Cherie Putnam Named Series Director for NASCAR Pinty’s Series
When the NASCAR Pinty’s Series kicks off their season in May, they’ll have a familiar face as series director, but not the face they’re used to seeing.
Long-time Series official Cherie Putnam was named Series Director for the Pinty’s Series at the beginning of February.
“I’m very excited. I’m happy to have the opportunity,” she told POPULAR SPEED. “Looking forward to the upcoming seasons, the challenges, and I have a great team behind me. We’re actively getting set for the 2017 Pinty’s Series season.”
Having spent the last five years with NASCAR as an official, Putnam’s involvement in racing goes back further, having been involved for the past 30 years.
“I started through the interest of racing of my husband, and just fell in love with the sport,” she said. “Truly do love it.”
Putnam takes the series helm as they come off an exciting season with their first year under the Pinty’s banner after Pinty’s took over title sponsorship beginning with the 2016 season. Last year saw excitement across the schedule on both the ovals and road courses, with 16-year-old Cayden Lapcevich becoming the youngest series champion.
“We’re really excited that Pinty’s came aboard,” she said. “It was well received across the entire series, and we’re looking to continue working on the partnership. As the season progresses and learning more about being the director instead of an official, hopefully, there’s good things to come in the near future.”
Preparations have already been fully in gear for 2017, following the release of the schedule at the beginning of December.
“I think our schedule is great for this year,” she said. “We have some nice new venues and some ideas that we’re trying. Saskatoon, we’re doing two 100-lappers, which is new to our concept. We’re excited about that, the track promoters are excited about it, and hopefully that goes over with the fans. ICAR – we’re changing that schedule a little bit. Instead of a two-day schedule, we’re doing a one-day schedule with the track being reconfigured there. So hopefully that adds some excitement to that event as well.”
Well, there’s been excitement, there have been concerns expressed surrounding the car count after some of the races saw lower numbers than expected. Putnam feels it’s a concern that will be adequately addressed, as cited in a board meeting held a week ago.
“A lot of good feedback came from that, so we’re going to work on all comments and the feedback that came from that,” she said. “Hopefully over the next few weeks, we’ll roll out some things. There’s lots of talks to increase the series, and the numbers and the interest.”
She also added that in working with Jason Christley and the series public relations department, they’re hoping to generate new ideas and new ways to promote the drivers, cars, and the series.
“We hope to have that in detail in the next coming months in working with the drivers, speaking with them, and figuring out ways to better promote not just our drivers, our series and all of Canada,” she added.
In looking to reach other markets and expand the schedule possibly, Putnam says it’s a possibility for the future.
“Like I said, we look into what we have currently and a lot of aspects of it, and do changes where changes can fit for all parties involved,” she said.
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