IRVINE, Calif. (August 2, 2018) – It’s been a long road to get back behind the wheel of a race car for Staff Sgt. (Ret.) Liam Dwyer, but next weekend he will return to competition in a 24-hour ChampCar race at VIRginia International Raceway behind the wheel of a Global Mazda MX-5 Cup race car.
Dwyer, a multi-time race winner with Mazda in IMSA’s Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge, has not competed since the final IMSA Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge race of the 2017. After the season, Dwyer, who suffered life-threatening injuries including the loss of most of his left leg during a military tour in Afghanistan in 2011, elected to undergo a procedure called osseointegration in which a titanium rod has been inserted into his left femur to allow direct attachment and removal of his prosthesis.
With multiple surgeries and physical therapy keeping him out of the car since last October, Dwyer is anxious to race again.
“I’m very excited to get back behind the wheel of a Mazda race car,” said Dwyer. “In my first race back, I get to drive the Global MX-5 Cup car with former teammates and friends, but more importantly, I get to do it with fellow service members working on the car. We are partnering with Operation Motorsport, a charity founded to engage wounded, ill and injured Service Members through motorsports opportunities to aid their recovery and rehab. Thanks to Mazda, all of us can work together at VIR with the same goal – to use motorsports to aid us in our recovery and rehab.”
At VIR, Dwyer will compete with McCumbee-McAleer Racing and drive with fellow Veteran and Spec Miata racer James Cameron, Chad McCumbee and Tom Long.
“Everyone at Mazda remains in awe of the Challenger Spirit that Liam demonstrates each day,” said John Doonan, Director, Mazda Motorsports. “We are thrilled to begin another part of his journey and see him back behind the wheel at VIR.”
Mazda Motorsports boasts the most comprehensive auto racing development ladder system of any auto manufacturer in the world. The Mazda Road to 24 (#MRT24) program offers a number of scholarships to advance drivers up the sports car racing ladder, beginning with the Global MX-5 Cup series and culminating with the Mazda Prototype team. The Mazda Road to Indy (#MRTI) is a similar program that includes Mazda-powered categories of USF2000, Pro Mazda and Indy Lights. In grassroots road racing, moreMazdas race on any given weekend in North America than any other manufacturer. Followall of the latest news at MazdaMotorsports.com, @MazdaRacing on Twitter, and Mazda Motorsports on Instagram and Facebook.
Mazda North American Operations
Mazda North American Operations is headquartered in Irvine, California, and oversees the sales, marketing, parts and customer service support of Mazda vehicles in the United States and Mexico through nearly 700 dealers. Operations in Mexico are managed by Mazda Motor de Mexico in Mexico City. For more information on Mazda vehicles, including photography and B-roll, please visit the online Mazda media center at InsideMazda.MazdaUSA.com/Newsroom.
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Tim Olson, Mazda North American Operations, 949-727-6551
Efrain Olivares, Mazda Motorsports, 818-254-7196