20130219-Johnstons-75-X3.jpg

Early Life

I was born and raised in a small mountain town in Northern California called Mt. Shasta. While it’s certainly not a breeding ground for racing drivers, and my family has no past involvement in racing, it became clear that racing is what I needed to do with my life after my brother took me to see my first professional race when I was seven. That weekend is when my dream of racing cars began.

Professional Career

In an unusual path into professional motorsport, I got my break playing video games! In 2011 I competed in the North American Nissan GT Academy, a competition that took the fastest Gran Turismo 5 video game racers in the US, and put them in real cars; In the end, I finished 2nd, narrowly missing out on victory. I returned to the US as determined and empowered to pursue my passion and realize my dream of racing. After several months of hard work, travel, networking, and more than a bit of tenacity, I was able to put together a program to go racing in 2012 and competed in my first full season of racing in my life in the IMSA GT3 Cup Challenge with Wright Motorsports. We clinched the championship with one race weekend to go, finishing the season with 14 podium finishes of the 15 races!  I then moved to Europe to go race in the Porsche Carrera Cup Germany from 2013 on.  Three years later, having battled the demon of expectations coming off a storybook year in 2012, and having lived through the death of my closest friend and teammate Sean Edwards who was killed in a coaching accident, I decided to take a step away from the world of professional motorsports.  Life had raised the bar on me quicker than I was able to keep up with, and I didn’t have the maturity to process all the many challenges, disappointments, and loss simultaneously.  So I took the backward step and went to live in a Zen Center in Santa Fe for a year.  This experience brought my feet back to the ground and was the perfect place for me to do some healing and really learn how to work with my mind.  I’m now back in Germany, and starting down a new path, exploring the discipline of Rally!  

A Vision for the Future

In 2015, I had the opportunity to go spectate Rallye Deutschland, the German round of the World Rally Championship. After experiencing that event first-hand, a passion for rally was reignited in my heart and my dreams and aspirations in professional motorsport began to shift away from sports car racing. My vision now? I want to be driving in the WRC! I know my dream is big and that I have years of hard work, learning, and development to get through before I could even be close to rallying on that level, but I’m keeping my head down, taking each step as it comes, and working as hard as I can every day to get myself closer to this dream. I also hope that my story can inspire other young people to pursue their dreams as well. My journey of pursuing my passion in this capacity has been the most challenging, incredible, heartbreaking, and fulfilling experience of my life, and there’s every reason to continue.