Dinah Weisberg runs a business during the week, races Mazdas on the weekends
One week after driving a Mazda Miata to victory at the SCCA U.S. Majors Tour at Mid-Ohio, Dinah Weisberg was back on track in a different Miata to compete with Touring Car America at Sonoma Raceway.
Weisberg is racing an ND1 Mazda MX-5 Cup car with Copeland Motorsports, but this is not her first foray in this series – she and husband John ran in the Touring Car category several years ago with NC MX-5s. This time, though, she’s tackling things a bit differently.
“We like World Challenge a lot,” she says. “Previously, we ran a Mazda that we are now running in the Majors. We just didn’t want to be the ones running the [race] team this year because it’s a lot to take on, especially since I run a business. It’s a family business and it’s extremely demanding.”
Weisberg is president and CEO of Redcom Laboratories, Inc., a company founded by her parents that makes communications equipment for military and emergency responders. She says that much of what she does in racing translates to her job, and also notes that, since her company deals with the military, that those who seek a career in that arena and racing often have the same type of personality. She also finds that her technical background, with a degree in computer science, is useful in her racing endeavors.
“They always tell you to look ahead to where you want to go in a corner – if you really focus on where you are trying to go, the things that you do will bring you to that point,” she says. “Other things are you can’t let yourself get intimated at all. You just have to put yourself in the position you need to get the job done. Make sure you race with confidence and, at the same time, because you are in a mixed class, you have to make sure to give people the room that they are due.”
Ramping up as the leader of the company, a role she began to assume in 2017, meant taking a step back from racing. The Weisbergs left World Challenge, concentrating on club racing and the Runoffs at Indianapolis Motor Speedway in 2017, and Dinah did very little racing last year. She’s come back at it with a renewed commitment this year, but has found some challenges.
“We ran Touring Car before, and this car is very much a momentum car and I am doing a lot of new tracks,” she says. “I only did one race in World Challenge last year and that was the one at Watkins Glen; given my work and family responsibilities, I had to take a step back. Getting back into it now, it’s definitely a challenge, but it’s a lot of fun.
“The car is very stable,” she adds. “Given that it’s a momentum car, it’s very much a learning tool for me. It’s a forgiving car, but definitely a momentum car.”
On the club racing side, Weisberg is using John’s old STU car to compete in the SCCA Majors with an eye toward the 2019 SCCA Runoffs at VIRginia International Raceway, where she’s raced twice this year – once in the Majors and once with TC America. But neither time did she do it in the car she’ll be racing in October. Given that she won at Mid-Ohio in the STU car, though, she should be pretty well prepared. “That was my first time running it in a race, and I had no practice because we had a wiring harness issue. But it worked out well,” she says. Especially, she notes, since it was her birthday.
Having achieved her goal of landing on the podium in club racing this year, her next objective is to move up the order in TCA and also do well at the Runoffs. With a renewed focus and special attention to attitude and details, she has a good shot at both.