IndyCar CEO Randy Bernard believes that he has diffused any tension between himself and the series' team owners after claiming earlier in the week that one of them was attempting to have him fired.
Bernard met with representatives of the teams at the Detroit street circuit on Saturday to discuss the issue, which began when he revealed via Twitter on Tuesday that one of the owners was trying to gain support to have him ousted. He refused to name the team owner at the center of the effort to unseat him, but said that his relationship with the teams remains strong.
"[The team owners] have all expressed their support this week," Bernard said. "I don't think my position was ever under any threat. My board has been very supportive. I just felt like getting one fact out there, and that's all it was. And it created a firestorm.
One of the main sources of discontent amongst the team owners has been the higher than expected cost of running the new Dallara DW12 chassis. Bernard admitted that the new car had proven to be more expensive than the series initially expected, but said that he was committed to reining the costs in.
"We do have issues [with costs], and part of my job is trying to work with [the teams] on cost control and bringing costs down," he said. "I don't think that we're taking a position of, 'too bad'. We're taking a position of, 'we need to help you, and we're going to work with you to try to bring those costs down.'"
Bernard signed a five-year contract with the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Corporation to take the IndyCar CEO role in March 2010. Bernard noted that, in contrast with the CEOs who were hired by the team owners under CART, he answers to the IMS board.
"Let's be honest: I don't answer to the team owners. I answer to a board of directors," Bernard said. "I want to work with the team owners, I want to work with the promoters, I want to work with the drivers, we need to work with our sponsors and our TV partners, and you're gonna make people mad along the way. But you have to do what is in the best interest of the sport."