Some call it "NOD" (NASCAR Off-season Disorder), others are just starting to get that "itch". For most of us this has been the longest period of time in recent memory between our trips to our favorite race tracks. Cutting my season short that makes over 2 months for me. The few races left to run on TV were just enough to keep that "itch" under wraps, nevertheless we now face "STOD" which I will tell you is 100 times more potent than "NOD".
Pull off I-41 onto HWY 144 in the town of Slinger roll your windows down and listen the the echos of a Super Late at full throttle down the front stretch. Stroll up to the top row of grandstands at Madison International Speedway and look in awe at its immenseness. Cruise into your favorite seat at Kaukauna and transport back in time 40 years. Peer over the fence at Beaver Dam Raceway taking in as much methanol through your nostrils as possible. Squeeze between the grandstands at Jefferson or Dodge County and soak in the incredible speed. These are the things I reflect on during "STOD". The things I miss most. The places I remember being as a child, a teenager, with friends, my dad, and my kids as well. Each and every event is truly a perfect night out.
With the Snowball Derby this coming weekend, it still amazes me to this day how fortunate we are to have as many places to enjoy our perfect nights out as we do. Enough so that the influences of Wisconsin racing is felt at all levels and series across the country. The uniqueness of each track challenges those who race here. The competition takes it to another level. There is no surprise that both the Cup and NCTS championship teams were heavily Wisconsin influenced. We are truly blessed. Here's to hoping for another Wisconsin weekend in Florida.
Help United Race Fans of Wisconsin continue to grow! Bid on our off-season auction items and help support 'URFWI' and short track racing in Wisconsin!
2016-2017 URFWI AUCTION
I thought it appropriate to do a quick survey to see what others thoughts were as 'URFWI' continues to grow so we can better drive the desired results. The more participation, the better chance we have to reach out to more people and get them to a race track in 2017. We had a great season in 2016. Our Super Late Model Fantasy game was very fun to run and play throughout the year. Our membership more than doubled. We have reached a point where I feel now is the time to start making more of an impact on our mission statement. We have our core group of almost 100 and its time to show that we can make a difference in supporting and saving the tracks we love.
The Survey Results:
Even with a smaller sample size than desired, I feel that it was pretty clear in some areas what will work and what will not. My wish is that everyone will contribute in some small way and to their comfort level in the coming years. I enjoy greatly running the website and social media, but this group is not just my thing its all of ours. If someone came to me today and wanted to take over the social media pages or be the liaison for meetup events we could have a plan in place to make that happen quickly. If you see an opportunity for yourself please reach out.
What 'URFWI' activity would you be willing to participate in in 2017?
69% of respondents said they would like to go to a meetup event. I love this because the only way our group grows stronger and becomes more relevant is if we get to know each other first.
A surprise to me, 60% of respondents said they would like to participate in an auction to raise money for the group. I will talk about this specifically below.
60% also said they would like to see more fantasy games. I will definitely need some additional resources helping a project like that along for the future and I have some great ideas on how to advance into the next phase as well as make it easier, more challenging, or perhaps even complicate it some more ,haha!
Honorable mentions were more photos (50%, if there is an amateur looking for a place to host their photos we can handle it), more "the more you know" literature (45%) and more merchandise (45%). If you have any assistance in these areas go for it!
The not so hot items: FB Live/Video of non-racing action (19%) I guess no more pits walk-throughs
Podcast/Radio (23%) and this one also surprised me because I think the opposite but literature about the group, member cards, etc..(32%) I will speak to this below as well.
Here were two my favorite:
"Not many people know how many tracks there are, can you list them?"
We already have that on the website on our Connect page. I am looking for someone to take that page over and update it and jazz it up a bit as well.
"How about some interview with drivers and track owners to build up some excitement."
I'll do you one better, how about interviewing members and asking them questions as to why they are a race fan and why they are excited for an event. If you have ever read Jeff Gluck's 10 questions with... articles that could easily be done through email. Just need a volunteer.
We can host everything you would like to do or see! We just need you to be a contributor!
So there you have it. You see where our focus will be for 2017, meetups, raising money to take care of website and sponsor cars, and more fantasy games and contests.
The big item I would like to get on top off this off-season is taking care of domain fees and accruing some finances for new stickers so we can sponsor a few cars this upcoming season. I would also like to, even though the survey results were poor, order 500 business cards from vista print with the logo, and website so we can hand them to potential members when we talk about the group. A new batch of stickers now cost about $1.25 per sticker. I typically get about 88 per batch. Given the positive feedback for an auction to raise money, I am starting off the process with a few items of my own. Bidding will take place on Facebook. Look for that soon. If you would like to donate an item to help raise money for the group for 2017, please email me firstname.lastname@example.org or message me on Facebook or Twitter.
Expenses for 2017:
Renew website domain for 2 years (due in April) $150
Business Cards - $15-20
Stickers - $125
Sponsor Cars - Whatever is Left
Please help where you can, if you'd like to help by buying a T-shirt and Sticker it is $20 shipped.
As always any other input is appreciated. Have a great off-season and stay tuned to the Facebook and Twitter pages for updates!
Rich Zimpel has been attending local race tracks for the past 30 years.