Honda Motorcycles - Race Wins

Motorcycle & Related Portfolio

Honda Racing:

The "Race Win" ads were probably the least liked ad assignments by the art directors and copywriters at that time. We were cranking out 1 to 2 a week and it seemed like the best ideas had already been done.

Also, if you were working on a Race Win, you didn't have time to work on a color spread or a TV spot. Because of this, I saw the opportunity to really practice my craft. I created this series which was submitted to the Belding Awards that year and low and behold, they won a Belding bowl. My first real advertising award and I wasn't even invited to the awards show. Yeah, sometimes advertising really sucks, plus the ACD at that time took my bowl home and I couldn't afford to buy my own.

Within the Race Win style of ads I got the opportunity to do what I thought was a very cool ad that would run in Cycle World. This was the spread, two-color ad that I got to create.

A few years later when I returned to Dailey & Associates I had the opportunity to change the way Race Wins were produced.The deadlines and waiting for photos to come in and then send them out for Mezzotint conversions were killing our production time and causing problems. I had the idea that if we could pre-produce our art, we could then drop in the win announcements and be days ahead in our production schedule. And that's how "The Red Riders" comic book approach was born.

The Red Riders celebrated anyone who raced on a Honda virtually turning them into heroes. To sell the concept, I designed the logo in concept form and presented a few layouts to the marketing department at Honda to show them how this campaign would look. I also explained how the problems of time-to-produce issues would be easier to control. They loved the idea and we set up a budget to work with award-wining illustrator Steve Vance to create the major images. The smaller inset images were drawn by Tom Moyer and myself as needed. I also created the bodycopy type font by hand so that we could bold or italicize words as the copywriters saw fit.

Tom Moyer was a young Art Center talent I convinced our group creative director to hire. Tom was also a damn good illustrator himself and actually created the images below when Honda allowed us to go full-color each time their race team won a national championship. I think this was when the campaign really showed its potential. It also accelerated Tom's career within Dailey and then on to his own agency M1.