Take a quick 30 seconds and name the top 5 sponsors of the series you run. Actually, just name any 5. Could you do it without cheating? Ok. Now of all the series sponsors , from which have you purchased a product? Any? Here’s where there is a problem. Riders are not supporting the companies supporting their series. And yes, I’m looking at you ATV racers.
“Well I pay gate and race fees,” is ringing out right now in some of your heads, justifying your position. “Racing is expensive enough already,” and of course it is. But, for example, when a goggle company sponsors your series and you aren’t under contract with another company, why wouldn’t you buy their goggles? “I don’t like the fit,” “they are too expensive,” “I don’t need new goggles right now.” Those are all legitimate reasons, but are you going to say that for EVERY SERIES SPONSOR? And the fact they are expensive is irrelevant. Save $5 on a competing company that isn’t supporting your chosen race series, and what incentive does any company have to support what you want to do?
These relationships are mutually codependent and it works three ways – tracks and series need riders to operate, riders need support from companies to afford racing and a place to race, companies need racers to buy their product, racers need the product. Get it? These things can’t exist without the other. And you are one of these things, or you probably wouldn’t be reading this. Oh and when there are people spending the entire day on their feet, in the heat, without much of a break, taking pictures and video of you, try to purchase a print or all these people will switch to sports with athletes who support them – like dirt bikes. And then we’ll be in an even bigger hole of unpopularity – major league frisbee is getting more TV time than ATVs. Does that make you feel good? Because I’m a little upset over it.
So the next time you are in the market for a new part, accessory or piece of gear, please take into consideration the companies that are supporting you and the things you like, be it a website, series, track, or you yourself (which if they are sponsoring you, there’s no reason not to purchase or use their products). Thank a company for being generous with their resources to keep you on the track, and if it’s a small business, there’s a bigger incentive for you to support them and buy their product. Support those that support your sport!