Quarterbacks & Lamborghinis
No vehicle on the road symbolizes fast, sexy and exotic more than the Lamborghini. The Italian roadsters are legendary for their sleek design, powerful motors, pure speed and hefty price tags. It is rumored that, Ferruccio Lamborghini, a former tractor manufacturer, started his auto company in 1963 after he was personally snubbed by Enzo Ferrari at the Ferrari factory. Nevertheless, Lamborghini’s have certainly earned a spot in the upper echelon of the sports car arena.
In 2009, the only Lamborghini race car in the country will be entered into the Sports Car Club of America’s (SCCA) SPEED World Challenge GT Championship. That news alone might be of limited interest to anyone but the hardcore race fan. However, the car will also be driven by former NFL first round draft pick and Pro Bowl quarterback Dan Pastorini. Pastorini, the third overall pick in the 1971 NFL draft behind Jim Plunkett and Archie Manning, played in 12 NFL seasons and led the Houston Oilers to the AFC Championship game in 1979 in which they fell to the eventual champion Pittsburgh Steelers. Pastorini is not new to racing, though. He has set several world records in unlimited drag boat racing, driven in a number of International Motor Sports Association events and has been a driver on the NHRA Top Fuel drag racing circuit.
Outside of racing circles, the SCCA gets fairly limited exposure. However, the Club hosts hundreds of professional and amateur events around the country every year. The SPEED World Challenge is the SCCA’s premier professional event. The series provides a forum for racing lightly modified production based vehicles in competitive events. The list of cars entered into the events includes Porsches, Vipers, Mustangs, Corvettes, Aston Martins and a host of others. In 2009, that list will include Pastorini’s Lamborghini Gallardo.
While the SCCA is a limited marketplace, racing is a growing sport in the US in almost every respect. Production car racing worldwide is gaining in popularity. Pastorini’s name and his black Lamborghini will also generate some excitement for the 2009 SPEED World Challenge season. The series is broadcast in its entirety on the SPEED network which reaches over 100 million cable subscribers. The professional drivers, some of which are talents on the rise in the motor sports arena, have numerous sponsorship opportunities open to them. For agents looking to break into the world of motor sports, the SCCA pro series isn’t a bad place to start. And there’s no time like the 2009 season with the added attraction of Pastorini’s Gallardo bringing some additional exposure to this up and coming racing series.
Guest contribution by Michael C. Frilling, Esq.; General Counsel; www.fksportsmanagement.com