Central Service Racing (CSR) | DJ Callahan
DJ Callahan – Central Service Racing / BRP Dealership (St. George’s, NL)
As a kid, who introduced you to snowmobiling?
My dad had us all on sleds as early as possible, he would haul my mom and I up to the camp in a ski-boose. Mom said that the sound of the engine would put me to sleep in minutes and I’d stay sound until in the camp. One time we toppled over in the ski-boose unknown to dad, he went on for miles and when he returned I was still asleep in Mom’s arms.
Tell us about your dealership and your plans for the future?
We have a family type atmosphere. We love to laugh and make fun at each other… makes the day fly by. We are moving back to Stephenville eventually, looking at a few options now but are in no rush(couple of years)…when we do, it will be to a state of the art new facility that will be the jewel of the West Coast when done, I guarantee that.
Growing up, did you always want to work in the Snowmobile Industry?
Absolutely…to me it was the only option since a child…it was always my dream.
What have been some of your biggest challenges over the years?
The biggest challenge for me would be finding qualified techs, most dealers I’ve spoke to about it agree. In NL it’s a big problem as there is the exodus of our mechanics to Alberta and beyond.
Who have been some people that have mentored or guided you over the years?
First would be my parents. Dad was Mr. Ski-doo, a brilliant businessman whom I tried to soak up his wisdom as much as I could while he was around…had many businesses ranging from an Irving station in St. George’s to as many as half a dozen fish plants, construction companies, etc… but the sled industry always tugged on his heart the most. His words that stand out the most to me that I quote him on from time to time were “Son you need two things in life the most…first you need your health, after that you need your word…without either you have nothing”. Mom was the rock at home preaching honesty and hard work. They are both my heroes. After them, it would be Terry Hinks…worked for my dad for over 30 years running the Ski-doo shop, he forgot more about this industry than most working in it know upfront, amazing individual, he tried to teach me the ropes for years and I owe much of my success to his efforts in guiding me for certain. Last but far from least would be my far better half Shantelle, she has brought much needed organization/support to my life in many ways and has cleaned up my act over the years…she has had her work cut out for her and would likely say she’s still struggling. She is the behind the scenes heart of what goes on, takes a good woman to organize us gear heads sometimes.
What recommendations would you make to young people looking to get into the snowmobile industry? Where would you say there’s more career opportunity (sales and/or becoming a technician)?
A qualified tech is rare and hard to find I have to say. It’s maybe the biggest opportunity to dive in when qualified…however a piece of paper is just the start, arrive early, work hard and maintain your word. Even bad news is worth being honest about. Sales is my area, know your competition near as well as your own product and never bash another brands …I’ve seen that a lot over the years from other dealers and it illustrates very little class.