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Submitted by Berny Herrera on Monday, August 8, 2005 - 12:33pm

Saukville, Wis. - At a very tender age, Jaime Bach was scooting around the property of the family's Saukville, Wis., home in a go-kart. On one occasion, while creating dust trails out of the well-kept grass, Bach's kart got away from him and he rolled it over. "I never want to drive that thing again," the youngster told his dad through his angry tears. And as his father and co-owner of B-K Motorsports, Bob Bach, tells the story, "the rest is history."

Obviously, Bach got back on that kart and hasn't lifted his right foot since. Since he was 9 years old, Bach has been behind the wheel: first racing karts, then switching to Formula Mazda racing cars at age 16. Now for 2005, at the age of 21, he has reached the top level of professional sports car racing in the American Le Mans Series, driving the No. 8 Mazda rotary-powered Courage P2 sports car. And what a ride it has been.

In the days of karting, Bach and sister Becky (also a successful driver in the SCCA Spec Racer Ford division) were tearing up the WKA (World Karting Association) record books with victory after victory and championship after championship. At that same time, their dad met his current partner, Pat Kestner. To make a long story short, the senior Bach and Kestner decided to form B-K Motorsports, Inc. to go racing with their kids. As a result, Jamie moved up to cars and the Formula Mazda open wheel division, while Becky and Kestner's son Sean also raced in Spec Racer Ford.

After just one short year in Formula Mazda, Bach scored the 2002 SCCA Formula Mazda National Championship. In just four years of racing the single-seat, open-wheel cars (which are powered by Mazda's bulletproof and legendary rotary engine), he has amassed more than 50 victories, 40 pole positions, and holds six official track records at racing circuits all over the Midwest, including his home track, Road America. Bach continued up the ladder to the Star Mazda Championship presented by Goodyear in 2003 and 2004. The "pro" series, which serves as a support race on many ALMS weekends, was the next step up with stiffer competition and faster machines as the new Pro Formula Mazda utilizes the Mazda RX-8 rotary powerplant, producing 240 horsepower.

Jamie Bach grew up racing karts and open-wheel cars around tracks in the Midwest, including Road America.
With race win after race win, the B-K group had visions of reaching the pinnacle of sports car racing in North America with young Bach as one of the primary drivers. With all the success racing Mazda powered cars, B-K was the logical choice when it came time to implement a program Mazda North America had been working on for a number of years: a re-entry into endurance racing with a rotary engine powered car in the ever growing LMP2 class. Mazda, the only Japanese carmaker to date to win the prestigious 24 Hours of Le Mans, was heading back to the traditions and racing heritage that is what their brand is all about. B-K's promising young drivers fresh out of the Mazda motorsports growth ladder made it logical fit to field a P2 car.

So in April, the B-K Motorsports Mazda-powered entry ran its first race at the Grand Prix of Atlanta. Jamie and co-driver Guy Cosmo, also a Formula Mazda champion as the 2002 Pro Series winner, debuted the rotary powered entry with a second place finish in their first outing. Just one month later at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course the duo made Mazda history by giving the company its first American Le Mans Series victory in just its second race as a team. Since then, the team has finished on the podium every race and sits in second place in the season's points championship heading into the Generac 500 at Road America, Round 7 of the 10-race season.

Jamie Bach and Guy Cosmo have one ALMS victory and four podium finishes to their credit in the Mazda rotary-powered No. 8 B-K Motorsports Courage.
The success is a simple story about the right group of people coming together at the right time to carry on the traditions of Mazda racing that were established by names like Downing, Drummond, Mandeville, Racing Beat and Team Spencer Racing. It is a simple story about a Wisconsin racing family, living just 30 minutes south of Road America, that has everyone pitching in out in the shop at night (after homework is done, of course) to work on the cars, pack the trailer or make meals. It is a simple story about two partners wanting to go racing with their kids to have some fun. It is a simple story about Bach…just a few weeks shy of his senior year at the UW-Milwaukee School of Engineering and Applied Sciences working on schoolwork while at the race track on some weekends. And most of all, it is a simple story about a fine young man who has worked very hard in school, at work and on his race cars to pursue a dream. As the team comes to Road America, Bach is hoping to celebrate his 22nd birthday from Victory Circle after conquering the beautiful four miles of Road America, his home track and site of many go-kart and Formula Mazda victories over the last decade.

The Generac 500 at Road America, Round 7 of the 2005 ALMS, is set for 3 p.m. EDT Aug. 21 at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wis. The race will be broadcast on SPEED Channel. Qualifying is scheduled for 2:55 p.m. EDT Aug. 20.

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