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Thread: IndyCar, A decade later

  1. #1

    IndyCar, A decade later

    10 years since unification, where do we stand?

    The good:

    Quality of Field
    Stable schedule (for the most part)
    New ownership starting to emerge
    A return of bigger speeds, 2017 saw some of the fastest IndyCar laps in 20 years (2018 car still TBD)
    Social media streaming content (ICS seems to be one of the leading sports in this area)
    Stable series leadership (up for debate, I'm sure)
    Indy 500 is "THE RACE" at the brickyard again



    The not so good:

    Spec Series (going with a general consensus here)
    Imbalance of RC/Ovals
    Low TV ratings
    Not enough races on broadcast television
    Lack of star power within driver lineup (lots of potential, but still looking for someone who can transcend our bubble)
    Lack of a third engine supplier
    Decline of motorsports popularity overall
    Title sponsorship search after 2018


    I am an open wheel racing fan who rooted on both sides of the fence. I want so badly for the series to become what it was in the 80's and 90's. I'm also realistic that those days are likely gone forever, and just thankful I still have racing to watch/attend.

    What are your thoughts on the state of the series, 10 years post unification?

    Cheers

  2. #2
    Sulli from f(x) Hitokiri's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SteelCity_Indy View Post
    The not so good:

    Spec Series (going with a general consensus here) - At least it's not a total spec series like in 2008.
    Imbalance of RC/Ovals - In the best years of Indycar there was always an imbalance.
    Low TV ratings - At least Indycar is getting paid to show its product as a whole. Something that didn't exist for years before reunifcation. From 2011 ABC has been paying Indycar $6 million a year to 2018 and NBC Sports/Versus I think was paying $10 million. That means Indycar has made over $100 million dollars from both ABC and NBC/Versus since reunification.
    Not enough races on broadcast television - True but at least Indycar is getting paid.
    Lack of star power within driver lineup (lots of potential, but still looking for someone who can transcend our bubble) - I'm not sure this is totally Indycar's fault even though they do deserve some of the blame.
    Lack of a third engine supplier - Two is still better then one.
    Decline of motorsports popularity overall - Yeah...that does suck.
    Title sponsorship search after 2018 - At least the series has a legit title sponsor. Something neither Champ Car or the IRL had before reunification.
    Yes...some do say I see the series through rose colored glasses and that may be true. Thinking of how things have changed since 2008 though Indycar has come a long way even though it's no where near where people would like it to be.

    I remember when reunification happened people wondered if it last 5 years let a lone 10. The fact that it's a decade later sicne reunification and there is still good news flowing in is a positive sign.
    Last edited by Hitokiri; 01-10-2018 at 02:22 AM.
    "The only good horsepower is usable horsepower.."

  3. #3
    Registered User David_Skywalker's Avatar
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    Reminder that a Panoz was entered and took laps during the month of may in '08.

    So no, it was not 'totally spec'.

    If anything its now a side step. Two chassis options in '08, two engine options in '18.

    Not to mention the multitude of parts that were allowed to be developed by the teams on the IR-05's... so really one could argue that somehow, some way, IndyCar is MORE spec in '18 than they were at the time of the merger.
    Just wait 'till next year!

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by David_Skywalker View Post
    so really one could argue that somehow, some way, IndyCar is MORE spec in '18 than they were at the time of the merger.
    No question. Especially from a team perspective.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hitokiri View Post
    Yes...some do say I see the series through rose colored glasses and that may be true. Thinking of how things have changed since 2008 though Indycar has come a long way even though it's no where near where people would like it to be.

    I remember when reunification happened people wondered if it last 5 years let a lone 10. The fact that it's a decade later sicne reunification and there is still good news flowing in is a positive sign.

    You shouldn't alter the quote you are referencing with your own thoughts.
    1. You don't want to project your thoughts onto others.
    2. How the heck will Spike evaluate your post point by point?

  6. #6
    Generation 3 EdJVuky's Avatar
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    there is no way the series will ever regain its 80-90s popularity and reach
    Third Gen Indy Fan

  7. #7
    I am a bit disappointed at what we have now. Thought we would have got rid of spec but oh well. I have learned to kinda accept it for what it is. Not sure what that is though.
    RIP Justin! WWJCD

  8. #8
    Insider MoparsRule's Avatar
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    A decade later. 22 years later. 24 years later... whatever. It's a shell of it's former self.

  9. #9
    Registered User Ryan1248's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MoparsRule View Post
    A decade later. 22 years later. 24 years later... whatever. It's a shell of it's former self.
    Insightful.

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by MoparsRule View Post
    A decade later. 22 years later. 24 years later... whatever. It's a shell of it's former self.
    But we still have it dammit. Try and remember that. We still have an OW racing series based in the USA, and yes she's battered and wounded but the old girl still keeps plugging along. And while she definitely still has many issues, every weekend it is some of best racing out there. And that is the reason why I keep tuning in. The product will still keep me glued to my seat for 2-4 hours for 18 weekends a year.
    I'd rather have 10% of the world interested in the ICS than 50% of US that NASCAR currently has

  11. #11
    From a fan's eye, not caring about what the outside world thinks.
    I think it's a great product at the moment, much better then what was had 10 years ago.
    I know I am more entertained now for sure.

