DECEMBER 29, 2001
America and F1 - a long way to go
THE impact of Formula 1 in the United States of America is still minimal despite the positive reception of the sport in the last 18 months. Sporting News has just published its list of the 100 most powerful people in US sport and the only racing people to make the list are from NASCAR.
The magazine concluded that the most powerful figure is Paul Tagliabue, Commissioner of the National Football League, while George Steinbrenner of the Yankee baseball team is second ahead of TV magnate Rupert Murdoch. NASCAR's Bill France made fifth on the list but the only others to make the list were NASCAR functionaries Mike Helton (45), Jim Hunter (52) and George Pyne (66), driver Jeff Gordon (68) and Dale Earnhardt's widow Teresa (95). There were no figures from CART or IRL although the omission of Tony George, the boss of Indianapolis Motor Speedway and the IRL, was glaring. So too was the fact that Roger Penske was not on the list.
Such lists always attract criticism but the general point is that open-wheeler racing in really not important in the United States of America.
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