Tag:Indy Car
Posted on: September 9, 2010 12:23 pm
Edited on: September 9, 2010 12:24 pm

Indy Car 2011 Schedule

The IZOD Indy Car Series will officially unveil its 2011 schedule at a Friday press conference but CBS Sports.com has learned what that slate will most likely look like.

All International Speedway Corporation tracks have vanished from the Indy Car calendar while Speedway Motorsports Inc. facilities in New Hampshire and Las Vegas join the fold added to other SMI properties in Texas and Sonoma. The Milwaukee Mile comes back after a one year absence and a new street circuit race in Baltimore will also debut in 2011.

In all 18 races will be held albeit at 17 different venues as Texas plans a doubleheader program.

Here's how the 2011 schedule should play out:

March 27 St. Petersburg

April 10 Barber Motorsports Park

April 17 Long Beach

May 1 Brazil

May 29 Indianapolis 500

June 12 Texas

June 19 Milwaukee

June 26 Iowa

July 10 Toronto

July 24 Edmonton

August 7 Mid-Ohio

August 14 New Hampshire

August 28 Sonoma

September 4 Baltimore

September 18 Motegi

October 1 Kentucky

October 16 Las Vegas 
Category: Auto Racing
Tags: Indy Car
Posted on: September 2, 2010 4:00 pm

Open Wheel Blues

I've received more than a few emails and other correspondence from readers who have labeled me an Indy Car hater.

Please allow me to defend those allegations.

If you've noticed I've been harsh on the American open wheel world in recent years you're right. The constant mismanagement and off the track maneuvers have more than soured my taste for Indy Car racing. Like all fans I lived through the IRL-CART war and thought after about fifteen years of madness things would get back on track once that nasty chapter in Indy Car racing ended.

I never expected any overnight cures. When something has been virtually destroyed there's no way for it to be replaced in any short order. As they say, Rome wasn't built in a day.

But here we are three years removed from when the Civil War ended and Indy Car racing is no closer to finding its way than it was five or ten years ago.

We have a new management team, new title sponsor, potential of a new car, a new television package and even a brand new name for what used to be known as the IRL - the IZOD Indy Car Series. But there are still the same old problems.

Owners who are fighting with one another, skyrocketing costs, the lack of a steady stream of American drivers, a schedule that chases financial rewards rather than solid racing and a TV deal that puts the sport about on par with professional ping pong in terms of audience are what I see in today's Indy Car world.

I truly feel sorry for CEO Randy Bernard, who came into what I believe to be a no win situation filled with great ideas, much needed enthusiasm and none of the baggage a recycled management type from inside the sport would have had if appointed to the role. And I realize he's been on the job for about a year if that and is not a miracle worker.

However some of what I see taking place reminds me a lot of what went wrong when the sport sailed off the tracks to start all of this mess. Throw into the mix the horrific economy that touches the sport on so many different levels and it's hard for me to see much in the way of positives these days.

Some of the racing I've watched in Indy Car this year is among the best I've seen in any discipline of the sport, including NASCAR. Call me bias if you will, but the racing I'm referring to came on oval tracks like Iowa Speedway, Texas Motor Speedway and Chicagoland Speedway, which hosted yet another breath taking event this past Saturday night.

The league continues to move away from that brand of racing and mixing in street circuits and road course events that are financially sound but artistically a bust. While I understand the business economics that are adding into the oval track portion of the schedule fading into oblivion, I return to the statement that to rebuild the sport it must return to its roots. Indy Car racing came from the Indy 500 at the most famous race track in the world. The current product on that track layout is far more superior than what takes place at a venue like Toronto or Long Beach or Brazil.

But a look at the grandstands in Chicago last week versus the crowds that continue to populate street and road courses, which are marketed as events and festivals rather than races, tells you where things are headed.

Some people kid because they care. I criticize the current state of Indy Car racing for the same reason.

Category: Auto Racing
Tags: Indy Car
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com