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Feb 07, 2013 - 06:24 PM
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Joel Miller To Serve As Driver Coach For USF2000 And Pro Mazda Series
Posted by: newsla on Feb 07, 2013 - 06:22 PM
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Joel Miller To Serve As Driver Coach For USF2000 And Pro Mazda Series


Talented Californian racer Joel Miller will add a new role for the 2013 season when he serves as driver coach for the Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship Powered by Mazda and Pro Mazda Championship Presented by Cooper Tires. Miller will take over the duties from fellow former Skip Barber National Series champion Gerardo Bonilla who had filled that position in USF2000 since the series was resurrected in 2010 and has opted to focus on private coaching for the immediate future.

 

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“There is no doubt Joel will be a valuable addition to our team and a great resource for our drivers,” said Dan Andersen, Owner and CEO of Andersen Promotions, the promoter for both series. “He brings a tremendous amount of experience including multiple race wins in a variety of formula cars. He drove for Andersen Racing a few years ago and I was immediately impressed with not only his talent but his attitude. He is one of the hardest working drivers I know.”

Miller, 24, from Hesperia, Calif., holds a degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of California-Riverside and has amassed an impressive resume during the past 15 years. In common with so many of the sport’s top drivers, Miller began his career in karting and quickly became acknowledged as one of the top protagonists in the world. He rose to become a factory driver for the Italian-owned Tony Kart team whose alumni also include seven-time Formula 1 champion Michael Schumacher.

Miller attempted to make the transition to cars at the tender age of 15, scoring a sensational debut victory in a Pacific F2000 race at Auto Club Speedway in 2004, but funding issues soon led to a return to the karting ranks where he continued to impress and rack up the victories. After winning the hotly contested 2006 ICA North American championship, Miller returned to cars in 2007. He won the Skip Barber National Series emphatically, earning five race wins, a place on the MAZDASPEED Driver Development program which ensured his graduation to Star Mazda in 2008, and a Team USA Scholarship prize which enabled him to contest the Formula Palmer Audi Autumn Trophy in England.

Securing the financial resources to further his career continued to prove difficult, despite finishing a fine second in his debut Star Mazda campaign, so Miller instead concentrated on his education. Now, with a degree in hand and a broad resume that has included starts in Firestone Indy Lights and the GRAND-AM Continental Cup Series in recent years, Miller continues to ply his trade in the sports car ranks.

He most recently was part of Mazda Motorsport’s program in the 2013 Rolex 24 at Daytona, joining fellow Mazda Road to Indy and MAZDASPEED Motorsports Ladder drivers Tristan Nunez, Spencer Pigot and Tristan Vautier aboard a all-new SKYACTIV-D clean diesel-powered Mazda6 – the first-ever diesel to compete in the Rolex 24 or at a GRAND-AM race.

At the same time he has returned to his roots by becoming an instructor at the Skip Barber Racing School and is excited about his new opportunity to work with other potential stars of the future in two of North America’s fastest growing open-wheel development series.

“Coaching the drivers this year in Pro Mazda and USF2000 is going to be an interesting as well as fun project,” said Miller. “When Dan Andersen approached me with the idea, I was immediately interested. He runs a top notch program and I am happy to be involved with both series. The goal will be to better prepare each driver for not only on-track performance but help in their progression up the Mazda Road to Indy ladder. In conjunction with my own on-track program in GRAND-AM it will be a busy year!”

Miller’s first tour of duty will take place at the Circuit of the Americas for the season-opening pair of Pro Mazda races on March 1/2 in support of GRAND-AM. The 2013 USF2000 schedule will open at Sebring International Raceway on March 14/15 in support of the American Le Mans Series.


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