We're Interested in Eddie Gossage

NASCAR's increased popularity over the last few years can in-part be attributed to Eddie Gossage.

The Texas Motor Speedway President and General Manager hones his public relations savvy to spin and sell race car driving to the masses. His wild approach to advertising, quite simply, works. For example, in 2008, Gossage launched the "Reasons Campaign;" reasons to attend the Samsung 500 or Dickie's 500. Billboards across the area flashed a big, in-your-face (perhaps confusing to non-race fans) statement: "Reason No. 88: Stepmom." Race fans know the history there. Racing rock-star, Dale Earnhardt, Jr. races the No. 88 car  -- and he and stepmom have quite the rocky history. The two have been trying to put the past behind them, but Gossage somehow talked the pair in to allowing the ad. Once it ran, they decided they were uncomfortable with it and it was pulled. But the billboard was up long enough to pull in fans who'd gone astray -- and pique the curiosity of potential fans.

The campaign is just one example of how Gossage likes to push the envelope. He's not afraid to take a chance -- he's the kind of guy who proactively pursues the PR stunts that others don't think are possible. He's lit a man on fire - on accident, of course - and he's offered drivers cash to cause a scene by throwing their helmets in a fit of rage, all in the name of promoting race car driving.

Eddie Gossage is one of those PR guys who cringes at the idea of the classic "grip and grin" staged event. He simply won't settle for anything less than bold, exciting and maybe even a little controversial...actually, he prefers it that way. 

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