Classic BMW's SprintX duo, Toby Grahovec and John Rader, are up next for this week's Driver Download. Coming from a team with many roots in the series, including running in Pirelli GT4 America and TC America, get to know the pilots of the #26 BMW M4 GT4 in Pirelli GT4 America.
Team: Classic BMW/Fast Track Racing
Car: BMW M4 GT4
Hometown: Dallas, Texas
Birthday: April 1
Favorite Track Circuit of the Americas
Daily Driver: RS7 P LE
Dream Car: 917 30 KL
Racing Hero: Jackie Stewart
Favorite Food: Sushi
Favorite Hobby: Bicycle Racing/ Ski Mountaineering
Occupation: Real Estate/ Patents
Favorite Vacation Spot: Somewhere high in the mountains.
Pet names: Teddy
First Car: Chevy Pick up
Hometown: Celina, Texas
Birthday: May 23
Favorite Track: Road America
Daily Driver: 1989 BMW 325i Touring/Wagon (right hand drive) - manual of course!
Dream Car: McLaren F1
Racing Hero: Aryton Senna
Favorite Food: Sushi
Favorite Hobby: Cycling
Occupation: Team Manager, Classic BMW
Favorite Vacation Spot: Grand Cayman
Pet names: Santa The Fish
First Car: Dodge Neon ACR
Favorite Movie: Slap Shot
Favorite TV Show: Homeland
How was the season opener at COTA?
John: Since I am a new driver, COTA was a great learning experience, especially getting to re-watch on TV!
Toby: I always enjoy racing at COTA since it is our home track. We have many guests from Classic BMW that come to support us during a race weekend there which is a lot of fun. This year in TC I had two great races battling for the win and I took home two second place finishes. In GT4, we had trouble in qualifying and started the race last but managed to pass a lot of cars and put on a good show for our guests.
How did you get into racing?
John: My father was a driver, but I became an athlete, having competed professionally in 3 sports. I have always wanted to see what it is like to race cars.
Toby: I grew up at the track with my Dad (Duane) racing Super Karts in the 1980’s and he raced in World-Challenge in 1997 and 1998.
What is your favorite racing memory?
John: The SRO Winter Invitational at the Thermal Club in California.
Toby: Winning at CTMP in TC in 2016.
What’s the story behind your helmet design?
John: I don’t have a story behind my helmet, just stock.
Toby: I have handprints from both of my children and a kiss from my wife on my helmet.
Something interesting about you or a hidden talent?
Toby: I like to juggle and I used to be able to juggle while water skiing.
If you could invite 3 people to dinner who would it be and why?
John: My father and a couple of his racing peers. I would like to be able to go back and ask them all about racing.
Toby: 1) Ayrton Senna because he is my racing hero. 2) Neil Armstrong because I always wanted to be an astronaut as a kid and I admire his accomplishments. 3) My wife because we miss dinner dates at restaurants since we have been in quarantine!
John, tell me a bit about your hobbies. (I heard you hike glaciers in Antarctica)
I love to be outdoors, so Ski-Mountaineering has taken me to some very unique places that are otherwise un-accessible. I have climbed and skied the entire West Coast of North and South America. 8 of us sailed to Antarctica and climbed and skied over 100 mountains there. I recently Guided Ski-Mountaineering in Hokkaido. I love to travel in the summer and road or mountain-bike mountains in other countries as well.
Toby, what’s it like being the Team Manager and driver on race weekends?
I am extremely busy the whole weekend, running from the car to driver briefings and checking on all the drivers and crew. I could not do both without my amazing team at Fast Track Racing.