SBD/23/Leagues Governing Bodies

BY GEORGE, TONY EXPLAINS THE POSITION OF THE IRL

     Indianapolis Motor Speedway President and IRL founder Tony
George explains his position in an op/ed piece that ran in
Sunday's INDIANAPOLIS STAR.  George writes that CART's position
against the new qualifying procedures for the Indy 500 come from
CART's desire to "eliminate the IRL and gain control of the
Indianapolis 500."  George claims CART created the conflicts that
threaten participation in Indy through its schedule, which makes
it impossible to race in both circuits.  He also calls the IRL's
qualifying incentives "a new and interesting dimension to how
starting fields are established because they provide a hard,
venue-to-venue continuity."  George continues: "CART had
obviously made a perfectly legal, free-market competition move to
prevent its teams from participating in the opportunities
presented by the IRL.  At that point, it became incumbent on us
to respond in kind, and we did it with a carrot instead of a
stick."  George writes the IRL's purpose is not to "harm or
control CART," but to keep the Indy 500 in the control of a local
group (INDIANAPOLIS STAR, 10/22).  In Philadelphia, Pete Schnatz
reports fan response has "exceeded expectations" in Orlando for
the IRL's inaugural race at Walt Disney World.  The race is
reportedly a "virtual sellout already" (PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER,
10/21).
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