January 05, 2009

A TRULY Happy New Year!

"Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great ones make you feel that you too can become great." -- Mark Twain

I love this quote, because it perfectly describes the type of people I’ve dealt with in the world of motorsports for the last 25 years. Resilient. Confident. People who persevere. Dreamers. Achievers.

And I love racing people.

This has been such a tumultuous year for the world, and that certainly trickled down to auto racing. The "haves" became the "struggling" or the "merging" or "out of business." There are no big teams any more who have what seemed to be unlimited funds. We are all in this together.

On the celebration of this New Year, I choose to look forward, not back. I choose to be positive about our nation’s future, and the future of motorsports.

If you doubt me, then where will YOU be on January 13th?

Damn the economy, there are about 290 entries for this year’s Chili Bowl Midget Nationals – a RECORD, for those of you who are pessimists. Midget racing in the middle of winter lives!

I am particularly excited about this year because I missed last year’s Chili Bowl festivities – the first time in a LONG time. It’s amazing how long a winter can be when a trip to Tulsa is not included! Not only did I miss some of the best racing of the year, I really, really missed re-connecting with people I only see once or a few times a year – that was the worst part.

In the last year, my life has changed drastically. Some not-so-good stuff (which I’m ignoring – it’s a new year, afterall), but a lot of really neat stuff happened to me as well.

I have basically expanded three areas of my ProRace Marketing business.

First, I created an online travel business – an extension of my previous Internet-based media sites. I created a master travel website - GoRoadTripping.com – that will play host to other sub-websites that cater to communities of people who travel. The first sub-site I developed is MotorsportsLife.com, which will provide resources to any racing fan or participant to help them enjoy their racing experience to the fullest. I am currently working on the second sub-site, ILikeTheLake.com, created for people who travel for water-based activities. Eventually I plan to become an online travel agent (so check out the sites often and let me know if I can help you with any travel plans).

To create excitement around these websites, I am creating or getting involved with key events in those categories. If anyone has followed my media career, you will remember that I was the person to pioneer a highly popular type of race reporting called "Live Updates" on my old website ILikeRacing.com. I am continuing that tradition with "Live Updates" and photos from the 23rd Annual Chili Bowl Midget Nationals, Jan. 13-17, 2009! Click on MotorsportsLife.com and find the "Live Updates" section for that race in the upper right-hand corner of the homepage. I won’t be doing any actual race reporting, as the Chili Bowl website (www.chilibowl.com) and the webcast, courtesy of Racinboys.com, will do a great job with handling the massive job of reporting on the 290 or so drivers as they tackle each night’s dirt action.

But you’ll love the stuff I do report on - updates on what is happening in the pit area, interviews, atmosphere, reports of who’s who in attendance, anecdotes, extracurricular activities, accident/injury updates, racing and non-racing event news, and reporting of anything else interesting that makes up the completely unique feel to this event. Knowing the "behind-the- scenes" stuff is an integral part of the Chili Bowl experience, and readers of the "Live Updates" section will have full knowledge of what it’s like to be at the Chili Bowl through these reports.

Aside from creating the new site at ILikeTheLake.com (and I do – I live right on the shores of Lake Erie), I have created a special event called Lake Erie Boat Week, which will take place near Port Clinton, Ohio (near the world-famous Cedar Point Amusement Park), on Labor Day week of 2009, which will include a national Offshore Super Series offshore powerboat race (yes, these are the 200 mph boats)! For anyone in the Great Lakes region, this will be THE event of the summer, so make plans to attend as it will be one big party on the Lake!

Lastly, I’ve really enjoyed the 25 years or so of working with racing teams and drivers, especially the opportunities I’ve had with young drivers. So I’ve taken that a step further and am putting on Driver Development Seminars, starting with the initial effort in Tulsa on January 13th! I’m also working with a group out of California and will be traveling there numerous times throughout this Spring to aid them in their driver development efforts! Check out MotorsportsLife.com for more information on the Seminars!

So 2009 is starting off in a REALLY spectacular way for me, and I have nothing but hope and positive thoughts for the year ahead. I hope you do as well.

Thank you for reading! I wish you nothing but success and happiness as we head into this blessed year of 2009.