Students win NASCAR marketing competition

Justin cues fireworks at the Homestead race Lindsay Brown//News Editor
Justin Leiser cues fireworks at the Homestead-Miami Speedway during the NASCAR sprint cup series Ford 400. Lindsay Brown//News Editor

Five University of Miami students have pulled into victory lane.
After a semester of competition, seniors Justin Leiser, Alex Bryant, Ethan Alpern, Lucas Schutt and Matt Small have been announced the winners of the national-collegiate NASCAR Kinetics: Marketing in Motion competition.
“We went into the competition expecting to win; our hard work paid off,” Bryant said.
The competition consisted of two case studies and an official viewing party. Their case studies, for NASCAR sponsors Growth Energy and Nationwide Insurance, and their ‘M&M’s Makes Race Day Fun’ viewing party at Smoke’T received top marks.
For team president Leiser, his relationship with NASCAR did not begin with this competition. He fondly remembers his childhood love of the sport.
“[NASCAR has] been a part of my life as long as I can remember,” Leiser said. “It’s become a main source of father-son bonding.”
After internships with Homestead-Miami Speedway and the International Speedway Corporation’s corporate marketing team in Daytona, he has found himself on the inside of the sport he once admired from the outside.
“I’ve went from a fan of the sport to a student of the sport.” Leiser said.
For Leiser, who hopes to have a career in NASCAR,  winning this competition is just one more step toward his goal.
“For me it’s gonna help a lot, people will know about it,” Leiser said. “The trip is going to be awesome, it’s such an incredible award. So much great access.”
The checkered flag has won the team a five-day trip to Charlotte, North Carolina for the NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race May 21. In Charlotte, the students will also have dinner with NASCAR and other sports marketing executives, as well as go on behind-the-scenes tours of NASCAR pits and garages.
“It’s basically like winning one of those fan sweepstakes,” Bryant said.

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