Docstoc

People Who Pave the Way

Document Sample
People Who Pave the Way Powered By Docstoc
					                                                                           BEHIND THE SCENES AT JOE GIBBS RACING                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                JOE GIBBS RACING



                                                                          People Who Pave the Way
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Four main divisions
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     (415 employees):
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         1                                                                                 2                                              3                                   4
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            THREE SPRINT CUP TEAMS:                                                           TWO NATIONWIDE TEAMS                                   JGR MX                            JGR DRIVEN
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 330 employees                                                          Nationwide is NASCAR’s second-tier series,              Motocross division run         Distributor of a racing motor oil
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             similar to Triple-A in baseball.                    by Gibbs’s son Coy            developed by JGR's chief engine
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                builder and made by Lubrizol.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          No. 18                      No. 11                       No. 20                                  No. 18                        No. 20
                                                                                                              How many people does it take to eld a racecar? Many more than it used to. Joe Gibbs Racing
                                                                                                                                                                                       —
                                                                                                              began in 1991 with 13 employees. Now, 415 people work for the company not including the                                                                        M&M Mars/Interstate Batteries               FedEx                   Home Depot
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   Driver: Kyle Busch              Driver: Denny Hamlin       Driver: Tony Stewart                                                                                            14
                                                                                                              drivers, who are independent contractors. JGR, based near Charlotte, is among the larger                                                                         (Currently 1st in points race)          (4th place)                (8th place)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         65 employees                         employees                    6 employees

                                                                                                              teams, smaller than mammoth Hendrick Motorsports (550 employees), but far larger than
                                                                                                              some one-car teams that employ fewer than 50. Here’s what all those people do, how they a ect                                                                                                 Departments within
                                                                                                              the cars on race day, and what employees of the top Toyota team have in their own garages.                                                                                                     the Cup portion:
Joe Gibbs
Currently                                                                                                                                            Reporting byBonnie Berkowitz| Graphic byLaura Stanton
No. 1 in owner                                                                         J.D. Gibbs
standings                                                                              Team president

                                                                                                                                                                     ADMINISTRATION                                                                                                                                                                                                    AVIATION                                                                  MARKETING
                                                                                                                                                                                                            40 people                                                                                                                                                                                                 30 people                                                                   30 people

