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SBD/November 2, 2012/Leagues and Governing Bodies
IndyCar's Belskus Yet To Finalize Process For Hiring Replacement For Randy Bernard
Published November 2, 2012
MOVING ON: The AP's Jenna Fryer noted Belskus in an open letter posted on the IndyCar website "admitted the past week has been challenging and called on fans to 'harness the energy and emotion of this time for the good of the sport we all love.'" Belskus said that he "planned to reach out to 'series stakeholders,' including fans, but wasn't direct when asked what impact the handling of Bernard's departure might have on a series desperate for fans." Belskus said, "It created some uncertainty, and anytime you create uncertainty I don't think that's positive. But I tell you, that we are moving ahead and we are focused on the future and 2013 now" (AP, 11/1). In Indianapolis, Curt Cavin writes, "As for how the final days of Bernard's tenure were handled by the Indianapolis-based organization -- there were rumors and denials aplenty, with Bernard finally resigning at an emergency board meeting Sunday evening -- Belskus acknowledged it was handled poorly." Belskus said, "In terms of style points, we could have done better." He would not say if Bernard "met budget goals." Belskus: "We're a private company, and we don't publicly discuss our financial results" (INDIANAPOLIS STAR, 11/2).
BUYER'S MARKET? USA TODAY's Nate Ryan wrote the "sheen is off big-time auto-racing in many ways, and remaining relevant is a conundrum that faces every series in this country." Ryan: "So how does NASCAR become more relevant? Well, it could buy IndyCar." NASCAR is "trying to lure a younger audience that doesn't think cars are as cool anymore." Acquiring IndyCar "might ameliorate some of those woes." It also would be "labeled heresy by both series' fervent fan bases." Each side "has something the other needs." NASCAR has "savvy leadership, shrewd marketing and the stability of permanent venues." Meanwhile, IndyCar "brings an inherently more advanced product for the digital age and a more diverse lineup" (USA TODAY, 10/31).