It was just a few weeks ago that women put their fanciest hats, people placed long-shot bets on horses, everyone enjoyed a mint julep (or a couple), and Pizza Hut’s Mobile Trailer and WingStreet food truck broke sales records for the second year in a row. Oh, and there was also a horse race or something.
At this distinguished event notorious for its Kentucky bourbon and Southern hospitality, Pizza Hut and WingStreet had a banner day after serving an estimated crowd of over 165,000 people.
The day could not have been more perfect for horse racing as the Pizza Hut and WingStreet operations teams took to the infield on Friday morning to begin serving the crowd in Kentucky during a series of races that act as a warm-up for derby day. It was also the perfect time for Stephanie Holdren, Captain of the WingStreet Truck and her mighty team of ten to get acclimated to serving a full-on demand rush. Stephanie—who traveled up with the truck from our headquarters in Dallas—was joined by an intrepid bunch of Restaurant General Managers, Area Coaches, and Region Coaches from West Virginia, Ohio, and as far away as Michigan, some of whom drove nearly four hours to help out for the weekend. This was the first time the WingStreet truck would handle a large volume of orders along with managing the payment process—the truck’s trip to SXSW, as we previously covered, was an event at which wings were given out for free.
For the Pizza Hut mobile trailer, it was their seventh year attending the derby, and things were business as usual. Fernando Reyes and his team of helpers were used to the rush, and having broken sales records last year they were anticipating another big day. On deck to make sure the event was a success was a team of all-stars: Mark Collins, Region Coach for Dayton, Evansville; Darlene Clements, Area Coach for Dayton; Deliverance Farrell, Restaurant General Manager; Dawn Cameron, Restaurant General Manager; Amber Riley, a five-year veteran; Justin Mendez, a three-year veteran; and Doug Fitch, Region Coach for West Virginia. Their planning and coordination was integral to making sure the Mobile Trailer’s operations ran smoothly.
When the crowds swarmed around the trucks around 2pm, the enthusiasm was obvious. The team served an estimated 4,000 wings and 3,000 personal Pan Pizzas over the weekend, with nonstop demand throughout the evening. Stephanie’s hat was a highlight of the event, and people flocked not only for the great food but to take pictures with her glorious WingStreet-themed headdress:
The whole experience was exciting not just for hungry customers, but also for the Pizza Hut teams. From their vantage point at the center of the field, they were able to see the horses race past throughout the day. Sadly the horses the WingStreet team were rooting for dropped out at the last minute, but their front-row seats made up for the disappointment!
When all was said and done, records were set by all (if not by the horses themselves). It was a big win for Pizza Hut, as the Mobile Kitchen and Truck sales on derby day alone broke last year’s record, and proved to Stephanie that her team was more than ready to take the truck on the road! Follow the WingStreet truck as it heads to Ohio in the coming months—@Wingstreet—though no promises that Stephanie will wear her awesome chicken hat for you.