                                                                                Includes Joe Gibbs and the rest of the front o ce, accounting, marketing, human resources, information technology, sponsor se rvices, buildi i ng services.                                                                                                                  This division functions like a small airline.                              Everyone involved with licensing, advertising,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             JGR owns three planes, with ights nearly                                   public relations, consumer products, the Web site
Todd Meredith                                           Robin Lambe                                                   Paige Strickland                                 Bob Dyar                                          Gwen Roberts                                   Cynthia Clemons                                                                      every day ferrying management, crew and                                    and show cars, which are non-racing cars displayed
From Fayetteville, Ark.                                 From Charlotte                                                From Charlotte                                   From Columbia, S.C.                               From Kingston Springs, Tenn.                   From Asheville, N.C.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             others to and from tracks.                                                 at events.
Vice president of operations                            Executive assistant (a.k.a Chief Keeper of Secrets) Receptionist (a.k.a V.P. of First Impressions)             Chaplain                                          Human resources manager                        Travel coordinator
Job: Runs the business side,                            Job: As the assistant to Jimmy Makar and                     Job: Greeter and all-around information           Job: As the only full-time chaplain for a         Job: People-related activities, such           Job: Arranges for about 100 people to get to                                         Ivan Beach From Pikeville, Tenn.                                           Susan Berry From Staunton, Va.
including aviation, human                               Todd Meredith, her duties include ling                       source for callers and visitors.                  NASCAR team, he also oversees JGR’s               as hiring, training and bene ts. “My y         and from testing and races every week, including
resources and accounting. He                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 Director of aviation and pilot                                             Retail manager
                                                        entry paperwork for races and scheduling                                                                       charitable giving and lters some of               job is to eliminate distractions,” she e       hotels, some ights and rental cars.
is the son of executive VP Don                                                                                       Best part of job: “I literally make a new                                                                                                                                                                                               Job: He ies planes and oversees the department, which                      Job: Chooses and purchases all products for sale at the JGR gift
                                                        JGR events such as blood drives.                                                                               Joe Gibbs’s many speaking requests.               says. She sometimes works as a
Meredith.                                                                                                            friend every day.” She said 25 of her                                                                                                              Worst part of job: Having to be exible, which goes                                   also maintains the planes: a Learjet 31A and two                           shop, Web site, and in trailers that travel with show cars. Along
                                                                                                                                                                                                                         backup scorer at races.
                                                        How would a mistake a ect a driver on race                   wedding guests were people she had                How would a mistake a ect a driver on                                                            against her plan-everything-in-advance nature, and                                   43-passenger Saab 2000 Turboprops.                                         with the usual shirts and hats, the shop contains race-worn tires
Best part of job: Change. “It’s an                      day? “If I forget to send in the entry blank,                  rst met when they walked through                race day? “He’s not at all dependent on           Worst part of job: Dealing with the            having to persuade hotels to be exible as well.
insanely competitive business                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           (only from winning cars), barbecue irons that will brand your
                                                        we’re in big trouble.” The team would be                     the door at the shop.                             what I do.”                                       minutae of compliance with                                                                                                          Best part of job: “I get to y two days a week, then
that changes very fast. ... You                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         How would a mistake a ect the drivers on race day? theyIf                                                                                                       burgers with car numbers and peanut butter dog biscuits shaped
                                                        assessed a huge late fee and would                                                                                                                               government regulations.                                                                                                             manage and organize. ... I like the responsibility of being
can be on top of the game right                                                                                      How would a mistake a ect a driver on             If you could have any other job in the                                                           don’t have cars, they don’t get to the track. If they don’t                                                                                                     like race cars. What doesn’t make the cut? Things that are priced
                                                        forfeit any points earned in the race.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               given a mission and let run the department as I see t.”
now and be out of it in a                                                                                            race day? “It wouldn’t. But if I hang up          company, what would it be?    Truck driver.       How would a mistake a ect a driver on          have hotels, they don’t get a good night’s sleep. In fact,                                                                                                      too high or are of poor quality. Weirdness isn’t a factor. “I’ve
month. ... We get a report card                         If you could have any other job in the                       on Joe Gibbs, that’s not good.”                   “I’m sure it would get old, but seems             race day? It wouldn’t a ect him, but           she said she once stranded Tony Stewart. “He called me                               How would a mistake a ect a driver on race day?   If                       been doing this for 16 years and nothing seems odd to me,
every week: You either won or                           company, what would it be? would
                                                                                    She                                                                                like such fun to drive all around                 it could a ect the mood of his team m          from the hotel lobby saying, ‘Um, I don’t have a room.’”                             race-day team members showed up late or not at                             because as soon as I think something’s odd, someone comes in
                                                                                                                     If you could have any other job in JGR, what                                                                                                                                                                                            all, the driver would have a very tired crew at best.                      and buys it.”
you didn’t win.”                                        create the position of M&M sampler.                                                                            America ... and people wave to you                and crew.
                                                                                                                     would it be?She would create the                                                                                                                   If you could have any other job in the company, what would it                        And if they didn’t think they were going home
                                                        (M&M Mars sponsors the No. 18 car.)                                                                            and want a hat.”                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               Best part of job: “I love the fans. They’re fun, excited
How would a mistake on your part                                                                                     position of hospitality coordinator. But                                                            Her ride: Toyota Highlander hybrid.            be? “I want to be J.D. for a day, just to see the                                    quickly afterward, they’d be grumpy as well.
a ect a driver on race day? It                          Her ride: Toyota Corolla.                                    “if I could go to Disney and                      His ride: a Toyota 4Runner, which he                                                             behind-the-scenes things that he has to do each day. ...                                                                                                                      to be here and thirsty for anything you can tell them
wouldn’t a ect him this week                                                                                         be Goofy, I’d be just                             bought six months before JGR                                                                     Plus, I could boss people around.”                                                   If you could have any other job in the company, what                                     about a driver, crew members — any little tidbits.”
but could hurt him six months                                                                                        as happy.”                                        switched to Toyota. “I tell them it was                                                                                                                                               would it be?“Driver. Any of the three cars would
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Her ride: Volkswagen Passat.                                                                                                                                                                                                H
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      How would a mistake a ect a driver on race day? e
from now.                                                                                                                                                              a preordained thing.”                                                                                                                                                                 be ne.”
                                                                                                                     Her ride:                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        would have a smaller payday. “We don’t make the
If you could have any other job in                                                                                   2004 PT Cruiser.                                                                                                                                                                                                                        His ride: Chevy S10 pickup.                                                              cars go fast, but we put more money in their
the company, what would you                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           pockets.”
choose? Head engineer.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Her ride: Pontiac Grand Prix.
“I like to push the
envelope.”
His ride:
BMW.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                BE NEFITS
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         Dave Alpern From Oakton
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         Vice president of marketing
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         Job:Anything related to the Joe Gibbs Racing brand or trademark
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         goes through him, including all product licensing. He also deals
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         with driver contracts and other projects.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         Best part of job: Meeting and interacting with di erent people.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         Best example: At the 2004 Daytona 500 when musician Kid
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         Rock was visiting friends, President Bush attended and actor Jim
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         Caviezel was there promoting “The Passion of the Christ.” Said
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         Alpern: “I’ve got President Bush, Kid Rock and Jesus standing
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         there and I’m saying, ‘This is the greatest job ever!’ ”
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         How would a mistake a ect, say, Tony Stewart on race day?   “He’d
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         have a plain white car, plain white uniform, no one in the stands
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         wearing orange, no media obligations. . . . Whoa, we better not
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         give him any ideas.”
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         His ride: 2008 Toyota Sequoia, his company car.




