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JUNE 20, 2005

The American press speaks

Curt Cavin, Indianapolis Star

"After what the fans have thrown on the track at Talladega last year in NASCAR. I'm surprised they didn't throw more stuff. I thought David Coulthard had it right when he said: 'If we come back, half of the crowd will not.' I don't think Tony George can run this race for 50,000 people. I also think that Michelin is not getting enough of the blame. If the FIA is going to hold fast on its red light rule with Montoya in Canada, then it has to hold fast with this rule as well."

Jonathan Ingram, Palm Beach Post

"It is a huge setback for Formula 1 and for the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. I usually have a lot of respect for both of those organisations but today I am reminded that in America the sanctioning bodies and promoters always work hard to get the best result for the fans. In this marketplace they could not survive if they did not do that. Clearly it does not work that way in the F1 world: that includes the teams, the tyre suppliers and the FIA. The prevailing attitude in that group is to put their own interest so far ahead of the fans that it is absurd. And we saw an absurd event today."

Dave Kallmann, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

"What happened today means that every bit of goodwill fostered over the last five years has been lost and revives every reason the fans had to question F1. The fans did not pay for a six-car show. You need to have a back-up plan and there was nothing. That is inexcusable. If you really want to be in the marketplace you have to adjust to how things are done and pissing off 120,000 fans is not a good way to keep them. it seems to me that a lot of what goes on in F1 is seeing who is the biggest bully in the sandbox and if they all try this it ends up blowing up the whole event. I cannot believe that someone could not find a compromise to make the race happen. I don't know who to blame."

Bruce Martin, National Speed Sport News

"This event has overcome the manipulative event in 2002. Last year was good and this year the crowd was up. It survived that problem but even the Speedway people are saying that they are not sure that the damage is repairable. Today there was no competition. It was a skeleton of a race. The problem is the F1 attitude, the bureaucracy. They have such a huge self-importance. The Speedway had zero control over what happened and they are the ones who are taking the pain. They are the ones who will have to answer the phones from people who want their money back. And Bernie will be off looking for another country to hold a Grand Prix."

Annie Proffit, Automobile Magazine

"The FIA could have done something about it earlier and could have avoided Michelin having to stand down its drivers. To place the blame on Tony George and the Indianapolis Motor Speedway does them a great disservice. They have gone out of their way to accommodate F1. Look at all the improvements made at the Speedway. I would like to see F1 back but I really think the politics is stifling and there is no commonsense."