Ram Makes Play for Women With Kentucky Derby Ads

Women Make up 11% of the Truck-Buying Market

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Ram aims to capture the attention of trailblazers and female buyers during Saturday's 141st Kentucky Derby.

The brand, in its partnership with the Kentucky Derby, will highlight the spirit of strong women and the courage to choose a new path in two TV ads debuting during the race Saturday.

The first, "Courage Is Already Inside," depicts hard-working women who have defied the odds and challenged stereotypes. The 60-second spot features two-time Kentucky Oaks winning jockey, Rosie Napravnik, along with Canadian hunter Eva Shockey, the first women in 30 years to make the cover of Field and Stream magazine; the Academy of Country Music Awards most-awarded female vocalist Miranda Lambert; and professional arenacross/motorcross racer Tiana Falls.

"You can break a stereotype. Throw it into a whole 'nother gear because the courage is already inside," the voiceover says.

Women make up 11% of the truck-buying market and influence even more purchases, a Ram statement said.

"Women are emerging as leaders and influencers in traditional male-dominated fields, including horse racing," Olivier Francois, chief marketing officer for FCA Global, said in the statement.

"Instead of focusing on women and their trucks in our ad, we chose to proudly celebrate the achievements of those committed to giving everything they've got to all they do."

The second ad, a 30-second spot called "The Pack," emphasizes Ram's sales growth from 2009 to 2015, the statement said. A single sheep breaks from the herd while a Ram truck drives down a country road. The breakaway sheep joins the herding dog and Ram driver, becoming a leader, the statement says.

"The ones with the guts to stand apart -- join a league of their own," the voiceover says. "More people are driving Ram trucks than ever before."

Both ads were created with The Richards Group of Dallas, Texas. Ram is the official truck partner of the Kentucky Derby and Churchill Downs horse racetrack for the sixth straight year, the statement said.

Mr. Francois said, "We wanted our Kentucky Derby advertising to once again make a difference and start a conversation."

The Kentucky Derby will air Saturday on NBC at 4 p.m. Eastern.

Earlier today, Ram said its U.S. sales rose 4.3 percent in April to 40,864 vehicles. For the year to date, Ram sales rose 7.9 percent to 151,270 vehicles. Industrywide U.S. sales rose 4.6 percent in April and are up 5.4 percent for the year to date.

--Hannah Lutz is a reporter for Automotive News