Tag Archives: 2008

Hey 2008!…

there’s the door.
You’ve overstayed your welcome.
See ya!

Ok, so it wasn’t all bad in 2008… but it certainly wasn’t all good either. So, we’ll take what we saw, and learned, and felt, we’ll reflect on it, we’ll digest it, and we’ll move forward into the new year.

We will open the book. Its pages are blank. We are going to put words on them ourselves. The book is called Opportunity and its first chapter is New Year’s Day.
-Edith Lovejoy Pierce

Ok so it’s not New Year’s Day yet, but I plan to have a bit of a healthy brain fog going tomorrow morning, so I thought I would put pen to paper pre-countdown. (er… digits to keys as the case may be). I like to think of the countdown as a count out actually. 2008 is bloodied and beaten and laying on the mat, and we the ref, are counting him out, urging him to just stay down, give up the fight, it’s OVER damnit!

My hopes for the new year? Survival. For all of us.
I’m going to aim low this year. Less disappointing that way.
No that is not a cop out, it’s just reality. 2008 was such an adrenaline rush of “what the fuck?!” right out of the gate that I was exhausted by the time it (the season) rolled to a stop finally. I had spent most of the year convincing everyone else that things were “good” and “fine” and to keep a positive outlook and “look on the bright side”, but in the end it was me who was left unconvinced and battle weary.

Personally, I thought I had made some great strides as far as furthering my career in the industry, but again, circumstance and lots of empty talk and promises leave me starting from scratch in 2009. meh. Shit happens right? Wiser for the experience.

Again, I’m aiming low. With the economic instability as it is, I’m not even entertaining the prospect of full-time employment with a team for this year. I will however be more resourceful in my job-hunting, diversifying my options and making sure that every experience is a learning experience and that I make the most of finding every opportunity. Putting all your eggs in one basket or depending on a single source is limiting and in some case debilitating, something drivers, teams and series have all discovered themselves. It’s not about the money really (though that would be nice) it’s about doing what I love to do, in a setting I love to be in. It’s about being happy. I wish to be happy and doing something I love in the new year. That’s not too much to ask for really. Again, I put it out there that if any of you know of anyone looking for a “girl friday” for their team, driver or organization, point them in my direction. I am open to internships and low-ball offers 😉

Resolutions? I don’t make them really. Again, I think it sets you up for failure. I have goals and desires and plans however. One of those is that I would like to be more consistent and organized in my blogging/writing. I want be able to immerse myself in racing this year, without causing myself the usual financial fallout by year end. I want to be taken seriously. This isn’t a game, or a hobby, or a means of socializing at the track. I bust my ass doing what I do, both away from and at the track. I would like my efforts to reap a more substantial reward than “hey thanks for your help/research/opinion… I’ll call ya”. And if and when I get there, I would like to pay it forward and bring others of my ilk, with the same desires, along for the ride.

My new year’s wish is that come this time in 2009 we are all laughing and reflecting and wondering what the heck we had our panties all bunched up about in January. (and y’all know there are some panty bunching moments coming up right?)

I thank you all for your readership & participation this year. I looked at my stats this morning and was floored by the number compared to the start of the year. That my little soap box in cyberspace has garnered such a following is surprising and humbling all at once.

*sidenote: someone googled “meesh mean” to land at this blog this week, which I found quite hysterical. I assure you, I’m not mean, once you get to know me… if I like you that is… hehehe*

I specifically want to thank all of my fellow keyboard jockeys for your support and linkage and wealth of knowledge. (specifically Tony, Bill & Jeff, in no particular order) You guys continue to set the bar high, forcing me to continue to up my game and hone my skillz daily.

My own personal “transition” from Champ Car to IndyCar was made easier by your acceptance of my naivety, sometimes clouded perception, and “chrome horn” style of expressing myself. This was the one place I felt completely true to myself and just accepted for who I am and appreciated for what I had to offer, as uncensored and brash as I may be at times. (oh and for those who still haven’t figured it out, I’m a broad! LOL! You can only imagine how humorous I found the shocked expressions throughout the season when introduced)

I’m proud and honoured to call many of you friend, and if I had to make one resolution for 09, it would be to make the effort to meet up with as many of you as possible at the track for a frosty beverage and animated conversation!

