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Alex Pratt: Class 1 And The Art Of Building Brand Awareness

Entering his second full season of Class 1 offshore racing, Good Boy Vodka and Good Boy Vodka seltzer founder Alex Pratt has no intentions of throttling back—on anything. If anything, his intensity is increasing as the former motorcycle racer originally out of Michigan has dedicated his racing efforts to creating a platform for his thriving brand. The Class 1 World Championship Series kicks off May 18-21 in Cocoa Beach, Fla., and Good Boy Vodka is entering the second year of a three-year sponsorship contract as the Official Vodka of Powerboat P1, which holds the marketing and promotion rights to Union International Motonautique Class 1 racing.

For Alex Pratt, Miles Jennings and the rest of the XINSURANCE/Good Boy Vodka Class 1 team, the sky is the limit. Photos by Pete Boden copyright Shoot 2 Thrill Pix.

Pratt, who owns the team with XINSURANCE founder Rick J. Lindsey and will drive its newly acquired XINSURANCE/Good Boy Vodka 48-foot MTI catamaran, and United Kingdom-based throttleman Miles Jennings faced their share of challenges last season. Competing in two of five races in the 2022 series, they finished fourth overall in the UIM Class 1 World Championship Series and fifth out of six teams at the Race World Offshore Key West World Championships. That there is room for improvement has not dulled their enthusiasm—if anything it motivates them.

“Being a part of the Class 1 racing community has been an amazing experience,” Pratt explained. “It has given me the opportunity to not only showcase my business to a massive following, but also to network with other like-minded individuals and companies.

“Moreover, it has allowed me to represent and promote other organizations that I am passionate about in a positive and impactful way,” he continued. “I feel grateful for the chance to be a part of such a supportive and dynamic community.”

Nine teams currently are committed to compete in the 2023 Class 1 World Championship Series.

Pratt wasn’t racing when he launched the vodka brand less than three-and-half years ago. But he was an avid high-performance powerboat owner and he connected the two. He made the Lake of the Ozarks area in Central Missouri ground-zero for his early Good Boy Vodka marketing efforts and it paid off in exposure and brand awareness that grew from local to national in a relatively short period.

That was long before his days of inking the likes of professional golfer John Daly for Good Boy product endorsements and sponsoring a NASCAR team. Competing in Class 1, he explained, has taken the brand’s marketing to another level.

“While I’ve always used my boats as a way to promote my business and increase brand awareness, I never could have anticipated how much value I would receive from being involved in boat racing,” Pratt said. “The opportunity to build my brand through this community has been an unexpected but incredibly rewarding experience.”

In a little more than two weeks, Pratt and his cockpit-mate will be back on the water. But this season, there are nine Class 1 teams committed to competing. And for the first time, all raceboats in the class will be running spec Mercury Racing 1100s engines.

Said Pratt (right), captured here with fellow Class 1 competitor Steve Curtis of the Huski Chocolate team, “Being a part of the Class 1 racing community has been an amazing experience.”

A self-motivated and driven 28-year-old on mission, Pratt has set goals on and off the racecourse this season.

“My main focus for 2023 is to go above and beyond for both my sponsors and myself—I’m committed to giving it my all during the upcoming season and leaving nothing on the table,” he said. “On the business side of things, Good Boy Vodka has recently entered some of the largest retail markets in the country, including Walmart, Kroger and Meijers.

“Our involvement in Class 1 racing is expected to help us achieve explosive growth and create new opportunities,” he added.

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