Space Derby is your Online Solution.
SARATOGA SPRINGS—For years, decades even - the real race has always preceded the races on the historic Saratoga Race Course oval.
The race for a decent parking space.
Where will I find one? Will I find one? And how much am I going to pay? The tension and uncertainty surrounding these questions have been as much a part of the Saratoga Race Course experience as the walking ring and the Big Red Spring.
Thanks to Saratoga Springs native Hans Theisen, you now have a solution at your fingertips: on your smart phone or any computer device.
Behold SpaceDerby.com – an online solution that makes finding and securing parking around the track (and soon, downtown and other areas) as simple as ordering a pizza or as Hans puts it “Think of it like booking a hotel.”
“Research has shown,” Theisen said, “that nearly two-thirds of same day hotel bookings are on a mobile device. We are just adapting it to parking.”
It really is so simple; your child could do it while you driving up the Northway. Once logged onto their site, you choose a date, and various options (locations and prices appear.) Click, book, pay online and receive an email or mobile receipt in seconds with your license plate number.
For instance, if you wanted to book a parking space for track opening day, July 18, you search on that date, and in this case, options ranging from $5 to $34 will appear. For Travers Day (August 23) the range is from $15 to $42, while a post-Travers weekday might be in the $5-$29 range.
Each location has a little profile page, showing a map and picture of your destination, which could be very helpful for first-time visitors, as well as various amenities (such as available restroom facilities) and even, in some cases, promotional incentives. For instance, at the Mexican Connection, a complimentary “Park-a-Rita” (a $6 value) is waiting for you inside and for your $7 parking fee at the Horseshoe Inn on opening day, you also get a 15 percent discount off your food bill that night.
Well, you do the math. Less stress and a more fulfilling experience. Sounds like a beginning of a winning day to me. You also have flexibility. You can reserve for any day of the meet, book a number of adjacent spaces (Tailgate!), pay for a client’s parking and even cancel with 24 hours notice.
Theisen, an entrepreneur who has participated in five previous start-ups is launching this one solo. He has been talking to downtown entities, and has plans to expand this concept to major markets like NYC, Boston and Los Angeles, where the appeal would be obvious, though certainly the logistical challenges would be greater.
“But I wanted to launch it here,” He said of his hometown. “I’m still here every August, and I am aware of the unique situation we have in this market every year.”