For those of you venturing out tonight, have fun but be safe and be smart. (especially all you drivers… DON’T give me something lascivious to add to my “Watercooler Wednesday” article next week, particularly in the police blotter section)

Fare thee well 2008!
Bring it on 2009!
Drop the fucking flag and lets get back to racing already!!


ugh… where to start!

I was going to do an entire entry on the drama that is Derrick Walker, but there was a mini rush of press releases in the last couple of days, so I guess I should touch on all of them (in my own unique way of course…) 😉

Conquest forms “technical partnership” (open wheel’s new catch phrase it seems) with Forsythe Racing Inc.

Translated: Uncle Jerry gets to play with the new toys and gather valuable data without committing or jeopardizing his precious fan allocated “principles”.

On the bright side, I hope this means that the FCR crew gets utilized and retains their employment past Long Beach.  I also foresee an FCR (or FRI?) entry for the 495 in May.

Walker Racing pulls out of IndyCar for 2008

Translated: I was so busy hoping the fence, talking out of both sides of my face for months and pulling splinters out of my ass, that I didn’t notice I no longer had a partner or a driver.

Gimme a break. Hey, I like Derrick, but come on. Who was fooling who here? Since all of the whispers behind the scenes started, lead ironically by some of his own quotes late in the season last year, all of the press from that team post 07 was coming from “Walker Racing” instead of Bam Media under the name of Team Australia. That was like shining a big spotlight on the trouble in paradise. Red flag number 2 was the no show in Sebring. Come on… how dumb do these people think we are? Now Walker is out for 08… or is he? After an “oh woe is me” essay on his site,  he received a plethora of support he says (both emotional and financial apparently) So now a second essay/update has him changing his tune a little with regards to the money owed and his participation in IndyCar.  I am curious about the 1.5 million allegedly owed to him by Gore… Observation: Walker seems to always have his hand out for money, but does he put any in? I have to believe there is more to the story behind the scenes. It doesn’t make sense that someone would stiff someone in such a large and public fashion and stick around! Speaking of which…

Team Australia/Will Power form technical partnership (there it is again!) with KV Racing Technology (who??)

Translated: Well, if we’re gonna be the two most hated men in the paddock, we might as well be in the same pit box where we can share some wine! (worst wine EVER btw… seriously, I’ve had more palatable vinegar! but thats a rant for another day)

Again, I fall back to there must be more to the back story on the money owed and the relationship with Walker, or else the man (Gore) would just disappear into the shadows. (much like I know there is more behind the scenes where KK is concerned, thus my angry vitriol towards him isn’t quite as intense as some) Soap opera storyline aside, I’ll be curious to see this team in action this year. The symbiotic set up with Ganassi, Jimmy as driver coach, Servia/Power as team mates, this really could be fun to watch their climb through the field.

Minardi Team USA pulls out of 2008 IndyCar Season

Translated: I’m no longer receiving KK bucks (another of those worst kept secrets), nor am I needed to act as a “symbol” of the strength and appeal of Champ Car, so I’m going to fade into the shadows again.

Co-Owner Keith Wiggins has stated that he is continuing with the team, going back to the familiar HVM moniker. Seems he is ok with the reality of not being competitive out of the gate (the reason cited by Stoddart for his withdrawal 😉 ) Athough if he is smart/lucky enough and retains Robert Doornbos, I think they will get a handle on the car by mid season. (and reap the rewards of taking the chance this year rather than waiting for next year)

Ok… I think that catches me up with all of the news that came trickling into my mailbox in the last 24 hrs.  I have other tidbits of information and thoughts… some I can share… some I can’t… (at least right now), but for now… I’m fighting off a cold and am tired… so it’s time to shut the lid on the laptop for the night…

one thing I’m sure of…

Tony George should not quit his day job to take up motivational speaking…
Good God man! Drink a Red Bull or something! Is he always like that??? Cripes.

