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Finally, a CART / Indycar unification?


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#101 VresiBerba

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Posted 09 February 2008 - 22:13

Originally posted by shoofirbin
i can't believe it's scheduling thats holding everything up. jesus h. christ, figure it out already!

Actually, it's not the sheduling that's the problem but rather contracts and agreements which are holding things up. Just toy with the thought that Champ Car all of a sudden would cancel Loong Beach for whatever reason; that would definitely be the end of Champ Car. Period.

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#102 VresiBerba

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Posted 09 February 2008 - 22:45

Originally posted by Buford
My immediate thought is this is what I wanted all along. A compromise and return to racing. But it went on way to long to say bygones will be bygones. I still will never pay another dime to Tony George so if he is in charge I doubt I will ever go to another Indy Car type race. It will never be as good as it was in the early 1990s so why pay premium prices for a inferior product and reward the clown(s) that wrecked the sport due to their own greed and stupidity.

Racing, or anything for that matter, just won't stay the same for 20 years. Things evolve, or in this matter we could say it has devolved. So what. Tough luck. Shit happens.

Today I'm 36 years old. 20 years ago, I had hair on my head, a mojo that would not only react by sheer will and I listened to Iron Maiden all day long. You think I would pass up a time-travel experience?

American Open-wheeled racing is just not what it used to be. Sure, we can Blame Tony George all day long for the mess, as long as we forget about Joe Heitzler, right? Because Joe Heitzler was a prime CEO for our beloved CART-series, wasn't he? Made things dandy with Honda and Toyota and stuff about pop-off valves and shit. Grand, wasn't it. What a fool Tony looked in comparison to out hero, Joe :stoned:

#103 shaggy

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 01:10

Originally posted by VresiBerba
Racing, or anything for that matter, just won't stay the same for 20 years. Things evolve, or in this matter we could say it has devolved. So what. Tough luck. Shit happens.

Today I'm 36 years old. 20 years ago, I had hair on my head, a mojo that would not only react by sheer will and I listened to Iron Maiden all day long. You think I would pass up a time-travel experience?

American Open-wheeled racing is just not what it used to be. Sure, we can Blame Tony George all day long for the mess, as long as we forget about Joe Heitzler, right? Because Joe Heitzler was a prime CEO for our beloved CART-series, wasn't he? Made things dandy with Honda and Toyota and stuff about pop-off valves and shit. Grand, wasn't it. What a fool Tony looked in comparison to out hero, Joe :stoned:

Sports evolve. F1 evolved. IndyCar racing, on the other hand, was destroyed.
It is as if you were being offered the opportunity to watch British F3 instead of F1.
A lot of people have moved on and are no longer interested. You and another 10k can watch it if you want to; millions have decided to pass on the opportunity.

shaggy

#104 Buford

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 01:53

Originally posted by VresiBerba
Sure, we can Blame Tony George all day long for the mess, as long as we forget about Joe Heitzler, right? Because Joe Heitzler was a prime CEO for our beloved CART-series, wasn't he? Made things dandy with Honda and Toyota and stuff about pop-off valves and shit. Grand, wasn't it. What a fool Tony looked in comparison to out hero, Joe :stoned:


Ridiculous. Of course CART made numerous bad decisions in their attempts to defend themselves against a cut rate cheap knockoff series that stole all of the prime TV time and was running off the casual fans by the hundreds of thousands, who had no idea what was going on but just knew open wheel racing sucked now. There was no Wharton School of Business primer on how to defend your enterprise against another company that is willing to lose any amount of money necessary and injure and kill any amount of drivers with unsafe cars and incompetent people behind the wheel for years, just to put you out of business. CART had to make a profit and the IRL had merely to exist, pissing away millions year after year to run off all of the customers until they became the only one left standing in the cesspool of their own creation.

Now 12 or 13 years later we have the results of that burnt earth policy initiated by Tony George. I will never reward that bastard for what he did. The incompetence of CART's defense of the sport is irrelevant. The blame goes to the person who started the war nobody could win. I won't pay him a dime to try to recoup his costs for destroying the sport.

#105 VresiBerba

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 01:55

Originally posted by jondoe955
I hate the irl, ovals, Dallara tubs, FTG... yet last year I watched more irl than Cart, who had the dullest racing out there.

That's the outset problematic dilemma, right there; TG's an abrevation for Tony George. Add the "F", and it becomes; **** Tony George, or in short, FTG - I'm a CART-fan, though the latter part doesn't spell, it's automatic. I'm beginning to wonder here if not the age of CART-fans these days average at twelve years old :rolleyes:

FTG notwithstanding, how can a CART-fan hate ovals :confused: It's completely incomprehensible given that Indycar, Indy Racing Leauge, CART all has at one time or another raced on ovals. There's a serious logical problem here, because I can't see how this equation can even compute. But then again, 12 is a seriously illogical figure. I suppose.



