Tag Archives: Tony George

How the mighty have fallen…

Whether by choice or force, it appears that Tony George is no longer calling the shots. (One of course questions whether he’s really been calling any shots of late anyway… personally I don’t think he has)

Sure the easy thing to do right now would be to cheer or taunt or sling mud and insults, but to what end? What would be the point? Does it change the past? No…

I got tired of the whole “our side-their side” thing long ago, and was relieved in a way upon unification that I no longer had to choose and explain and validate. It was exhausting.

One has to think that Tony George, the man, unburdened by the titles President & CEO, is also feeling a sense of relief tonight.

Much the same way those of us that work in racing sometimes long for the days when we we’re ‘just fans’, when we went to the track ignorant of the insider gossip & news, and just enjoyed the racing, unaware of the ugly underbelly of the industry, it will be interesting to see Tony ease into the fulltime roll of just team owner.

There is a picture one of our photographers took of Tony in Texas (which I used in our story tonight) I remember when I saw it being mezmerized by it. It was Tony George, almost unrecognizable. Relaxed, sitting on the ground, headphones on. Gone was the buttoned down shirt and dress pants, in it’s place a t-shirt, jeans and a casualness. He looked unfettered and relaxed. Like a great weight had been lifted from him.

I get that there are many, in particular those who refused to accept, let alone embrace last years unification, who are still wearing giant chips on their shoulders. They are celebrating tonight. Dancing, shouting, jubilant at what they foresee as the final nail in the coffin, the death of the IRL.
Good for them. I hope they find some satisfaction in their revelry.

I, for one, don’t find any joy in this.
Instead I worry for the sport I love.

Was I happy with unification? no. It broke my heart to lose Champ Car. But the thought of losing American open wheel all together breaks my heart even more. So I was, and still am, willing to put the past behind and look to the future, to finding some common ground between IndyCar and Champ Car, taking the best of what they both had to offer and moving forward.

If IndyCar fades away, there is no magic bullet. No phoenix will rise from the ashes this time. For a while, if we’re lucky, the junior formulas (if they survive) will feed the European series. Hell, even that’s a clusterfuck.

This is not the time for divisive behavior. This is the time we need to rally. To fix this. To move forward. Lest we risk losing it all forever.

another good read…

Mr. Miller lays out what needs to happen.

Funnily enough I made a comment to someone this week comparing TG to BE with regards to the folks refusing to watch or support because of their blind hatred for George. (ya ya, I know the cars are shit too, but they are slatted to be changed so that’s a moot point) I’ve not met or heard of one person who thinks Ecclestone is the bees knees, and yet they all still watch F1.

Can’t find anything to dissect in the article, except maybe this line: (which I’m sure if clarified, means something different than how it reads)

George might not be the ideal choice to lead as much as he might be the only choice.

That should keep the RM haters spinning in a little tizzy for a day or two. (you know damn well they will ignore the rest of the article and focus on that one thing in true myopic fashion)

Windtunnel – Feb 23/08 – recap

Segment 1:

“it’s about damn time…” – Robin Miller.

Well ain’t that the truth…

Lot’s of soundbytes from open wheel peeps past and present, giving the thumbs up.

“my goal tonight, get past the hate, and start figuring out where open wheel racing goes from here, and how it can be made better” – Dave Despain

Segment 2: TG & KK

Ha! funny quote segment. Careful what you say, it will come back to bite you…

A look back at the history and the split. Wow. When you see it laid out like that, it’s amazing either series lasted as long as it did. Does make you wonder “what if” though…

And there they are… the two now “most hated men” in American Open Wheel. LOL… “the press stayed out of it”… nice little dig at Robin from Kevin (with a shit eating grin and giggle)

hmmm… unanimous decision huh… LOL… tell that to conspiracywagon…

hmmm… both are being rather humble and congenial. Seems genuine.

*Ok… but that split screen with TG, RM & KK just made me LMAO. Photoshoppers around the world are making screen captures*

They are dodging a lot of the questions in lieu of the press conference on Wednesday. Understandable I guess. Probably still some details to sign off on between now and then too.

Segment 3: More TG & KK

hmm… vaguely laying out the game plan…. (good questions by RM) (he’s almost giddy… hehe)

2008… just get er done. Get the teams up to speed.

2009… “bring the best of both series” together. (I’m taking this as the addition of a few more former CC events)

2010 is still being talked about as the introduction of a new car (thank god) and schedule expansion.

Both agree that they would like to see a return to the 90’s in terms of track diversity. (oh the irony on both accounts there) New technologies, alternative fuels, etc…

Segment 4: More TG & KK

This is not the “magic bullet” A lot of work to be done starting tomorrow…

Again, confirmation that Atlantics will continue. No word on where, when and with whom though.

Curiously TG is referring to Indy Car future as an “international” series with “international” drivers and manufacturer participation. (I think that bodes well)

KK gives major props to Mario A. before signing off.

Segment 5: Bonjour Jacques!!

Mostly talk about his Nascar ride (or lack thereof) & the Pollack snafu.

Despain: “for what it’s worth, if you need any help with this, I think I could get you a ride at long beach…” LOL… ok… gotta admit, that was funny…

Segment 6: Mario Andretti

hmmm he was USAC IndyCar Champion the year I was born!

he’s glad it’s over so he no longer has to talk about all the negativity. (amen to that!)

what did he see as the biggest positive? Pointing out that Tony and KK were complimenting each other. (I noticed that too, and it did seem genuine)

If it were up to him, pick the assets from both sides and build on that.

Segment 7: Robin Miller final word…

“All you zealots on both sides of open wheel, get over it!”

wise words my friend…

Personal observations?

Jacques is growing into his looks… yum (sorry… girl moment…)

There seems to be a genuine respect (dare I say friendship?) between Tony George and Kevin Kalkhoven.

I’m excited about the potential going forward. I too want to talk about the racing and not the war, or the split or the differences.

I was amused throughout the show picturing the heads of fans on both side of the split exploding with each question/answer.

As Miller said… get over it. Let’s drop the fucking flag and just go racing.

Ok… off to read the melt downs on the interweb…