Friday, July 10, 2015

Why are IndyCar Drivers Underpaid?

Although the vast majority of today's IndyCar drivers make much more than your average "Person on the Street" does. Their respective salaries are a mere pittance in comparison to other professional athletes...

In what to Mwah, can only be described as one further notch in Indy Cars unspoken plight of "The Split" and its longstanding effects, it's pretty laughable how paltry today's current top flight IndyCar drivers are paid, especially in comparison to the sport's other two top-tier categories, i.e.; Formula 1 andNASCAR.

As its pretty amazing that IndyCar, which I perceive as being far more dangerous than driving a 'RASSCAR "Taxicab," although any form of racing is dangerous! Pays mere fractions of what Americres' elite motosports series does, which No Fenders  'Offical Photographer 'CARPETS pointed out recently is  due largely to the Sponsorship disparity between the two sports.

Now I'm not implying that the average IndyCar Pilot should be earning a comparable salary to Lewis Hamilton, as the 30yr old Brit  is one of F1's current Top-3 drivers, along with Sebastian Vettel and Fernando Alonso. As Vettel's rumoured to being paid $34m for his first year at  Scuderia (Ferrari) with Fernando making $25m at McLaren Honda.

Although I've since read that Alonso's currently the highest paid F1 Driver while last year's average Formula 1 salary was estimated around North of $6.27m, albeit backmarker's make substantially less, i.e.; Jules bianchi's $500,000 v Marussia F1 team-mate Max Chilton's $200k, with Caterham's duo of Marcus Ericsson and "K-Squared," aka Kamui Kobayashi reportedly making the paltry sum of $150k apiece; Huh?

Whilst originally I couldn't find any current data for NASCAR's elite, where the creamed of the crop can make anywheres' between $1-20m from a variety of sources, i.e.; salary, percentage of  prize winnings and bonuses, which the top drivers supplement nicely with personal endorsement deals and merchandise sales. As surely Danica's (Patrick) were impressive, eh?

Forbes claimed that the sport's most popular driver Dale Earnhardt Jr. made $28.2 million dollars for 2011-12 as NASCAR's highest paid driver, while the rankings for 2013-14 once again feature 'lil 'E on top with Danica slotting in nicely at No. 7.

Yet the racing landscape is littered with aspiring drivers with untapped potential having seen their respective motorsports dreams come 'N go. As one certain driver , forever idyllically known as that "DAMN COOGAN!" recently came to mind.

As the Culver City California   native first tried his hand unsuccessfully in Formula 1, failing to qualify twice, at the 1980 Canadian Grand Prix aboard a RAM  Williams FW07 and then the following year's United States GP West in a Tyrrell 010-Cosworth before switching his  focus to  CART/IndyCar.

as Cogan made 116-starts between 1981-91 and 1993, with a lone victory at the '86 Phoenix race for Patrick Racing. While making 12-starts in the Indy 500 with a career best finish at Mother Speedway of runner-up (2nd) in '86 after being passed for the lead on a late race restart by eventual winner Bobby Rahal! Along with fourth in his rookie event in '81 and fifth in 1983, sandwiching the race he's most remembered for...

thus, taking the  plight of unheralded Californian Kevin Cogan further into mind, IndyStar's Curty' Cavin excellently profiled him recently during the Month 'O May;

Meanwhile, good 'Ol Max Mosley just cannot stand being outta the F1 limelight and has chimed in by saying that today's gran Primo Pilotes' are paid too much!

Yet on the Flip-side, consider Professional Football player Cam Newton, who's had less than stellar NFL Playoff results while  just inking a five year extension for a reported $104m, with $67 million guaranteed after only one playoff victory to date!

Meanwhile, A-L-L of Seattle holds its collective breath over how much the Seahawks will pay Star QB Russell Wilson, and more importantly when they'll wrap him up for the considerable future with a new contract extension.

Alas, suddenly three time IndyCar series champion Scott Dixon or HELL! Even three times Indy 500 winner Helio Castroneves accomplishments seem under-valued! And I think Will Power only earned a measly million dollars (bonus) for winning the '14 IndyCar title, vs. "Junior" (Dale Earnhardt Jr.) having failed to ever win NASCAR'S top crown, whilst the reigning Sprint Cup champion Kevin Harvick reportedly made $12m-plus...