Sheezuz :rolleyes:

#106 whitewaterMkII

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 02:07

Originally posted by VresiBerba
There's a serious logical problem here, because I can't see how this equation can even compute.


That's been obvious with just about everyone of your posts on the split for years now.

Maybe when you figure out that there were fans that lived for the I 500 every year, and then a lucky sperm comes along, with an IQ of about room temperature and decides he know what the fans want.
THEN you'll know why folks like Buford, myself and hundreds of thousands of others are permanently pissed off at FTG.
He ****ed the whole thing up.
Not Joe Heitzler.
Not Fred Nation.
Not AJ Foyt.
Not Carl Haas.

Compute this, TG started this whole schmoozle and only now that both series are literally on their deathbeds, he's making the effort to put Humpty Dumpty back on the wall.
Too little, too late.
It will take at least as long as the split has lasted, to get it to where it was before he had the brain fart that stunk up USOW.
I eagerly await your latest excuse for what an idiot FTG was, is, and no doubt will continue to be.
Not

#107 VresiBerba

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 02:23

Originally posted by shaggy
It is as if you were being offered the opportunity to watch British F3 instead of F1.

Originally posted by whitewaterMkII
I suppose that if you bought tickets to see the Rolling Stones and then at the last moment they switch the act to the Spice Girls you'd be OK with that?

What inane examples. It's more like going to an AC/DC concert but instead thumble into an Accept concert; same shit, different name. The thing is, if you like AC/DC, the chance is you like Accept as well. So where's the ****ing problem!

#108 Buford

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 02:45

The problem is... something that apparently flies over your head. A matter of principle. Not rewarding the man who destroyed the sport with his power grab and inferiority complex, because nobody was taking him seriously after his mommy gave him the first job of his life and they were all making fun of him because he was a known druggie and dimwit lucky sperm. Nobody had respect for 30 year old TG so he set out to fix them. Not the sport... the people who made fun of him and his alcoholic nut case mother.

With the incompetence of CART leadership, this fool could have if he had been skillful and not a weasel, within 5 years been running CART by simply starting a team (which he eventually did anyway) and like in any other shareholder driven business, win other voters to his side in a voting block. But in reality none of his "Vision" that suckered in the lemming followers (now all disillusioned) about all ovals and opportunities for Americans and reducing costs had a speck of validity.

This was all a manhood contest for TG and the sport had to fall to prove he was a man after all. He stood up to the bastards and defended his family honor. That was what this was all about and everybody in the sport knows it. Except maybe McGuire. So he won. He proved he was a man. Big man. Piss on him and his series. He won. But he won nothing but the everlasting disdain from the history books as the man who killed the sport because he was too stupid to take it over in a adult businesslike way... which was certainly doable and arguably even necessary.

#109 VresiBerba

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 03:17

Originally posted by whitewaterMkII
That's been obvious with just about everyone of your posts on the split for years now.

That's 100% correct, Yiserr! And do you hear that, the sound of me not caring. I really don't give a shit about what Tony does or what Joe feels. I like racing, IRL, CART or what the **** ever. FULL BLOODY STOP!

When I used to roam another forum, which of course had the same rotten apples as here, there was one, or rater several guys, who went rabid over Kenny Bräck's move from CART to IRL back in 2002. Called him names and shit, because he betrayed CART by going to IRL. Since I'm a Swede, a countryman of Kenny, I took particuilar interest on the topic. But I couldn't figure out, as a CART-fan, how Kenny could have betrayed CART when he moved from IRL to CART and then back again! I mean, what is that! It should be the otherway around!

Like I said before, twelve-year-olds, or some other unpleasent kind of defect seems to behappen CART-fans every now and again. No matter what topic.






Pardon my French. I'm just that. And I'm bloody pissed off to boot, because I love American Open-wheel racing, and my greatest wish is for it to flurish. Survive even.

#110 917k

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 03:45

Originally posted by whitewaterMkII



THEN you'll know why folks like Buford, myself and hundreds of thousands of others are permanently pissed off at FTG.



:lol:

There are, like, six of you guys left.

#111 Buford

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 03:57

Try more like all the fans of the sport in 1995 who no longer are fans of the sport, leaving about 700,000 who watch on today on TV. A hell of a lot more than 6 little man. You never did have a clue and prove it still again.

#112 whitewaterMkII

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 04:04

Originally posted by 917k



:lol:

There are, like, six of you guys left.


Riiiight
The split is why the I500 ratings are about half what they were and why NASCAR's are through the roof.
Even racers are disinterested any longer, it's gone from over fifty serious entries to around 35, if that.

#113 F1 RusH

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 06:40

Originally posted by bear
No Toronto race but a race in Edmonton? hmm

mark


That is just for 2008.
Reports are that things will have better planning in 2009. Which includes the better Champ Car tracks.

We`ll see.

