John Edwards

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John began racing karts in 2003 winning the Great Lakes Sprint Series Jr Briggs Restricted Cham­pi­onship. That same year he became the youngest ever licensed driver in U.S. open-wheel road racing. Competing in the Skip Barber Formula Dodge Race Series on January 17, 2004, John became the youngest winner in open wheel road racing history, at just 12 years of age (click here to read his first inter­view-  click here for his ‘Boys’ Life Cover, story begins on page 12).  Later in 2004 John won the Red Bull Driver Search, an effort to find the next Amer­ican F1 World Champion.

In 2005 John moved to Europe, first competing in inter­na­tional karting. His early mid-year promo­tion to Formula Renault resulted in him becoming the youngest to ever hold a FIA license.  After a first year of “baptism by fire” John completed a successful campaign in 2006 with podium finishes at Spa-Franchorchamps and the Nurbur­gring, and his first Euro­pean victory at Anderstorp.

In 2007 John raced the compet­i­tive Atlantic Cham­pi­onship, another youngest achieve­ment, but a prema­ture step up in class. He had a second place at Toronto, as well as several other top-five finishes, ulti­mately ending 9th in the cham­pi­onship.  In 2008, John won the Star Mazda Cham­pi­onship.  In spite of missing the first race he secured 4 poles, 8 podiums, and 5 race wins in 11 races. For 2009 John returned to the Atlantic Cham­pi­onship. It was a return of deter­mi­na­tion as he won a hard fought cham­pi­onship, perhaps the high­light of his racing career.  He finished the season with 3 poles, 4 wins, and 9 podiums in 12 races.

For 2010 John teamed with Adam Christodoulou in a SpeedSource-prepared Mazda RX-8 in Grand-Am GT. They achieved one win, two seconds and a third in eleven races. For 2011 John joined Matt Bell and the Stevenson Motor­sports Team in the Grand Am GS Series, achieving wins at Laguna Seca and Road America.  In addi­tion he raced a partial season with Team Sahlen in the Grand Am GT series, taking the Mazda to the podium several times with co-driver Wayne Nonna­maker. For 2012 John once again raced for Stevenson Motor­sports, achieving wins in both the Grand Am GS and GT series.

For 2013 John is once again paired with Robin Liddell and Stevenson Motor­sports in the Grand Am GT series, and Matt Bell in the Grand Am GS series.  He will also race a partial season in the Amer­ican Le Mans series with Rahal Letterman Racing driving the Z4 GTE BMW.

AN INTERVIEW WITH JOHN EDWARDS:

Where do you feel most at home?
“In the mountains.”

What do you find so capti­vating about motor­sport?
“I like feeling so in control of some­thing that is so on the limit.”

What memo­ries do you have of your first race?
“I don’t remember my first race so well but I remember my first test, the first time I ever drove a Go-Kart and it was the first time I really felt that I belonged in a sport. Because I had tried other sports before where I defi­nitely did not belong.”

Did you ever doubt whether being a racing driver was the right profes­sion for you?
“I had plenty of doubts when I was younger and even when I was older whether I would be able to become a racing driver, but I never doubted whether that was what I wanted to be.”

What car do you drive outside of work?
“Right now I have a BMW M6, but for the summer I will have a BMW X6 M. The new model of the BMW X6 M is what I am really excited about.”

Your favourite book?
“‘Into thin Air’ by Jon Krakauer about the drama at Mount Everest.”

Your favourite circuit?
“The Nürburgring-Nordschleife and Watkins Glen.”

Your favourite food?
“Sushi.”

Your favourite place?
“Jackson Hole, Wyoming.”

Who is your biggest fan?
“My biggest fan is a friend of our family. He has been supporting me since I was little and started racing. He even came over to see me in Europe.”

What is your greatest strength?
“When it matters, I am able to be very analytical.”

And your greatest weak­ness?
“When it doesn’t matter, it is the oppo­site. I then have a very hard time control­ling my emotions.”

Your goal for the 2015 USCC season?
“Obvi­ously the goal always is to win the cham­pi­onship. But the very least is to win some races, regard­less of what happens over the season because that relies on a lot of things you can’t control. But over ten races we should defi­nitely be able to win some.”