Del Mar on track to begin nationwide PR campaign

SAN DIEGO: Promoters of a landmark southern California racetrack have hired Bailey Gardiner (BG) to implement a national campaign to highlight its summer horse-racing season.

SAN DIEGO: Promoters of a landmark southern California racetrack have hired Bailey Gardiner (BG) to implement a national campaign to highlight its summer horse-racing season.

The Del Mar Thoroughbred Club, founded by singer Bing Crosby in the 1930s, chose BG as agency of record for the seaside track located near San Diego, and has charged the boutique firm with presenting the facility as a trendy hot spot.

"We're more aggressively positioning the entire Del Mar experience as a very cool, hip thing to do, a place where people go to see and be seen while making a few wagers," said Craig Dado, VP of marketing for the Del Mar Thoroughbred Club.

Del Mar has focused on regional and local publicity in the past. This will mark its first major foray into national efforts. BG plans on targeting a range of media outlets, including travel publications, in-flight magazines, and men's and women's consumer titles. For travel books, BG is pitching the track as an adult experience in a town better known for family-friendly activities such as the San Diego Zoo. For consumer publications, the agency is pitching it as an upscale scene for hipsters.

"There's a very active social element to the track, particularly the turf club," explained BG principal Indra Gardiner.

BG will also focus on positioning the club as a destination for reality TV shows and broadcasts. Last year, the club hosted a segment of The Bachelorette.

The firm will also center some of the campaign on the upcoming film Seabiscuit.

Although nearby Santa Anita already has a campaign centered on the film with Universal Studios, Del Mar will highlight that the famous horse also ran on its track, and that the summer-season opening coincides with the film's debut.

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