                                                                                                                         CAR MANUFACTURING                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             RACE DAY
Research & design, engineering and testing                             Assembly, fabrication, engine building, machine shop and materials
                                                    30 people                                                                                                                                                                                      130 people                                                                                                                                                                           70 people

                                                                  The nitty-gritty. This group designs, tests and builds the cars and a majority of the parts inside them.                                                                                                                                                           These folks work primarily at the track: haulers, spotters, pit crews, scorers, mechanics. cs.

Jimmy Makar From Cedar Knolls, N.J.                           Nelson CosgroveFrom Bu                       alo           Mark Cronquist From Eagle River, Alaska                              Terry Saunier From Canton, Ohio                                               Michael Lepp From Charlotte                                                     Peter Jellen From Sta       ord Springs, Conn.                              Heath Cherry From Belmont, N.C.
Senior VP of racing operations                                Director of engineering                                    Head engine builder                                                  Fabrication shop supervisor                                                   Athletic director                                                               Primary hauler driver for Kyle Busch’s No. 18 car                           Rear tire carrier on Denny Hamlin’s pit crew
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        and sponsor services manager
Job: Formerly an extremely                                    Job: Testing, testing, testing. Engineers                  Job: “Making sure the motors last all day.” Toyota                   Job: Fabricators make and hang bodies on the cars —                           Job: Trains pit crews much like a football team, with weight                    Job: Hauling the two No. 18 cars (a primary and a backup —
successful crew chief, Makar now                              design all parts and test many of them                     supplies the block, heads and manifolds, and Cronquist               13 cars per team. Roofs, noses and hoods are bought                           work, nutrition, practice and lm review of the previous                         although ideally only the primary car is used) and their                    Job: Like many pit crew members, Cherry has two positions.
oversees anything that has to do                              on elaborate gizmos they invent to                         and his crew choose and assemble the rest (and make                  from Toyota, then the fab shop makes the rest out of                          race’s pit stops. The shop’s tness center contains rows of                      equipment to the track each weekend, plus cleaning and                      He splits time between courting new sponsors and working
with racing: crew chiefs, car                                 simulate race conditions. Often they                       many of them). How many parts are there? He once                     sheet metal to NASCAR’s exacting speci cations. A                              tness machines and a training room for physical therapy                        stocking the truck. “I’m the shop on wheels,” he says.                      on Denny Hamlin’s pit crew. As a rear tire carrier, he has to
building, engines.                                            abuse a part until it fails to determine                   counted 1,136 per engine. Each motor must be rebuilt                 body takes about 10 days to complete and hang. Even                           and sports medicine. Lepp also sets up tness routines for                       Trucks usually arrive at the tracks three days before the                   be strong with quick re exes and excellent hand-eye
                                                              its breaking point. They also do                           after a race and tweaked for di erent tracks and                     after a crash-free race, at least a third of a car’s body                     other shop employees and handles preventive medicine for                        race. Jellen also does some mechanic work and even cooks                    coordination — some of the same requirements from his
Best part of job: “Seeing people —
                                                              aerodynamic testing in a rented wind                       conditions. The department is responsible for about 100              must be rebuilt. Saunier recalled one race several                            road crews whose travel makes scheduling di cult. He                            for drivers.                                                                college days playing linebacker at Lenoir-Rhyne.
drivers, crew chiefs — that haven’t
                                                              tunnel.                                                    engines, including some JGR leases to other teams.                   years ago when three of his cars were totaled (after                          also scouts for potential new pit crew members.
had success at this level attain                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Best part of job: Driving. “The truck is my sanctuary.”                     Best parts of jobs: The hunt and the acquisition of a new
                                                                                                                                                                                              two were totaled the week before). “That was the
success at JGR.”                                              Best part of job: “Coming up with really                   Best part of job: The challenge of trying to make the                                                                                              Best part of job: “You get to see every Sunday, whether good                                                                                                sponsor; the athletic outlet and camaraderie of the pit crew
                                                                                                                                                                                              weekend I passed out.”                                                                                                                                        Worst part of job: Being away from family, especially his
                                                              elegant solutions to a problem” on an                      motors better under constantly changing scenarios.                                                                                                 or bad, the fruits of your labor.” At a recent Nationwide                                                                                                   team.
