Sometimes when you stick a microphone in front of a driver’s face, you have no clue what they may say and a couple of times you’ll hear something that surprises you or gives you a bit of a perspective.
Throughout the 2020 season, I had the opportunity to speak to a bunch of different competitors. During those interviews, there were some quotes that stood out. So it seems only fitting we take a glance back through the year at what was said.
“The day of racecars being a walking, rolling billboard are over, and people have to get out of that small box and thinking they can go, ‘I have a racecar, sponsor me, or be a marketing partner’. That’s not how it will work anymore. What sponsors and teams are looking for is content. We were told multiple times by people that we approached that, ‘if you came in here looking for a sticker on the side of a racecar, you wouldn’t get past the door. We love the race 4 trades idea. We love the fact that you’re building a car. We love the social media interaction, Facebook page, Instagram – Ontario Asphalt Mini Stocks.’ That’s what they’re looking for. We’re going to do a time lapse video; we have cameras on this build all weekend.
“That’s what the sponsors are looking for – the ability to reach kids. You have companies like NAPA and Mister Transmission that can’t get enough trades people into their programs. When I sat down with NAPA, they talk about a program where they can take a high school kid and plan it out for them to become a trades person to a franchise owner for NAPA Auto Parts. So this is what you have to do; you have to reach kids in high school. If they branch out into other things, leave the motorsports things, you don’t come back. When you play hockey as a kid, you may join a beer league when you get older, but it’s not the same. This stuff is too hard to get back into after you leave so we have to keep the kids interested.
“These tracks have to see that if there’s no builder divisions, there’s no APC Series, no OSCAAR Hot Rods, no late models at Jukasa. So build these divisions, but we have to reach out to these sponsors. I’ve had so many of the great partners – 22 Automotive with Steckly, Chris Howse Automotive, Sauble Falls has come on-board – these are all people that have reached out to me.” – Rich Schwartzenburg
“I have found the mini way different then the pure stock – set up, how it handles better on the track, you can do more to a mini then a pure stock. I have lots more learning to do but have some great help to assist me.” – Chris Pendlebury
“I just learned tons of stuff from working on the car in the shop with my dad, to racing and how the car works and what to adjust to make the car better, and racing in general. Here again, this week (at Motorama Custom Car and Motorsports Expo taking part in the Race4Trades build), I’m learning this week in getting to work on the car and what to do to the car and all that stuff. So I think it’s a great program and hopefully gets some kids involved in the sport.” – Kyle Steckly
“M dad at first said, ‘I don’t want this car anywhere near my shop’, which turned into, ‘Well, bring it over and we’ll go over it, but then it needs to leave,’ but it hasn’t left. Do you know those memes where the dad doesn’t want the cat, and the next photo is him cuddling it on the couch feeding it bits of baby food? That’s my dad and my racecar.
“So the price, especially in the bone stocks, was perfect. If I finished 15th, my night was essentially paid for – my gas at least for the night. So I went out and had some fun, and my gas for the night was paid and maybe a bit of food. This certainly beat racing karts for a $5 plastic trophy; forget that.” – David Butcher
“I think 2020 is gonna be an interesting year with the track switching tires and the possibility of the entire province going to one set of rules. It could really help get this division back to where it was in 2017 with 25-30 cars every week with seven-eight cars having a chance at winning at any time.” – Cameron McGlashan