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Old 18 May 2000, 14:30 (Ref:7366)   #1
KC
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KC should be qualifying in the top 5 on the gridKC should be qualifying in the top 5 on the grid
Felix Sabates has confirmed that he and Chip Ganassi have reached a verbal agreement for the CART team owner to purchase a majoity of Team Sabco. No offical announcement of the deal will be forthcoming probably before the Indy 500, but expect to see Ganassi standing in a NASCAR pit before long.
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Old 21 May 2000, 22:09 (Ref:7367)   #2
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Unfortunate, we don't need more cart types comming into NASCAR! I've always been against franchises, but if it would keep these types out, I'd be all for it!
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Old 22 May 2000, 00:41 (Ref:7368)   #3
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And your reasoning for that is?
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Old 22 May 2000, 01:23 (Ref:7369)   #4
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But Ganassi is doing this the right way; smart enough to know that you can't start a new team and win the first year (PPI, Foyt). This deal is real intriguing...Chevy, Pontiac, Dodge...Toyota? Plus Schrader has been thrown around as one of the drivers. Marlin has met with Ganassi as well. Irwin left standing?
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Old 23 May 2000, 13:50 (Ref:7370)   #5
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What's wrong with CART types? Are they too professional for the NASCAR circuit? Do you hold it against Joe Gibbs because he is a football type? Do you hold it against Jack Roush because he is a sports car type? Are the fans of NASCAR becoming as clannish as the hierarchy of NASCAR is?
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Old 27 May 2000, 05:11 (Ref:7371)   #6
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Crash Test,
On 22 May 2000, you ask, "and your reason for that is?" I will try to answer your question without my "extreamly intense dislike" for open-wheel racing affecting my answer. cart has the worst possible leadership in existance, rule by committee. The owners of the various teams make the rules. This Andrew Craig individual is nothing more than a figurhead. He has ZERO authority. He can only act as a mouthpiece, a spokesman for the owners. The problem is simple, an owner, having any say in the rules, is going to try to "fashion" the rules in his favor. NASCAR, on the other hand, is a dictatorship. One man makes, and sets the rules, the various team owners have no say so in the rules. Now, does that mean that NASCAR is perfect, certainally not, but it is the fairest way that a racing series can be adminstered. In the late 70s, or early 80, these team owners formed their sanctioning body (cart) took control of open wheel racing in the United States from the United States Auto Club, USAC, they, however could not, and never were successful in gaining control of the "biggest, and most desirable plum on the tree", the Indy 500. USAC retained control of the biggest, and face it, in the United States, the only open-wheel race that matters. Here is why I am dead set against all of these cart owners trying to get into NASCAR, I do not want them ruining NASCAR, in the same way that they ruined open-wheel racing in this country. In NASCAR, we have our own resident troublemaker, in the person of one O. Bruton Smith. He has made threats about starting his own stock car series. His history of "extreamly intense dislike" for NASCAR goes back to the formative years of NASCAR. It was a race between Bill France Sr. and O. Bruton Smith to organize and form the various stock car series into one series. A race that Bill France Sr. won. Smith didn't take kindly to this. In the 80s and 90s, Smith tried to buy every NASCAR sanctioned track that he could. Many beleive it was to hold NASCAR "hostage" in order to gain control from the France family, in other words, "you may own the series, but I own most of the tracks, where are you going to race if I don't let you run on my tracks?" NASCAR trumped (no pun intended, as in Donald Trump) him by buying several tracks on their own, them merging with Roger Penske's organization, thereby putting a stop to Smith's attempted monopoly of race tracks. Smith has never forgiven NASCAR for these two moves, or for the fact that he will not receive a second race for his Texas track, which is an altogether different story. Smith routinly threatens litigation against NASCAR. To put it mildly, there is no love lost between NASCAR and Smith. Bring in several of these cart types, allied them with Smith, who would split up NASCAR in a heartbeat, if he could, and you have a recipet for the same disaster that ruined open-wheel racing in this country. This is "my reason for that." Take care.

