New Changes and Improvements For the 2010 Indianapolis 500
CHASSIS COMPETITION FOR 2012: The Indianapolis 500 Mile Race was the proving ground for early automobile manufacturers and its history of innovation has as much to do with its iconic status as its size, distance, and age. The invitation to brilliant automobile engineers to bring their best ideas to Indy has been kept in the box for years, as the historic venue has evolved into a spec race. The teams competing at Indy are currently all driving the same chassis and the same engine. The chassis are supplied by the Italian automobile company Dallara and the engines are leased to the teams by Honda.
The Indy Racing League, in an effort to boost competitive design options, has solicited entries from other chassis manufacturers for 2012, including Lola, Swift, Delta Wing. The IndyCar racing series set forth the specs and the manufacturers are looking for ways to develop a compliant product. Among the specs the manufacturers are expected to comply with is a requirement that the cars be manufactured within the united states and preferably in Indiana. Safety and cost specs are also specified.
CHANGE OF LEADERSHIP AT IMS: Announced in June of 2009, Tony George resigned his position as President of the Indy Racing League and resigned from the board of directors for the Indianapolis Motor Speedway as well. Revered as a hero to some and assailed as a villain to others, Tony George, will forever be remembered as the man who brought NASCAR and Formula 1 to Indy. He will also forever be remembered as the man who dismantled the Indy car series by giving CART teams an unceremonious boot on the rear end, which led to a fifteen year rivalry that threatened the future of both factions.
Shortly before his double resignation was announced, rumors circulated that other Hulman family members serving on the IMS board were in a state of revolt after years of what they considered imprudent spending by Tony George. Enormous sums of capital were invested into the speedway to accommodate Formula 1, including the construction of completely new high tech garages, the construction of an infield road coarse, and resurfacing of the oval segments of the track to accommodate the Formula 1 series. The total price tag for these accommodations is said to be in excess of sixty million dollars. After negotiations between IMS and Formula 1 failed to produce an ongoing working agreement, IMS abandoned its desire to host the F1 event in the future. The short 8 year run of Formula 1 at Indy is generally regarded as a failed experiment, having cost millions more to run than it generated.. This, coupled with the staggering expense of operating the Indy Racing League, brought pressure for a dramatic change of course in the operational map of the two racing organizations. Tony George, who was apparently not willing to compromise, elected to resign his post at both organizations.
In January 2010, Tony George also announced he would be closing the doors on his own personal racing team, Vision Racing. This move appears to signal the complete and total abdication of all things Indy for Tony George. His mother, Mari Hulman George, remains the Chairman of the Board, where she is joined by other George family members including daughters Nancy George, Josie George, and Kathi George-Conforti.