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SEMA ’06 Recap

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SEMA ’06 Blog
By Ken Crocheron

SEMA is a peculiar experience; it has at once an energy level and at the same time, a sense that either everyone copies everyone else because they don’t have something unique to present or, they try to out “bling” everyone with over the top sensory blasts. HPC with a very limited budget was able to produce a very “organic” booth that invited a closer look with the Meteor, a car that was entirely different from any at the show and a nostalgic back-drop that gave the booth depth and character.

Ken Crocheron HPC Vice President of Sale and Marketing sitting in Mormon Meteor 3 at SEMA 06.

Marv Jenkins was unlike any celeb at the show; a folksy, charismatic man with obvious history and instant charm and credibility. This encouraged people to linger and listen. This also helped the sales and marketing group to comfortably engage with people.

Interest from the media was also remarkable with reps from Print, Radio and TV coming in to interview. One notable interview was with Peter Swiriduk of 1060 AM, WBIX in Boston . He co-hosts with his brother John, a program called, “Sweet Chariots” a talk show about classics and restoration and preservation. I spoke with him for an hour and then he spent half an hour with Marv Jenkins. This segwayed nicely into a conversation about Nano-Technology and HPC’s new Nano-formulated coatings and their benefits and applications. Peter has extended an invitation to speak live on the air on his weekly program and we need to follow up with an interview schedule.

The people from Two Guys Garage found the whole story of the Meteor and HPC to great to resist and spent quality time with us in the booth. The element of tangible links to the past and the interest in preserving it dovetailed so nicely into our SEMA Theme, “Preserving the Past / Revolutionizing the Future” and made for a unique angle for this program normally dedicated to the Hot Rodder but obviously attracting an older crowd of preservationists.

I spoke with Steve Ford of South Seattle Community College . He is the director of Automotive Education and expressed an interest in having HPC present a Power-Point to the instructors, much as we did for MMI earlier this spring. His interest was piqued by the incredible presence of the Mormon Meteor and the ancillary story but he became increasingly interested in the science of Coatings Technology and the application thereof in the preservation and restoration of autos in general. I will try to line out a visit to Seattle to present our PPP.

Richard Levy, the Marketing and Promotions Director for, “XTREME Race Cars” in New Jersey is representative of the folks that came to HPC at SEMA wanting an evolutionary edge and product that was outside of the norm in the coatings industry.

John Porter, Chief Engineer for “Vacuum Process Controls Inc.” of Santa Rosa, CA came and was wanting to know how the new “Green” nano-formulated coating might serve the needs of an acidic environment. As I was able to discuss the efficacy of lower porosity-higher density coatings, he captured the vision of where HPC is headed and how there might be a fit.

There were 5 news media interviews and the opportunity for free product support from these contacts and their programs are and will be valuable.  

AC Delco Las Vegas NHRA Nationals Blog:
By Lisa Leonard

SEMA weekend for the HPC Marketing staff started out with a real jolt at the Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway for the AC Delco Las Vegas NHRA Nationals Saturday, October 28, 2006.  We were certainly not expecting to be so “moved”… to the tune of 15,000 to 16,000 horsepower surging through our bodies as we stood on the starting line beside Larry Dixon’s Top Fuel dragster.  Words do no justice to that riveting moment; fuel burning, tires squealing and a thundering roar that was deafening – even with earplugs in.  WOW!!!

Ken Crocheron, Chelsea Paepke, and Lisa Leonard representing HPC at the AC Delco NHRA Nationals as special guests of Aaron Olivarez of Olivarez Racing.

We were there as special guests of Aaron Olivarez of Olivarez Racing – a rising star in the Top Alcohol and soon to be Top Fuel drag racing arena.  Aaron introduced us to the “man of the hour”, Tony Carmean, Director of Sales for NHRA.  Thank you Tony for getting us on the starting line – we will never forget it.

Ah, and then there was SEMA – the car and technology show of all specialty shows.  The buzz about the Mormon Meteor and Marv Jenkins quickly spread throughout the show and numerous media affiliates were cuing up to film the HPC Booth with the Mormon Meteor.  We would like to especially recognize and thank Discovery Channel/TURBO on TLC, SPEED TV, Motor”n TV, Two Guys Garage and Sweet Radio Program, in addition to many others who stopped by to film and interview.

Special thanks to many for making this show such an incredible success.  Most especially we are grateful to Marv Jenkins and his family for their dedication and commitment to a real historical treasure and legacy. Also to Stanley Wanlass for donating his spectacular bronze sculpture for this event; Brandi Wanlass for her painting of Ab Jenkins in the Mormon Meteor; and Jim Wright for his superior artistic talent in creating the HPC Mormon Meteor Poster.

Our goal for the HPC SEMA booth this year was to create a casual and personable atmosphere where our sponsored teams, clientele and end users could visit and talk shop.  We also wanted a place where HPC could recognize all the many customers who are making a difference for HPC.  We value their business, creativity and opportunities we have to make a difference in their coating needs.  

Thank you to everyone for an amazing show and hope to see you all back at SEMA next year!!