The fan – perception

There are all sorts of popular stories referring to such national items like the Gulf of Mexico oil spill, Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan, Times Square bombing attempt and even Betty White’s re-found fame.  Also international news such as the Cannes Film Festival and the new conservative PM of Great Britain have made the headlines recently.  Throw in Lady Gaga, Lena Horne’s passing and the latest hot movie Robin Hood, and you pretty much have what every internet news source, blog, Twitter or media outlet had talked about the past week or so.  So what in the heck does that have to do with fans – actually drag racing fans or more exactly Nostalgia drag racing fans.

Well, there’s always been talk that the drag racing fan is not representative of average Americans.  That none of which I cite above is anything drag racing people care about.  They’re out of the loop.  In fact, the perception is the drag racing fans and horror of horrors, “Nostalgia” drag racing fans are a version of an old Joe Sixpack, grease monkey style.  Terrible.  Who wants to be associated with that!  Those news stories I mentioned to start with?  Drag racing fans don’t pay attention to what’s going on; they just wait until the next race and bring out the beer and another round for everyone – Yee Haw! Actually there might be a few greasy beer-drinking Joe Sixpacks in the litter and in fact it brings up a point, the fan base is very broad and you’re apt to find just about anyone at a drag meet.

So where am I going.  Hang with me.  Perception is a tough wall to climb.  So many people in business, media or wherever, believe drag racing is nothing more than a bunch of uneducated, poor unseemly aging louts.  Those perceptions couldn’t be further from the truth.

Factually, our fans are younger, more educated with more spendable income than just about any other sport!  Drag racing is the most diverse motorsport and think about this.  What sport has every ethnicity AND BOTH SEX’S competing head to head?  There’s only one – drag racing.  When you add Nostalgia drag racing to the fray, you add even more spendable income.  These statistics are even more incredible when you consider Nostalgia drag racing fans are increasing in numbers as the meets last year and this can attest to – inspite of the Recession.

Perceptions can be startling but we, the fans of drag racing already knew this.  Maybe we do, maybe we don’t know that Elena Kagan is the Supreme Court nominee and wonder did she actually advocate for the government banning books … Or if Christina Aguilera really hates Lady Gaga (BTW, Lady Gaga’s got the marketing PR figured out).  Wow, did I just put Elena Kagan and Lady Gaga in the same sentence?  A disturbing thought when you think about it.  But I digress.

The drag racing fan is everyone; they’re families, teenagers, kids, baby boomers, grandparents, immigrants, wealthy, poor, students, urbanites, suburbanites  and small town folks.  So the rest of general public and indeed the media and corporate business needs to put away their perceptions and realize drag racing IS Americana – even if we do like an occasional beer … or two.

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2 Comments

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2 responses to “The fan – perception

  1. Juanita

    Oh, so true! I’m an administrative professional at the executive level and when I tell someone I love Top Fuel drag racing, they laugh and say, “You don’t look like a drag racing fan!” I’m always wondering what I’m supposed to look like!

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