Great Rivalries: Indy vs Monaco and FISA vs FOCA

Great Rivalries: Indy vs Monaco and FISA vs FOCA

Indy vs Monaco
by Ezra Dyer

At Monaco, you might see P. Diddy riding a Jet Ski while wearing a fur tuxedo. At Indy, you might see Peyton Manning riding a Honda Ruckus while wearing a Tennessee tuxedo. Monaco's course runs on public streets, and turning right takes you through the tunnel. Indy is a dedicated track, and turning right takes you into the wall. The Indy infield is a great place to park your truck and play some ladder golf. Monaco's harbor is a great place to dock your yacht and drive golf balls at the paparazzi. Racing at Monaco has been compared with flying a helicopter in your living room. Racing at Indy has been compared with driving into a closet at 200 mph. Indy is frequented by a five-foot-two firebrand who poses for the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue. Monaco is frequented by a five-foot-two firebrand who poses a problem for racing teams that want consistent rules. Monaco includes Monte Carlo. Indy's parking lots include Monte Carlos. Monaco is near Nice. At Indy, everyone's pretty nice.

FISA vs FOCA
by Ronald Ahrens

Jean-Marie Balestre was voluble and impetuous. Bernie Ecclestone was quiet and cerebral. His proven strategy - promising more money, and delivering it - countervailed the "sporting power" of Balestre's Fédération Internationale Sportiv de l'Automobile (FISA). Emerging from Ecclestone's Formula One Constructors' Association (FOCA) was the vision of greater wealth for all F1 teams by increasing their shares of television and sponsorship money. The organizations got into a dispute over the turbocharged Cosworth V-8 engines of the FOCA teams, which were primarily English, versus the normally aspirated twelve-cylinder engines of Ferrari, Alfa Romeo, and Matra, which, with Renault, made up the backbone of FISA. Ground effects versus flat-bottomed cars created another sticking point. Fallout included the "pirate" 1980 Spanish Grand Prix without FISA teams, the postponed 1981 Argentine Grand Prix, and heartbreaking rulings against Colin Chapman's deviously tricky Lotus 88. There were years of fines, boycotts, disqualifications: a mess. Ultimately, Ecclestone's acumen and toughness impressed the F1 community, and control of the sport gradually acceded to a Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA) that came to be controlled by ex-FOCA men.

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