This season has been filled with ups and downs and boy were they some big swings. In the end, things are better than ever and life has started laying its path in front of me. Currently I am racing in the IMSA Prototype Challenge in an LMP3 car with a brand-new team, P1 Motorsports. This year has also been a busy coaching year and I am extremely thankful for it. Coaching is something I really enjoy doing and work hard to provide the best value for my clients. With so many things going on, a balance between everything is necessary. I have continued my pursuit towards an education and have since transferred to my university’s fully online business program. School has been difficult to balance with racing/coaching, but I find it extremely important. I have also been speaking to local schools about the importance of becoming an organ donor as well as the dangers of distracted driving. All of the above has occurred in the past 6 months and the whirlwind has only begun!
January of this year I thought I was out of hope for an opportunity to race in 2017. Until a conversation with a friend of mine, Alberto Pena, at the Roar Before the 24. He had started a racing team and was looking for someone that he thought deserved a shot at moving forward. I was fortunate enough to be the one he was looking for. The team, P1 Motorsports, was to compete in the IMSA Prototype Challenge in the brand new LMP3 platform with a Ligier chassis. With a new team, there is always period of reaching maturity and I feel we have reached our stride in a very short period of time. Alberto Pena, team manager, put together a program that can win in just a few months. We have won the most races this season and sit 2nd in points having missed the first race of the year. The championship is still within grasp but it will be a tall ask. We are 11 rounds into a 13-round season; with 2 races to go, it will be head down until the end.
Coaching is valuable service that I provide. I have learned to translate my experience into short, easily understandable, and applicable snippets of information. I work with multiple clients in a variety of different cars and series. Currently, I am working with Zach Lee and Keith Jensen in MX-5 Cup, Bryan Putt in a modified Elan DP02 (Old IMSA Lites car), George Kurtz in PWC GT4, as well as others. It is always enjoyable to get to know all my clients on a more personal basis. It is extremely rewarding to see jumps in confidence and pace. Although the travel is crazy and times are busy, I enjoy every moment I’m at the race track.
My desire is in racing, but I find equal importance to direct attention to my education as well. Currently 3.5 years into Cal State Fullerton’s Online Business Administration Degree with 2 years left, the light at the end of tunnel is starting to glimmer. I have learned a great deal in school and have been able to apply what I have learned to the racing industry to spark new ideas that can be beneficial to not only myself but others.
Something else I have more recently done is spoke at a couple of High Schools about the dangers of distracted driving as well as the importance of organ donation. The importance of the message is for these students to become safe driving ambassadors to hopefully help share their new knowledge with their peers and parents. Organ Donation is important to myself as my mom was a recipient of a heart. What better way to touch your peers than having a well delivered message from a professional racing driver? I have made new friends through this and look forward to speaking at more schools about this problem that exists with all age groups.
The year started off rough but has turned into something I couldn’t have imagined. I am truly blessed to have the opportunities I have been given this year and can’t give enough credit to the one above for pulling me through it and making me a stronger person in the process. Next year, things are looking promising to be racing GT cars and possibly Prototypes in the U.S. as well as venturing over to Europe. It seems as if things are starting to fall in place for years to come. I will be getting married in November and will probably move to the East Coast to pursue my racing career and coaching career to its fullest potential. There are a lot of people who have supported me along the way and I owe thanks to: my parents, Justice Brothers, Donate Life America, Mazda Motorsports, friends and family, and last but not least all the teams that have believed in me all the way from the beginning (Alara Racing, Murillo Racing, JDC Motorsports, IMoto, Performance Tech, PR1 Motorsports, and P1 Motorsports).