GINETTA’S DREW STAVELEY ENJOYS GREAT GTS AM SEASON IN PWC AS HE HEADS TO HIS HOME TRACK, UTAH MOTORSPORTS CAMPUS
Racing and Teaching a “Dream Come True” for personable driver
GRANTSVILLE, Utah – Drew Staveley lives out a dream of teaching racing as well as competing professionally in the Pirelli World Challenge road racing series.
The California native knew his goals as a teenager but just wasn’t sure if he could make them happen. Now, the Salt Lake City competitor is living his dream as a driving instructor in the Ford Performance Racing School at Utah Motorsports Campus during the week and a top-level driver in the GTS class with the Ian Lacy Racing Ginetta racing team on the weekends.
In fact, this year Staveley leads the GTSA class point standings in both the Sprint and SprintX categories as he competes at his home track next weekend (Aug. 10-12) in the PWC Grand Prix of Utah at Utah Motorsports Campus.
“I always wanted to be a pro driver if it was possible,” said Staveley, driver of the No. 12 Ian Lacy Racing Ginetta G55 GT4 sports car. “And, at one point, I just wasn’t sure. I worked several regular jobs like construction, sheet metal and even sales. My family competed in the SCCA and I did it too. But my goal was to be a pro driver and maybe a driving instructor. Now, I am lucky enough to do both.”
After starting racing mountain bikes at age 14, Staveley worked his way up the motorsport ladder, scoring a top-ten at the Rolex 24 at Daytona in 2008. But things didn’t always fall into place for the personable 32-year-old driver.
“I had to start networking back into racing a few years back and Dan McKeever (FPRS general manager) talked to me about being a racing instructor,” said Staveley, a GTS overall race winner this year at Lime Rock Park. “It was away to get back into racing and help other people enjoy the sport. The school is a great training ground and I was able to continue my racing career as well.”
Staveley hooked up with Frank and Jennie Gannett as well as local Utah racer Ian Lacy to form the Ian Lacy Racing team. And the rest is history as they say.
“My wife, Kathy, and I always dreamed of what we wanted to do in our jobs,” said Drew. “She wanted to be a veterinarian and I wanted to be a pro racing driver. Well, Kathy got her veterinary doctorate and works for a great place in Salt Lake City, and I was able to stay in racing as a driver and instructor. It is a great position to be in for our family.”
Staveley leaped into the Pirelli World Challenge GTS limelight a year ago at Utah Motorsports Campus with a spectacular 50-minute sprint race. He drove the No. 12 Ginetta G55 in a wheel-to-wheel battle with veteran Ian James before settling for the runner-up position.
This season, Drew has been a dominant racer in the GTS Am division with a GTS overall victory in May and six GTS Am podium runs including three class wins. Now he enters the PWC Grand Prix of Utah in search of clinching the GTS Am SprintX title.
“The Utah track is tricky and, luckily, I have a lot of experience there,” Staveley said. “The Ginetta is a unique race car too. Built in England with a Ford motor, the car is good for rhythm tracks against the (Chevrolet) Camaro, (Ford) Mustang, Audi, Panoz and others. So, I am hoping for another strong showing at Utah. It’s a great track and I would love to clinch the SprintX title in front of family and friends. But it will not be easy.”
Staveley leads young driver Aurora Straus in the GTS SprintX category point standings, 163-147, with the two GTS SprintX 60-minute features set for Saturday (Aug. 11) at 1:10 p.m. MDT and Sunday (Aug. 12) at 11 a.m. MDT.
“I think we can be fast here at the Utah facility, but I can’t get caught up in any damage or mistakes,” Staveley admits. “I would hate to lose the GTS Am championship by a mishap. My goal since I was a teenager was to win a racing championship. Now, we are in position to do it at Utah and then the GTS Am Sprint title at Watkins Glen next month. It would be a fantastic way to wrap up our first complete season with Ian Lacy Racing. So, I need to have good races in the next two PWC weekends.”
Competition for the eight classes – GT/GTS/GT Cup SprintX, GTS/GTSA SprintX and the three Touring Car categories, TCR, TC and TCA – gets underway for the PWC Grand Prix of Utah on Friday (Aug. 10). Four races are scheduled each day on Saturday (Aug. 11) and Sunday (Aug. 12). All PWC races can be viewed live on www.world-challenge.com and the World Challenge TV YouTube channel.