#114 Ross Stonefeld

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 06:57

Originally posted by Buford
Try more like all the fans of the sport in 1995 who no longer are fans of the sport, leaving about 700,000 who watch on today on TV. A hell of a lot more than 6 little man. You never did have a clue and prove it still again.


Casual fans at best.

#115 Jedi_F1

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 10:51

Kevin Kalkhoven said:

“As long as Honda won’t move Motegi, there won’t be a merger,” Kalkhoven told the Associated Press. “It’s a major hurdle, but it’s not the only one. There are significant advantages in merging but there are also significant advantages in not doing it. But at the moment there are no discussions until they move Motegi.”


Anybody that knows what the advantages are in not doing a merger???? :confused:

#116 Imperial

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 12:17

Originally posted by VresiBerba
But I couldn't figure out, as a CART-fan, how Kenny could have betrayed CART when he moved from IRL to CART and then back again! I mean, what is that! It should be the otherway around!


I stood and watched Dario Franchitti take his first oval win at Rockingham a few years back. How we stood and cheered him for his great victory.

I don't think 48 hours had even passed before he announced he was off to Indycar for the next season. I thought 'you motherf****r', how low can you get? It seriously felt like he was literally pissing all over his fans who had been stood beneath him under his podium. I was shocked for some time and annoyed to be honest, it felt like a betrayal.

I don't feel the same now though. Time changes everything.



Something different:

Can I ask those who believe OW in the USA does not need to become a single series, is there anything in that case that would make it a bad thing to go the whole hog and have even MORE series?

What if one of the team owners decides neither IRL, CC or even a merger is for him and starts up a third OW series. Would that not dilute it even further?

The absurdity that people can't see the negative effects of dilution is astounding.

Yeah, you can harp on about how CART had 5 million viewers or whatever and TG destroyed that.

Maybe he didn't - if CART had remained as good as it used to be would it not still have 5 million viewers?

Or maybe he did and he knows he did and is now trying to fix it. Is that a bad thing?

Since when did trying to fix something become a bad thing?

And all this rubbish about refusing to give a dime to TG because of what he supposedly did to OW. Since when did pristine ethics come into play in motorsport?

The sponsors aren't ethical thats for sure, why should the owners be?

F1 is a huge success and people are willing to give over hoards of cash every fortnight to Bernie Ecclestone, but do we all think he's Mother Teresa around the negotiating table?

#117 Ali_G

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 14:33

God, lets just hope that from 2009 onwards, there'll be a redesign on the cars.

Scrap the IRL chassis and go back to a more CART looking chassis. Scrap the N/A engine and go back to a Turbo.

The only reason IRL went N/A was to be different.


I dunno could I watch a series headed by Tony George though.

#118 Ross Stonefeld

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 14:38

The engine mfgs may have had something to say about it.

#119 Bloggsworth

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 14:41

Neither the Indycar nor the Champcar sites have a word on the subject..............

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#120 Ali_G

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 14:45

Originally posted by Ross Stonefeld
The engine mfgs may have had something to say about it.


The original switch to N/A or the possibility of moving back to Turbo's ?

Surely Honda could provide a mule of a Turbo engine for not much additional expense. I mean there aint much engineering in making an engine for a one engine series.

#121 Ross Stonefeld

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 14:49

Originally posted by Bloggsworth
Neither the Indycar nor the Champcar sites have a word on the subject..............


Why would they? It's no different than F1 team webpages only reporting driver announcements and not rumours.

#122 CWeil

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 17:38

What would Cosworth do in all of this? They have very, very little business at the moment besides supplying engines to Champ Car. I suppose they might have a few issues with all of this. Honda does have substantially more power and influence, though, but Kalkhoven owns Cosworth, so...I'm not sure what they'd do about that.

#123 Ross Stonefeld

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 17:51

When Honda originally came into the IRL, Ilmor did their engines. I don't know if that deal is still going. You could easily continue to use Honda engines and have them maintained by Cosworth. You could (probably easier) go the other way and slap Honda badges on the Cosworth Turbo.

A Dallara-Cosworth combo would level the playing field for most people.

#124 random

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 19:50

The Australian Goldcoast press is saying that Honda has agreed to move the Motegi date and that the deal is done.

GoldCoast story

Why is a Goldcoast newspaper the first to report this? Probably because Surfer's is one of only three races carried over (read: sold to the earl). It makes sense that Surfer's management would have to sign-off on the deal.

I can understand why ChampCar was trying to keep this deal secret. Any deal this late in the game is going to violate all manor of contracts. Contracts with teams, contracts with promoters, contracts with venues, contracts with suppliers, and contracts with networks. (I'm probably missing some).

ChampCar's only way out of this mess would seem to be bankruptcy.

