AutoLeadStar’s Inside Auto Podcast features top leaders, entrepreneurs, influencers, and authors inside and outside of the automotive industry. Find this week’s episode here and check out all of our latest podcasts here. 

Here’s a glimpse of what you’ll learn:

  • Our Director of Marketing, Ilana Shabtay welcomes our guests, Derek and Brooke DeBoer

  • Derek and Brooke talk about how they came up with the idea for their TV show, Fastlife

  • Derek shares the story about his first professional race win

  • How COVID-19 has affected racing and the filming of their TV show

  • Brooke shares how she got involved in the life coaching business

  • How Derek’s dealership has adjusted to customers’ needs during the current pandemic

In this episode…

Have you ever asked yourself what you would do with your life if you could do anything? That’s exactly what Brooke DeBoer asked her husband Derek one night, and they’ve both been pursuing their passions ever since.

Join Ilana Shabtay in this episode of Inside Auto Podcast as she interviews Derek and Brooke DeBoer. They discuss their TV show, Derek’s racing experience, Brooke’s work as a certified life coach, and how they’ve dealt with the current pandemic in both their personal and professional lives. Derek also shares how COVID-19 has impacted his dealership and his insights into the future of car buying.

Episode Transcript

Intro 0:03

Welcome to Inside Auto Podcast where we feature everyone and anyone you’d want to talk to in and out of the automotive industry.

Ilana Shabtay 0:15

Hi, everyone, Ilana Shabtay here co host of the Inside Auto Podcast where we feature top leaders across the industry. Past guests and clients include pro basketball, football and baseball stars that own and operate fleets of car dealerships. So before we introduce our guests today, Derek and Brooke DeBoer. This episode is brought to you by AutoLeadStar. AutoLeadStar is pioneering smart marketing automation in the automotive industry. Built by top tier engineers and data scientists AutoLeadStar’s sophisticated machine learning future proof dealerships marketing operations and replaces traditional marketing methods for better results at a lower cost. So without further ado, today we have Derek DeBoer. Who is a dealer owner at TC Chevy as well as a race winning driver. He stars in Fastlife TV show and is passionate about everything he does, especially when he’s in his racing suit. Derek is also husband and father of three girls. We also have here Brooke DeBoer, who is the creator of Fastlife.TV, encourager of dream chasing and certified life coach. She is a wife and mother of three girls. Thank you so much. I’m so excited to have you both.

Brooke DeBoer 1:31

Thank you for having us.

Derek DeBoer 1:33

Yeah, great to be here. And I always love hearing those introductions. I feel pretty lucky to have that as a teammates, creator of a show encourager chasing dreams, and she can coach me when I need to pick me up.

Ilana Shabtay 1:45

Yeah, it seems like the power couple right here for sure. And what and we have a Wonder Woman, which we can see on your mug today. Yeah, that’s awesome. So tell us tell us tell us about Fastlife. Let’s start with that. You You know Running and starting your own Amazon Prime show is pretty amazing.

Derek DeBoer 2:05

Don’t take that one. You created it.

Brooke DeBoer 2:07

Well, no, I think you should start.

Derek DeBoer 2:09

Okay, sounds fair enough. So, um, one night we were simply laying in bed and Brooke asked me what passion I haven’t chased yet in life that she should know about. And I had never told her that I wanted to be a professional racecar driver. I hadn’t probably told anybody that but that was absolutely my childhood dream. And the moment I said that to her that she said, Well, then you should. And she signed me up for racing school. And being the storyteller and documentarian that she is the moment that things started to unfold. She was learning so much about something she knew very little about racing, and thought it looked pretty cool. And that there’s some stories to tell that people don’t ordinarily get to see. You know, we’re used to seeing the race cars and the drivers on TV on Sunday, and that’s about all we get to see. So her idea was To go behind the curtain and share the whole story, and it kind of evolved into a show where we really hope to encourage others to do the same whether it’s racecar driving and becoming a doctor or whatever their crazy dream is to encourage that to happen. So that’s Fastlife.TV in a nutshell.

