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IRL to bolster staff
The Indy Racing League seems to be expanding, especially with three new races this season and interest from international sites regarding future events.

But it isn't growing to the level officials desire.

That's the driving force behind what's expected to be a significant buildup this spring in those pitching the value of the Indianapolis-based series to potential teams, sponsors and customers. League president Brian Barnhart said the IRL needs more manpower to close deals. 

The league also needs help with its relationship with its television partner and its broadcast ratings, particularly with the recent passing of Buddy McAtee, the longtime leader of IMS Productions.

"We have 13 or 14 fewer employees than we had in December 2005," Barnhart said. "We were trying to be as lean as we could be, but what worked 18 months ago doesn't necessarily work now.

"We need more arms, legs and bodies, and we need them now. And we're going to get them."

Most of that muscle will go to the business side of the organization, which is not Barnhart's strength or background. But how the organization will be structured remains to be seen, he said.

"It could mean hiring internally, it might mean hiring externally (in the form of an agency) or it might be a combination of the two," Barnhart said. "But help's going to be coming, I can assure you."  Indy Star

[Editor's Note: How will Champ Car's depleted staff compete against the 700+ NASCAR staff in Daytona and the expanding IRL staff?  Knocking on doors and landing sponsorship for the series and its teams is what makes the France family race series so successful.  Champ Car's biggest failure is its inability to land corporate sponsorship.  One race promoter told us that the corporate sales for their Champ Car race is down drastically from 2000.  Champ Car recently hired Next Marketing to go out and sell sponsorship deals.  They need to hire five more Next Marketing firms or bolster their own ranks.]

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