[media-credit name=”Auto Club Speedway” align=”alignright” width=”200″][/media-credit]With the Auto Club 400 only already upon us, preparing for this once a year NASCAR style extravaganza in Fontana, California, has been in the planning stages since Kevin Harvick crossed the finish in last year’s upset over hometown favorite Jimmie Johnson.
The speedway which first opened its gates in 1997, has been the Southern California center piece where fans from all over the country get the chance to watch NASCAR’s biggest star do battle on the 14 degree, 2-mile D-shaped oval once a year.
Putting on a race filled weekend takes many painstaking hours of careful scheduling, arrangement of events leading up to the race, along with making sure everything is in place once the fans begin pouring in to enjoy another weekend of NASCAR excitement.
“The months leading up to the big race are spent talking to, and booking the entertainment such as the performers who will entertain the fans on various concert stages throughout the race weekend, and to make sure everyone who comes has a good time,” said David Talley, the Director of Communications at the speedway.
Mr. Talley also added that, “We have 50 people working diligently to make sure we have quality food entertainment parking and everything that a fan expects when they come to Auto Club Speedway,” Refreshment stands and food booths, ticket sales, maintenance during the race, along with security are only a few of the obstacles that need to be carefully planned.
The staff at Auto Club Speedway has also spent a significant amount of time doing promotional events such as having the Daytona 500 winner Matt Kenseth, who drives the No. 17 Best Buy sponsored Roush-Fenway Ford, come down to one of Hollywood’s famous eateries to meet and greet the fans.
A few weeks ago it was 4-time Winston Cup Champion Jeff Gordon, and P.B.A. Hall of Famer Parker Bohn III who held an open press conference in front on ESPN Zone in Los Angeles, to help promote the upcoming Auto Club 400 with guest radio personality Uncle Joe Benson from KLOS 95.5 FM.
This week it was Joey Logano, Coca-Cola Racing Family member, and driver of the No. 20 Dollar General/Home Depot Toyota who boarded a Metrolink train, along with Miss Sprint Cup Kristen Beat to kick-off the annual Speedway Day in L.A.
The press conference which was free to attend and open to the public, was highlighted by Logano hopping into the Auto Club Speedway show car, and arriving at the press conference in front of L.A. Union Station in thunderous NASCAR driver style.
These are just a few of the many events that have taken place to help promote the race, along with the driver signings and appearances away from the track for the fans to enjoy.
“Our dept. main job is to get the word out what we are doing. To talk to the media tv newspapers set up interviews for track president Gillian Zucker. Press releases marketing drivers to help get the word out in an effort to get the word out to whoever is gonna be in and around So California needs to be at Auto Club Speedway,” said Mr. Talley.
Mr. Talley added that, “Usually during the off season we put in our regular hours but close to event time, it seems like we are there forever which is fine with us as long as we get the job done.”
“We work hard and Joann Young who is the Manager of Communications is a go getter and I couldn’t do my job without her. We have a good time putting together events for the fans putting together events for the media that will enjoy coming to.”
“We feel that the Auto Club 400 weekend will be the place to be on March-23-25. So putting on a race weekend NASCAR style is by far not an easy task.”