Bob Tasca III said the dealership group uses social media, billboards and TV commercials to tie Tasca Racing to the retail business.
"It's emotional marketing, connecting with fans on an emotional level," he said. "It has been a huge benefit to us at the dealership, back in the showroom."
He said the group's online parts business, TascaParts.com, gets a big benefit from racing, starting with the website's tag line: "OEM parts, fast." Racing boosts the site's name recognition and promotes an image of speed, reliability, efficiency and teamwork, Tasca said.
The parts business generates more than $40 million in annual sales, Tasca added. Its 20 trucks make deliveries throughout the Northeast, far outside Tasca Automotive Group's dealership footprint.
"I attribute that to drag racing," he said. "We have been able to grow our business because of it. Hey, I can only sell so many cars in Rhode Island, right?"
Showroom customers often ask about the racing team, Tasca said, even though there are only three drag-race tracks in the Northeast -- one each in New Hampshire, New Jersey and Pennsylvania. They're not in the markets where Tasca Automotive Group has its dealerships.
In his grandfather's heyday, Tasca said, "Win on Sunday, sell on Monday" was almost literally true. Customers could buy cars that at least superficially looked like the ones that raced on Sundays.