Like most American kids that grew up in the 80's I watched the Indy 500 every year and became interested in motorsports thanks to that race, but I didn't really get hooked until I started watching Formula 1 racing in the late 90's. My favorite era were those years with the great Mika Hakkinen/Michael Schumacher battles. (I was a Mika Hakkinen fan) So my fondness for Formula 1 waned once Mika retired and Schumacher started winning everything, even at the expense of his teammate Rubens Barrichello. My interest in F1 has only been lukewarm since.

Then I turned to Champ Car racing here in the US for my motorsports fix. However that was quickly extinguished once Champ Car and Indy Car merged and we were stuck with Tony George and his many foibles. (It was entertaining to watch the Hulman/George drama I'll admit.) My interest has been less than lukewarm with Indy Car lately, even without Tony George at the helm.

Over time however, the excitement I once had for motorsports has slowly gone. Maybe it has to do with my age, I don't know. But I think I will pour my efforts into my Trooper and my interests in the outdoors to add excitement to my life.

Thanks for checking out my blog, I hope you enjoy it. I will still post racing news when I find something interesting or noteworthy.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Bernard says Motegi not a good fit

(Helio - "This is the thanks I get for moving over to let Danica win?")

(by Curt Cavin 2-9-11)

IndyCar CEO Randy Bernard said today that the series’ race at the Twin Ring Motegi circuit in Japan didn’t work for either party, and that’s why the annual event won’t be held after this year.

The final race is Sept. 18.

“To us, it didn’t fit in that time of the year,” Bernard said. “Here we are gaining momentum for the championship and we have this race at 2 in the morning.

“It would make more sense if you had a big TV following in Japan, but it’s marginal.”

As for the track’s ability to make money on the event that requires expensive international transportation, Bernard said “it was a fair deal, but no one was doing great.”

The 1.5-mile egg-shaped track in the mountains north of Tokyo opened in 1997 and hosted five Champ Car World Series events before switching to IndyCar. Motegi is owned by Mobilityland Corp., a wholly owned unit of Honda Motor Co.

Scott Sharp won the first IndyCar race in 2003. Danica Patrick won her only series race there in 2007. Dan Wheldon and Helio Castroneves won two races each.

Bernard said he isn’t worried about losing an oval track because there “are plenty of options.” He declined to name them, but he has been particularly interested in Phoenix International Raceway.

Also possibilities: Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, Calif.; Chicagoland Speedway; Nashville Superspeedway, among others.

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