How is your off-season going? Mine has been filled with fantasy football championships, chasing new hobbies, weeks of sick kids and passing back and forth the flu bug. It has also been filled with tough life changing decisions and lifestyle choices. 2 years ago I left a strong retail career to “find myself”. 2 years later, I still don’t know if I found myself. Many people do what they love in their careers. The rest of us, well… we just never quite find “our thing”. The things I most enjoy in life and find the most satisfaction in I will never be able to monetize. I am starting to accept that. When faced with the choice of moving into another career path or staying in my current “comfortable” role I came to the realization that “comfortable” is not paying the bills. It is time to move on.
I see many tracks have become “comfortable” in their weekly shows. This is not always a bad thing. But...just like I was comfortable in my current position deep down I know that in the end, disaster awaits me. It is time for short track racing in Wisconsin to get out of its comfort zone and adapt a new mindset. It is time to stop spending time focused on rules and regulation. It is time to adapt a minor league baseball type mindset. Every half inning (or stop between races/long cautions) must be filled with entertainment. From announcers to concession staff, it is time to re-think the process.
I have reached out to a few local tracks offering my voice, my experience, and my expertise. I will put out an open invite to the entire short track industry today. It is time for a change on how you run your program. Now is the time to make changes. If you put 20% of the energy into fan engagement that you do rules for your race cars I guarantee that you will see a bump in engagement and attendance at your track in 2018.
What am I looking forward to in 2018? As my kids are getting older I am more focused on that quality time vs quantity. If dad is home but not focused I may as well be at work making money. A new career will hopefully help facilitate that. (If you work in construction and skilled trades, live in the middle section of the state please contact me and lets help each other). Another fantasy football playoff championship. Fire Jason Kidd. A weekly program with a minor league atmosphere. Regain some steam in our group. More fan participation in our group and the short track industry across the board. Safety and success to all our members drivers/track owners and officials. A strong Short Track Fantasy program. Some new fun unannounced ‘URFWI’ events and projects that will hopefully come to fruition. And that blog #080 owes a certain member.
We’ll see you in April #atthetrack.
Rich Zimpel has been attending local race tracks for the past 30 years.