Originally posted by shaggy
I still say that the fact the the IRL has to provide Team Assistance in its 13th year of existence, with Honda backing on top of it, means that there are serious issues with racing in the IRL.
Couldn't disagree more. Real racers are paid to race. The definition of professional motor racing is when you can make money at it. When you get right down to it that is what Gurney's White Paper was all about: increasing the payout fund and prize money to realistic levels... which in CART was never addressed as the focus shifted to a franchise scheme, and the points/prize money never was increased in 20 years.
The IndyCar TEAM program (please investigate) offers a minimum season payout of $1.2 Million for starting every event, with ups based on performance. Which is how it should be. Race teams should not have to depend 100% on sponsorships and ride buyers to stay in business. That is a bad model and is undeniably responsible for many of the problems in the sport.
Another bad model: the annual shakedown ritual between Champ Car ownership and team owners. Which is the subtext to the current news story making the rounds. To get a field of cars to answer the bell at Long Beach, once again Champ Car is going to have to write some checks. That practice is what bankrupted CART during the Pook regime - throwing money around based on short term exigency with little process. Once again, that is the difference between business/not a business: process.