The Racing Capital
of the World
September 29, 2011 | By Tom Surber
Experienced sports marketing and sales executives Brent Schoeb and Patrick Merna have joined the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, focusing on corporate partnership and sales services for the facility and its events.
Schoeb will serve as the director of corporate partnerships, overseeing the IMS corporate partnership sales strategy and corporate partnership sales team. Merna will serve as manager of corporate partnerships service and activation, serving as the main contact between IMS clients and all IMS departments in areas including facility signage, media advertising, hospitality, retail and market promotions, Web advertising and event specific sponsorships.
Both executives come to IMS as the iconic facility finished a season that included a successful 100th anniversary of the Indianapolis 500 and several new or extended relationship announcements for its three major annual events.
The new additions, along with the experience of the current IMS sales team, will better position IMS to take advantage of the strong corporate interest in the facility and its global events, said IMS Vice President and Chief Sales Officer Michael Redlick.
“There are not many properties in sports or entertainment that can provide the value, the access, the activation opportunities or the exposure that is offered by an association with Indianapolis Motor Speedway,” Redlick said. “As corporate interest in our facility and our events continues to increase, we have made it a priority to deliver better value and a more targeted, predictable outcome for our partners. That takes the assistance and expertise of experienced people like Brent and Pat.
“Together with our current staff, we can truly deliver a client experience that exceeds expectations and delivers results.”
Schoeb comes to IMS following two years with the San Francisco 49ers, where he served as senior sales manager, corporate sponsorships for the NFL franchise. Prior joining the 49ers, Schoeb served three years in the same capacity with the Memphis Grizzlies of the NBA.
“Working at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, the Racing Capital of the World, I look forward to taking our corporate partnerships to the next level,” Schoeb said. “The facility and our events have international recognition that few other venues possess. It truly is on an exclusive list of iconic sports properties around the globe.”
Schoeb received a bachelor’s degree in marketing from St. Cloud State University in 2004 and a master of sports administration and master of business administration degree from Ohio University in 2006.
Merna brings a background in sports and civic and university business to IMS.
He served as the director of business development with the Goleta Valley Chamber of Commerce after working as director of business development for the University of California, Santa Barbara Alumni Association.
From 2003-07, Merna served as senior manager, corporate partnership services with the Memphis Grizzlies and previously served for four years as assistant athletic director of marketing for intercollegiate athletics at the University of California, Santa Barbara.
“I am extremely excited to be back in the sports industry, especially with such an internationally historic property, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway,” Merna said. “IMS has a unique mix of 100-plus years of tradition and endless opportunities for its partners. Our significant focus on corporate partnership development and our strong value proposition position the facility and events for some great growth opportunities.”
Merna received a bachelor’s degree in university studies from the University of New Mexico in 1999 and an associate degree in business merchandising from Cazenovia College in 1987.
2012 IMS tickets: Tickets for the three events at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in 2012 – the Indianapolis 500 on Sunday, May 27, the Super Weekend at the Brickyard from July 26-29 and the Red Bull Indianapolis GP from Aug. 17-19 – are on sale now.
Tickets can be purchased now by visiting www.imstix.com, calling the IMS ticket office at (317) 492-6700 or (800) 822-INDY outside the Indianapolis area or visiting the ticket office at the IMS Administration Building at the corner of Georgetown Road and 16th Street. Ticket office and phone hours are 8 a.m.-5 p.m. (ET) Monday-Friday.