James Hinchcliffe - Anne Proffit photoEnlarge Photo
Ever since he joined Andretti Autosport as the driver of the No. 27 GoDaddy.com IZOD IndyCar Series Dallara/Chevrolet/Firestone Indy car, Canadian James Hinchcliffe has been campaigning to be the "face" of sponsor's GoDaddy.com brand. The ruse began as an insider joke but has grown to the point where GoDaddy.com is officially opening up the campaign to a public online vote.
Hinch, or the Mayor of Hinchtown, as Hinchliffe is known to his worldwide followers on indycar.com, Twitter and YouTube, is hoping to take over the GoDaddy.com homepage from Danica Patrick, whose commercials have been a staple for GoDaddy.com since she joined the Phoenix-based firm in 2007. INDYCAR's 2011 Rookie of the Year, Hinchcliffe is having a banner year thus far in the IZOD IndyCar Series, standing fourth in the 2012 series standings after four races.
"Being on the front of the GoDaddy.com website would be great," said Hinchcliffe. "Go Daddy's website attracts millions of visitors every week. All due respect to Danica, she's been great for Go Daddy, she's an exciting driver and iconic personality, but maybe it's time for a change, right? Vote 'Hinch for Homepage!'" At the first race in St Petersburg this year during driver introductions, Hinchcliffe donned a long, Danica-like dark wig just for fun and said he had some "big heels to fill."
Go Daddy is the world's largest provider of Web hosting, domain name registrations and new SSL Certificates and ranks as the 46th largest website in the U.S. and the 85th largest in the world. That sort of homepage exposure could do a lot to popularize Hinchcliffe's promising career.
"Danica and the Go Daddy brand have become synonymous; we're not going to lose sight of that," said Go Daddy chief marketing officer and senior executive vice president Barb Rechterman. "It's fun to see a young man like Hinch come in and attach to what we do with such gusto. We think it's worth giving him a shot at the homepage."
An acknowledged techie, Hinchliffe recently visited the company's Phoenix-area headquarters. "As a tech guy it was great to see how Go Daddy handles traffic running to millions of customer websites from its Information Technology Operations Center," he said. "These guys are serving up billions of DNS queries every day on one side of the building, while the 24/7 customer care team is helping small businesses grow on the other side… and they are racing fans - what's not to love?"
To voice your preference for either James Hinchcliffe or Danica Patrick as the "face" of Go Daddy, fans can place a democratic vote by going to the GoDaddy.com homepage. At last look, Hinch had a two-to-one lead...