Sunday, February 24, 2008

Thoughts on the interview with TG and KK....

I hope that a lot of you caught the interview on SPEED this evening. The interview with Tony George, and former (isn't it great to say former) Champ Car World Series owner, Kevin Kalkhoven, provided some insight on where they believe the series should go and what the next few years will look like.

It's pretty clear that that direction that the IRL was going before this merger is the direction they will continue on. Specifically, the oval, street and road courses will make up the series. I believe this is the best possible race structure. The street/road courses will appeal to former Champ Car fans, some US-based F1 fans, and generally a younger fan base. The ovals will appeal to the older generation that remember the series for what it was before the split.

There was some discussion of the 2010 season when the new chassis will be introduced to the series and how that will affect that quality of racing. It seems like the series is really excited about that year - probably wishing it was coming in 2009, not 2010. I think in the coming years we're going to see some interesting additions to the cars...the different sets of tires, I think the nose on the cars will change, there was even discussion of using the turbo feature that the Champ Car series had. I'm not so sure about the turbo but I love the other two additions and I think they could bring a lot to the IRL.

As for this year, KK made reference to a few teams from Champ Car that have committed to racing in the series this year (which we knew) and a few others that were seriously considering it. My guess is that the few that have already committed will be the only teams that actually compete. The other teams may run the 500 and maybe some of the road courses, but not the entire season. Testing for Homestead starts tomorrow and they're going to need to play catch-up.

Will be interesting to see who shows up this week at Homestead. Can't wait!

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