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Old 27 May 2000, 05:23 (Ref:7372)   #7
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KC,
You ask, "whats wrong with cart types, as opposed to Joe Gibbs, and Jack Roush?" Read my reply to Crash Test, in the post above this one, as to what I see wrong with cart types comming into NASCAR. As far as Gibbs and Roush, their loyal is to NASCAR, they wouldn't attempt a takeover in the situation I described above. Both have been in NASCAR for a while, and know that their best intrest lies with NASCAR, not against it. The same might very well not be true of the cart types, they have no loyality to NASCAR. I'm sorry, but they are outsiders.
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Old 27 May 2000, 09:31 (Ref:7373)   #8
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Lee, rest easy. The CART types are entering NASCAR because that is where the money and sponsorships are going. They want a piece of the action too especially when open wheel racing is divided and not growing as fast as NASCAR. Just remember Roger Penske is a CART type and who did he align with in the control for track ownership here in the U.S.?
NASCAR would easily squash any rival stock car series now. They own almost all of the great tracks in the U.S.
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Old 28 May 2000, 01:43 (Ref:7374)   #9
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Joe Fan,
While I don't deny that the fact of all of the sponser and money going to NASCAR is a major reason for all of these "outsiders" being attracted to NASCAR, I'm still very uneasy about it. You are right about the fact that NASCAR could "crush" any other stock car series, and I dare say any other racing series period, for that matter, in the United States, at any time they wished, but this is not my major concern. What worries me is the behind the scene, backstabbing, and backroom political dealings. As stated above, Bruton Smith would be more than happy to rip NASCAR apart for any percieved chance that he might have to gain part, or full control of stock car racing, he has NO love for NASCAR! Rodger Penske, made the move to NASCAR in 1972, with Mark Donahue, and the old "flying brick" AMC Matador, probally the "boxiest" car to ever race on the series. I can remember Junior Johnson saying, in an interview, "Penske will not have the success in Grand National racing that he has had everywhere else. He was pretty much able to either write the rules, or do anything he wanted in them TransAm and CanAm deals, but he won't do that here in NASCAR. Big Bill runs this place, and you play by his rules." Junior was right. Penske only won a couple of races before he departed NASCAR. He only became moderatly successful in NASCAR when he became a part owner of Rusty Wallace's team. I will give you this, Penske is an extreamly smart and savy businessman. He is a survivor in every sense of the word. While still a cart owner, I think that you are going to find him slowly becomming less and less involved with both it, and the NASCAR teams, till finally he gets out of the team owner role altogether. It was a stroke of genius that he, and Bill France Jr. had in consolidating their two sets of racetracks into International Speedway Corporation, thereby completely trumping Smith! I think what is going to happen is that Penske will wind up running ISC for the France family, which would be a very good move for all parties concerned. If you'll remember your NASCAR history, in the early 60s, Curtis Turner, and Tim Flock tried to basically take control of NASCAR from Bill France Sr. through the Teamsters Union. Big Bill ruled NASCAR with an "iron Fist" and crushed the effort, banning Turner and Flock for life, although Turner was allowed back in in 1965. Those were different times, NASCAR was pretty much a "Southern" sport then, and the dispute was between the drivers and NASCAR. Nowdays, things are quite different. NASCAR is the biggest, and most popular form of racing in the United States. There is also another problem that was not present in the early 60s, the country was not full of low down, scumsucking, backstabbing, government-backed, litigation-crazed, lawyers! Loathsome creatures that only crawl out from under their rocks when they sniff a profit, and would sue their own mothers (that is if they have mothers) for a profit! Combine Smith with several of these "outsider" cart types, that decide they don't want to play by NASCAR's rules, but instead want to make their own rules, shades of cart, and you have a potential recipet for disaster. I can just see it now, Smith, Ganassi, and Wells (these are not drivers, they are powerful businessmen, use to having their way) with an army of lawyers, against NASCAR, on national T.V. Throw in this worthless government of ours with crys of monoply, and it could destroy NASCAR. I know some of you will say that I'm paranoid, but stranger things have happened. As I said, this is alot different situation than the early 60s. I'm not looking for trouble, but given the way things are in this country, it would not supprise me at all if this were to happen. After all who would have ever thought the government would attack a legal industry manfacturing a legal product (tobacco, and no, I do not use tobacco products) in a free country. Yes, tobacco products have been shown to cause cancer, but no one forces anyone to use them. My only question is, if they are so bad, why don't they just ban them outright? I know the answer, MONEY! Anyway, thats my two sense worth.
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Old 28 May 2000, 03:35 (Ref:7375)   #10
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Oo, I hate to look like an apologist for O Bruton, with what he did to North Wilkes and Atlanta. but here it goes anwyas. The paranoia of monoply that you speak of Lee does exist. Just look at the two recent schedule additions. Anyways you look at it it just doesn't add up. These tracks aren't even finished yet and have cup dates? Where's ythat leave Gateway, which has payed thier dues with lower series. Granted, Chicago is huge for amrketing, I'll grant that, but Kansas City isn't a hot spot, and ir ranked lower for tv exposure tahn St. Louis, so this whole "expand to where we can get exposure" deal is bs. It's just go to new ISC tracks and screw anyone else. That itsn't to say Bruton should get a 2nd date at tms either, NAscar should boycott running there in protest of closing NOrth Wilkesboro. Which is one of the many reasons I'd be open to a rival stock car league forming, if it was run correctly. I doubt Bruton SMith would be able to run it in a way which would take NAscar back to its roots, but he's about the only one powerful enough to do it, and he has been critical of NAscar's processioanl racing (of course, 1.5 mile quad ovals lend themselves to this, while closed short tracks don't), but he does have a point, hypocrite or not. IF Bruton were to form a league that was mainly short track based, had boxier, more stock car like cars, and a focus on track action instead of marketing, I'd embrace it in a heartbeat. Now, given his track record, would Bruton ever do something like this? Probably not, if he did form a rival league it'd be just as bad or worse in terms of processional racing and going to all these cookie cutter superspeedways.


