The 811 racing team of professional jockey Julien Leparoux, Casse Racing and Classic Empire placed second in Saturday's 142nd Preakness Stakes. But being the second-favorite entering the race and finishing second led to significant national exposure for the “Call 811 before you dig” safety message throughout the weekend.
According to NBC Sports and Nielsen, 7 million Americans watched the race Saturday evening. Based on advertising rates charged by NBC and NBC Sports Network, The Common Ground Alliance estimates the equivalent value of exposure for 811 on television alone to be more than $2 million. In the coming days and weeks, CGA will be searching for other exposure of the 811 logo in media coverage that will most certainly add to this estimated value.
It was another winning day for 811. "And that's why we do this," Cheryl Ritter, Sunshine 811 damage prevention manager explains. "There are still many people in Florida and nationwide who don't know about 811. These national efforts make it possible for our not-for-profit to make a big difference with a small investment."
The following dedicated member-sponsors made the CGA's 2017 horseracing program possible:
- Win sponsors: Dig Alert of Southern California, Dig Safely New York, Kentucky 811, USA North 811
- Place sponsors: Atmos Energy, Colorado 811, Pennsylvania 811 and Shell Pipeline Company LP
- Show sponsors: American Gas Association, Georgia 811, Magellan Midstream Partners, Miss Utility of Maryland/D.C., One Call Concepts, Ohio Utilities Protection Services and Virginia 811
- Exacta sponsors: Alabama 811, JULIE Inc., Northern Natural Gas, Southern Star Central Gas Pipeline, UGI Utilities and West Virginia 811
- Trifecta sponsors: Avista, Infrastructure Resources/Rhino Marking and Protection Systems, Interstate Energy Company, Missouri One Call System, North Carolina 811, Oklahoma 811 and Sunshine 811