IndyCar's Randy Bernard quotes
IndyCar CEO Randy Bernard was the guest on Sunday night’s Wind Tunnel with Dave Despain, where Despain and guest co-host Robin Miller asked about IndyCar’s recently announced 2011 race schedule and the reason behind the changes. Below are select quotes from the show:
On choosing to partner with Bruton Smith’s SMI tracks over ISC tracks:
Bernard: “… we didn’t set out to say we wanted to get rid of all the ISC tracks. What we had to do was look at our promoters, look at the ones that want to get aggressive and really focus on the ones that want to create a strategy where we can move IndyCar to the next level. I think Bruton Smith stepped up to the table and said, ‘Hey, I’m here and I’m willing to step up and promote’ and that’s what I wanted to hear. He had some tracks that we wanted – Loudon – and hopefully Las Vegas.
On putting “most of his eggs in one basket” with Smith:
Bernard: “No, I don’t think so … if you look at the past five or six years and you look at the races we’ve had good crowds at, I think he’s delivered. I think Eddie Gossage has done a fantastic job and I think those are the type of promoters that I want to deal with. They were the ones calling me very aggressively on a day-to-day basis saying, ‘What can we do; how can we help?’ Bruton and I talk often. That, to me, is a sign that they want to be a team player and I’m hoping this is a long-term deal for us with Bruton.”
On the proposed $20 million “double” for winning both the Indianapolis 500 and Coke 600 in May, Miller said, “I took you to Eldora for the specific purpose of meeting Jimmie Johnson, Kasey Kahne, Tony Stewart and the guys like Kyle Busch that might have showed some interest … where does the $20 million race stand now and do you think we will ever see it?”
Bernard: “There were two of your guys that really had a lot of interest in it. And I think if they committed today, I think Bruton and Jeff Belskus and I would commit today. I think it’s very important. That’s what the fans want to see and I hope we can pull that off, because I think it would be real exciting.”
Dave Despain also asked him about the rumor posted on AutoRacing1.com whereby Ferrari threatened to leave F1 if a 4-cyclinder engine was selected in 2013 and they mentioned that racing in America was always as option.