Quote of the day

Posted by Iannucci | 2/18/2010 | , , | 24 comments »
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“Our success and whether we’re going to stay in business, in all motorsports, is determined by that 10-year old kid. It’s not going to be determined the 40-year old looking at the computer.” - Panther Racing co-owner John Barnes, explaining his enthusiasm relating to the Delta Wing tricycle concept.


  1. NMan // February 18, 2010 9:06 AM  

    Someone gotta pay for that kid's ticket...

  2. Matt // February 18, 2010 9:07 AM  
    This comment has been removed by the author.
  3. Matt // February 18, 2010 9:13 AM  

    Exactly as NMan said. That 10 year old kid is only going to go the race because of his parents.

    I am with the team owners on this - I like the written concepts of the Delta Wing but I do not like the final product.

  4. pressdog // February 18, 2010 9:17 AM  

    The present might be determined by the 40-year-old sitting in the stands and watching on TV, though. Difficult to have a future without a present. If IndyCar doesn't want this 46-year-old's business, I'm not going to force them to take it. Got plenty of options. I also happen to have more disposable income than a 10 year old.

  5. J // February 18, 2010 9:36 AM  

    Adults crave the familiar. Look at what Hollywood is spitting out as an example of this. But kids don't have pre-conceived notions yet. They're open to new stuff, and if you can get them to latch on to *your* new stuff, then that's what they will crave when they're adults. That's what IndyCar really lost in the last 15 years. As Curt Cavin once pointed out, ask a kid in the 80's to draw a race car and he drew something like an IndyCar. Ask a kid today to draw a race car, and he'll draw a stock car. I still think the DW's a big pile of phallic hideousness, but if the engineering is solid and we eventually see 33 of them take the green flag, we're going to see the next generation of kids draw a race car that looks like... ok, bad example. But still, that's what Barnes is getting at. Kids will be able to accept this where adults won't, because they don't have the baggage we do.

  6. charlessouthwest // February 18, 2010 9:42 AM  

    So by that rationale, perhaps this would be a better lure than the Delta Wing: http://campbelld.files.wordpress.com/2009/11/free-candy-van1.jpg

  7. Shane Rogers // February 18, 2010 9:44 AM  

    I don't think Randy Bernard would appreciate being called a 10 year old kid. :)

  8. SammyPerry // February 18, 2010 9:59 AM  
    This comment has been removed by the author.
  9. SammyPerry // February 18, 2010 10:01 AM  

    I'm sorry, was this supposed to be controversial? I think 40 year olds (with or without computers) know that they aren't the future, don't they?
    Everyone in every industry should be looking at what tomorrow's consumers want. This isn't specific to IndyCar and it is exactly what Mr. Barnes meant. Maybe next time we shouldn't take things so personally? After all, ITS NOT ABOUT YOU - it is about the survival of the sport.

  10. Carrie // February 18, 2010 11:13 AM  

    Maybe next time we shouldn't take things so personally? After all, ITS NOT ABOUT YOU - it is about the survival of the sport.

    @SammyPerry And the survival of the sport depends on people with the money and willingness to spend it on the product, now and in the future. Therefore, it is about me and not about some 10 year-old kid.

  11. meeshbeer // February 18, 2010 11:19 AM  

    um... 40 yr olds (44 to be exact thank you very $%*#ing much) are the only ones who still give flying %#@! about this gong show. (and less and less with each passing day)

    So go ahead an alienate the one demographic that is still actually writing about and promoting your gig. Then good luck filling the seats in your future phallic fantasy world.

    (this just may be worth coming off hiatus early.... )

  12. The American Mutt // February 18, 2010 11:26 AM  

    This thirty year old is questioning whether or not he'll be following Indycar when he's 32, and if there's a deltawang there'll be one less 32 year old fan of the sport. Strictly speaking, the mutts brother will be 37 in 2012 and he won't be watching either.

    You don't get the future without the present. Indy draws something like 250,000 thousand eyeballs for non 500 races. You take out 99 for every one hundred of those, and who gives a shit how a ten year old feels about the car.

  13. Declan // February 18, 2010 2:08 PM  


    Nail on head Sir or madam! :)

    I got hooked on racing as a seven year or eight year old. I saw my first Indy 500 coverage in 1977 when I was eight.

    A year or so later I saw Moss V Richard Attwood live at the Phoenix Park in Dublin. Moss managed to keep up with Attwood's Porsche 917 in his gorgeous little Chevron B8.

    I'd imagine most of the 40 year olds here have similar stories and that is what Barnes is talking about. What is there in IndyCar right now that can or could engage kids and capture their imagination? A decade old Dallara isn't going to do it.