I'm guessing CC's plan is:
Step 1. Agree on terms with the earl, money for the teams, etc...
Step 2. Sell the three top venues and whatever other assets the earl wants
Step 3. Dissolve

Because of all the violated contracts and the likelihood of receivership, I really don't see how Kalkhoven or Forsythe could receive any payday from this deal. My take is that Kevin and Gerry had gotten tired of writing checks with no real prospects of a return on investment. That said, the money Gerry and Kevin have thrown down ChampCar's black hole is probably less than 1/10th of what Tony George has spent and lost keeping the earl afloat.

From a business perspective, it's probably a smart move for the ChampCar pair to cut their losses and move on. Still, it's sad to see ChampCar end this way.

#125 Imperial

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 20:11

Originally posted by Ross Stonefeld
When Honda originally came into the IRL, Ilmor did their engines.


I don't think Ilmor exists as an independent entity anymore. I'm sure they were bought by Mercedes in order to concentrate the f1 effort.

I may be wrong, but that sounds right from what I remember.

#126 Imperial

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 20:18

Originally posted by random
The Australian Goldcoast press is saying that Honda has agreed to move the Motegi date and that the deal is done.

GoldCoast story

Why is a Goldcoast newspaper the first to report this? Probably because Surfer's is one of only three races carried over (read: sold to the earl). It makes sense that Surfer's management would have to sign-off on the deal.

I can understand why ChampCar was trying to keep this deal secret. Any deal this late in the game is going to violate all manor of contracts. Contracts with teams, contracts with promoters, contracts with venues, contracts with suppliers, and contracts with networks. (I'm probably missing some).

ChampCar only way out of this mess would seem be bankruptcy.

I'm guessing CC's plan is:
Step 1. Agree on terms with the earl, money for the teams, etc...
Step 2. Sell the three top venues and whatever other assets the earl wants
Step 3. Dissolve

Because of all the violated contracts and the likelihood of receivership, I really don't see how Kalkhoven or Forsythe could receive any payday from this deal. My take is that Kevin and Gerry had gotten tired of writing checks with no real prospects of a return on investment. That said, the money Gerry and Kevin have thrown down ChampCar's black hole is probably less than 1/10 of what Tony George has lost keeping the earl afloat.

From a business perspective, it's probably a smart move for the ChampCar pair to cut their losses and move on. Still, it's sad to see ChampCar's finale.


That's a good find.

Erm...being English I don't have much cause (to say the least) of ever reading that website, is that known as reliable?

Sounds good though, I'm happy.

#127 Rob G

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 20:36

Originally posted by Imperial
Erm...being English I don't have much cause (to say the least) of ever reading that website, is that known as reliable?

If that article is reliable, then somehow Ryan Briscoe jumped from Penske to Team Australia without anybody else knowing it.

#128 PhilG

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 23:14

Originally posted by Imperial


I don't think Ilmor exists as an independent entity anymore. I'm sure they were bought by Mercedes in order to concentrate the f1 effort.

I may be wrong, but that sounds right from what I remember.


You are wrong .
Ilmor is very much its own independent entity , after Mercedes bought into Ilmor, the special projects group was retained by Ilmor and is now Ilmor Engineering which produces the Honda Indy V8 engine, here in the UK, with Ilmor Inc supporting the Honda effort in the USA, as most of the motors are supplied in kit form and built as required in the USA.


#129 Imperial

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 23:21

Originally posted by PhilG


You are wrong .
Ilmor is very much its own independent entity , after Mercedes bought into Ilmor, the special projects group was retained by Ilmor and is now Ilmor Engineering which produces the Honda Indy V8 engine, here in the UK, with Ilmor Inc supporting the Honda effort in the USA, as most of the motors are supplied in kit form and built as required in the USA.


Just going off this wiki article it appears as if Merc owns it and it isn't even Ilmor anymore.

http://en.wikipedia....r#Mercedes-Benz

It states Ilmor designed the Honda IRL engine but doesn't specify when (before Merc's buyout in 2005 I would imagine).

So do Ilmor (or Mercedes-Benz High Performance Engines Ltd as it's now called) actually make the engines or is it just that the design is still produced by another company?

Either way, assuming Mercedes-Benz High Performance Engines Ltd still has some sort of copyright over the original design maybe it's a possibility for Honda to have a competitor in Indycars in the guise of Mercedes who wouldn't even need to design an engine, just rebadge it. A fairly pointless exercise, granted, but it would instantly give the series a tad more credibility by having at least one more engine 'competitor'.

EDIT: Just re-read that Wiki article and can't believe I'd missed the bit about Mario Illien forming a new company but naming it Ilmor Engineering Ltd. Seems a bit weird a company could be bought out then a new company formed with almost exactly the same name as before - hence situations like this, with people thinking it's the same company. Turns out it isn't. I totally misread your post as well I think. I'm tired!

I left the unedited part of my message above, just for the sake of potential interest. In that case I assume Merc have no control over that design, unless indeed they did buy the design or part of it. Hmm.

