Auto dealers on board to support Mariners again
REEF City Motors has signed on for another year to support regional soccer through the CQ Mariners.
Last year Reef City Motors gave a Ford to Joe Fenech, Football Queensland's CQ regional development officer at the time, and this year it has given his replacement, Tom McDonald, an Isuzu.
Reef City Motors' general sales manager Alex Ward originally comes from England and was more than happy to support the game he loves.
"I prefer football, soccer as it is known, and I support Manchester United," he said.
"It's good to help out football in the region and help it to grow."
The Isuzu was a new vehicle with 2015 plates, and it was ready to be driven around the region when the keys were handed over to Mr McDonald on Saturday before the Mariners played Bundaberg.
Mr Ward said the sponsorship was not performance based.
"It's all about the community and they are also all wearing new kits that we helped out with," he said.
"We don't have anything to do with the performance. That's (Mr McDonald's) job."
Mr McDonald has been in Gladstone for a month and said it was very different to his role in Vanuatu.
"I was doing the same job there but they were hard to organise because they worked on island time," he said.
"The kids here are really motivated and we have a lot of talent."
With his new role, Mr McDonald travels to Rockhampton at least once a week.
"It's wonderful to have a brand new car because I also have to drive out to Longreach, Emerald and everywhere in-between," he said.
"It is basically my job to grow the game of football in the entire central region."
Mr Ward said the new car looked a lot like the old Ford with the same stickers.
"The old one is still sitting out in the car park now," he said.
"We are going to remove the stickers and put it back in the yard and resell it."