Many thanks to AP’s Jenna Fryer (@JennaFryer) for doing the hard work of reading the Boston Consulting Group’s 115 page opus on what IndyCar needs to do to be successful and then giving us the Cliffs Notes version of the main ideas. Since the IndyCar season is still down the road, it is time for New Track Record to get in some preseason practice. With so little news coming out of the IndyCar camp, even the bloggers need some extra time to dial things in.
Does anyone else find it interesting that the AP’s Jenna Fryer got a “leaked” copy of the BCG report for her “AP Exclusive: Family told to keep IndyCar, IMS” story? The IndyCar Series has suffered from a very provincial mindset regarding publicity. One reason the series has not received national coverage, other than the total dysfunction of management, is that they do not work for it. Since the main daily coverage of IndyCar was by local reporters Curt Cavin of the Indianapolis Star and Robin Miller of Speed, most information was leaked to them and gleaned by them. They, along with Speed‘s Marshall Pruett, were the only real media following the series. They play the quid pro quo game with the teams, drivers, and management. They get the scoop. They are also players in the continuing internecine battle for political supremacy among owners, drivers, and management. Sources give information to reporters because it helps them in some way. Nothing new there.
What is new is that, after being frozen out of exclusive news last year, Jenna Fryer got the skinny on the BCG information. I don’t think it was an accident. With the notoriously leaky ship that is IMS and IndyCar, it is more than just surprising that no one else got a copy. Someone with unquestioned authority made sure the national media got the story first. And that is good news for IndyCar, even thought the Twitterless Robin Miller might disagree.
If IndyCar is going to be a BIG DEAL again, then they have to think beyond the Indianapolis 500. The practice of freezing out local media to give exclusive content to the national media is prevalent in all pro sports. The Indianapolis sports media is often bypassed by the Colts because the power and reach of ESPN is so great. It makes better business sense to go national. The local media hates it, but they understand it. It’s not personal; it’s just business. Curt Cavin, Robin Miller, and Marshall Pruett will get their copies. They just won’t get them first. Watch how this plays out for the rest of the year.
Well, it was great to take the blog out for a couple of shakedown paragraphs. I’ll get it back to the shop, check for leaks, take a look at the data, and get it back out later in the week. For sure.