But a word about CART and its owners.I think giving the owners some voice is a good idea because they are the ones investing in the series, but the series does need a dictators (a la Bernie Eccelstone) to get things going in the same direction, perhaps, as Dan Gurney had orinially suggested in his White Paper: "One director/negotiator, one secretary and a staff accountant and gopher if needed." But otherwise, the owner based board of directors is fine, imho. Furthermore, the original proposal of the team oweners was for a board or 6 owner reps and 6 usac reps; that's hardly a hostile takeover, but compromise was not accepted by usac, so they had no choice but to leave if they wanted to improve thier lot. They didn't "ruin" open wheel racing, that was the action one of individual, Tony George. Look at cart prior to the split, and it was more popular than nascar and beginning to rival F1 in international popularity. And even though USAC still sanctioning the 500, cart bascailly ran the show, and quite efficiently too. But up until that time, they hadn't ruined anything; they had in fact saved a fledginig, nay languishing, series and built it into one of the top forms of motorsports.

Also a word about Penske. Junior Johnson making those comments about following the rules is like the pot calling the kettle black. Two words: yellow banana. Roger may have coined the unfair advantage, but Junior certainly lived by it. Big Bills rules were as maleable as any; just so along as it advanced the series. Cars illegal, well let it run cause we want manufacturer X in the series. Car illegal, we'll let it run cause we want these big name drivers in the field. SO please don't single out Roger for his rule bending when it was rampant in Nascar. Sure Junuior wasn't abke to rewrite the rules, but neither was Roger, at least not in trans-am/can-am.

