Dave Weitzenhof: Still Going Strong
First on the registration list for the F2000 Championship Series is a familiar face. Series and racing veteran; Weitzenhof is ready to take on the 2015 season, and is no stranger to a cockpit. Weitzenhof took the time to talk racing, spanning from his long list of achievements to what he wants to get out of the upcoming season, and everything in between; Weitzenhof had no problem coming up with an answer when it came to racing.
To gain a background on Weitzenhof, his resume does a lot of the talking. He is a seven time National SCCA Champion; has 189 professional and SCCA National wins, and holds around 56 track records. To name a few, Weitzenhof has run in SCCA Formula Ford, S2000, Formula Continental, and more recently, the F2000 Championship Series; which he will continue to compete in, behind the wheel of the No. 67 Citation 95Sfz/Zetec car.
Hailing from Bath, Ohio, it’s a classic story how Weitzenhof got into racing cars when asked how it all began.
“I started out killing dying cars out on the farm before I could legally drive on the road. That progressed into driving too fast (and getting away with it) on the street.”
After getting ahold of a Formula Vee car, Weitzenhof went to driving school, and the rest is history.
“I bought a used Formula Vee in spring 1968, and took to it immediately. By the end of the weekend in my first drivers’ school, other instructors thought I must also be an instructor since my lines were good,” said Weitzenhof, he then continued with, “It just progressed from there.”
Weitzenhof has a lot of track time, over several decades, meaning he has driven with some big names. Those of which include: John and Michael Andretti, Dennis Firestone, Chip Robinson, and Scott Goodyear, along with many more.
Throughout his career, Weitzenhof has also learned some major lessons that he shared including to never assume, and some words on driver etiquette.
“Unless you know a driver’s tendencies, NEVER assume that you know what he is going to do when you try to run with or pass him.” As well as. “Have a short memory of race incidents, don’t hold grudges, and give everyone the benefit of the doubt. Try to understand why someone did what he did – it makes it easier to remain friends, or at least not be enemies.”
Some more words of wisdom he left were; “Listen to those with experience and follow their good advice.”
Looking to the future, Weitzenhof’s expectations of the season and how he plans to take on the new spec Hoosier Tires is simple.
“Get a baseline with my current setup at Road Atlanta.” and “Test at a racetrack (likely Gingerman) in late April.”
“We’re looking forward to this season since we have finally, I think, sorted out the handling, plus we will have a fresh QSRE Quicksilver rebuild.
And finally, Weitzenhof added one more thing. “Even at age 72, I still think I can drive as fast as the kids.”
Weitzenhof has no problem taking on his younger opponents, and will be seen doing just that in the 2015 season.