I'm wondering now if I maybe should have just deleted this entire post, ha ha !!!

#130 xflow7

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 23:45

Amusingly, it's no dissimilar to the situation with Cosworth and Cosworth Technology (a castings compay now owned by Mahle, I think). Although that may have been a purchase and spin-off arrangement or something.

#131 whitewaterMkII

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 23:54

IIRC, Mario Illien works with Team Penske in NASCAR on tuning his Dodges. Penske was the one that gave the startup buck to Mario amd Paul (?) Morgan. Does anyone know whether Penske sold his entire share to M-B? I think he was a 33% shareholder in Ilmor. In other weird Penske dealings, he also runs the Porsche's in ALMS, now whether Mario is involved in tuning those, I just don't know.

#132 PhilG

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 23:56

Originally posted by Imperial


Just going off this wiki article it appears as if Merc owns it and it isn't even Ilmor anymore.

http://en.wikipedia....r#Mercedes-Benz

It states Ilmor designed the Honda IRL engine but doesn't specify when (before Merc's buyout in 2005 I would imagine).

So do Ilmor (or Mercedes-Benz High Performance Engines Ltd as it's now called) actually make the engines or is it just that the design is still produced by another company?

Either way, assuming Mercedes-Benz High Performance Engines Ltd still has some sort of copyright over the original design maybe it's a possibility for Honda to have a competitor in Indycars in the guise of Mercedes who wouldn't even need to design an engine, just rebadge it. A fairly pointless exercise, granted, but it would instantly give the series a tad more credibility by having at least one more engine 'competitor'.

EDIT: Just re-read that Wiki article and can't believe I'd missed the bit about Mario Illien forming a new company but naming it Ilmor Engineering Ltd. Seems a bit weird a company could be bought out then a new company formed with almost exactly the same name as before - hence situations like this, with people thinking it's the same company. Turns out it isn't. I totally misread your post as well I think. I'm tired!

I left the unedited part of my message above, just for the sake of potential interest. In that case I assume Merc have no control over that design, unless indeed they did buy the design or part of it. Hmm.

I'm wondering now if I maybe should have just deleted this entire post, ha ha !!!



The design is nothing to do with Mercedes, nor is Ilmor as a company.

As Ilmor designed it, it remains theirs.

Honda would welcome the competition.

#133 McGuire

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Posted 11 February 2008 - 00:04

In 2005 Ilmor was split into two separate entities, the major part going to DaimlerChrysler and the other to a group led by Mario Ilien, with financial backing from Roger Penske. The latter is called Ilmor Engineering and has facilities in the UK and in Plymouth, Michigan. Ilmor in Michigan does a variety of engineering consulting work primarily on engines, including NASCAR (both Dodge and Ford) and general aviation, and also builds and markets marine engines under the Ilmor name.

#134 xflow7

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Posted 11 February 2008 - 00:10

RM's on Speed right now saying the meeting between TG and Honda is 2-3 hours away (makes sense; Monday morning in Japan) indicating that it's likely no deal over Motegi has formally been made yet.

#135 whitewaterMkII

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Posted 11 February 2008 - 00:12

Originally posted by McGuire
...and also builds and markets marine engines under the Ilmor name.


Yup, have a buncha buds in the boat business, that engine is by far the hottest ticket out there, using the Dodge Viper V-10 as the block. Forgot about that one.
I think Ilmor is also selling crate Craftsman Truck series engines as well.

#136 shaggy

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Posted 11 February 2008 - 02:45

Originally posted by VresiBerba
What inane examples. It's more like going to an AC/DC concert but instead thumble into an Accept concert; same shit, different name. The thing is, if you like AC/DC, the chance is you like Accept as well. So where's the ****ing problem!

Do non 12 year old use the language you use ?
If FTG shows one as a 12 year old, what does using the F.. and S.. words, so regularly, for other sentences prove ?
It is not the same thing .... as if watching 4 British lads playing Beatles covers was the same as watching The Beatles live.

If you want to watch it, go and watch it; but to claim that it is the "same" thing is ridiculous. It is going back to CART 94 ..... but with no fans, no goals and no future. TV networks want nothing with it. Not even sponsors want to come near it and, yet, you claim it is the same thing.

shaggy

#137 McGuire

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Posted 11 February 2008 - 03:15

Originally posted by whitewaterMkII


Riiiight
The split is why the I500 ratings are about half what they were and why NASCAR's are through the roof.


By 1990 NASCAR's attendance and television ratings had exceeded CART's. At that time open-wheel had the cachet and the big names of the sport -- Foyt, Andretti, Unser -- but NASCAR already had the audience. The split is a symptom of larger problems that the "merger" is not going to solve.

This is in no sense a "merger" anyway. Champ Car is preparing to dry up and blow away.

