Shockoe Bottom brewery sponsors auto racing team to rev up marketing

Mary N

The Richbrau Brewing-sponsored Ginetta vehicle will race this year at Virginia Global Raceway. (Photos courtesy of Richbrau Brewing)

A Richmond brewery is gearing up to get into the distribution game with a high-octane sponsorship offer.

Shockoe Base-primarily based Richbrau Brewing a short while ago signed a offer to be the title sponsor of an vehicle racing workforce in the newly made North American Ginetta Challenge.

Ginetta is a automobile maker primarily based out of the United Kingdom, where it has also operate a race series for 26 years. Before this calendar year it announced it was bringing the series to North America with 14 races managing as a result of Oct at Virginia Worldwide Raceway close to Danville.

Matthew Mullett

Richbrau co-operator Matthew Mullett explained he grew to become knowledgeable of the races many thanks to a handful of motor vehicle fans that have turn out to be regulars at the brewery at 5 S. 20th St. in Shockoe Bottom.

“I’m not sure wherever the plan begun. I assume the (race vehicle) proprietor realized that these men ended up huge Richbrau fans, and was like, ‘Hey if you want to set us in touch, if they want to sponsor the automobile, I will need to get this factor wrapped,’” Mullett reported.

At to start with, Mullett stated he was apprehensive about the plan of sponsoring a race car.

“We had been pretty up entrance with them,” he explained. “We informed them we’d will need to be capable to activate it regionally and have it get the job done for us from a marketing standpoint.”

In the close, Richbrau wound up masking component of the price tag to wrap the Ginetta G56 – which is powered by a Ford-sourced, 270-horsepower V6 motor – with Richbrau’s classic symbol. In 2016 Mullett, Brian McCauley and Hank Schmidt bought the trademarks to the model that has roots in Richmond relationship back to the 1930s.

Mullett reported they put in four figures to sponsor the race motor vehicle. Christian Defend is the car’s driver and received the North American Ginetta Challenge’s initially race event very last thirty day period at VIR. The upcoming races, also at VIR, are scheduled for May 13-15, and Mullett stated they’re doing the job on obtaining the races streaming at the brewery.

Richbrau was determined to ink the offer in portion mainly because it is planning to get started distributing its beer. Since opening in 2019, Richbrau’s been providing its beer solely out of its taproom. But Mullett said they not long ago signed with Richmond Distributing Co. and program to begin distributing beer to some regional places to eat and bottle shops in the upcoming two to a few months.

Richbrau Brewing opened in Shockoe Base in 2019.

The very first beers to hit cabinets will be Richbrau’s namesake lager and Psychic Horse, its hazy IPA. It is beginning by only distributing cans, with ideas to finally insert kegs. Mullett said getting cans with Richbrau’s branding on them will be like getting “little marketing and advertising soldiers” on the tables of regional places to eat.

“When anyone orders a beer at the bar and the man or woman sets it down, the only particular person who understands what it is ordered it,” Mullett said. “It’d be great if anyone who purchased a Richbrau beer was specified a beer and glass, stuffed it up and established the can up coming to it. We’re heading to try to get our cans some visibility.”

In preparing for the distribution push, Mullett mentioned they added 3 15-barrel fermenters final summer. The brewery also rolled out another Richbrau-branded automobile which is a little bit older than the Ginetta race car or truck: a 1965 Chevy C50 beer truck. After owned by Northern Neck Distribution, Mullett stated they purchased the truck very last spring and outfitted it to be a cellular draft beer truck. The organization has been renting it out for functions like company pleased hrs and personal events.

The brewery also recently acquired and renovated a 1965 beer truck, which it’s leasing out for functions commencing at $800 for 4 several hours.

For the brewery’s a few-year anniversary get together this July, Mullett reported he’s hoping they’ll be in a position to have the Ginetta motor vehicle on-web site. As significantly as he’s mindful, Mullett said, they’re the only non-autosport-relevant sponsor with a vehicle in the North American Ginetta Problem.

“A whole lot of these items start out as conversations that, to begin with when you’re in them, you’re like ‘I just never see this as something that will go any where,’” Mullett mentioned. “But the far more you converse to persons about unique opportunities, the extra you understand there may possibly be a in shape.”

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