IMS board reinstates Anton George UPDATE Randy Bernard said both Tony George and the board deferred on an opportunity to interfere when he was negotiating to bring Firestone back as tire supplier.
"I stayed so confidential on negotiations with Firestone because I didn't need them leaked in any capacity that could hurt our relationship. It was very difficult and stressful," Bernard said. "I could have seen if he was going to get involved in wanting to know more, and he stood behind me. They all have. I have to give him 110 percent of my time. I want this series to succeed so much. If it fails, they won't say it's because of them. It's because of me. So far they've been outstanding, hope it continues to go that way."
Bernard said he found George "very gracious" during a three-hour dinner, discussing family and personal lives more than racing business.
"He's family. He should be a part of it," Bernard said. "I think I remain optimistic they continue to let me do my job as they have. He has not tried to interfere. Not that I don't want his advice. If he has good advice, of course. I'm sure we'll talk more."
George's son and namesake, the manager of business development in the league's development series, bristled at the notion that George and fellow board appointees Andre B. Lacy, Michael L. Smith and Jerry W. Throgmartin would form a bloc to manipulate Hulman business.
"They're not my dad's buddies. They're responsible guys in the community who have a passion," George Jr. said. "They feel they have a responsibility as Hoosiers to contribute to our business. It's honorable and respectable."
02/17/11 SPEED.com reports that the man who brought IndyCar Racing to its knees, Tony George, has been reinstated on the board of directors of Hulman & Company, the umbrella that funds and administers the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, IZOD INDYCAR series and Clabber Girl Baking Powder.
|Just when things were looking up for IndyCar racing, the man who almost singlehandedly destroyed it all, Tony George, is back|
It’s believed that Mari Hulman George, board chairwoman for Hulman & Company in addition to being chairman of the board at IMS, made the call to bring her son back into the fold.
SPEED.com reports that it doesn’t appear that George’s re-emergence will immediately affect the day-to-day operation of INDYCAR or the Indianapolis 500, although he was known to have made an unsuccessful attempt last summer to purchase the series he started with a couple of investors.
George had served as Chief Executive Officer of Hulman & Company and the Speedway before resigning both positions on June 30, 2009 following what can best be described as a civil war among his siblings.