#138 McGuire

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Posted 11 February 2008 - 03:35

Originally posted by VresiBerba
American Open-wheeled racing is just not what it used to be. Sure, we can Blame Tony George all day long for the mess, as long as we forget about Joe Heitzler, right? Because Joe Heitzler was a prime CEO for our beloved CART-series, wasn't he? Made things dandy with Honda and Toyota and stuff about pop-off valves and shit. Grand, wasn't it. What a fool Tony looked in comparison to out hero, Joe :stoned:


While Honest Joe Heitzler was no doubt the most comical figure among all the CART CEOs, it can be reasonably argued that CART never had effective management in its entire existence -- due to its impossible organizational structure. However, the one who arguably did the most damage was Andrew Craig. He was largely responsible for CART's stance against the IRL, the IPO, and the disastrous marketing arrangement with ISM.

#139 whitewaterMkII

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Posted 11 February 2008 - 04:04

Originally posted by McGuire
This is in no sense a "merger" anyway. Champ Car is preparing to dry up and blow away.



The France's get him for a bunch every year to bring in the NASCAR circuit, and score all the TV money to boot, and are now the # 1 race at that track.
Bernie convinces him to hack up his property, pay him a ton, get all the F-1 TV money, and then blow him off when he doesn't give him more.
And if KK and GF don't suck a few million dollars out of FTG in the process of a merge, it won't happen, some reports say it's 100 million dollars exchange, but I don't belive that, but it will be millions for sure. And that's just to KK and his cohorts, not even counting the guranteed 1.2 mil per team with free cars, and no doubt engines as well.
If anything, it's another case of the Hulman/George clan spending money instead of just counting it like Grandad did.
That TG guy is soooo smart, it's impressive.
Your right it's not a merger, it's another one of TG's buys, that makes little or no sense.

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#140 random

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Posted 11 February 2008 - 07:26

It's not at all obvoius how they can manage this deal at all. Let alone, how they could walk away with any of FTG's cash.

If this were a deal for next year, the entire deal would be far easier. Including the potential for Forsythe and Kalkhoven to receive payment. But this is a deal for now. And by now, ChampCar has certainly signed a bunch of 2008 contracts. So if they do a deal with George, ChampCar will immediately be in violation of any number of existing contracts. Contracts with partners like tracks, promoters, suppliers, TV networks, etc....

If George were to actually BUY the ChampCar corporation, he'd also be buying all of ChampCar's contracts. Some of these contract's he wants, but a lot of these contracts he doesn't want, doesn't need, and cannot use. Many of ChampCar's contracts either duplicate things George already has (TV deals) or conflict with contracts he already has (track deals). Were he to outright purchase ChampCar, he'd have to pay off each and every violated partner or end up in lawsuit hell.

By far the easiest and cheapest way to legally get out of all these contracts would be for ChampCar to fold the series and declare bankruptcy. But if the series were go into receivership, any money Tony George paid Kalkhoven and Forsythe would immediately be demanded by these partner tracks, promoters, suppliers, TV networks, etc...

So if Kalkhoven and Forsythe want to be paid, they can't go bankrupt, they have to sell the series. But George would be crazy (more than his usual crazy) to actually buy ChampCar's liabilities.

It gets weirder. Because the courts aren't very friendly to indebted corporations that sell off the most valuable assets of a company and then immediately file for bankruptcy.

And it makes no sense for ChampCar to file for bankruptcy with plans for George to buy up the assets. Firstly, it takes the courts awhile to auction the assets. Most importantly, the instant they were to file for bankruptcy, their most valuable assets, the contracts with Long Beach, Surfer's etc, would all become void. Meaning George could step in and immediately sign deals with those venues without paying anyone a dime.

So how will this work out? I have a few guesses. Maybe they have plans for long and arduous contract termination negotiations with each of the violated partners. Unlikely, as this could take a long time and a single stubborn partner could kill the entire deal. Or perhaps the ChampCar corporation doesn't actually own much of anything. Perhaps the promotion contracts are owned by a separate entity, allowing them to be sold without incurring the wrath of ChampCar's partners. Or maybe George is prepared to pony-up each and every contract termination fee as dictated in each of ChampCar's partner contracts, then actually purchase the series outright.

Bottom line: I'm very curious as to how they plan to execute a move that will purposefully violate a file-cabinet's worth of contracts in order to sell off the corporation's most valuable assets; all while hoping to be paid, and without incurring massive lawsuits.

#141 Ross Stonefeld

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Posted 11 February 2008 - 07:30

With all those issues in mind, who becomes the deal killer? A grouping of the smaller teams in each series claiming a merged championship violates their own contracts?

I'm thinking of the kind of comments Bachelart made about having just spent a load of money on new bits, but not thinking of him specifically as being the fly in the vaseline.

#142 McGuire

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Posted 11 February 2008 - 11:12

Originally posted by random
Bottom line: I'm very curious as to how they plan to execute a move that will purposefully violate a file-cabinet's worth of contracts in order to sell off the corporation's most valuable assets; all while hoping to be paid, and without incurring massive lawsuits.



