Indianapolis, IN – July 13, 2016 – Schmidt Peterson Motorsports (SPM) driver Heamin Choi has set a goal of completing his ascent through the Mazda Road to Indy ladder system and competing in the Verizon IndyCar Series.
Thirty-two-year-old Choi began kart racing in 1999 and is recognized as the first Korean to have raced in the Mazda Road to Indy Series (Pro Mazda, USF2000) and the first Korean driver to have participated in any race held in the U.S. He made his American race debut in 2007 in Pro Mazda and competed in the 2012 USF2000 Championship.
Choi’s other achievements include the 2005 BAT Championship (Formula Korea), 2006 Korea GT championship (GT1), and 2013 Super Race GT driver’s title. He was also the Samsung Everland scholarship driver from 2003 to 2005. The Busan, South Korea native recently tested a super formula car in Japan, earning another record as fastest Korean driver.
Choi first competed with SPM in 2015 for the Indy Lights presented by Cooper Tires season finale weekend at Laguna Seca, where he finished the first race in 12th place and the second race in 11th place.
For the 2016 season, Choi returned to race the ovals in Indy Lights with SPM. His first race of the season was at Phoenix International Raceway, where he finished 15th. He also participated in the Freedom 100 race at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. A crash on lap 35 put him in 12th place at the checkered flag.
Most recently, Choi competed with SPM at Iowa Speedway, where he finished with a season-best tenth place.
“I was a three-time champion in Korea,” said Choi. “I started racing in 1999 so I have extensive experience and my focus in Indy Lights is the high-downforce, aerodynamic character of the car. My last two race results were a bit disappointing but I’m very positive and gaining more knowledge about the Indy Lights car.
“The support from my homeland and seat time will be very helpful. Korean companies have been very watchful of my challenge in America and I’m working on securing sponsorships for the upcoming season. I’m racing only a few select events in 2016 and hoping for the best results before testing in an Indy car. Next year, I hope to race in the 101st Indy 500, along with other races. I’ve worked actively with my Korean agent on the campaign to make next season possible. I look forward to creating a larger fanbase for IndyCar and introducing Korean race fans to a world-class race series.”