NHRA Pro Stock rules prohibit anyone from racing a Corvette.
The rulebook says nothing about promoting one.
For the fourth season, Mike Edwards heads to Reading, Pa., marketing the wares of Contemporary Corvette, a Pennsylvania-based company located in nearby Bristol, Pa. Contemporary Corvette is an associate sponsor for the team.
The timing of this weekend's race and recent changes to Contemporary Corvette make the timing of this renewal perfect.
In the last few weeks, Contemporary Corvette has gone through quite a change, as owner Ron DeSmedt calls it, "to catch up with the times." Though the company still is one of the leading salvage yards that specializes in General Motors rear-wheel-drive high performance cars, the entire appearance on Edwards car and the internet has been updated to meet the demands of today's market.
According to DeSmedt, the company was one of the first in the country to develop a website focused on products, that started out for Corvettes and has grown to all makes of GM high-performance vehicles, but "as the years went by we never really updated the website and it became not user friendly," he said of his website, contemporycorvette.com.
"So we knew it was time to refresh and make it user friendly. Instead of scrolling through the website, customers can truly use it and request information by part numbers, vehicles for anything that is considered a high performance GM car such as Corvettes, Camaros, Firebirds, GTOs, and the new version muscle cars. And best of all, they are able to make a purchase on-line. It doesn't sound huge, but it has made a big impact already."
With the change to the website, DeSmedt also focused on building a better brand image.
"After seeing the logos of K&N, Interstate Batteries, Penhall, and Young Life on Mike Edwards's car, I knew we needed to make our logo where we could build our image around over the years and hopefully become synonymous as the go-to place for salvaged GM high-performance vehicles."
Edwards's car adorns the new company look on its rear-quarter panel, where DeSmedt knows it has helped build that brand identity.
"With Mike and Lisa Edwards is just an awesome business strategy, because you never feel like you are a sponsor, but part of the family," DeSmedt added. "In 2009, when we reached out to them for the Reading event and from that point forward it has been one of the best deals I've done since I opened this business as it has allowed us direct access to what I consider our core customer base and build that name recognition in the racing community."
Edwards agrees, "We are very fortunate to have a company like Contemporary Corvette on board and be a major part of our racing operation. We continue to work on making this partnership stronger and more valuable for them as we do with all of our marketing partners. By having Contemporary Corvette support, it helps us elevate our entire business model at all levels in promoting Mike Edwards Motorsports' team message."
Contemporary Corvette is located in Bristol, Pa., just outside of Philadelphia, and opened its doors for business in 1990 with three Corvettes and a half-acre of what DeSmedt calls "the Field of Broken Dreams." Now, after the tremendous success, he has expanded to four acres to house the nearly 450 Corvettes and GM rear-wheel-drive high performance vehicles that occupy the grounds.
In addition to the extensive yard of salvaged vehicles, the company also has several warehouses full of engines, transmissions, suspension parts and electrical oddities. Most of the products Contemporary Corvette sells are previously owned, but also sells many new parts still in original wrappings, such as chrome trim, emblems and taillight lenses.
Contemporary Corvette's website is contemporarycorvette.com.
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