The coffee company will have to take one in the neck.

#143 aportinga

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Posted 11 February 2008 - 13:58

purple monkey dishwasher.

#144 shaggy

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Posted 11 February 2008 - 17:14

Originally posted by McGuire


By 1990 NASCAR's attendance and television ratings had exceeded CART's. At that time open-wheel had the cachet and the big names of the sport -- Foyt, Andretti, Unser -- but NASCAR already had the audience. The split is a symptom of larger problems that the "merger" is not going to solve.

This is in no sense a "merger" anyway. Champ Car is preparing to dry up and blow away.

What you are saying is true; I think it was RM who once wrote an article about this, too. The problem is that the split happened at the worst time. Furthermore, people simply want to get back to the way CART was in 94, not realizing that the battleground has changed dramatically in the last 14 years or so.

One thing is for sure, in 13 years Dan Gurney's White Paper had built a series that some people said was rivaling F1. In 13 years, TG has managed to build a series that can barely compete with WoO.

shaggy

#145 Go_Scotty_Go!

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Posted 11 February 2008 - 17:19

The fact that Speed's new website has tabs for NASCAR F1 Autoracing Motoracing - with Chump Car and I-are-ill as subcategoroes to Autoracing says it all.

...another rumor of a merger followed by a bunch of press releases as to why it didn't get done.

:|

#146 aportinga

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Posted 11 February 2008 - 17:55

No...

Walker and Minardi have been talking with TG for some time - a year perhaps. With Haas stating that they are gone in 09 where does this honestly leave KK/GF? ChampCar can barely hold it's own today - what are they going to do when they are 6 cars/3 teams down - one of those teams their most well known???

One of the reasons (I believe) that KK was so pissed about the leak (of this deal) was due to the fact that he knew teams were talking to TG/IRL. Additionally he knows that if a merger is pending for 09, that any team without sponsorship or basically cash for 08 would simply sit out altogether and wait for 09 to come. This would lead to ChampCar NOT making the cut in terms of cars on track with many events and also make CC more of a shell then what it is today.

There is - realistically, no other way out of it for KK/GF. If they push on they will do so without Walker - and they will do so with possibly Wilson running a handful of IRL races alongside his ChampCar season. This is supposedly the deal that McDonalds wants and also a means for Haas to grab some valuable data on car/track set up which will benefit the team when they switch over in 09.

I do not like TG anymore then the next guy. That said KK/GF have proven to be just as incompetent and as far as I am concerned the way they are handling CC is more painful year after year. What needs to happen foremost is the series (CC) working hard to keep long-time dedicated and passionate employees working. If that means moving to ALMS or the IRL I don't care.

#147 Locai

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Posted 11 February 2008 - 18:30

Originally posted by Mark A
They need to wait until 2009 for the merger, or has TG suddenly realised the IRL has no cars this year as someone has posted previously in this thread?


I think that the reason for the sudden URGENCY in the situation is that NEITHER series has enough of a car count to keep from violating their contracts with the tracks/promoters. This will get done one way or another because BOTH series may well disintegrate before the 2008 season ever starts. I don't think that either series has more than a dozen drivers even 'rumored' so far. And neither side can attract any sponsorship money (or any drivers with sponsership money). And neither side has the cash to pay to prop up any teams/drivers. You can't really have a war anymore when neither side has any bullets.

The 'out' might be for BOTH sides to declare bankruptcy, break all of the contracts on both sides and start over. Deal with the fallout later.

No matter what, 2008 will be a lost season. Everybody will just have to figure it out as they go. If they have half-a-brain (a reach, I know) they will immediately start working on the particulars for 2009. I doubt that any of the desirable tracks, promoters, or suppliers will just disappear while waiting out 2008. Many of them might actually lose LESS money by having to sit this year out.


The one thing that finally having ONE series will do is take away the excuses. There will no longer be 'the other series' to blame. There also won't be another semi-equivalent North American series (OW, at least) for anybody to run off to if they "don't get their way".

GET IT DONE!!!! YOU DON'T HAVE A CHOICE!!!!

#148 random

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Posted 11 February 2008 - 19:01

Originally posted by Ross Stonefeld
With all those issues in mind, who becomes the deal killer? A grouping of the smaller teams in each series claiming a merged championship violates their own contracts?

I'm thinking of the kind of comments Bachelart made about having just spent a load of money on new bits, but not thinking of him specifically as being the fly in the vaseline. [/

I don't think any of ChampCar's teams or partners could enlist the courts to kill the deal prior to it being signed. The thing is, ChampCar won't violate the contracts until the deal is actually done. The courts are very unlikely to get involved with a secret deal between two privately held companies simply because some other companies have a hunch that the deal might violate contracts. The courts would probably rule that if this deal were to result in the violation of contracts, the litigant's relief would be in the form of a post-deal lawsuit.

