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February 5, 2009

Running Antelope Rides Again!

My amazingly kickass freelance writer of a wife chalked up another cover story this month, this time about the living legend of NASCAR, Jeff Gordon…

The modern NASCAR would never have become the modern NASCAR if it hadn't been for this guy, who totally changed this sport into a Tier 1 draw.

Of course, she interviewed him back in the summer during a weekend event. Which just so happened to be the same weekend as the Brickyard 400. At Indianapolis Motor Speedway. As in, Indy. THE Indy.

And knowing how much I follow and enjoy NASCAR…did she invite me to go along on this one? That would be a big neg-a-tory, good buddy. Not that I’m bitter or anything about it.

Enough of my sob story…there are some pretty sweet giveaways attached to this. First, a lasagna recipe from Jeff’s mom, Carol, so you too can enjoy the pasta of champions.

Second, there’s a giveaway contest. Up for grabs?

  • Grand prize: A 1:24 scale fantasy die cast car from the Jeff Gordon Foundation
  • Runner-up prize: Pit Stop in a Southern Kitchen, a recipe book authored by Martha Earnhardt (wife of Ralph, mother of Dale, and grandmother of Dale, Jr.) and Carol Gordon Bickford (Jeff’s mom)

As always, you gotta be in it to win it, so enter before 2.28.2009 if you want to be in the running.

|| posted by chris under epiphany, freebie, media, motorsports, travel || comments (0) || ||

July 12, 2008

Welcome to the Funcar

That’s right folks.

The Arrowhead of Awesomeness in Action at Dover!

Black Warrior Technology has become an official member of the Microsoft Small Business Racing Team.

Which means The Arrowhead of Awesomeness can officially appear on the #00 Toyota Camry driven by Michael McDowell for Michael Waltrip Racing.

Why?

Because there is no type of sport that does more for its sponsors than racing/motorsports. And the motorsport that does more for its sponsors than anyone else?

NASCAR, without question.

First...the right side. 

Every NASCAR driver receives special media training, and is fully briefed on sponsors. Which totally rocks. Think about other professional sports. How many times have you heard any kind of ball/hockey/soccer/what-have-you player talk about a sponsor before, during, or after the event? Not at all. But NASCAR drivers, owners, and crew members constantly thank their primary sponsors by name whenever the cameras are running.

Why?

Because the teams know that without sponsorship, they have no rides. Without rides, they basically have no team. Which is why having your logo riding around right beside the numbers on a car during a NASCAR race totally rocks.

Not only that, but NASCAR fans are some of the most rabid fans anywhere. They are fiercely loyal to drivers, teams, manufacturers, and sponsors.

Why?

Because everything that goes into the creation of the grand carnival that is NASCAR matters to them. They’re no different in that regard than superfans of any sport anywhere. But the loyalty that fans of other sports have is pretty much limited to teams and players. OK…sure, there are bat, ball, glove and sportswear manufacturers who benefit in other sports. But only because they are directly associated with the activity of that given sport.

NASCAR is different in that they offer nearly any company from nearly any industry the ability to sponsor a team.

And then the left side AKA The Double O Awesome side!

Why?

Because NASCAR also knows that sponsors also bring their own fans, typically greenfield type of fans, who have never been to or watched a race before in their life.

And, to be honest…

The attitude of NASCAR appeals to me. NASCAR races are preceded with a prayer, a singing of our national anthem and presentation of our flag, replete with a flyover of some kind of military aircraft normally timed to roughly coincide with the “la-and of the Freeeee!” crescendo.

Not only does the respect for God and country mean something to me, but the fact that NASCAR works hard to be a family-friendly sports matters VERY MUCH to me. It’s important to me that The Arrowhead of Awesomeness won’t be shown next to the Playboy, Penthouse or some other porn empire’s logo. Let alone plastered on the backside of some Vivid Video starlet.

Thanks to Microsoft and its amazingly awesome Small Business Specialist sponsorship program they entered into with MWR, the price point for all this is an astonishingly low price. $4K? That’s chickenfeed for the kind of exposure you are getting.

The tried and true, classic style profile shot. Look at that SWEET logo placement! 

So the question you should be asking yourself shouldn’t be…

Why?

The question you should ask yourself should be…

Why Not?

And the only question I still have for myself is…

Why Didn’t I Do This Sooner?

|| posted by chris under business, hardware, media, more cowbell, motorsports, thumbs up || comments (10) || ||

March 28, 2008

The SBSC Car Has To Qualify Today To Race On Sunday

Martinsville has been described as

If you just can’t wait to see the SBSC logo running around a racetrack, you’ll be able to see Kenny Schrader’s #49 Toyota Camry with the Microsoft Small Business paint scheme later today during his qualifying run for the Goody’s 500 race this Sunday at Martinsville.

