Brian Mullen turns championship into business success
By Bert Lehman
Editor, Full Throttle Magazine
When Brian Mullen pulled into the pit area of 141 Speedway on Oct. 5 of last year for the final race of the Badger Modified Tour, winning the championship wasn’t the first thing on his mind. That, despite the fact he was leading the standings by only four points.
“We weren’t thinking about the championship stuff too much,” Mullen says. “Obviously it was in the back of our mind but we were kind of focused on getting a new car out and trying to get some laps on it before the year was over so we knew where we sat and what we had to do, so people could see what we were building.”
What Mullen was building was a chassis that he raced in the final race of the tour. He knew it was a gamble but felt it was a risk worth taking in order to help promote his new chassis business — MadMan Race Chassis. The gamble paid off as he won the feature that night, and the championship.
“It’s a real cool deal because it was the first tour,” Mullen says. “Only one guy can be the first winner. It went over really big so it was a good deal to win it.”
He says the Badger Modified Tour championship ranks up there with the IMCA Big Dog Dakota Series Championship he won in 2010.
Winning the championship helped the sales of the MadMan chassis.
“It’s been busy [building chassis],” Mullen says. “We took off real quick with the way the car performed, so we had plenty of work all winter.”
Mullen says there are a handful of area drivers racing the MadMan chassis, including Benji LaCrosse, Eric Van Iten and Brad Rohloff, just to name a few. A few drivers in other states also race them. Mullen says the bigger the pool of drivers who race the chassis, the more input that can be gathered.
“We don’t limit who we sell them to, but we’re going to limit how many we do [build] just because we have to stay racing so we can help those guys,” he says. “I have to be on the track learning and trying things myself so I can have feedback for the guys also. Even though we raced a ton, you never know everything.”
Mullen only sells complete rollers which include the same parts he has bolted on his chassis. This makes it easier for Mullen to help drivers who race the chassis.
“I don’t have to wonder what’s on the car, it’s just like mine,” Mullen says. “I can talk a guy through something on the phone because I don’t have to wonder what he has bolted on the car.”
So where did the name MadMan chassis come from?
“That was actually Greg Wichman, the owner’s idea. He came up with that name. He claims that’s what I look like when I pull my helmet off, about two months overdue on a haircut,” Mullen says with a laugh.
Mullen has a simple goal for the MadMan chassis business.
“For the guys to do good and better in them than whatever they were in before,” Mullen says.
(This article first appeared in the May 2014 issue of Full Throttle Magazine)