For the past 20 years, many of Martensville’s residents have come to trust Checkered Flag with all of their automotive needs. As the community’s first full service mechanic shop, the business has become a familiar name to all within the area. Owner/operator Daryl Brandrick took over the business approximately two years ago and has seen steady growth since then. “I liked the fact that this business was well established already. It is the original shop in Martensville and I think that it huge. For this business to be a part of the community for so many years and for me to have the opportunity to be a part of that was a great feeling,” Brandrick said. As a full service shop, Checkered Flag Automotive offers a little bit of everything from top to bottom and front to back when it comes to ATV’s, trailers, and all types of vehicles.
Brandrick had been interested in purchasing the business for years prior to taking over, and had given up on the idea that it would happen. Then one fateful day, he received the phone call he had been waiting for and three months later, he was proud to be the owner. “It made it easier having the experience that I do from working in and running other garages. I already had relationships in place with numerous suppliers and I had customers that came because they knew me from previous shops,” explained Brandrick.
Brandrick, who has been working in the automotive industry since he was 17 years old, has gained a wide array of experience in both maintenance and repair of vehicles, but also when it comes to running a business. Taking this experience and using it to form his vision for the business, Brandrick has not looked back and intends to expand in the future, with plans to renovate the business, construct additional bays and bring in more service technicians in order to accommodate their growing customer base. “Our goal is, and always has been, to service people the absolute best that we can.”
With customer service being of extreme importance to Brandrick and all of the staff at Checkered Flag, they strive to ensure all customers are treated fairly and honestly. “I truly believe that customer service is something that is lacking in the world today and people don’t get that personal connection anymore. In my opinion, customer service is number one and that is what I base my business on.” Brandrick continued on to state that most of the customers that come to the business aren’t typically in the best mood due to having vehicle issues and had not planned to spend money on repair, so the way you treat them can really make a big difference. “There’s no magic to it. That is just the way it should be done, and people appreciate that. Be fair, be honest and be willing to do the little extras.” As an added service to customers, Checkered Flag offers courtesy cars at no additional charge, ensuring that their clients still have the convenience of their own transportation while their vehicle is in the shop for a day or two.
Additionally, Brandrick has plans to take his customer service up a level in the near future. “We will be implementing follow up calls with our customers a couple of days after the vehicle was fixed. We want to ensure that they are happy with the service they received and that the problem they were having was fixed. It is our job to do that follow up and to check in with them to see if they have any questions or concerns about the work that was done. Communication is a huge part of customer service in my eyes.” That communication is also why Brandrick ensures his customers are kept up to date on the progress of their vehicle throughout the day, so they know exactly where the repairs are at, the issues that are being fixed and the cost of the repairs.
Having lived in Martensville for the past fourteen years, and raising his children here, Brandrick believes that it is important for Checkered Flag to support the local sport teams, service groups, events and more. “Being a part of this community is important to me. I try to be as much of a part of it as I can and I think that is what builds the community. We are a city, but we can still maintain that small town feeling if everyone does their part.” In addition to supporting local groups, Brandrick also employs multiple local residents. “I think it is extremely important to support the locals with jobs, donations, with their fundraising and more. I try to be as much of a part of that as I can.”
At Checkered Flag Automotive they believe every customer is as important as the last, and that they deserve to be treated as such. “If someone rolls up here at 4:30 for a tire repair, they are just as important as the customer that brought in a truck that needs a transmission. Regardless, it is a customer that has a problem that they need fixed. It is as simple as that.”
For more information about Checkered Flag, you can follow them on Facebook under ‘Checkered Flag Automotive’, or call (306) 975-2140.