    My only beef is that the season should be a few races more. But that was my beef then as well (Only the other series filled that gap then, but having all the talent in one place makes for better racing)

  12. #12
    Insider Nigel Red5's Avatar
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    good:
    at least we sill have an Indycar series to watch.
    A return of some old favorites, though as we've seen, they may be short lived
    a balanced schedule imho.

    Bad....
    reunification actually cost us the equivalent of an entire series and season of racing. Half the tracks, half the cars, half the drivers.
    no Fontana, no MIS
    No Ford Cosworth
    I'll leave the thoroughly beaten spec horse to die.

  13. #13
    Insider Grizzlor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nigel Red5 View Post
    good:
    at least we sill have an Indycar series to watch.
    A return of some old favorites, though as we've seen, they may be short lived
    a balanced schedule imho.

    Bad....
    reunification actually cost us the equivalent of an entire series and season of racing. Half the tracks, half the cars, half the drivers.
    no Fontana, no MIS
    No Ford Cosworth
    I'll leave the thoroughly beaten spec horse to die.
    Ford left CCWS a few years before then.
    "If your car was a dog, then you had to figure it out and test your own limits. And we didn't go to a wind tunnel – we did it in the first turn at Indianapolis."

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grizzlor View Post
    Ford left CCWS a few years before then.
    correct, Ford Left CCWS after the 2006 season.
    World's biggest Ryan Hunter-Reay fan!

    Born in 1992, I've been lucky enough to have attended every '500 since 2000. Milwaukee (RIP) from 2003 - 2015, Iowa 2007-present, Long Beach 2016, Road America 1998-2007, 2016-present,
    Michigan 500 (RIP): 1997-2001 and Mid-Ohio in 2008

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Nigel Red5 View Post
    good:
    at least we sill have an Indycar series to watch.
    A return of some old favorites, though as we've seen, they may be short lived
    a balanced schedule imho.

    Bad....
    reunification actually cost us the equivalent of an entire series and season of racing. Half the tracks, half the cars, half the drivers.
    no Fontana, no MIS
    No Ford Cosworth
    I'll leave the thoroughly beaten spec horse to die.
    No Surfers, no Cleveland.

  16. #16
    Registered User Boweimer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SteelCity_Indy View Post
    10 years since unification, where do we stand?

    The good:

    Quality of Field
    Stable schedule (for the most part)
    New ownership starting to emerge
    A return of bigger speeds, 2017 saw some of the fastest IndyCar laps in 20 years (2018 car still TBD)
    Social media streaming content (ICS seems to be one of the leading sports in this area)
    Stable series leadership (up for debate, I'm sure)
    Indy 500 is "THE RACE" at the brickyard again



    The not so good:

    Spec Series (going with a general consensus here)
    Imbalance of RC/Ovals
    Low TV ratings
    Not enough races on broadcast television
    Lack of star power within driver lineup (lots of potential, but still looking for someone who can transcend our bubble)
    Lack of a third engine supplier
    Decline of motorsports popularity overall
    Title sponsorship search after 2018


    I am an open wheel racing fan who rooted on both sides of the fence. I want so badly for the series to become what it was in the 80's and 90's. I'm also realistic that those days are likely gone forever, and just thankful I still have racing to watch/attend.

    What are your thoughts on the state of the series, 10 years post unification?

    Cheers
    Would the quality of the field exist if not for spec racing?

  17. #17
    Registered User Mr. Muffins's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Boweimer View Post
    Would the quality of the field exist if not for spec racing?
    I think it the spec racing has really showcased the skill of the drivers and made it clear who will be ready to move up to the top series.

    In short, the Verizon Indy Lights series has been a huge success.
    Sitting president of the "Sato Forever Faithful Fanclub"

  18. #18
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    On Sunday, April 20, 2008 the very last CCWS race was run at Long Beach, ushering in the end of the split. Has it really been 10 years??

  19. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by Boweimer View Post
    Would the quality of the field exist if not for spec racing?
    Great question, I'm honestly not sure. I have to think that the cream always rises to the top. But, how often do spec rules prop up the back markers? In any event, I go into each race weekend feeling like I'm watching some of the best wheelmen in the world.

  20. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by apollo8fan View Post
    On Sunday, April 20, 2008 the very last CCWS race was run at Long Beach, ushering in the end of the split. Has it really been 10 years??
    I suppose not quite, but the story broke in mid february of '08 that a merger was happening.

