James Hakewill – driving bio



Winning in Formula cars since 1996!


SCCA FF National Championships 2006 – 2nd place

SCCA FF Champion 2006 – Northern Pacific Division

SCCA Spec Ford Champion 2004 – San Francisco Region

SCCA Spec Ford Champion 2003 – San Francisco Region


James is a professional engineer working on the design of microprocessors for consumer electronics devices.










James is currently competing in the Pacific F2000 championship, with a Van Diemen RF03 Zetec



The beginning… 1994


James’s car racing career began with the last race of the 1994 season at the home of British motor racing, Silverstone – in a Royale RP31M Formula Ford.


The result was a creditable 4th in class and a description in Autosport magazine as a ‘promising newcomer’.


Ups and downs in ‘95


The 1995 season had its ups and downs, and a fair share a novice mistakes – this picture caught at a wet Cadwell Park in 1995. Ooops!


First win in ‘96


James’ first FF race win came from a close-fought race at Oulton Park in 1996, still campaigning the Royale RP31M.


James had consistent success in 1996, starting on the front row of the grid twice, and finishing in the first five places ten times from thirteen starts, to achieve fourth place in the final championship standings.


A short programme of just four races in 1997 netted the Monoposto club’s ‘guest driver’ trophy, from two wins, two seconds and a fastest lap!





Prior to his circuit-racing debut, James was a keen follower of F1, and frequent driver in karting events and road-car track days.


Is this James’ first kart race? - Karting on holiday in Cornwall in 1983… history does not record the final result.


Racing in California


On moving to California in 2001, one of James’ first steps was to purchase a 1979 Crossle 35F Formula Ford – to run in the San Francisco Region SCCA’s Spec Ford class.


Race wins followed in 2002, and a full programme of events in 2003 and 2004 resulted in back-to-back Spec Ford Championships wins, and setting a new track record at Thunderhill Park.




photo: Chuck Koehler




James’ Formula Atlantic debut in 2004 – in Mike Bernstein’s 1985 Ralt RT-5 SuperVee. With 225hp, this has has almost exactly double the horsepower of a Formula Ford at the same weight, with downforce thrown in!

Qualified on pole, won the race – against more modern carbon-tubbed Toyota Atlantic opposition!






photo: Chuck Koehler




During the 2005 season, James participated both as a development driver and race engineer for Bill Kincaid’s Eagle DGF Formula Ford.


The car is fitted with a special wide-track front suspension – the development goal was to make the car work as well as a Crossle with the new suspension. A large amount of mathematics for static and dynamic suspension analysis was applied, along with many race miles. The jury is still out however..






photo: Chuck Koehler


Also in 2005, James drove Mike Bernstein’s DB6 Formula Ford – for both shock development and setting ‘reference laps’ for driver development.


Formula Ford 2006


During the 2006 season, James competed in SCCA National Formula Ford, winning the Northern Pacific Divisional Championship in a Van Diemen RF99 – competing races in California, Oregon and Washington.


The highlight of the year was a 2nd place result at the National Championship Runoffs at Heartland Park Topeka, leading the race and topping the timesheets for two of four qualifying sessions.