Ilana Shabtay 3:17

It’s pretty incredible. Not everyone has that kind of partner, right? You

Derek DeBoer 3:23

know, I often pinch myself, I couldn’t tell if she really loved me or if she was trying to get rid of me, but I think

Derek DeBoer 3:30

clearly that she likes, I think,

Ilana Shabtay 3:32

and Brooke, do you make it?

Brooke DeBoer 3:35

What’s up? do you rate? Do I race? Yeah. I’ve taken the class at a barber. Um, but it was more like on the infield of the track. It wasn’t the actual like race driving course. It was like a performance driving course. I guess you would say, but I did win. At the end. We had a race. That’s amazing. But

Derek DeBoer 4:01

you’re in a Dodge Viper. I

Brooke DeBoer 4:02

was in a Dodge Viper back in the day. And I had a co driver and we had a driver change, and we want to race out of our class. So that’s amazing. Is there right? Yes, definitely. It’s way more than I do.

Derek DeBoer 4:17

And how long would that be fun to get a taste of what it’s like to be in the car and that speed and the heat and all that stuff. And she’s also got to go on several ride alongs with me in certain tracks and whatnot.

Brooke DeBoer 4:28

Now a couple other drivers. But yeah, Derek’s the best one. I’ve actually been with another driver that flew off the track two, so that’s why I say Derek’s the best. We haven’t had any incidents, but I’ve been in the ride along.

Derek DeBoer 4:41

Yeah, that’s, that’s highly not encouraged in passenger rights. We were supposed to kind of go about 92%. But you know, I think sometimes drivers maybe show off a little bit, especially when they have a pretty girl in the car.

Brooke DeBoer 4:53

And I’ll be nice and not many names.

Ilana Shabtay 4:57

Oh, man. All right. We could also we could Share this with him after so he knows he has a he’s liable for sure. Um, what about tell us about one of your your winning experiences?

Derek DeBoer 5:12

Oh, probably I would go to my first professional race win, which was a really special one. You know, another thing that we’ve learned about racing and through Fastlife.TV is that we really get to interact with a lot of great people. And we’ve you know, through that had really amazing partnerships like the one that we have with you and AutoLeadStar, and we’re able to tie that into work we do at the dealerships and work that we do with nonprofits and charities. One group that we work with is Sparrow Clubs USA, and there’s a young boy from the Seattle area. Mason, who is having a lot of challenges in life, and we had kind of met him just recently before that race, so we did a fundraising campaign for him and his family. We had Mason’s hope all over the racecar and we’re showing up at a racetrack that I had never been to road, America. Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin. And it was just one of those magic weekends where everything went right. Our car was fast. The crew was spot on. Brooke was there with me recording it all. And as the race unfolded, we just found ourselves moving forward and forward and forward and halfway through had the lead and kept it for the entire race. And that was the first professional Raceway. And that was pretty awesome.

Ilana Shabtay 6:22

That’s amazing. And for a cause, it seems which is great.

Derek DeBoer 6:25

Absolutely. It was so cool at the end to hear the announcers go, Well, there’s a good gift for Mason and yeah,

Ilana Shabtay 6:33

that’s awesome. That’s wonderful. And your daughters do they go with you as well?

Derek DeBoer 6:38

They do. They’ve kind of grown up to love racing. Now. We have plenty of photos you know, even from you know, Paige was our first and we’ve got photos of her, you know, sleeping in, in the stroller on pit lane and so the girls have definitely been accustomed to tagging along. They’ve been almost everywhere with us. We raced in the mall, France in 2015 two of the three girls came along on that. And yeah, they they love right life at the racetrack. They even got some passenger rights now not the youngest one.

Ilana Shabtay 7:09

Oh, gosh, I would be nervous.

