Questions For Randy
This weekend, I will be going to Barber Motorsports Park for the third year in a row. I went to a pre-season test there in spring of 2009, then went last year for the inaugural Indy Grand Prix of Alabama. Some may recall me writing about one of my most frustrating moments in my short blogging career.
To refresh your memory, during last year’s race weekend at Barber, I was in the media center between the two IZOD IndyCar practice sessions on Friday. Suddenly, I noticed everyone crowding around one section of the room. Being semi-curious, I went over to see what all of the commotion was about. Randy Bernard, who was only about five weeks into his new job as CEO, was giving an impromptu press conference.
All of the professionals were firing eloquent sounding questions his way. I stood there and listened intently to everything he was saying. One by one, the reporters walked away, until there were only about two of them left…and me. Without warning Randy Bernard turned to me, shook my hand and asked what I would like to know about. I froze. I think I uttered some nonsensical babble along the lines of “Oh, I’m just a blogger”. Noticing my awkwardness, he nicely said “That’s OK" then repeated "What would you like to know?” I stood there for a second and realized I had nothing.
In a few weeks, I will mark the two-year anniversary of this site. In that time, that is the one single moment that I wish I had back. On Monday, I wrote about second chances. The Butler Bulldogs did little with their second chance Monday night, but this is a second chance that I would like to have. But what would I do with it if I got it?
I’ve said many times that I am not a journalist, nor do I pretend to be one. There are some IndyCar bloggers who could be considered journalists, but I’m not one of them. I’m a fan – pure and simple. This is not a news site. Posting three times a week doesn’t exactly make for “Breaking News”. I’ve never done an interview with a driver. I have had many conversations with them and other racing personalities, but I only use those conversations as a basis to form my opinions. But I enjoy writing those opinions and throwing them out there.
If I do have another chance meeting with Mr. Bernard this weekend, I’m still not sure what I would ask or say – other than to tell him I think he is doing a great job. I probably wouldn’t even do that, fearing I would come across as a suck-up. I could ask him about the double-file re-starts, but Dave Despain did that on Wind Tunnel the other night.
It’s not really in my personality makeup to come up with hard-hitting questions for someone like Randy Bernard. But if I am given the chance to ask him something again, this time I don’t want to feel like Michael Corleone in The Godfather coming out of the restaurant bathroom with just his…well, you know. Then I got an idea. I thought I would throw it out in a post to my dozen or so readers and ask them what they would like to know.
So for the next couple of days, post to me in the comment section what you would like for me to ask Randy. I promise, if I get in front of him – I’ll take the list and read as many as I can before he gets tired and walks away. All I ask is to keep it relevant. I don’t really care if he wears boxers or briefs. I’m not interested in what kind of tree he would want to be. Nor do I want to hear about his views on global warming. I am interested in learning how he plans to pursue his long-term goals for the IZOD IndyCar Series and things along those lines.
I don’t always think quickly on my feet. I do OK when I can sit at a keyboard and pound out some thoughts with the aid of a backspace key – but I always need a little time to digest things. If I were to take that amount of time with Randy Bernard, he would be gone before my first question.
So here’s a chance to help me out and possibly get an answer to a question that has been smoldering inside of you for months. I do have a recorder, so I pledge that I will post his responses in their entirety, if I get the chance at all.
On another note…who is going to Barber? I’ve gotten e-mails from a couple of people already that I will try to meet up with. Last year, I got to meet “Bent Wickerbill” down there and we’ve stayed in touch ever since. I will be at Barber all day Friday and Sunday, but I will not be there on Saturday. If you are going to be there, please send me an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. I’d like to meet up, if possible. Based on my experience last year, it’s a lot easier to try and get together Friday than Sunday.
Anyway, start thinking about your questions and post them here. I’ll do my best to get them answered. Like last year, I’ll be posting throughout the day Friday and Sunday, with pictures, so check back often.
Update: I have now been contacted by the INDYCAR office and have been granted a meeting with Mr. Bernard for Sunday morning. I’ll use a word I rarely use – WOW! Get those questions ready.