Name: Michael A. Varacins
Date of Birth: 05/15/75
Years Racing: 7
Goals for 2001: Indy Lights or Toyota Atlantics
Career Goals: Indycars or Formula 1
Education: B.S. in Mechanical Engineering, with studies in aero and vehicle dynamics
Hobbies: Mountain Biking, Amateur Rocketry
Michael Varacins is among America's future racing stars. It was apparent from his first driving school, that if applied correctly, his skills could help move him into the ranks of the professionals. But he also has an incredible understanding of today's racing cars. He grew up in his father's machine shop, then went on to earn a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering.
Perhaps the best indication of Michael's abilities came at the Valvoline Run-offs in 1996. Michael was driving the new Speed Sport Engineering Formula Vee, known as the AM-3. It was a car that he and his father designed and built, and they finished it just six races prior. The first qualifying session was in the pouring rain. Michael took the new AM-3 and set the fastest time by almost a full second! A margin that big was unheard of at this event, as there were 56 of the best Formula Vee drivers from around the country. It was a great showing of Michael's driving abilities, as well as the design of the new Speed Sport chassis.
Most car owners would agree that driver performance in the rain is a good indication of a driver's skill. That performance helped him secure a FF2000 drive the following season with Neinhouse Motorsports, now of Indy Racing League fame. Michael proved his abilities once again by stepping up to the class with promising results, including several top 5 finishes. This included another brilliant drive in wet conditions at Mid-Ohio.
During the 1998 and 1999 seasons, Michael attended several IRL events with Nienhouse Motorsports, while racing in selected SCCA nationals. Doing so, he was able to keep his driving skills sharp, but learn more about operating at a professional level such as the IRL. At the end of 1999, Michael drove a FF2000 during a local race. Again, it was a rain soaked weekend and he went on to win by almost a full lap!
With the 2000 season taking place right now, Michael is more focused then ever at moving up racing's ladder. He has already scored one national victory in 2000.