IndyCar has finished its season by crowning Ryan Hunter-Reay as the 2012 champion, and the driver is busy celebrating in New York City. Hunter-Reay visited the Empire State Building on Sept. 19 to pose with his new trophy. While the 31-year-old driver's victory has garnered most of the attention, I think IndyCar still has some serious issues that must be addressed for 2013.
The First IndyCar Series Championship for Ryan Hunter-Reay
Ryan Hunter-Reay earned his first IndyCar Series championship on Sept. 15 and posted four wins in 2012. The Andretti Autosport driver became the first American to win the championship since 2006, and IndyCar has been promoting this fact heavily in the media to counteract some of the criticism it has received in the past.
Planning for 2013 Begins Now
Randy Bernard, the CEO of IndyCar, hopes to start planning for the 2013 season immediately. A meeting has already been planned for Sept. 20 as the organization begins to construct a new schedule. Although other racing series still have several weeks left in their seasons, IndyCar is finished for 2012. Bernard is rumored to release the 2013 schedule at the beginning of Oct. Discussions about the new schedule have also led to new reports about the possibility of IndyCar returning to Pocono in 2013.
Will Randy Bernard Keep his Job?
Despite IndyCar's attempts to focus the attention on Ryan Hunter-Reay and his victory tour in New York City, there are multiple rumors about the instability of Randy Bernard's job. Team owners have already attempted to remove him from his position as CEO this year, so it is not surprising that reports have resurfaced about several owners planning a new strategy to get rid of him.
Bernard seems to think that the improvements made by IndyCar this season will be enough for him to find peace in the series and remove doubts from team owners about his ability to lead as CEO. However, he may be underestimating some of the resentment they feel. Unfortunately, IndyCar is losing popularity as this type of internal bickering continues. If the organization is serious about regaining its status among fans and shifting away from the negativity of previous seasons, then the infighting has to stop.
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Growing up in Indiana, Lana developed a love for motorsports at an early age. She follows NASCAR, IndyCar and Formula One. Follow @Lana_Bandoim on Twitter.
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