Through The Esses - Edd Davin Plans His Return To A Racing Life
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Edd Davin and the Argo prototype
02/06/07 © Andrew S. Hartwell

If you are a fan of prototype sportscar racing, and have been enjoying the sport for the last two decades or so, you probably know the name Edd Davin. If you are one of the new generation of fans drawn into watching this sport by the close racing action found in the Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series, you may soon have the opportunity to become very familiar with the name Edd Davin.

From his teens onward, Davin raced in SCCA events and then moved into the professional ranks with wheel time in the Formula Continental and Formula Super-Vee series. He later moved into GT racing and ran in IMSA races in the 1980's and early 1990's. He sort-of wrapped up his early career in the late 1990's with time spent driving open-top prototypes in the series from which the Grand-Am Rolex Series was spawned - the short-lived, second generation of the United States Road Racing Championship.

We say sort-of wrapped up his career because he suffered a setback that put him on the sidelines for four years. A setback his doctors told him was destined to put him on the sidelines of life in 10 months time.

Davin recently announced he is bringing a new old' team into the Grand-Am Rolex Series this season. He has a powerful new sponsor, a new lease on life, some old friends, and soon, an almost new Crawford race car that he plans to mix into one potent and competitive team. And he has a five year plan to put that team right into podium contention and keep it there.

For the benefit of the newer fans, and for those older ones (like us) who seem to remember less of life's details with each passing year, we asked Davin to recap his history for us, and then tell us more about his future plans.

I grew up in Atlantic City where I was raised by my grandparents and my aunt. My aunt was a professional baseball player in the women's league during World War II. She was also heavy into cars and she got me working on cars when I was just a little kid. She encouraged my mechanical background.

Across the street from us was a man who was in the military and who rode his motorcycle back and forth to Fort Dix. One day coming home he had a bad accident. He had a sprint car and a stock car that I had been helping him work on. The accident left him paralyzed and, when I was just 14 years old, he asked me to drive his dirt-track sprint car. That was my first time driving a race car and that really sparked my interest in becoming a racing driver. In fact, that is really what I have been doing my whole life.

Like many a man (and woman) with a big heart for racing, but an empty wallet, Davin had to work his way through his racing life, finding ways to make money to spend on his goal to become a professional racing driver.

I basically went to school or college. Whenever I had money I would go racing. When I didn't I would go back to school. I eventually got a degree in Mechanical Engineering and a Masters in Aeronautical Engineering. But I would pick up little jobs here and there, pretty much as I have done ever since, just picking up enough money to continue racing.

I chased around in a bunch of production cars, running in various SCCA classes. I finally came to realize I might be better off in open wheel formula cars. I went to the basic SCCA driving school and later went through Bill Scott's school. That was when I first met Tom Milner. He was working with Scott at the time. I worked my way along in the SCCA and wound up driving in the Super Vee and Formula Atlantic series. All this time I was still living with my grandparents.

Davin found that he had the talent to run with the top drivers. This too convinced him his life would simply have to be spent in the racing game.

I did pretty well in the SCCA. I won a championship in Formula Continental and won several races. I raced with guys like Bob Lazier, Bobby Rahal, and Howdy Holmes. I have always managed to be competitive in whatever clas