Miles seeks blended IndyCar management structure

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Two separate reports have indicated new Hulman & Co. CEO Mark Miles wants to blend the organizational structure of IndyCar and the Indianapolis Motor Speedway into a more cohesive, unified unit.

Writing for SPEED.com, Marshall Pruett spoke with Miles and rumored IndyCar CEO candidate Zak Brown. Miles is aiming to unify the two factions into a singular unit tentatively referred to as “Hulman Racing.”

“Step one is combining the IMS commercial stuff together with the IndyCar commercial stuff. I don’t have an exact name for it but I think of it as ‘Hulman Racing,’” Miles told Pruett. “There’s no reason in my mind to have, or not a good enough reason, to have separate staffs for marketing and sales and licensing and communications, when for the most part we’re dealing with the same end customers.”

Along the same lines, Miles is also hinting at looking at a competition CEO much the same way as a commercial CEO, for someone to handle the IndyCar paddock’s interests.

A projected timeline on hires is later this month, and by the green flag of the Indianapolis 500 on May 26 at the latest, according to a report in the Indiana Business Journal.

That report indicates Miles is looking at a series-wide revenue-sharing plan, which is different from the Leaders Circle funding distributed equally to 22 of the 25 series entrants for the season. That funding is at least $1 million for the year, provided the entrant qualifies for the Indianapolis 500.

See also:

Penske’s IndyCar leader comments easier said than done

Zak Brown’s marketing company up for sale

Could Zak Brown become IndyCar’s CEO?

Miles “Blown away” by IndyCar potential

Neuville wins Rally Australia; Ogier takes FIA WRC title

Sebastien Ogier. Photo: Getty Images
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COFFS HARBOUR, Australia (AP) Belgium’s Thierry Neuville won Rally Australia by 22.5 seconds on Sunday as torrential rain added drama to the last day of the last race of the World Rally Championship season.

Neuville entered the final day with an almost 20 second advantage after inheriting the rally lead Saturday when his Hyundai teammate, defending champion Andreas Mikkelsen crashed and was forced to retire for the day.

His lead was halved by Jari-Matti Latvala early Sunday as monsoon-like rain made conditions treacherous on muddy forest stages on the New South Wales coast. The rain stopped on the short Wedding Bells stage where Neuville was almost 5 seconds quicker than his rivals, stretching his lead to 14.7 seconds entering the last stage.

COFFS HARBOUR, AUSTRALIA – NOVEMBER 17: Thierry Neuville of Belgium and Nicolas Gilsoul of Belgium compete in their Hyundai Motorsport WRT Hyundai i20 coupe WRC during Day One of the WRC Australia on November 17, 2017 in COFFS HARBOUR, Australia. (Photo by Massimo Bettiol/Getty Images)

That stage was full of incident. The driver’s door on Neuville’s Hyundai i20 coupe swung open in the middle of the stage and Neuville had to slam it closed as he approached a corner.

Latvala’s Toyota then crashed seconds from the end of the stage, allowing Estonia’s Ott Tanak, in a Ford, to take second place overall and New Zealalnd’s Haydon Paddon, in a Hyundai, to sneak into third.

Sebastian Ogier was fourth after winning the final, power stage but the Frenchman had already clinched his fifth world title before Rally Australia began. Neuville’s win was his fourth of the season, two more than Ogier, and was enough to give him second place in world drivers’ standings for the third time in five years.

Ogier owed his drivers’ title to his consistency: he retired only once and finished no worse than fifth all season.

Neuville admitted the last day was touch and go as the rain made some stages perilous, forcing the cancellation of the second to last stage.

“That was a hell of a ride,” Neuville said. “Really, really tricky conditions.

“I kept the car on the road but it was close sometimes. I knew I could make a difference but I had to be clever. You lose grip, you lose control and the car doesn’t respond to your input.”