Worst part of job: People. “If every                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2-year-old daughter, for 210 to 230 days per year.
                                                              extremely tight schedule. If a part                                                                                             Best part of job: “Seeing the nished product win races                        race, the two lead cars came into the pits simultaneously.
person has one bad day a year that I                                                                                     Worst part of job: “The days we blow up.” Then he has to                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       How would a mistake a ect a driver on race day?    Two ways,
                                                              breaks on Sunday, the engineers see it                                                                                          and knowing you had something to do with it.”                                 The JGR crew got its car out rst, and it won the race.                                                                        “He
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            How would a mistake a ect a driver on race day? doesn’t
have to deal with, that’s every day                                                                                       gure out why an engine failed, which is most often bad                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        since Cherry wears two hats: If he makes an error on pit
                                                              Monday and must solve the problem                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             race because his car’s not there.”
of the year for me.”                                                                                                     material in a part.                                                                                                    N
                                                                                                                                                                                              How would a mistake a ect a driver on race day? ASCAR                         Worst part of job: “When you come out [of a pit stop] and                                                                                                   road, the driver loses potentially critical seconds in the
                                                              before the cars go back out Wednesday.
                                                                                                                                                                                              could con scate a car if it doesn’t pass inspection and                       lose six places.”                                                               His ride: 2002 Ford F-250 Super Duty.                                       race. And if sponsors aren’t happy, the driver may not get
How would a mistake a ect a driver on                                                                                    How would a mistake a ect a driver on race day? He’ll be “on
                                                              How would a mistake a ect the drivers on                                                                                        he would have to drive the backup. This happened to a                                                                                                                                                                                     to the race at all.
race day? It wouldn’t immediately,                                                                                       the trailer with the announcers going, ‘What                                                                                                       How would a mistake a ect a driver on race day?  Just as a fast
                                                              race day? “They fall out of the race. They                                                                                      JGR car once at Texas Motor Speedway due to a slight
but it could be disastrous in the                                                                                        happened?!’ ” If the motor breaks, the car doesn’t nish.                                                                                           pit stop can win a race, a slow one can lose it.                                                                                                            His ride: 1993 Toyota 4x4 with 225,000 miles on it.
                                                              crash. If parts malfunction, parts break                                                                                        fab shop mismeasurement.
long term. “I could lead the whole
                                                              — those are the things that keep me                        If you could have any other job in the company, what would it                                                                                      If you could have any other job in the company, what would it be?
company down the wrong path.”                                                                                                                                                                 If you could have any other job in the company, what would
                                                              awake at night.”                                           be? “Janitor. A lot less stress.”                                                                                                                  Engineer. “I view myself as a human engineer,” and he likes
                                                                                                                                                                                              it be? Jimmy Makar’s job. “You’d know everything
His ride: Cadillac Escalade.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                problem solving. Also, “parts don’t talk back.”
                                                              His ride: BMW 3 series.                                    His ride: Harley-Davidson Fat Boy.                                   that’s going on.”
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            His ride: Toyota RAV4 with 130,000 miles on it.
SOURCES: Joe Gibbs Racing; Bill Janitz and Joe Crowley of True Speed Communication; NASCAR; Hendrick Motorsports
                                                                                                                                                                                              His ride: Toyota Tundra.                                                                                                                                          NEXT SPRINT CUP RACE: JGR teams will compete in the Coca-Cola 600 at 5 p.m. Sunday in Concord, N.C
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    The                                                                                                                            .

				
DOCUMENT INFO