So, What?s the deal with sponsorship? Based on the number of PMs I?m getting and all the times I get asked at the shows, I thought I?d put a little insight into the whole Sponsorship thing. Please feel free to comment or add anything at the end. I hope this helps answer a few questions. Why get sponsored, can I get sponsored, do I need to be good, what IS sponsorship, what do I need to do, do I need a resume???. and so on. I?ll try to answer as many as I can and there will still be more questions. I have spoken with many of you already and I will help as many as I can. This does however apply to other companies, stores or services. So, here we go. What IS sponsorship? ANY form of help that will make your racing easier, cheaper, more relaxing, more fulfilling or more productive. Everything doesn?t have to be given to you all the time. Yes, there will be hand outs and freebees from time to time but sometimes discounts, help, service, advice or support will take on the sponsorship roll. Remember that the sponsor doesn?t always know who you are or what you are capable of. Sometimes sponsorship comes in different phases or levels. This can be from discounts all the way to free rides and paychecks. Can I get sponsored? Why not? Anyone can get sponsored but it?s up to you. You have to sell yourself?.. Let me repeat that, YOU HAVE TO SELL YOURSELF. No one knows you better than you do, so this should be really easy. Don?t lie about what you?ve done or will do. Remember, as I said before the sponsor doesn?t know who you are. So, give them the 5 W?s. Who you are, Where will you be racing (And be at ALL the races!), What are you racing and what classes, When will you be serving the sponsor (Races, demoes, bikeshows, fundraisers, etc) and more importantly to the sponsor Why should they sponsor you. In other words, what?s their payback? Shops (Insert your favorite here) don?t help you out just because they love giving stuff away. The payback is advertising and getting you to get their name out and feeding them other racers, and hopefully spectators to their shop. Example; I race in one of the best helmets ever made. It?s lighter, stronger, never fogs up and I can do things with my shield that would make you wonder ?Holy cow what?s that made of?? Guys like Miguel Duhamel, Troy Corser, Muggerage, Crevier, Depuniet all swear by them. My suspension was set up by RMR, First time out boom 1.5 seconds off my lap time. Some great feedback and adjusting and Rod had another 4 seconds off my time. Starting to get the picture? Some people have the knack for doing this, Jayson, Nikola, Blair etc are constantly sending people to their sponsors. Ask them how they got started. Be different! Nikolas? 675 with the cool paintjob, Greg Holmes?..who?.....Spiderman. (Not one kid left without cheering for Spiderman). Mike Pierce with his Pink wheels. Jayson and Dean?s cool paintjobs. These guys get noticed. The other option is?..Be very fast. Some got it, some don?t. (Not that I?m saying these guys aren?t fast, they can hold their own). Use any angle to your advantage. By the way being notorious or dangerous doesn?t count. Be involved with your sponsor. Ask them what they want, expect or how you can help out. Where do you want the stickers? Can I add you to my website? Do you want my bike for displays? Help out where you can and be involved. Keep in touch and let them know what you?ve done. At the end of the year thank them. It may pay off for next year. Resumes? Only if you can?t make it in to see a sponsor and you have something worthy to list. What many sponsors are looking for is someone who will ?SELL? their business or service ALL THE TIME. Therefore you should know as much about your sponsor as possible so you can represent them properly. What do they do? How much? Features and benefits of a product. Etc, etc. Believe it or not but most companies will look for Novice and intermediates since they are the ones who will push the product all the time. Pros have been there done that and many expect everything for free. I?ve been fortunate that the top pros we sponsor will take the time to explain all of my products. It also helps to some degree to be with a team and all to be racing for the same cause. It gives credibility to the product being sponsored. So, I hope that helps a little and gives some sort of direction. Remember names like ?Blackfoot? and ?Trev Deeley? aren?t known across Canada just because they sell motorcycles. The have racers flying the flags and representing. Very rarely will a sponsor come to you, so it?s up to you. Get off your ?Duff? and go talk to them. Be honest and leave the ego inside your race suit. Good luck. Any further questions you can post up, PM me or come see me at the show in the Kimpex Booth.