The thought definitely crossed my mind a time or two as a walked through the International Motorsports Industry Show, being held at the Indianapolis Convention Center. Somewhere between 8-10,000 people will attend the two-day convention, bringing together just about every part of the auto-racing community.
If I had a clean credit history and a checkbook at my disposal, starting a race team would have been relatively easy from there. Suppliers of everything from rack and pinion steering systems to screen-printed t-shirts made up the 572 booths at the convention.
Alright, let's start building a team: you want a racecar body? Easy enough to find a builder here. Tires, brakes and suspensions? Done. A loan from Wells Fargo? Take care of. Helmets and safety equipment? Plenty to choose from. Air filters? K&N, the official sponsor of the IZOD IndyCar Series can set you up with those. Brakes? You'll need some, and there are plenty of suppliers. T-shirts and merchandise to sell? Just name the quantity, including specifically designed merchandise for women.
Robin Miller? You'll need him around, just so you feel like a real IndyCar team. He's there, too (though not in a booth, conducting interviews for SpeedTV).
The only thing missing from the "Build Your Own Race Team" experience was a booth to obtain victory cigars and/or models for each arm while gleefully celebrating a championship, Ganassi-style.
And with the convention center expanding through 2010 and the IMIS contracted to be in Indianapolis through 2015, I have a feeling that booth may be around next year.