Leading IndyCar team boss Roger Penske says he has no concerns about the appointment of Curtis Brighton and Jeffrey Belskus to run the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and IndyCar Series after Tony George's departure.
Indianapolis announced yesterday that George, who had run the Hulman-George companies since 1990 and was behind the formation of the Indy Racing League in 1996, had decided to stand down from his position, although he will remain a board member and will still run the Vision Racing team.
The move followed a month of speculation after reports in the America press that George was to be ousted. Although the Speedway issued statements denying this at the time, it did reveal that he had been asked to submit plans for potential restructuring of the running of the company. This process ended with George relinquishing his position at yesterday's board meeting.
Although the IndyCar team owners issued a statement stressing their full backing for George when reports of his potential departure first broke a month ago, Penske said he did not expect Brighton and Belskus' promotion to have any adverse effect on the IndyCar Series as both had long held executive positions within the company.
"Those are good people and capable people, and they represent the family's interest," Penske told the Indianapolis Star
. "They've been involved in the discussions before, so it's not like we've got a brand-new cast of characters that we don't know."
There had been fears that any change to George's position could have an adverse effect on the championship that was his brainchild, but when announcing the new management structure chairman Mari Hulman George insisted that the IndyCar Series had a secure future and that the changes were intended to make it stronger.