Anyways, this isn't to say i want a cart style ownership deal in nascar. I think it's working fine the way it is, and the series is based upon the strong dictatorship, just wanted to throw my 2 cents in about a couple of things, but otherwise you're right, a move by Smith with help from Well et all would probably not be good.
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Old 28 May 2000, 16:35 (Ref:7376)   #11
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Heeltoe6, you say Kansas City isn't a hotspot for racing, how wrong you are. I live in the Kansas City area and we had NASCAR themed bowling leagues here long before there was ever a hint that we would ever get a track. We also have several diecast car shops that do great business. Kansas City also has both a Ford and GM assembly plant which creates a foundation for a great NASCAR rivalry here. How many areas that have NASCAR Winston Cup dates have both a Ford and GM assembly plant? In many ways Kansas City is a better market for racing than most areas that already have big tracks, including a few in the south. ISC has indicated that they get a high percentage of people from the Kansas City area at Daytona.

As far as history, we held IndyCar races back in the 1920's. A.J. Foyt also got his first major USAC sprint car win at a track here in Kansas City. We once held NASCAR convertible division races. When the Kansas City track offered Personal Seat Licenses for sale, they sold out fairly quickly and they had to add more. These PSL's go for $500 to $1250 a piece. I know St. Louis pretty well because I travel there at least once a year. Oddly enough, I have talked to a few people there involved with after market ticket sales and they say St. Louis isn't big on racing which is surprising since the Wallace brothers and Ken Schrader are from there. Overall, Kansas City is a much better racing market than St. Louis and forget about Gateway holding a Winston Cup race, it just isn't possible from a logistics standpoint. The highway structure around the track is just too congestedand the track doesn't have enough outlet roads. I know because I have been there. Also note that they added some seats and still haven't sold the place out. The reasons: 1) St. Louis isn't big on racing and 2) Gateway is a nightmare to get out of even when there is only 40,000 people.

The bottom line is that St. Louis had the opportunity to get the big track that we got here and they couldn't mount an effort to get it built there. Part of this was the existence of Gateway. Gateway just isn't condusive for a Winston Cup race, it is Busch Grand National, IRL and CART material. St. Louis is a great city and in many ways in better than Kansas City but this is not one of them. St. Louis is big on the Cardinals, Rams, Blues and Budweiser and that is about it.



[This message has been edited by Joe Fan (edited 28 May 2000).]
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Old 28 May 2000, 20:34 (Ref:7377)   #12
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That may be true, but I was meaning to refer specifically to tv market share, where St. Louis ranks at least 10 spots ahead of KC. I'm not saying KC isn't going to sell out, I have no doubt it will, but I'm just saying the line we're getting from isc that they went to KC for marketing reasons (tv was mentioned specifically by Helton) is doublespeak. They went there cause they own the track, pure and simple.
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Old 28 May 2000, 22:35 (Ref:7378)   #13
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Heeltoe, Kansas City is still a bigger TV market than Loudon, Martinsville, Richmond, Talladega(Birmingham), Dover, Bristol, Pocono, Rockingham, Darlington, Las Vegas, Watkins Glen and probably close if not bigger than Charlotte. I don't think it really matters anyway since NASCAR is a national sport and will get ratings anywhere. What is important are ticket sales. Without strong ticket sales you cannot hold a Winston Cup race.
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Old 30 May 2000, 13:49 (Ref:7379)   #14
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Lee, I agre that CART is not run in a proper manner, but this has very little to do with Chip Ganassi racing in NASCAR. Believe me, if any one of the NASCAR owners could possibly buck the establishment to make more money they would. They are certainly loyal to NASCAR, but NASCAR also is run as a dictatorship and not run buy a board of investors. Nothing wrong with NASCAR being run the way it is, but Ganassi will have to play the same game as every other team owner. Just because he comes from CART doesn't mean he is going to somehow take over the series. If any one could have taken over NASCAR, Roger Penske would have done it.
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