Junior Open Wheel Talent

News and Views on Drivers Chasing Open-Wheel Stardom

Vision Racing Terminates Indy Lights Program

by Ryan Stringfield
Posted January 29, 2010 at 6:17 pm Indy Lights, open wheel racing news

In a time where negative news is least needed, the stark reality of the current economic climate has surfaced again with the demise of Vision Racing.  The last direct link between Tony George and the IRL came to an end this week as Vision Racing announced they would cease operation due to the inability to lock a key sponsor for the 2010 season.  Not only does this news affect the IRL but it will also leave a lasting mark on the Firestone Indy Lights as Vision’s Lights program will also come to an end.  I guess it seems like it might be a bit early to throw in the towel for 2010, but perhaps the announcement revolves around more than just money or sponsorship. Lauren George, who is the daughter of Tony George and owner of Vision’s Firestone Indy Lights team, tweeted yesterday:

Strange feeling of peace today… and complete trust in God’s timing. Can’t wait to see what the future holds for my @VisionRacing family.

Perhaps it was just time for Tony George to take a step back and leave the weight of his controversial decisions behind.  It’s hard to accept that as a reasonable possibility, but in reality it might not be that far off base.  The good news is that if that is in fact the case, it leaves room for a Vision Racing return in the future. The team has done such a tremendous job of utilizing the various social media outlets and building a fan base that there are truly a lot of disheartened people out there mourning the loss of their favorite team.  As Jeff Iannucci and so many other bloggers have pointed out, every team should use Vision’s fan building tactics as a benchmark for their own marketing program.  It’s little things that help build a solid fan base and, as we all know, fans are the lifeline of the IRL or any sport for that matter.

As for what the future holds, we will have to just wait and see.  It’s truly a shame to see Vision end their Indy Lights campaign after such a successful season with Australian James Davison behind the wheel in 2009.  The team managed to finish 2nd in the final standings and won their first race last season.

The Vision team shared space with Bryan Herta Autosport in 2009, but since then BHA has moved into their own shop.  It was confirmed yesterday that the cancellation of Vision’s 2010 efforts will not affect those of  Bryan Herta Autosport.

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3 Comments

  1. Ben Waugh on January 29, 2010 6:27 pm

    Great post. I will read your posts frequently. Added you to the RSS reader.

  2. Mark Boudreau on January 30, 2010 9:11 am

    I will never, ever be able to get passed the fact that Tony George singlehandedly destroyed open wheel racing in America when he pushed through the IRL. Champ Cars in the early 90s was exciting, vibrant and had fan support. For crying out loud Ayrton Senna was testing with Penske and the FIA was seriously worried enough to launch a mythical World Oval Championship! It is unfortunate that Vision Racing is being moth balled but the faster this guy is dis-associated from the sport the better.

  3. Doug on January 30, 2010 2:33 pm

    What does this do to James Davison’s season? He really had a breakout season in 2009 and I was looking forward to seeing him compete for the championship this season.

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