (compared to history) IndyCars are too big for like Monaco is to F1? Sure. Does that mean cars are getting broken at a bigger rate? Sure. But what is wrong with that? It's a product of street racing. 

 

Which is the bigger issue. Street racing, like Ross has said, has produced some good racing in the past. It has broken cars and might cost more money for promoters. Also, street circuits brings the action to the fans. On roads the locals drive on. You don't have patches of grass and sand traps keep the fans from the racing. You have a concrete wall and catch fencing. 



#87 Tlux

Tlux
  • New Member

  • 8 posts
  • Joined: September 08

Posted 03 January 2014 - 05:08

The main thing that put me off is the tracks.  I'm not a fan of ovals and the majority of non ovals are these short, awful street circuits.  They need to race on proper race tracks.

 

The current street circuits are terrible. The cars bounce around on uneven surfaces. They seem obsessed with having the fans as close to the track as possible at the expense of exciting/challenging corners.

 

They visit Sao Paulo, but dont use Interlagos.

 

Circuit race in Texas but dont use Circuit of the Americas.

 

I think the Surfers Paradise race is the best example where Indy Car have lost their way. The event was a massive success. Every hotel was sold out, the attendance was fantasic. The circuit, whilst being a street circuit, was fast, challenging and exciting.

 

They really need to think bigger.
 



#88 HammyHamiltonFan

HammyHamiltonFan
  • Member

  • 161 posts
  • Joined: June 13

Posted 03 January 2014 - 06:05

I didn't watch last season cause it was generally on ESPN here in the UK which at that point I didn't have, I have it now though and I will probably watch it cause I was a big Montoya fan in his F1 days so will be keen to see how he will fare in it.



#89 Prost1997T

Prost1997T
  • Member

  • 1,780 posts
  • Joined: July 11

Posted 03 January 2014 - 17:03

Tlux - You seem to think Indycar can just turn up at a track and demand lots of money\race there like F1. That's not how it works or they would be there already. If you watched the CART era you'll notice that with the exception of Sao Paulo and Baltimore, the street circuits on the calendar are returning venues.

 

Secondly, the fact that the circuits aren't billiard-smooth is one part of the challenge (and refreshingly, no car park run-offs). Admittedly I don't care too much for Houston or Detroit, but I had nothing against the Sao Paulo race (it needed a few less chicanes, but it was actually a long track with two good straights for passing opportunities). Hinchcliffe's last lap pass for the win was entertaining, as was the battle for the lead in general last year.


Edited by Prost1997T, 03 January 2014 - 17:05.


#90 HaydenFan

HaydenFan
  • Member

  • 2,038 posts
  • Joined: February 09

Posted 03 January 2014 - 17:45

Tlux - You seem to think Indycar can just turn up at a track and demand lots of money\race there like F1. That's not how it works or they would be there already. If you watched the CART era you'll notice that with the exception of Sao Paulo and Baltimore, the street circuits on the calendar are returning venues.

 

Secondly, the fact that the circuits aren't billiard-smooth is one part of the challenge (and refreshingly, no car park run-offs). Admittedly I don't care too much for Houston or Detroit, but I had nothing against the Sao Paulo race (it needed a few less chicanes, but it was actually a long track with two good straights for passing opportunities). Hinchcliffe's last lap pass for the win was entertaining, as was the battle for the lead in general last year.

 

Look at Valencia. That is an example of what you don't do with a street venue. The smooth surface, the car park run-offs. That is the wrong approach. Keep the streets as street like as possible. 

 

Bell Isle is a bettering venue. The loop around the fountain is something I don't particularly like, but like Long Beach, it isn't going away. And the return to the original layout has made for better racing. Houston, though, is another question. A track built in the parking lot of a football stadium brings back memories of the Meadowlands for the older fans, and lacks just about anything that'd make it exciting for the younger fans. Was part of the late Champ Car street venues that never really inspired much. 



#91 Prost1997T

Prost1997T
  • Member

  • 1,780 posts
  • Joined: July 11

Posted 03 January 2014 - 18:03

I wonder what the response to the Sochi F1 circuit will be, since it's essentially a few loops around a stadium... :p


Edited by Prost1997T, 03 January 2014 - 18:03.


#92 Risil

Risil
  • Member

  • 13,358 posts
  • Joined: February 07

Posted 03 January 2014 - 18:09

I wonder what the response to the Sochi F1 circuit will be, since it's essentially a few loops around a stadium... :p

 

Add in a security situation that's more Dallas 1963 than Houston, and you've got a perfect representative for the state of F1 2014.


Edited by Risil, 03 January 2014 - 18:09.