    Kids also drive a significant chunk of the interactive entertainment market (a multi-billion dollar industry) mainly with their parents money and why should the next generation of IndyCar be any different. Pester power has an enormous impact on everything!


  14. Iannucci // February 18, 2010 2:18 PM  

    Declan, I've got a 10-year-old daughter who currently watches every IndyCar race, and I guarantee it AIN'T because of what the car looks like.

    It's because she's a huge fan of a particular driver. She's rooting for people. Shockingly, it's the same motivator as many 40-year-olds who watch IndyCar racing. Even more shocking, it's why bazillions of people watch N----R, or the NFL, or "American Idol".

    Take that unscientific sampling for what it's worth. I mean, what do I know - I'm just a 41-year-old with a computer, right?

  15. Declan // February 18, 2010 2:44 PM  


    You are missing the point. Catering for the existing fanbase is not going to save the series. Would your daughter be watching if you were not a rabid IndyCar nut?

    There simply aren't enough of you out there to turn this ship around.

    Take that from a marketing professional who has had to promote US open wheel racing abroad, someone one who has worked in the interactive entertainment business for 16 years and someone who has been working for over 12 months trying to find a single US video games publisher who was even remotely interested in the IndyCar series or brand (and I talked to all of them!).


  16. Iannucci // February 18, 2010 2:56 PM  

    And you’re missing my point, Dex. You can’t expect to build a series by giving the stiff-arm to some of the few remaining fans comprising the tens of fans in attendance or the .1 ratings on VERSUS.

    What John Barnes could have said was “Our success depends not only to the 40-year-old with the computer but his 10-year-old kid as well.” Despite the fact that it would be truly alarming that JUST NOW Mr Barnes realized this, I would not think it a noteworthy comment.

    But that’s not what he said. He said what he said. And I don’t care if he gets Dan Wheldon’s image on a premium Bakugan car or has WWE turnbuckles in the Panther pit box, 10-year-olds alone aren’t going to save this sport.

    I realize this may be just as alarming news to Mr Barnes, but eventually most 10-year-olds become 40-year-olds.

  17. Declan // February 18, 2010 3:13 PM  

    Your last point makes his for him.

    Anyway, we shall agree to disagree, there is nothing wrong with that. :)

  18. Ross // February 18, 2010 3:22 PM  

    One would think the owners might go into damage control after the response to the DW but instead one of them decides to make ridiculous statements like this. Cars are only part of the equation, name one 10 year old in America thats going to care about a Dan Wheldon or hell just about any driver in the series besides Danica and Helio. You had a driver in the series last year sponsored by McDonalds and yet there was no in store advertising or tie ins with happy meals or the likes. And yes I know its not the teams fault for stuff like that but unless you actually get your drivers out there and give kids or even adults a reason to care about them then you could have spaceships driven by Stone Cold Steve Austin and the Cat in the freakin Hat and no one will care. So before you bash 40 year olds at computers(and im 22) maybe you should have picked a better time and better way of saying it.

  19. Declan // February 18, 2010 3:48 PM  

    Hang on Ross, I'm just writing this down.....*grabs note pad and pen*......Stone Cold Steve Austin and the Cat in the Hat you say, eh?

    Hmmm we could be on to winner there!


  20. manik56 // February 18, 2010 5:14 PM  

    The 40 year old only has 30+ years of his or her life left to follow IndyCar along with disposable income. Now why would anyone want that demographic?

    Clown. Though DW does look like a car from a Saturday morning cartoon.

  21. pressdog // February 18, 2010 7:58 PM  

    The reason the audience is small and shrinking is NOT because people think the current Dallara is fugly. I can't remember what the cars looked like when I was a kid, but I can remember they went fast and Rick Mears was a God to me. It's not the car. It's the racing that the car allows.

  22. Declan // February 19, 2010 8:31 AM  

    I remember exactly what the cars looked like when I was a kid. And that was as much a part for the attraction as the noise and the speed.

    Actually the noise was absolutely crucial when I think back.

  23. Don // February 19, 2010 9:12 AM  

    Wrong John! The 10 year old kids that can't pay for anything on their own won't make up for the THOUSANDS of paying fans leaving the series if this monstrosity is selected (forced on IndyCar).

    I’m very concerned the owners will make an ultimatum to IndyCar that it’s this piece of crap or no racing. If that's the case, RIP IndyCar.

    Please don't destroy 100 years of history and the identity of IndyCar. Please come to your senses!

  24. Mark // February 19, 2010 8:48 PM  

    As a 39 year old with a computer, I plan to stick around the sport as long as I am kicking. Let's hope for another 40 years. My kids won't be watching if I am not and that car will avert my gaze. No one is resisting change here: we're against astronomically stupid change. Pick one of the other Batmobiles if you must but leave the phallus on the salt flats.