It has been a fast and furious ride since last October.  My posts have been infrequent as I was on a journey inside the world of NASCAR.  The journey began by diving deep into the NASCAR Nation creatively. Why were people passionate?  What were they passionate about?   What about this sport attracts brand dollars?   More importantly, why was this audience ready made for our client.

My first step was to take a deep dive in to the NASCARs history.  As I researched the likes of Bill France, Lee Petty, Buddy Baker, Cale Yarborough, Ned Jarrett, David Pearson and Bobby Allison I realized that this is one of America's first consumer generated sports.

With its roots in the US as an outlaw sport.  Drivers ran bootleg whiskey made in and around Appalachia in street vehicles that were lightened and reinforced to outrun the law.  After the repeal of prohibition, drivers raced to break land speed records.  From the beaches of Daytona to foot hills of Pennsylvania this group of men generated racing entertainment for anyone who was interested in watching.  It is this group of people who have created a sport that allows anyone with the need for speed to play.

For me it began by traveling back to my own roots in Texas. It was there in my rented Shelby Mustang, with a Hot Pass on my hip, that I discovered that there is a need for speed in all of us.  

IMG_9611

"Throttle Up" read the sign at the entrance to Texas Motor Speedway and that was exactly what my heart did as I watched the Earnhardt crew work the start the race from pit row.   It was then that I understood exactly why people love NASCAR racing and how the brands that facilitate the sport factor into the picture. 

I was hooked and ready to tell consumers why generations of legendary NASCAR drivers continue to choose Nationwide Insurance as their partner.  The vision was to take people off the race track and into a place they couldn't get with another Insurance company.

Enter the Earnhardt's true Nationwide story.  Three generations of the Earnhardt family have trusted their insurance with three generations of Steve Cook's, a Nationwide Insurance agent's family.  After listening to consumers we could not imagine any other way of using NASCAR's favorite son to demonstrate how Nationwide Insurance is On Your Side.

Capturing JRs history, authenticity, as well the raw excitement of touring his working race shop is the added bonus for the true blue NASCAR fan.

From radio, to television to the behind the scenes content the Wunderman N@TCH team worked to launch the 2009 Nationwide NASCAR campaign.  Follow the entire campaign at nationwide.com/dalejr.

Updated: Generations (Dale Jr. & His Nationwide Agent Steve Cook)

ON: My NASCAR Adventure via @jpenabickley