Rotary Club of Scottsdale: DeBruhl links Indy racing with winning communications

Richard DeBruhl responding to Rotary Club of Scottsdale member and guests questions during a recent meeting held in Scottsdale. (Submitted photo)

Richard DeBruhl a reporter, anchor, TV-personality, journalist, speaker, and storyteller was keynote speaker at a recent Rotary of Scottsdale luncheon meeting.

When introducing Mr. DeBruhl to the Rotarians and guests, Rotarian Christopher West noted Mr. DeBruhl is an award-winning network television broadcaster who understand both social and traditional media form — everything from corporate branding to crisis communications.

Mr. DeBruhl has worked for ESPN as part of the broadcast team covering the IndyCar series, which includes the Indy 500 and is an on-air talent for Motor Trend Network, which includes coverage of the Barrett-Jackson Classic Collector Car Auctions.

Club President Kent Hammond and Visiting Rotarian Linda Nudd from Rotary Club of Belleview, Iowa exchange Rotary Club banners. (Submitted photo)

In a racing world that travels at more than 200 miles per hour, Mr. DeBruhl has learned communications are critical. The right information at the right time not only gives racing teams a chance to win, it also can avoid a disaster where lives are at risk.

During his talk, Mr. DeBruhl shared winning communication insights within the corporate world and the Indy racing world. He noted it is important for a racing team and/or organization to have a communication culture built into the racing team/organization; to communicate at the right speed; and, to communicate one’s strategy.

Mr. DeBruhl shared that winning communications played a key role in the May 2016 IndyCar race when Alexander Rossi ran on an empty fuel tank in his No. 98 NAPA Auto Parts/Curb Honda, and managed to coast the final quarter-lap to win the history-making 100th running of the Indianapolis 500.

Mr. DeBruhl shared the communication strategy used by the race car’s co-owner and race strategist Bryan Herta. Mr. Herta told Mr. Rossi to conserve fuel, gambling Mr. Rossi could go a seemingly impossible 36 laps (90 miles) on the 18.5 gallons of fuel he had to make it to the end.

In closing his talk, Mr. DeBruhl stated effective communication culture, speed and strategy wins races – noting – you are only as good as your last communication.

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