The press reports thus far give vague suggestions that ChampCar plans to sell off the promotion contracts, assure a deal for the teams, then wind up ChampCar's operations. The moment the deal is signed, ChampCar's partners will be able to litigate. And unless Kalkhoven, Forsythe, and/or George are willing to pay off each and every contractee, I suspect there will be immediate lawsuits. Were I a contracted ChampCar partner about to lose my race, TV contract, supply contract, etc.., I'd have the lawyers already lined up.

Venues that are about to see their 2008 races canned could do the smart thing and negotiate 2009+ events at a discount rate. Teams like Bachelart's that have just purchased large amounts of now-worthless kit could and should demand a buy-back of all that kit. (or an extra million or three to cover the costs.)

Of course a lot of these contractees don't have a product the earl wants or needs. So with ChampCar folded and worthless, who will they sue? They'll probably go for the deepest pockets. Forsythe, Kalkhoven, and George have no shortage of deep pockets. Ordinarily, the corporate shield would protect all three. But folding up the company after gutting the assets could be construed as fraud. Because all three of those amigos have a lot of self worth, I think these contractees could be holding a very strong hand of cards.

I don't know what the termination fees are on these contracts, but because there are likely to be so many contracts violated I find it hard to believe an auction of ChampCar's assets could cover all of these commitments. What does ChampCar even own? I don't know if they own their office building (I don't think they do). My guess is that other than the promotion contracts they're selling to George, they may only own their race control equipment, a few vehicles and some office furniture. On a good day that's a few million dollars worth of kit, probably a lot less at auction.

Unless ChampCar has been set up like Bernie Ecclestone's businesses, with "unrelated", off-shore shell corporations holding the valuable promotion contracts, I think a sale of ChampCar's most valuable assets (the promotion contracts) followed by an immediate folding of ChampCar (leaving only scraps for the litigant creditors), could leave George, Forsythe, and Kalkhoven with a lot of lawsuit headaches. Lawsuits I suspect they'd eventually be forced to settle out of pocket.

#149 Ali_G

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Posted 11 February 2008 - 19:50

Guys, I didn't realise that IRL was in such a sticky position at all.

If this merger does happen, I hope that the Champcar guys push TG to the limit to get the most of him.

As Locai has said. A fresh start it needed for 2009. Complete restart.

#150 jondoe955

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Posted 11 February 2008 - 20:46

We all could place blame and make comparisons.
Personally, I’ve always liked road courses over ovals (and street). I liked it better when the OW series dropped the roadsters and eventually most ovals. HOO-RAY.
The split was all about ego and control. F’n or not, TG had no interest in improving the sport, making it ‘more American’, cheaper or any of the BS he made up as he tore apart the OW world. It was all about making it more TG, and ****ing the rest of us.

My comparison (here it comes…) is to Bush and Gore. When the 2000 results were in chaos, Bush got the corporate jets to get him where he needed to be, and the big cash to operate. He got the press and the access he needed. No one offered Gore what only the wealthy and the connected could provide. He had to wait for Delta when he needed to be here AND there at the same time. The courts knew how they needed to respond – and did so. Big money wins again!
CC and IRL both had to scramble to stop the hemorrhaging. CC had more resources than Gore, and a better product than IRL. But time was against them, nonetheless. Nascar didn’t want the competition, but they could live with the TG show. It was just another variation of low-level oval racing, like Nascar West or Canadian Nascar (whatever it’s called). They provided a lot of money, support, TRACKS. While CC was slowly slitting its throat, they were running out of talent, money and racetracks – which were owned mostly by the Nascar crowd, or at least those within the Coven. Were Carl Rove and Rumsfeld running this transition also???

Why do people like Nascar? I haven’t the foggiest! But they are doing something right by someone. And now that they have some OW drivers and HD, I occasionally watch. But never much of it. I’ll watch the start and ending, but FF through the middle. (oh, and I do watch the road races)

Was OW racing destroyed by IRL, Nascar, CC or our own stupidity? I'm guessing all the above, and in that order.

To CC Inc: Thanks for the years and the memories. You had the best racing on the planet. Thanks for soldering on through the bad years. I was always a fan, and I still watched. Unfortunately, over the last few years I’ve had no one to cheer for. Silly as that is, it is a big part of enjoying a race. Lately I’ve found the races unexciting and hard to follow.
Lastly, I thank you for carrying on until I didn’t care anymore. I’ll be interested in how you manage this last year before bankruptcy, and I’ll watch some of your races. But I won’t feel that bad when CC is gone like I would have a few years ago. Whether through assimilation of bankruptcy, the series is gone for good. I didn’t care for the (50's) Indy product when Foyt controlled it, I’ll live through the TG years – watching, and hoping it will morph into a better product.
Maybe it will even happen with F1 and our own government. I'm not confident about either.