Thursday, December 04, 2003

CART Stumbles

In yet another blow, it appears that the proposed buyout and privatization of CART has fallen through. It looks like the only option left is bankruptcy leading to either liquidation or reorganization. The sticking point is the number of cars that are expected to race next season, which has fallen below eighteen. As the fields become smaller and less competitive the fan base dwindles further. As the fan base dwindles, the advertising dollars go away and smaller teams drop out, making the field smaller leading to a death spiral.

The proposed buyers (OWRS) seem to be interested in CART's reorganization, with them taking over some but not all of the CART functions. If they succeed, they claim to plan on running a lot of the season next year, but these deals do keep falling through. It seems likely that without a large infusion of cash from somewhere, the decline will be hard to stop. If only Bernie Ecclestone were interested in promoting CART.