10 Questions with Jonathan Summerton

A big thank you to Jonathan for taking the time to answer our questions.  We wish you the very best for 2014.

Matt:  The 2014 season is about to begin, what are your plans for this upcoming season? 

JS:  for the 2014 season are still up in the air. I am talking to a couple teams in different series, it’s just a case of timing and where the sponsors want to be.

Matt:  You’ve driven everything from A1 GP to sportscars to Global Rally Cross.  

JS:  It all depends on what part of driving we talk about.  A1GP was a blast all around. Lots of fun PR events along with great racing with some of the best drivers in the world. Sports cars are always fun racing door to door, close battles, and cars that resemble street cars is great. Then there’s Rally Cross. This is again totally different. Lots of contact, lots of action but very short time to get the job done. This is made more to be done for entertainment and it’s a lot of fun to drive.

Matt:  What techniques or skills are common across the many platforms you’ve driven? 

JS:  Pretty much it’s all about feeling the car and maximizing the grip at all angles to get the most out of the tire and vehicle. You have to always be on the edge in order to be going fast.

credit:  Matt Kistler

credit: Matt Kistler

Matt:  You won the Sebring 12 Hours on your ALMS debut.  Describe that feeling.

JS:  It was also my GT racing debut. This was amazing. To have driven a GT car just 3 days prior to winning my first race it was awesome. We started the race in 8th I believe and were able to come away with a win at the Sebring 12hrs. It’s one of those races that not many have won and it’s such an honor to do so.

Matt:  You have had a great career with a lot of highlights, what is your personal favorite? 

JS:  That’s hard to say. Racing in Shanghai and winning in A1GP for USA was huge for me. Meant a lot to win for my country. Also winning in F3 at the final race of the season was so cool to know that in that season there were names like Vettel, Di Resta, Grosjean, Hulkenberg, Buemi. It was awesome to end the season with a win. And of course winning Sebring was amazing. All the struggles we had to come out and win was just amazing.

Matt:  When you first heard about the merger between ALMS and Grand Am, what were your thoughts?

JS:  It is a shock to a lot of drivers as now the seats one is fighting for have now been limited down to fewer numbers. It’s good to help with Sports Cars but we will see where it goes in the long run.

Matt:  Favorite track and why? 

JS:  Oooo this is hard. There are so many fun and exciting tracks. I love Road America and Laguna Seca in the USA. Both are iconic tracks and a lot of fun to drive. I also enjoy Shanghai and Malaysia. Both are really great tracks to drive.

Matt:  When you’re not in a race car what do you do to relax?

JS:  I love to hang out with friends, go to the gym, or go out to a park and take in the outdoors.

Matt:  If you weren’t a race car driver, what would your career be? 

JS:  Now that’s a hard question. Being a racing driver is my heart and soul and would be hard seeing myself anywhere else. I’ve always had an interest in business and the medical field but I am not sure where I would be. All I know is racing is in my blood and I would have to be involved in some way.

Matt:  You’re behind the wheel of any car from any era, what is it?

JS:  Hmmm, good question. I would probably have to say the 2004-2006 F1 cars. They were producing so much downforce and had so much technology and power in them.

About the author


Matt Kistler is the founder and editor of NASportsCar. Matt works full time for a Fortune 500 life Insurance company and runs Kistler Media on the side producing digital media of all kinds.