Randy Bernard steps down as IndyCar CEO

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Bernard announced the return of the “The Triple Crown” promotion, an IndyCar tradition last done in 1989, the last time the series visited Pocono. He’s also been in talks with Phoenix and Michigan, two other traditional IndyCar tracks, about returning to the series for the 2014 season.

Although he received mixed reviews for his 2013 schedule announced earlier this month, few understood his reasoning for creating doubleheaders or a long summer-stretch of racing. Saddled with a tough television package he inherited from George, Bernard strung together six consecutive weeks of racing through the summer to get five dates on ABC, including a prime-time Saturday night event at Texas Motor Speedway.

And because IndyCar has so little shoulder programming and cable partner NBC Sports does not often air qualifying live, Bernard viewed doubleheaders as a way to get the series on television more often.

Alas, none of his gains were ever lauded the way his missteps were jeered.

The cancellation of an August race in China was a reported $7 million hit to his budget _ one of the reasons speculated he fell out of favor with the board. And Bernard’s desire for engine competition led him to ignore all red flags and welcome Lotus into to the series. The manufacturer was an embarrassing disaster from start to finish.

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