Hometown: Cincinnati, Ohio
Birthday: March 11, 1991
Team: Newman Wachs Racing
Team Website: www.newmanwachsracing.com
Car # : 36
Sponsors: MAZDASPEED/Nuclear Clean Air Energy/Entergy Nuclear Swift
John Edwards first entered organized motor racing in karts in 2003, winning the Great Lakes Sprint Series Junior Briggs Restricted Championship. In October of 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, Edwards first won at the historic Daytona International Speedway, becoming the youngest winner in open wheel road racing history. His first year in racing concluded by being selected as the sole winner of the coveted 2004 Red Bull Driver Search, a program designed to find the next American Formula One World Champion.
To begin 2005, Edwards moved to Europe, first competing in international karting. Edward’s early mid-year promotion to the highly competitive Formula Renault Cup and EuroCup Series resulted in him becoming the youngest in history to hold a FIA license, and the youngest to compete in the Formula Renault series. After a first year of learning and "baptism by fire," he completed a successful campaign in 2006, with podium finishes at Spa-Franchorchamps and the Nurburgring, and his first European victory at Anderstorp. In 2007, Edwards set another “youngest-ever” record racing in the ultra-competitive Champ Car Atlantic Championship. He recorded one podium finish, with second place at Toronto, as well as many other top-five finishes, ultimately ending 9th in the championship standings.
In 2008, Edwards collected the Star Mazda Championship, climbing the Mazda driver development ladder into an Atlantic Championship seat for 2009. He claimed four victories and four pole positions on his way to capturing the 2008 Star Mazda crown.
Star Mazda Championship presented by Goodyear
Hometown: Noblesville, Indiana
Birthday: December 15, 1991
Team: Andersen Racing
Team Website: www.andersenracingteam.com
Car #: 22
Conor Daly, a second generation race driver, is the son of professional race car driver Derek Daly (who reached the pinnacle of the sport, competing in Formula One and Indy Cars for well over a decade), and his Mom, Beth, who won a Novice Jet Ski World Championship in 1990.
Daly’s career started racing go-karts as a 10 year old. In 2005, he won 19 races and two championships driving an American-built Margay chassis. He was also elected “Junior Driver of the Year” by Kart Racers of America, and in 2006 he switched to an Italian-built Birel chassis and won three World Karting Association National events, including the jewel of the WKA season, the Grand Nationals in South Bend, Indiana. Towards the end of the season and on age waivers (he was just 14 years old), he became the youngest driver in the country to win a "senior" Pro kart race when he won the Pro Invitational race at the TaG World Championships.
Daly drove a race car for the first time when he attended the Bertil Roos three-day racing school in October, 2006, at Moroso Park, Florida. In 2007, driving for the factory Top Kart team, Daly won the Stars of Karting TaG East championship having dominated the penultimate rounds in Schwano, Wisconsin, where he scored two pole positions, four fastest race laps and a first and second place in the finals. He finished off his season with five consecutive pole positions. In 2007 he also won three Skip Barber Regional races, including a win on his debut in the series.
In 2008, Daly concentrated on race cars and had an outstanding season winning the Skip Barber National Championship (five wins), the Ontario Formula Ford 1600 Rookie of Year (five wins) and the Walter Hayes FF 1600 Trophy in Silverstone representing Team USA. Along the way he set three new lap records in Canada, and scored ten pole positions in three different classes. The 2008 Skip Barber National championship earned Daly a spot on the Andersen Racing Team in Star Mazda courtesy of Mazda.
SCCA Pro Racing SPEED World Challenge Touring Car
Hometown: Fort Worth, Texas
Birthday: : December 28, 1973
Team: Tri-Point Motorsports
Car #: 75
Eric Foss won the 2008 SCCA Pro Racing Playboy Mazda MX-5 Cup Series Champion with four poles, two wins, and eight top-four finishes. Foss is also the 2008 SCCA National Champion in the Spec Miata class and competed in four SCCA Nationals in Spec Miata resulting in three poles and four wins. He competed at the SCCA National Runoffs in a Spec Miata, qualified on pole, and won the race.
Foss began club racing in 1990 with the Sports Car Club of America (SCCA) and was winning races by 1995. In 1997 he obtained his Professional Sports Car Racing License and in 2001 started running in SCCA National events, while in the same period becoming an accomplished test driver and coach for various organizations.
Foss drives a Mazda RX-8 on the street and enjoys Mexican food. South Park is his favorite TV show, Klaus Ludwig is his racing hero and Road Atlanta is his favorite track.
Playboy Mazda MX-5 Cup
Hometown: : Patterson, NY
Team: Alara Racing
Team Website: www.alararacing.com
Car #: 89
Make/Model: Mazda MX-5
Justin Piscitell has one of the shortest resumes ever for someone who has made the jump to professional motorsports, with total career starts of just 16 races. But from those 16 he has earned seven wins and 15 podium finishes.
Piscitell raced the inaugural Skip Barber MAZDASPEED Challenge in 2008, just months after having graduated from a MAZDASPEED Three Day School, and proceeded to win the championship. That title got him an invitation to the MX-5 Cup shootout, where Piscitell beat out 10 other Mazda racers – all NASA and/or SCCA Club Racing champions in their own right.
Piscitell is the third driver to win the Mazda MX-5 Cup shootout, following in the footsteps of Andrew Caddell and Brad Rampelberg. He is spending his 2009 racing season in the SCCA Pro Racing Playboy Mazda MX-5 Cup with ALARA Racing.