For James French, racing is his passion - it's in his blood.
Growing up watching his dad race, James quickly fell in love with the sport. At the age of five, he started racing go karts at the Road America Motorplex and it was clear to everyone that he was meant to race. By the time he was (legally) able to drive, he was competing in the Central Division SCCA events and during his second season, he won the June Sprints and followed that up with a third place finish at the SCCA National Championship Runoffs. When he turned 18, he quickly transitioned into pro racing and has been competing at that level ever since.
Over the past decade, James has raced in several different series, in several different cars and has found great success - from multiple podium finishes in the American Le Mans series, to several SCCA championship titles, to racing in Indy Lights and the NASCAR XFinity series. He is the Asian Le Mans series champion, a 24 Hours of Daytona winner, a Sebring 12 Hour winner, and a Petit Le Mans winner in the IMSA Championship - all titles that he's earned from years of hard work and dedication to the sport.
2009 | 3rd Place SCCA National Run Offs
2011 | American Le Mans series debut
2011 | 3rd Place SCCA Majors Tour
2011 | SCCA Central Division Champion
2012 | SCCA Central Division Champion
2013 | 3rd Place Petit Le Mans
2014 | 2nd Place Virginia International Raceway
2016 | Indy Lights series debut
2017 | 1st Place 24 Hours of Daytona
2017 | 1st Place 12 Hours of Sebring
2018 | NASCAR XFinity series debut
2020 | Asian Le Mans series champion
2020 | SCCA National Runoffs Champion
2021 | SCCA National Runoffs Champion
2021 | Petit Le Mans Winner
HEART OF A CHAMPION
We all talk about the legends in our racing world, and the ones that we remember most, are not just the ones that win races, but the ones that have positively made an impact on others. James is a driver that stands out in the paddock because of his goodness of heart and his natural inclination to want to do anything and everything he can to help others. One thing that he always asks is, "what can I do to help?"
This past August leading up to the Road America IMSA race, James heard about, Truman, a local boy battling leukemia who has a strong love for cars and racing. Upon hearing his story, James invited Truman and his family to the race to be his guests for the weekend. When Truman and his family arrived at the track and walked over to the pits, Truman handed James a drawing he made which perfectly matched the fiery red color of the race car. James immediately taped it to his helmet to bring him good luck that weekend, and when Truman returned for the fan walk, James showed him the new addition to his helmet and watched his face light up when he saw his artwork on display.
Every year, James competes in the Kart 4 Kids Pro-Am race and donates his race suits for the auction to raise money to benefit John Hopkins All Children's Hospital in St. Petersburg, Florida. He also takes to two wheels to participate in the 12 Hours of Road America each year. This endurance event puts riders to the test to see how many laps they can make around the track in 12 hours. The organizing and benefitting organization is MyTeam Triumph Wisconsin, which is focused on bringing people of all backgrounds and abilities together by using teamwork to compete in endurance activities.
While James' race wins and championships catch attention, it's his character that shows he has the heart of a champion,
which is what makes him legendary.