When you talk to Jeff Westphal two things become very clear – first, you can see that he absolutely loves what he does for a living, and second, he knows exactly what it takes to get these cars around the track in a big hurry. An introductory conversation that was just supposed to last for a few minutes ended up being closer to an hour. He’s a young driver with a clear idea for what it takes to win (as he did for the first time this season at the Belle Isle Grand Prix in Detroit) and more importantly, what it takes to be successful. Some of you might think that those two things are one in the same, but they are, indeed, very different. Winning – that’s obvious, but being successful takes more than just great skill in the drivers seat. It takes a drive and commitment off the track, as well. Not being able to speak well and promote yourself is a quick way to find yourself without a ride, these days. Jeff, I found out, does not have that problem, at all. He is personable, sure, but beyond that he’s downright charming, particularly when interacting with the fans. Always a smile and a sincere “thank you” as fans drop in to the pit area for an autograph.
Keep your eyes on this fine young driver, my friends. He’s going to be one to contend with for some time to come, I suspect.
Here is my conversation with Tudor Championship Driver, Jeff Westphal.
Some photos from the Tudor Championship Series race at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca: