Maryland prep shop specializes in Miatas and the Mid-Atlantic Road Racing Series
Chris Windsor’s journey into the prep shop business is a familiar one. It started out assisting one guy, helping him develop the suspension setup on his Spec Miata, and that guy went from the tail end of the field to the front. Then the racing bug bit Windsor and he started competing in Spec Miata. The snowball was rolling downhill and getting bigger
“I was going to build a rental car and try to get something going that way,” he explains. “My dad was looking to get involved, so when the car wasn’t rented, he would race it. That ended up being the other way around – when Dad wasn’t in it, maybe I could rent it. So then we ended up building another couple of rentals, and we had customers hopping in the rental cars, seeing how good they were and buying [the rental cars]. We were selling them as fast as we could build them.”
Now Windsor Customs takes care of 30 to 40 cars, with about a third or more of those residing in his shop. That could be everything from transport to trackside support, pre-race prep and new car builds. He also has a fleet of rentals. Most of his work is in Spec Miata, including several SSM (Sealed Spec Miata) cars, a class popular in SCCA’s DC Region, and some NAs that are getting more track time with the advent of the SVRA Mazda Miata Heritage Cup (Windsor has three wins in the series this year). It also includes some NC MX-5s for Touring 4 and SM5
Windsor concentrates on the Mid-Atlantic Road Racing Series, MARRS, which is the DC Region’s championship; but he’ll go where his customers want to go. “People want to know where we’re heading; I tell them the customers steer the truck,” he says. And he’s confident that truck has everything the racers might need during the course of a weekend.
Windsor says his shop does everything from builds to coaching. “We are a one-stop shop. If somebody wants to get involved in racing, we’ve got a ladder program that can help them develop their skill set. We’ve had guys graduate through what we can do and move along the ranks into the pro series.” he says. To that end, Windsor also ran several cars in the MX-5 Cup series a few years ago.
Most of all, Windsor says, he wants to make sure his customers are happy. “We’re responsive,” he says. “We make sure everybody can get back on track. If somebody has a damaged car, we do whatever is needed to get them ready for the next race.”