David Vodden Candidate Statement

Board Director Candidate

David B. Vodden

As a candidate for the Club Board of Directors I have made a case for my experience, business and industry education and commitment to work on a new vision and direction for the Club. Experience and a proven track record for making things happen is what you want and what we all need. You get that if I am elected. Beyond the words and summaries of the trite and true you should know what the candidate you vote for WILL do.

Here is my agenda: [1] Develop a younger image for the Club as it is presented to new audiences featuring active and dynamic presence on the Web page, in the Wheel and in all other social media.  To attract new people we must appeal to them in their world. Our target audience is in their twenties and thirties. These people will embrace amateur road racing just like we did when we were their age, but they are not interested in joining and hanging out with me. Seeing pictures of significantly older people with whom they have nothing in common will not capture their attention. This may not feel good but it is true. It is not about us. It is about the future and “new people”. Without them, there is no future. Re-imaging the club to look more inviting to younger people will work. The leaders in NASCAR, F-1 and Indy Car are doing this right now.

[2] Set up a kiosk with an appealing presence at all of our events to greet the people we attract to our races and sell them memberships. Involvement starts with membership. The Wheel goes to members. If the Wheel is appealing and readable to a younger demographic their involvement in the sport will increase. It worked for us back in the 70’s.

[3] Make membership a big deal. Solicit memberships. Solicit family memberships. Solicit “Associate memberships” from other regions that visit us or who just want to be members of the SFR/SCCA.  Provide incentives to current members who recruit new members. New members become new volunteers, new drivers and new solo participants.

[4] Use race weekends to promote the Club in all ways. Start by promoting memberships, also promote entries at events. Promote the next event as the next best thing in all of road racing. Build up the magnitude of winning using the Public Address system and the winner’s podium. Adopt a podium finish mentality such that classes with strong fields recognize the top three. Use the Wheel, Web and other social media to make our competitors heroes in our world and beyond.

[5] Embrace SCCA’s Track Nite in America as a tool to increase our membership and awareness among an audience that will never find us unless we reach out to them.

[6] Embark on a program to develop Club growth and participation around Thunderhill Park. Membership follows venues. This was true with Sears Point, Vacaville and Laguna Seca. It can and will be true around Thunderhill Park. There are reasons why it has not occurred here but we can fix that and build a large body of SFR/SCCA members, volunteers and drivers in the North Valley.

[7] Begin a specific plan to cross-pollinate our form or racing with other forms including increased outreach to the Solo Communities to bring them into road racing. The use of Kiosks and perseverance at select events will produce results. We did this at Baylands with drag racers, motorcycle racers and the circle track boys and girls. This will work but it will take time. What’s the down side?

[8] Identify and create new sources of revenue to slow the reality of rising costs impacting race entry fees and nothing else. Recreate the SFR/SCCA merchandise program. This effort produced close to $40k at its peak. Solicit and close sponsorships. Examine the cost of existing programs with an eye on Return on Investment [ROI]. Continue to market time slots in weekend schedules when doing so adds value to the experience of OUR racers.

[9] Re-write schedules so as to identify the cost of time to the racers. We cannot expect racers to pay what they pay for the track time that they get and then spend three-days to get a minimum return. We can and will do better on this critical value component in the competitive world in which we now compete for the “X” games value-proposition. [Road racing is “X” games.] I, for one, am not interested in track time without the components of racing.]

[10] Develop a High Performance Driving Experience [HPDE] component in our business model that can serve as “our” feeder system for road racing and also serve as a new income stream.

[11] Investigate the creation of a subsidiary corporation for our “unrelated business income” [UBI]  activities as a means to mitigate the impact of this activity on the primary purpose of our 501 C-4 organization. Our charter says that we are to provide “educational and recreational opportunities with the automobile for our members.”

[12] Implement a specific program for succession planning for Board member and Regional Executive candidates. We need a pool of people willing and able to run this Club in the years/ decades ahead. To achieve this goal we need a plan.

There is more but that will have to do for now. It is a lot of work but so was Thunderhill Park even though we made it look easy. It was not. The prosperous future of our Club will take a lot of work. I will do my part if you vote for me. Vote on line through Motorsports Registration and do not delay. It may be that, by the time you read this, time is of the essence. Check out The Wheel in this issue to see how to cast your vote.

See you at Thunderhill for the 2017 Season Final October 27th and 28th and the Illgen Endurance four-hour race on Sunday October 29th. There is a big dinner and lots of fun is on the agenda. The new 25th Anniversary magazine will be available for the first time for you to see and enjoy. This is a revenue generator that the Club could copy for promotional goals and money. There is no limit to what we can achieve. Now all we have to do is just do it!