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SBD/June 1, 2011/Marketing and Sponsorship
Dan Wheldon Still Without Sponsor, Ride After Winning Indy 500
Published June 1, 2011
THE JEAN POOL: Designer clothing brand William Rast sponsored Wheldon's No. 98 car, and Wheldon did not forget his sponsor immediately after winning the race. He said in Victory Lane, "Totally my style. It’s a great sponsor for me. I feel like a fashionista. I’m going to be wearing jeans tomorrow night (to the Indy 500 banquet). I know I’m supposed to dress up, but I’m going to be wearing William Rast jeans" ("Indianapolis 500," ABC, 5/29).
WHEELS OF FORTUNE: In Indianapolis, Heather Gillers reported a Hot Wheels promotion prior to the running of the Indianapolis 500 saw a car "sail a record-breaking 332 feet through the air." Hot Wheels spent more than $1M on a "life-size yellow Hot Wheels car and a ten-story high orange ramp" (INDYSTAR.com, 5/29). IndyCar CEO Randy Bernard said, "I'm a big believer that you have to give fans a great experience and you do that with excitement and value. This is not some fly-by-night operation. (Hot Wheels parent) Mattel has invested millions of dollars, and I think it can deliver a little younger demographic." For Hot Wheels, the "hope is that stunts will add older buyers to a market traditionally reserved for children," and the investment "also means Hot Wheels is looking to do more than one show." Mattel VP/Marketing Simon Waldron: "It's definitely captured the interest of other sports tours where they have motorcycles performing, BMX, that kind of stuff" (AP, 5/29).