He is a talented British racing driver, that is not only racing in Indycar but who is also racing in sportcars. Lately, he is even involved in the new FIA Formula E Championship. Mike Conway had some major successes in Europe, but made the switch to the USA. To RacingInside.com Mike is talking about his career and future in an exclusive interview.
Hello Mike, I think many visitors will be familiar with the name of Mike Conway. Unfortunately, some of them will not know who you are. Could you give a brief introduction about yourself?
Hi! I'm Mike Conway, a British racing driver that has been racing various things for over twenty years now. I am currently racing Indycar, Sportscars and from now on also some Formula E.
Some race drivers are getting involved in racing through friends or family. How did you get involved in racing? Did your parents support you from the early beginning?
My dad took me down to a local karting track to see if I'd like it, and I didn't want to get out! So, it went on and on from there.
Did you start your career, like many other drivers, in karting? Do you think karting is an essential step in the career of a race driver?
For me, it was a very essential step as it was the start of a long career. But, go karts taught me a lot of race craft and it was a family sport also, because my family came everywhere. So, it kept us all close!
During your career you have got some major successes in single seaters, like winning the championship in British Formula 3. You have raced in Formula Renault 2.0, Formula 3, GP2 Series and Indy Racing League. In what way did your career progress?
I tried to have a plan on where I wanted to end up and that could change along the way, but ultimately I had some good guidance from the people around me.
During the last couple of years, you are not only racing single seaters, but also in prototypes and endurance races. What made you decide to drive in such cars too?
I stopped racing Indycar on ovals at the end of 2012, after a heavy crash, and looked at sportscars. It has been the best decision I made. I love the racing and still get the chance to race Indycar on courses I like and get to try new things.
Some years ago, you have moved from Europe to USA to race over there. Why did you decide to leave Europe and the racing over there?
I had an opportunity to test an Indycar in 2008 and I really enjoyed it, so I just made the move.
Lately, you are confirmed as one of the drivers that are involved in the new Formula E Championship. What do you expect of it?
It's completely new, all electric race cars, very interesting and something that manufacturers can get involved with and showcase new technologies. I am excited about it.
If you take a look ahead, what do you think that the future will bring to you? What do you want to achieve?
A lot of success I hope, I want to keep winning whatever I do!
Every race driver has his good and bad moments. What is the best moment in your career and what is the worst moment in your career, until now?
Winning is always the best moment, so anyone of them is a good memory.
As a bad moment, I would probably say not qualifying for the indy500 in 2011, when the car was so slow.
The life of a race driver is tough physically and mentally. Do you have a special training programme to stay fit and to gain strength?
I like to mountain bike a lot, swim and cross fit. Riding around on dirt bikes in Arizona or anything with an engine brings a smile to my face.
If you could change lives for a day with another race driver, who would it be?
Maybe I would change with James Hunt, but he’s dead so that wouldn’t be a good choice.
From the outside, being a race driver looks like a real dream. But there are also negative points, of course. If you could take people a look at the ‘inside’ of racing, what do you think is the most negative point of being a race driver?
I don't have one negative point, I just love it!
What would you like to say to everyone that is dreaming of a career in racing?
Go for it!