As a former NASCAR driver and two-time ARCA Racing Series Champion, Bill Venturini knows a lot about operating at peak performance. Now, as CEO of Venturini Motorsports (VMS), a premier NASCAR Driver Development Program, Bill maintains key practices that help his whole team run efficiently and effectively. At AAPEX/SEMA, an automotive specialty products trade event, Tork had a chance to hear from Bill about his racing experience, the VMS team, and his impressive family, who recently earned a place in the Italian American Hall of Fame.
The Venturini family has a long and prestigious racing reputation. Among their many accomplishments, Tony Venturini began racing stock cars in the 1950s, Bill and his son Billy not only raced themselves but also built VMS, Bill’s wife Cathy led the first all-female pit crew in racing history, and his daughter Wendy is a longtime NASCAR TV personality working for major broadcast networks covering the sport from the inside.
Since 2007, VMS has developed over 60 drivers, with many going on to the NASCAR circuit, including Joey Logano, Justin Allgaier, Erik Jones, Alex Bowman and Brian Scott to name a few. Justin Boston, their newest driver to break into the NASCAR circuit, came from a background in motorsports and, before his training with VMS, had only competed in 17 stock car races. Justin made his NASCAR Camping World Truck Series debut in 2014 with Venturini Motorsports and recently signed a contract with Kyle Busch Motorsports to run full-time in the Truck Series in 2015.
Always one to help others succeed, Bill provided his top tips for operating at peak performance – whether you’re a racing team CEO, a facilities manager or an automotive aftermarket professional.
Details Count “Don’t overlook the small details, because usually you can pinpoint an issue before it becomes a major problem. The key to our success is that we’re constantly double checking everything we do. If we see something that could potentially be a problem, we don’t overlook it, we fix it.”
Keep it Clean for More Efficiency and Professionalism “Maintaining a clean and neat workplace helps maintain professionalism. Also, having everything clean helps diagnose problems more easily. If a car is exceptionally clean and something’s leaking on the car, you can immediately tell what’s leaking. If there’s ever a problem developing, you can catch it right away.”
Think Economical, Not Cheap “Being the team owner, I’m always looking to find a better product and at the same time make it economically smart to upgrade. I know how hard this industry is to break into and to be successful at it. Many talented drivers can’t make it because they don’t have the right equipment. Knowing that I’m giving a young driver today the opportunity to make it, I make sure that our equipment is the best that we can possibly put into it. When a young driver succeeds in our racecar, and I see that they have the potential to move on, that’s now what inspires me.”
Stick To Your Founding Values “We are definitely a family-oriented business and resonate to family people. Most of the drivers we get hooked up with, their families are involved. And it’s a legacy sport, passed on from generation to generation. We work a lot with Joe Gibbs racing, and they like our values as a company. We just hit it off. Nearly every year Joe Gibbs has one or two drivers they run through our development program. That makes me feel really proud that they trust the future of their drivers with us.”
That’s great advice from a racing legend.