Derek DeBoer 7:12

knows that from

Brooke DeBoer 7:13

Yeah, having them though. Yeah, it was fine for some reason. I don’t know. I really trust Derek. Like, I guess it sounds a little cheesy, but like now he’s a very competent driver. And he’s, he’s got a good head on your shoulders. I’ve seen a lot of drivers that seemed like they might have some screws loose. You know, I mean, I’m not joking. Like some people just don’t have an off button or like that judgment. And I think Derek has really good judgment in the car. So don’t worry too much.

Ilana Shabtay 7:41

Yeah. Especially with cargo, especially with that. Yeah. Quick. Yeah,

that’s wonderful. Has so has, um, I know everything is always Covid Covid Covid. So I want to make sure that we don’t focus the entire conversation around it, but I have to ask how it has impacted racing if at all. the past couple months.

Derek DeBoer 8:02

Yeah, it’s completely changed the dynamic and it’s changed our schedule. Not all for the worse. There’s been some really great things we’ve found over the last time that our family sat at a table and like played a game of Yahtzee together. That was that was pretty fun. So we’re finding other simple ways to entertain ourselves and interact, but no racing specifically, we were really lucky this year, to have the whole season kind of put together early on. And again, you know, some, some partners such as that without AutoLeadStar and LaSalle Solutions, people that have been partners with us for a long time, and we’re willing to continue even if the road was a little bit bumpy. So we still had support when the season did get switched back on, you know, we’re ready to go and the racers group the team that I drive for is very strategic as well. So we’ve been doing a lot of other things interacting, you know, they own a winery called Adobe road winery, and we’ve been doing zoom virtual wine tastings to keep partners in the loop and the team together and interacting the same ways that we would per race season. So essentially, there was just a big gap. A few of the races were canceled, but they’re now being made up, you know, later in the season. You know, for instance, we just got back from Virginia. And we had three races while we were there to make up for some of the ones that we had missed. So it’s a it’s a huge change. We didn’t get that fans at the race, but we’re looking forward to that happening again sometime soon. Not sure. Yeah. But yeah, I was gonna ask we’re back. We’re going.

Ilana Shabtay 9:34

Yeah. Back on track. No pun intended, for sure. Yeah,

Derek DeBoer 9:38

exactly. It’s, it’s also caused some changes and how we’ve approached Fastlife. You know, ordinarily, Brooke is totally hands on traveling with me, and documenting all of this. And, you know, with this, that has not been an option, you know, haven’t been allowed to even bring guests to the races. So, I’ve been doing a lot more of the filming. So the quality’s not that good. It’s more of a vlog style now. And then she’s been able to kind of shift gears down another path that she’s always wanted to pursue in life and essentially what she did with Fastlife and encouraging me to go racing, so she is now doing life coaching and, you know, hopefully to be able to impact a lot more people.

Ilana Shabtay 10:22

Yeah. Wow. So how, how is it Covid impacted the the life coaching business? I’m sure there’s, there’s it’s tremendous right now.

Brooke DeBoer 10:32

Yeah, it’s actually been a great time to get complete some of my training and we’re anti, I’m entirely online. So I actually think it’s been good because I think this is a time when people need additional support. And they might have a little more time to focus on things that they otherwise wouldn’t, you know, and they can do it all online and we can meet up on an Zoom call just like this. And it’s, it seems to be I mean, it’s going really good. And were you online before as well? I wasn’t coaching before. Officially coaching. I wasn’t like a certified life coach before COVID. That’s what I decided to do. During this time. I thought me, you know, what a perfect time when I’m here at home and we’re trying to have me be at home with the kids. kind of keep everybody safe and figure out how this was all going to play out. And Derek was going to work every day. And so I chose to take care of getting my actual certification while this was going on, and I now officially working with clients. That’s wonderful. Yeah, that’s great. Have you so Are you still going into the dealership every day? Derek.

