I think BSR Racing should step in here...
After some six months of searching and with the official launch of the event less then a week away, the promoters of Canberra's V8 Supercar street race are still on the hunt for a naming-rights sponsor.
Event manager Neal Guthrie said that even if this key race sponsor was not found, it would not affect the exposure of the event, nor the way it was run.
"There will be nothing cut out of the program or in what we're delivering; we're still out there in the market plugging away and . . . we haven't given up the pursuit yet," he said.
The IMG team has personally pitched the naming-rights sponsorship to some 30 companies, and made up to 300 telephone calls to potential backers, yet to no avail.
The race had been sponsored for the past two years by power-tool specialist GMC.
In general terms, the street race over the June long weekend costs about $9 million a year to stage, with the ACT Government providing around $4 million and the rest raised through ticket sales and sponsorships.
Last year's race produced a cash shortfall of $1.17 million, largely as a result of a decline in ticket sales.
The naming-rights sponsorship is worth $350,000-$500,000 a year. "We're still eight weeks from the event," Mr Guthrie said. He said there were different revenue streams from the race.
"There's more than one way to skin a cat. There will be a point where we'll pass the point of no return and start to break packages up and package things differently for companies." Income from hospitality had already surpassed its target and ticket sales, which quietly kicked off in October last year, were expected to gather momentum when the full marketing campaign started this weekend.
"Ticket sales to date have been consistent with previous years; we've been tracking it and they always start slow but, when the marketing kicks in, they start to pick up and we have a large walk-up crowd," he said. "I'd say the [ticket sales] targets we set for ourselves last year were probably a bit higher than what they should be and this year we haven't set our targets anywhere near that level, and our budgets are shaped around that."
The ACT Government is contractually bound to run the race now in its third year for a five-year period. The agreement to stage the race had been forged under the previous Carnell Liberal government, with James Service as the then chairman of the Canberra Tourism and Events Corporation. Mrs Carnell resigned, Mr Service has left CTEC, and IMG is now the new event manager. Although details of the contract between the Government and AVESCO the company which schedules and runs V8 Supercar racing are "commercial in confidence", AVESCO would receive a multi-million dollar pay-out if the contract was terminated prematurely.