And now a new word

Posted by Iannucci | 2/21/2008 | 14 comments »
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"Merger", "unification", "acquisition", "amalgamation"..."blend"?

A deal that would unify America's two open-wheel racing series entered the final stages Thursday.

Rather than a merger, talks have centered on a proposal in which some teams from the Champ Car World Series would blend into the Indy Racing League's IndyCar Series.

With the deal apparently nearing completion, it appeared Wednesday between six and 10 cars from the Champ Car side would take the offer from George of a free Honda engine lease program, free Dallara chassis and $1.2 million in team incentives.

Several Champ Car teams are not expected to take George's offer because, even with the engines, cars and incentives, it would take an additional $2 million or more to compete in the IRL. The teams that don't have the sponsorship or backing to continue will either close down or move to sports car racing, which is less costly.

(MORE from the Associated Press)
"You say tomato, I say to-mah-to, you say..." Wait, I just remembered that line ends with "let's call the whole thing off."

TRANSLATION: The article above also mentions this:

"There are four issues they will try to hammer out by the end of the night," IRL spokesman Fred Nation said. He did not identify the issues.

Oh, we can "identify the issues", Fred. Kevin Kalkhoven, Gerry Forsythe, Paul Gentilozzi and Dan Pettit. And Tony George brings his hammer to work every day.

14 comments

  1. Johnny // February 21, 2008 12:32 PM  

    I LOVE this phrase:

    "or move to sports car racing, which is less costly"

    Maybe it's cheaper to literally circumnavigate the tracks but to be competitive, it will take as much money or more than they're currently spending. I can hear Petersen/Flying Lizard licking their chops at this one now. Maybe Grand Sham?

    Also that assumes that the ALMS would be at all willing to put up with a bunch of self-important whiners like the dregs of CCWS. Magic 8 Ball says no on that one.

  2. Tabernerus // February 21, 2008 12:49 PM  

    Well, I'm not sure Coyne and PCM deserve to be lumped in with Gentilozzi as self-important whiners. It seems to me that PCM made a gallant effort on a much lower budget than the real whiners. Same with Coyne, and Bruno's success late in the year. Sort of like D&R showing some strength with Buddy on the road courses. I agree, though, that ALMS should tell Gentilozzi to keep walkin'.

  3. Johnny // February 21, 2008 12:52 PM  

    I really just meant one or two teams and seemingly a large chunk of their fanbase.

  4. Tabernerus // February 21, 2008 12:59 PM  

    Oh, yeah, that can be a poisonous fanbase! :-)

    Well, the guys online screaming are, at least.

  5. mmack // February 21, 2008 1:00 PM  

    Johnny,

    We should send The Crappies to ALMS, so they can continue a hate filled fight against Grand Sha, I mean, Grand Am. All they need to do is rename their site ALMS Fanatics.com.

    I can see it now: FBF! instead of FTG!

    I agree with Tabernerus: ANY racing series with COMPETENT management should tell Paulie G-String "Sorry, all full up! Try another series." Perhaps he can offer to partner with the France family in the N-Word series.

  6. Johnny // February 21, 2008 1:05 PM  

    The problem with the Crappies to ALMS theory is that the existing fans and management wouldn't put up with them for even a day. It's a lot more formal and dictatorial over there. And it's like somebody said, they're NOT fans of racing, they're just haters of Tony George.

    P.S. Motorcycle Racing won't take 'em either.

  7. the american mutt // February 21, 2008 1:19 PM  

    You must also keep in mind, the sad fact is with fan bases, the fringe elements are usually the loudest. I tend to think a large portion of their fan base just wants to see their drivers and teams racing at the tracks they love. I can't blame them for that. Don't lump all Champ Car fans with the crappies. Lets not forget also, there are plenty of elements in the IRL fanbase that don't want to see MORE road races.

  8. Johnny // February 21, 2008 1:28 PM  

    Yeah, we'll just have to agree to disagree on that. I understand there was gross mismanagement on the CCWS side, but if these legions of civil and devoted fans truly existed, in my mind they could have sustained the series, if not indefinitely, at least into a better bargain position.

  9. Zappatista // February 21, 2008 1:35 PM  

    I still like "ABSORPTION". It kind of reminds me of Black Sheep.

    roooooooad..ruuuuuuad..roooooood...

  10. Bash // February 21, 2008 1:39 PM  

    Submergerblendification.

    Oh, wait...

    "We are Borg (Warner). You will be assimilated. Resistance is futile."

  11. The American Mutt // February 21, 2008 3:56 PM  

    Johnny,

    Perhaps you're right. Could be all the civil fans got sick of the not so civil fans, and ditched them for IRL and ALMS. Regardless, I still want Cleveland and Michigan on the 09 schedule. Just sayin'.

  12. Johnny // February 21, 2008 4:00 PM  

    Mutt:

    100% agree. In fact I'd like to think I'd be at that 2009 Clevo race with you...I love that city.

  13. Anonymous // February 21, 2008 4:55 PM  

    I admit I've been lurking on the crappies board the last couple of days.
    They are trying to organize a protest to take place at the Long Beach race. Don't know what they will do if it turns out their own teams are the ones racing there.

  14. Anonymous // February 21, 2008 9:49 PM  

    Is it not possible to like ALMS and IRL ??


    I do !!!

    and yes ALMS is so much better than Grand (Sh)Am /GARRA !