21-year-old James Roe Jr from Sallins, Co. Kildare has been selected as the fifth nominee for the 2019 Motorsport Ireland Young Racing Driver of the Year Award, for his performances in the month of August. Roe has been carving out a career in the United States in the past number of seasons and has been focusing on the F3 Americas Championship Powered By Honda this year. Here, he picked up a win in Road America on his way to fifth in the Championship, with his results also helping his Global Racing Group team take the Team’s Championship.
Roe started competing in Junior Rallycross and Ginetta Junior Ireland in 2014 and in that same season, made the switch to single seaters, becoming the youngest person ever to race an open wheel race car in Ireland at 16 years old and 1day. Since then, Roe has gone on to establish himself in British Formula Ford and in 2018 he set his sights on America where he took part in the Pro F2000 Championship where he finished runner up in the series while being named top rookie and vice champion. His maiden American F3 win means Roe has now won a race in every series he has competed in. Roe has been a Sexton Trophy finalist every year for the past 4 years as well as a member of the Team Ireland programme.
His recent move stateside and focusing on his own career and development has turned into a full time job and when possible, he tries get some work in at the racetrack. The move to America has also impacted on Roe’s career ambitions. As with all young drivers, making a sustainable living from racing is the goal but his ambition is to become the first Irish man to win the Indy 500. With the 2019 season finished, Roe plans to spend the off season preparing for the 2020 season by working closely with current and future partners, physical fitness and working closely with his race team planning for the year ahead. Roe’s current partners include CJJ Motorsport, Topcon, Vortex Companies and Bennett Law Offices.Having been selected as a nominee for the 2019 season, Roe is once again a contender for the prestigious Motorsport Ireland Young Racing Driver of the Year Award and the historic Sexton Trophy. This award is presented annually and is supported by Sport Ireland and Motorsport Ireland.
Photos courtesy of Red Case Photography.