Breaking News

Shockoe Bottom brewery sponsors auto racing team to rev up marketing

The Richbrau Brewing-sponsored Ginetta vehicle will race this calendar year at Virginia Worldwide Raceway. (Pictures courtesy of Richbrau Brewing)

A Richmond brewery is gearing up to get into the distribution recreation with a superior-octane sponsorship deal.

Shockoe Base-centered Richbrau Brewing not long ago signed a deal to be the title sponsor of an automobile racing team in the newly designed North American Ginetta Problem.

Ginetta is a automobile manufacturer centered out of the United Kingdom, where it has also operate a race sequence for 26 many years. Previously this calendar year it introduced it was bringing the sequence to North The us with 14 races operating through Oct at Virginia International Raceway in the vicinity of Danville.

Matthew Mullett

Richbrau co-proprietor Matthew Mullett stated he became aware of the races thanks to a handful of vehicle enthusiasts that have become regulars at the brewery at 5 S. 20th St. in Shockoe Base.

“I’m not sure where the thought commenced. I consider the (race automobile) operator understood that these men ended up huge Richbrau fans, and was like, ‘Hey if you want to put us in contact, if they want to sponsor the automobile, I need to get this thing wrapped,’” Mullett said.

At 1st, Mullett explained he was apprehensive about the idea of sponsoring a race car.

“We had been pretty up entrance with them,” he reported. “We told them we’d need to be equipped to activate it regionally and have it operate for us from a advertising standpoint.”

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

Mullett claimed they put in 4 figures to sponsor the race motor vehicle. Christian Protect is the car’s driver and received the North American Ginetta Challenge’s first race function final month at VIR. The next races, also at VIR, are scheduled for May perhaps 13-15, and Mullett reported they are working on having the races streaming at the brewery.

Richbrau was enthusiastic to ink the deal in aspect due to the fact it’s getting ready to begin distributing its beer. Due to the fact opening in 2019, Richbrau’s been offering its beer exclusively out of its taproom. But Mullett said they recently signed with Richmond Distributing Co. and approach to start off distributing beer to some area restaurants and bottle outlets in the next two to 3 months.

Richbrau Brewing opened in Shockoe Base in 2019.

The to start with beers to hit shelves will be Richbrau’s namesake lager and Psychic Horse, its hazy IPA. It is starting by only distributing cans, with options to inevitably insert kegs. Mullett stated owning cans with Richbrau’s branding on them will be like getting “little advertising and marketing soldiers” on the tables of community restaurants.

“When anyone orders a beer at the bar and the human being sets it down, the only individual who is familiar with what it is purchased it,” Mullett mentioned. “It’d be good if anyone who purchased a Richbrau beer was given a beer and glass, loaded it up and established the can next to it. We’re likely to try out to get our cans some visibility.”

In planning for the distribution thrust, Mullett mentioned they extra 3 15-barrel fermenters last summer season. The brewery also rolled out a further Richbrau-branded car that’s a bit more mature than the Ginetta race car or truck: a 1965 Chevy C50 beer truck. As soon as owned by Northern Neck Distribution, Mullett said they bought the truck last spring and outfitted it to be a mobile draft beer truck. The company has been leasing it out for situations like corporate happy several hours and private get-togethers.

The brewery also just lately acquired and renovated a 1965 beer truck, which it’s renting out for gatherings commencing at $800 for 4 several hours.

For the brewery’s a few-calendar year anniversary celebration this July, Mullett claimed he’s hoping they’ll be equipped to have the Ginetta automobile on-site. As considerably as he’s knowledgeable, Mullett stated, they are the only non-autosport-associated sponsor with a auto in the North American Ginetta Problem.

“A large amount of these issues start out out as conversations that, initially when you’re in them, you are like ‘I just really don’t see this as something that will go anyplace,’” Mullett mentioned. “But the more you speak to folks about distinct opportunities, the more you understand there could be a in shape.”