The infuriating technical problems, combined with Mr. Mumbles coma inducing monotone answers certainly made this assignment… challenging…
So, to save me having to re-write all of this again, & for those of you that might have missed the press conference here is my “official” take on it: Article at CCW.net
You can also find the Press Transcript there as well.

OK… that out of the way… I guess I expected more.
Sorry… expected more isn’t true. I expected exactly that. I wanted more… This was basically a glorified WindTunnel appearance.

I could hear the screams of exasperation and heads exploding all over the world as the two “leaders” stood infront of the impressive line up of drivers, shaking hands and smiling for the cameras. We knew it was coming. Didn’t make it any less cheesy (or to many, offensive)

Considering the location, and the fact that there isn’t an event attached to it (i.e. a race this weekend) that was one packed press room, proving that, like it or not, this is a big story, this is piquing the interest of the media, and this is perceived as a good thing.

I did find it amusing that they both kept touting this coming together as being for the “fans”, especially considering the abject ire being displayed all over the interweb. (honestly, I think some people just aren’t happy unless they are hating on someone or something… but that’s a debate for another day) In the long run it is going to be better for the fans, but it’s going to be a large, bitter pill for many to swallow initially.

Things I thought were apt and that I appreciated hearing:

– the key is not to disenfranchise anyone if possible. (hard task there, but good on them for being aware of that and not just blowing off anyone person or event with a shrug and an “oh well”)
– that they don’t want to waste time looking back at who is right and wrong, but wish to concentrate on moving forward. Sage advice for all me thinks.
– that the goal is to stabilize open wheel racing (in other words, stop the bleeding)
– that they realized that it’s going to take time before they see “success” results.

I was happy to hear that the Medical trailers are coming over with us, along with some of the key staff. I would certainly hope that Holmatro would also somehow be incorporated.

I was very happy to hear that the Atlantics will continue to run. It would be interesting to see the Atlantics continue to run with a variety of series on a variety of tracks (perhaps expanding their package to be outfitted for ovals to join up with us on a few events) The opportunity for the drivers graduating from the series would then be limitless as they would be well versed in all disciplines.

Disappointed about the lack of schedule confirmation, but I guess in a way it’s better that they didn’t have all the answers. It means that they aren’t being hasty and making decisions just to appease some needy deadline. (ie: it still gives us in Toronto some more time to potentially move our date and save our race for 08)

The elephant in the room? The constant mentions of and kudos to the elusive and glaringly obviously absent Jerry Forsythe.
I’m personally still very VERY uncomfortable at the lack of any news out of the Forsythe camp. I know that Jerry is practically mute & invisible at the best of times, so I shouldn’t expect him to be chatty Cathy now. That said, I would really like some confirmation on PT for the season. If Jerry is going to pack up his toys and stay home or help PG fund turbo lawn mower races in the everglades, that’s fine. To each their own. Just let Paul out of his contract so he can get a ride elsewhere. If Jerry is going to jump into the deep end with everyone else, LET US KNOW!! Let Paul know. Let him get out there with confidence and confirmation and start talking this thing up

ok… that’s it from me tonight.

oh, actually… Rus’l… you know I love ya right? Ok…
Sweetie, do you really think that all of this came about because Robin Miller wrote a couple of editorials??? Now who’s repping for “Team Naive”? 😉
Guess we can share our koolaid recipes with each other this summer.

Oh hell, since I brought it up, perhaps someone can explain to me why his (and every other writer’s) credibility and influence as a journalist is legit only when it suits a specific agenda? Can’t have it both ways my friends. Gotta take the good with the bad. You don’t always have to agree with the point of view, but you can’t put someone on a pedestal one week then call them a hack or stick an F in front of their name the next (or vice versa). Likewise you (the collective) can’t continuously dismiss someone (Robin Miller) as having zero connections, credibility, or influence then turn around and credit (blame) him for the demise of the series. It just doesn’t work that way. This is of course my humble opinion, take it or leave it for what it is.