One thing that hasn’t been mentioned much is that Schrader does not have an automatic berth in Sunday’s race. Only the top 35 teams in owner’s points are guaranteed a spot. Everyone else has to qualify on time, which includes the #49 team.

Although this morning’s practice session is not being televised, live stats are available here. At the time of this posting, Schrader shows as 12th.

Quailfying starts at 3:40p Eastern time, on SPEED. I’ll be watching, just to see how good the car looks, and hear the quality of the sponsorship chatter.

But even if Schrader qualifies at that very same spot later today, he might still not make it into the race.

Here’s why…

The top 35 teams in owner points get automatic berths, as long as the cars can at least get around the track for one qualifying lap. There are only 43 slots for any race total. So that leaves a mere 8 spots for teams that qualify on time.

At the 12th spot, there could still be 8 other “go or go home” folks that qualify higher. In other words, Schrader needs to have at least the 8th fastest qualifying time among the “go or go home” drivers to make the race.

Looking at the practice list right now, there are definitely a few folks ahead of Schrader who are in the Top 35 already…

  • Denny Hamlin
  • Jimmie Johnson
  • Jeff Gordon
  • Dale Earnhardt, Jr.
  • Kurt Busch
  • David Ragan

Make no mistake about it, Ken Schrader is a damn good driver who could use some better equipment. It’ll be interesting to see what he’s able to do with the new power that Toyota engine should give him.

Assuming he makes Sunday’s race, that is.

|| posted by chris under business, community, mothership, motorsports || comments (0) || ||

March 22, 2008

Never Doubt Eric Ligman

Never thought I'd see the day, but SBSC on a NASCAR ride? Now I've seen everything!

I’ll admit it.

I thought Eric was kinda joking last week when he asked me via e-mail…

By the way, are you a Nascar fan? Ever thought of putting your logo on a car as a sponsor?

But I should have known better. When Ligman speaks, astounding things happen.

And I have to say…

I think the SBSC sponsorship of a NASCAR team’s a pretty cool idea. Best of all, Microsoft’s doing something serious to get the SBSC logo out in front of people. Non-IT people, that is.

Of course, you knew I’d have to take the liberty of ‘chopping in BWT’s arrowhead, just to see…

BWT goes racing, boys. Ohhhh YAY-UH! 

Oh yeah…that could work!

|| posted by chris under business, media, motorsports, theme, travel || comments (0) || ||

February 27, 2008

Virtualization Rights In Windows Server 2008 Standard

I said VIRTUAL machine, not visible machine!

One thing that stood out from the Server 2008 launch today was a small, but key, enhancement regarding virtualization rights under Windows Server 2008 Standard.

Under Windows Server 2003 R2 Standard, the license permitted the following…

A single Standard Edition license server permits you to run one instance of the software in either a physical or virtual OSE on that server. You need to assign a Standard Edition license for each running instance (in which case you may want to choose a higher level edition).

The key word is the or in the first sentence separating the words physical and virtual, which means if you want to virtualize a copy of Server 2003 R2 Standard, you still have to pony for the host OS.

With Windows Server 2003 R2 Enterprise, the license was much more liberal…

An Enterprise Edition license grants the right to run one Enterprise  server in one physical OSE and up to four simultaneous virtual OSEs. If you run all five permitted instances at the same time, the instance of the server software running in the physical OSE may only be used to run hardware virtualization software and software to manage and service the OSEs on the server.

Most people get all hung up on the 4 instances, but the real benefit here is that the licensing for the host OS is included in Enterprise.

Since Microsoft has already publicly stated that Server 2008 Standard includes the ability to run 1 physical instance and 1 virtual instance, I see that as meaning Server 2008 Standard will have the same rights as Enterprise, but with a 1:1 P-V ratio, as opposed to the 1:4 P-V of Enterprise. As such, I’d fully expect the physical instance of Server 2008 Standard…

 May only be used to run hardware virtualization software and software to manage and service the OSEs on the server.

Now, here’s hoping those selfsame rights will extend to Small Business Server 2008 too. Especially Premium Edition.

Any and all Microsoft folks with the authority to do so should consider this an open invitation to confirm or refute this post…

Which is tagged as an opinion, in case you’re wondering.

|| posted by chris under business, freebie, hardware, it pro, motorsports, opinion, virtualization || comments (1) || ||

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