IRL in a lose-lose situation

Rumor has it that the departure of Toyota, and to a lesser extent, Chevworth, will exacerbate the imbalance that currently exists in IRL competition. If the IRL goes to a single engine supplier in 2007 as appears to be the case, the following scenarios appear likely.

If it is Honda, then HPD will support its factory teams of AGR, Rahal-Letterman and Fernandez for maybe 10 cars; With Penske that will make 12 cars total, as there will be no engine support or subsidies for the rest and Chevy and Toyota won't be around to support any teams.

If it is Ilmor-Penske, then who will pay for AGR and Rahal-Letterman without Honda? But in this scenario the IRL will have a low-cost engine vis-à-vis 1998 and a lot of low budget teams with Penske thoroughly dominating with his own engines. Penske always does his own engines anyway – 2nd class engines will go to the paying customers. Can you imagine Foyt or Hemelgarn buying a 2nd-class engine from Penske? The IRL will lose AGR's 4 cars, Rahal-Letterman's 3 cars and all the Toyota backed teams.

Either scenario, they will lose teams. Its a lose-lose situation if they can't get additional engine manufacturers to support the teams. This is the best thing that can possibly happen to the IRL, Tony George just doesn't realize yet. With too few cars it will force a merger with Champ Car, which is what everyone but Tony George and his minions believe must happen anyway. Together Champ Car and the IRL can be a force to be reckoned with, divided and the France family will continue to toast their stupidity every chance they get. Mark C.

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