SPEED to air “Amalgabsorbtification” press conference Live…

From SPEEDTV.com:

 SPEED will interrupt regularly scheduled programming Wednesday afternoon at 12:30 p.m. ET to broadcast coverage of the scheduled IndyCar Series press conference from Homestead-Miami Speedway formally announcing the merger with the Champ Car World Series for 2008. SPEED’s Robin Miller will be on-site providing commentary and perspective.

Yes that’s right kids! They will bump some tape delayed motocross & CORR programming in the middle of the day, in the middle of the week in February!! My goodness, whodda thunk it???

Ok, sarcasm aside, I find it funny that there is nothing about it at all on ESPN, the supposed broadcast partner of both CC & the IRL.

so, ya… let’s add lets get back with a TV promoter that seems to care to the list of “to-do’s” for the new series.

I had also heard a rumor earlier that Indystar.com would have a live podcast.  No confirmation on that yet though.

So what do we expect to hear? I’m guessing a finalized schedule. Perhaps some team/driver announcements, god willing a name change/alteration. “Indy Car World Series” would sound sooooooooo much more palatable no?

And then? Then we all move forward…  (well, most of us anyway)

On the ropes…

Champ Car has taken yet another blow to the solar plexus this week.
It is bloody, and weak, and unstable.

One side of the stadium is crying out to the referee:
“show mercy! It’s still got a chance! Don’t count it out yet!!”

The other side of the stadium is pleading with the referee:
“show some compassion! It’s over… it can’t take any more pummeling… put an end to it’s noble battle”

Who’s right?
Furthermore who wins? Who loses?

In the middle of the melee and trying to be supportive are the fans who are repeatedly being sucker punched in return for their devotion.
“what?? you believed us when we said < insert latest promise/placation here >

It’s one thing to be angry or frustrated as a fan of something. The emotion acts like a fuel, pushing you to want more for and from the object of your desire, to keep fighting the good fight, to show support despite the odds. It’s an entirely different sensation to be embarrassed by the object of your affections.

I have felt a lot of emotions over the years with regards to Champ Car, but embarrassment was never one of them… until now.

Gone is the feeling of pride I felt as Champ Car, determined to come out the victor, persevered in the face of adversity. Replacing it is a sense of shame & sadness for all of us who believed the hype, and fought the good fight on behalf of a series who seems to be watching the battle from the sidelines while the rest of us fall on our swords.

ENOUGH! No more excuses or spin or conjecture or placation or lies!
We’re tired and we deserve better. How many more ways can we say it?
The drivers, the teams, the promoters, the sponsors, the fans… we all deserve better!

Fuck! *she says in exasperation*

At some point you’ve got to look at all we’ve lost (people, venues, sponsors, etc…) and stop pointing the finger of failure and blame their way. How can they all be in the wrong and Champ Car always be right. It’s beginning to look suspiciously disingenuous.

Just this week the blame for the problems with the series has fallen on the shoulders of Raphael Matos (how dare the Atlantic Champion expect to get paid for his profession) Miller/Kirby/Oreo/Phillips/Cipolloni… and whomever else still bothers to write about this series (they are single-handedly destroying Champ Car via their editorials don’t you know!) and the best one yet, the ‘Toronto Whiners gang”, (this came from an employee of the series who I used to respect…) Yes, that’s right, let’s blame the fans for this mess. The folks that are hanging over the side, holding on to the railing for dear life, still believing this sinking ship will right itself. Still actually caring enough to get angry.

Who will you blame when we are all gone? When we stop caring enough to even raise our voices or our keypads in protest?
Who will you blame then for your failure?

Time to lay it all out there, once and for all boys.
What’s the plan? The real plan.
Not the oft talked about but never explained “5 year plan” (which by all accounts was apparently to destroy the series, and with it AOW once and for all, while souring an entire fan base to racing forever) but the “this is what we are doing here and now and why” plan.
Everyone on the same page, no false hope, no phony promises, no spin, no incoherent spokespuppet…
Just the facts.
Black and white.
Out there for all to see.

At least then we will know whether or not we are in it for the long haul or are heading into the home stretch of the CC farewell tour.

When someone loses a loved one, suddenly, without warning, the common regret is not having the opportunity to say goodbye.

At least give us that much