I have been a Sarah Fisher fan since the day in 2000 when she was signed by Derrick Walker to begin her open wheel career. No, I am not just jumping on the bandwagon of fair weather fan support, nor am I just singing praise because it is fashionable. Sarah Fisher totally EARNED her place in the Indy Car history books, alongside the most humble family man currently driving an open wheel missile, Mr. Ed Carpenter. Rick Dreiling of Dollar General should take a few minutes to reconsider his decision to sever ties with Sarah Fisher Racing after next weeks final in Las Vega$. I am certain that Mr. Dreiling could practically sponsor next year’s Kentucky 300 all by himself, if one believes everything written over a year ago about his renegotiated contract to run Dollar General. Follow this link for some eye opening journalism:
Now, don’t get me wrong. I am not taking sides in the “to tax or not to tax high earners” argument, I am just offering up some background so that we can all be more informed. We all need to understand the economic reality facing oval type racing and its lack of self-support, let alone lack of butts in seats type of support. I completely agree with the cowboy, RB that ovals need a title sponsor to survive and you cannot just make a venue host a race. A title sponsor is the only way this is going to work. Mike King made an interesting yet factual statement during the Saturday morning practice sessions. He opined and mildly hammered open wheel bloggers with the truth. He said that if you want to see more oval racing then go out and SEE an oval race. With Kentucky, Chicago and Milwaukee all within distance of Indy, then go and buy a ticket! Being called to task in that manner made sense. But, I digress…..
When the tearful Sarah Fisher made her appearance in victory lane on October 2nd, I had to join in and shed a tear or two as well. This is a family operation through and through. These folks at Sarah Fisher Racing toil away at something that is more than a paycheck, but a FAMILY passion. The fact that Sarah gave birth to Zoe on September 13th and they both attended SFR’s first win is testament to the family thing. Sarah gave up her place behind the wheel for all the right reasons and look at the reward she has received in return. Not many people I know can say that they were the first at anything and yet, Sarah will always be known as the first female owner to win an Indy Car race. The only one to do so……..I call that trail blazing.
Which finally brings me to my point in the first place. I have been one of the many in 2007 that donated small checks to the cause called SFR when a sponsor promised but did not deliver. It pains my heart to hear that Dollar General will yank the plug after the Las Vega$ finale of the 2011 IZOD Indy Car Series. I have an idea; how about someone pony up $300,000 and be the title sponsor for the 2012 edition of the DG/Sarah Fisher 300@ Kentucky Speedway. Maybe Mr. Bernard and Bruton read this blog………nah, but don’t they wish they did?
As always, one last shout out to the hard working peeps in Client Services. They helped me out a bunch this year and it is greatly appreciated!