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SBD/23/Leagues Governing Bodies
BY GEORGE, TONY EXPLAINS THE POSITION OF THE IRL
Published October 23, 1995
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).