Derek DeBoer 11:55

Yeah, we were lucky enough through the the whole time that we were considered an essential business, not just the service side, but sales as well. So, you know, again, the landscape of that was much different than normal. And we were all keeping six feet away from each other everywhere you know, changing practices, not not able to do test drives and, and, you know, shuttle services and all of that stuff, but you know, things that kind of, I think, in a way, challenge all the different departments to do things in a new way and maybe even a better way and in some cases, and, you know, it felt really good, because we were able to still be there for customers customers certainly still had needs. We specifically had a lot of people that were, you know, panicky about their car payments and whatnot, they needed to downsize or get into a car with a lesser payment or take advantage of some of the specials banks were doing with, you know, deferred payments and better financing. So, we’re able to be there and and help with that. The downside though, you know, the With the factories being closed, they weren’t they weren’t making cars for quite a while. So right now we’re in a situation where we’re, we’re almost out. So we’re waiting for the trucks are going up.

Ilana Shabtay 13:09

How is that playing out? I know there’s a huge inventory issue across the country.

Derek DeBoer 13:16

Yeah, well, I think when I showed up at work yesterday, we had about 12 new cars on the lot. And you know, the TC Chevy is not a giant store, but we would ordinarily have maybe 150 cars or so out there. So we’ve just had to really focus on used cars. We’re doing a big campaign right now where we’re offering is to buy cars off the street, because the you know, the auctions were also closed for a while. So there’s just a huge, you know, delay in getting everything back to normal. But we certainly know there’s lots of people with with bigger problems and being out of cars. So we’re trying to be respectful of that and do what we can and, you know, we’re selling anything we can get our hands on and anything that anybody wants and is doing the best with the situation.

Ilana Shabtay 13:56

Yeah, I think that’s that’s what everyone’s trying to do right now. And what do you think? How do you think COVID will actually change the face of car buying? Do you think everything is going to go digital? Do you think it will be somewhere in the middle? What’s your take?

Derek DeBoer 14:10

I believe it’ll probably move somewhere closer to the middle than where it was. I think it’s still a process that people, for the most part, enjoy being hands on with. And there is something about touching and feeling a car. But able to do a lot of it and a lot of the early parts completely remotely and and certainly, you know, for some people, maybe the whole process needs to be remotely and we’ve certainly learned better and more efficient ways to do that. So I think we’re just gonna have more options than what we used to have before.

Ilana Shabtay 14:42

And I think that’s also across the board in any industry, life coaching, therapy. I mean, all of my son’s doctor’s appointments, it must they absolutely have to see him have been on FaceTime. So it seems like everything is moving. I though would still need to buy a car in person and I I’m the stereotypical millennial but I will not I cannot check out on online with a car. I just can’t. So I love that. That’s a great case study out there. I’m actually Yes, I’m going to work on an op ed piece for for hopefully Automotive News on this because I think that the the whole industry is moving way too quickly and making way too many assumptions about how people are going to buy cars. And I just I don’t think the dealership is going away anytime soon. But like you said, Oh, good, more options. I think there will be more options, which is always helpful and I think maybe more will be done online. But at the end of the day, someone’s gonna walk in.

Derek DeBoer 15:36

Yeah, we’re still little ways away from flying cars that are just going to show up on your front porch, you know, with a couple keystrokes. So I like to believe that the dealership model is still very valid.

Ilana Shabtay 15:46

Yes, for sure. For sure. Well, this has been awesome. Really, really awesome. I’m so happy I got a chance to meet both of you learn about Fastlife and about racing the dealership. We absolutely love and appreciate our partnership with you. So thank you so much for your time. And we’re really excited. I hope that I get to see you on another podcast episode soon we can do a specific episode on what what racing is like when it goes back to normal when your fans are back on the track. I would absolutely love to do that. Thank you so much for your time today.

Derek DeBoer 16:23

Well, the feeling’s mutual. We greatly appreciate the partnership both on the racetrack and at the dealerships. You guys are a integral part of what we do so and absolutely, we still need to get you to a racetrack. It’s been many years of talking and we’ll get happen at some point. So

Ilana Shabtay 16:39

that is my dream. Sounds great. Thank you so much. Thank you.

Outro 16:47

Thanks for listening to Inside Auto Podcast. Check out our other episodes with top entrepreneurs and industry leaders.

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