  21. #21
    Quote Originally Posted by EdJVuky View Post
    there is no way the series will ever regain its 80-90s popularity and reach
    PLEASE! Get off the "never again" talk. You don't know that. I don't know that. I do know that there have been myriad instances of sports rising from the grave to regain or exceed previous levels of popularity. The fact is there are likely lots of things that could carry Indycar to increased popularity. Will any of them happen? I don't know. But there are too many cases of that happening to permanently assign Indycar to the sports trash heap.

    To bolster my argument:

    The NBA playoffs in the 1970s and 1980s were on TAPE DELAY. The NBA was dying. What happened? Magic Johnson, Larry Bird, Michael Jordan. The product became compelling.

    The NHL has had a tremendous resurgence this century. Likely because of a generational change of management at several key teams in several key markets.

    Fighting was dead and buried after the retirement of Muhammed Ali. Now between PPV Boxing matches and the rise of MMA ...

    My Point: Just because something is at a low ebb, does not mean it will stay there. For Indycar the first five years of re-unifications were pretty bad. The last five have been much more promising with some sign that management knows something about what they are doing.

  22. #22
    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Muffins View Post
    In short, the Verizon Indy Lights series has been a huge success.
    I would wait until Lights fields are regularly in the Mid 20s before I pronounced it a success. In fact, if the series were truly a success, it would be a logical place for drivers like Conor Daly to stay sharp after they lost their Indycar ride. We are not there yet.

  23. #23
    Registered User Boweimer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bullwinkle View Post
    PLEASE! Get off the "never again" talk. You don't know that. I don't know that. I do know that there have been myriad instances of sports rising from the grave to regain or exceed previous levels of popularity. The fact is there are likely lots of things that could carry Indycar to increased popularity. Will any of them happen? I don't know. But there are too many cases of that happening to permanently assign Indycar to the sports trash heap.

    To bolster my argument:

    The NBA playoffs in the 1970s and 1980s were on TAPE DELAY. The NBA was dying. What happened? Magic Johnson, Larry Bird, Michael Jordan. The product became compelling.

    The NHL has had a tremendous resurgence this century. Likely because of a generational change of management at several key teams in several key markets.

    Fighting was dead and buried after the retirement of Muhammed Ali. Now between PPV Boxing matches and the rise of MMA ...

    My Point: Just because something is at a low ebb, does not mean it will stay there. For Indycar the first five years of re-unifications were pretty bad. The last five have been much more promising with some sign that management knows something about what they are doing.
    But it’s bigger then just Indycar isn’t it? Motor sports in general in this country has been trending down. Some want to see NASCAR fall to Indycar levels. If that was to happen, does that mean that IC wil immediately get a boost? I don’t .

  24. #24
    Sulli from f(x) Hitokiri's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by apollo8fan View Post
    On Sunday, April 20, 2008 the very last CCWS race was run at Long Beach, ushering in the end of the split. Has it really been 10 years??
    I know. Incredible isn't it? It's amazing how 10 years just pass like that.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bullwinkle View Post
    PLEASE! Get off the "never again" talk. You don't know that. I don't know that. I do know that there have been myriad instances of sports rising from the grave to regain or exceed previous levels of popularity. The fact is there are likely lots of things that could carry Indycar to increased popularity. Will any of them happen? I don't know. But there are too many cases of that happening to permanently assign Indycar to the sports trash heap.
    Wow Bullwinkle, I think you're probably the most optimistic person on this forum when it comes to the future outlook of the Indycar Series.

  25. #25
    Sulli from f(x) Hitokiri's Avatar
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    Double post sorry.

  26. #26
    Registered User Mr. Muffins's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bullwinkle View Post
    I would wait until Lights fields are regularly in the Mid 20s before I pronounced it a success. In fact, if the series were truly a success, it would be a logical place for drivers like Conor Daly to stay sharp after they lost their Indycar ride. We are not there yet.
    I was calling the "Indycar" series "Indy Lights" because what Boweimer was praising is the proper function of a good junior series.

  27. #27
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    If you would have told me in 2008 that there would be no more Indycar in 2018 I would have believed you. Not that I would have predicted it but I would have thought it possible.

    If you told me today there would be no more Indycar in 2028 I would not believe you.

    So I guess we improved things this decade.

  28. #28
    pork tenderloins gottastayfly's Avatar
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    One of the things you are forgetting is the development ladder is much clearer than it ever was even when the series were unified.
    "Lyrically, I'm Mario Andretti on the mo-mo" - A Tribe Called Quest

  29. #29
    Registered User Boweimer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gottastayfly View Post
    One of the things you are forgetting is the development ladder is much clearer than it ever was even when the series were unified.
    I would agree, but not many good seats become available, and if one does become available, A feeder series (Indy Lights) driver probably doesn’t get it. Then your left with drivers like Conor Daly that get mid level or worse seats and are usualy out of the series within a few years. Do we really know if driver like Conor are truly given the tools to succeed ? I personally don’t know,

  30. #30
    Registered User rainracn's Avatar
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    I'm just glad an American open-wheel series is still around ten years later....seriously.

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