2011 Team USA Scholarship Nominee
Michael Johnson, 18, — Flint, Mich.
Current Season: Johnson — who was paralyzed from the waist down in a motorcycle crash — is currently racing in the Skip Barber regional and national series utilizing hand controls. Additionally, he spends his weekend at the kart track competing in the Great Lakes Pro Series. In the Skip Barber Winter Series, Johnson had three top-five finishes in four races, logging a best finish of third at Homestead-Miami Speedway. His winter program really helped him adapt to the nuances of the Skip Barber car and the hand controls required for him to tour the track. His growth and comfort level inside the cockpit has become increasingly evident with each and every race in the 2011 Skip Barber Summer Series. He has two wins, one pole position and four podium finishes in six starts. Pretty impressive.
- Motorcycle racing
- Star Mazda test
- Skip Barber Regional
Why he would be a good selection for the Team USA Scholarship: Johnson was an extremely talented motorcycle racer who suffered a severe crash in August 2005 while making a pass for the lead at Hiawatha Horse Park in Sarnia, Ontario. The incident left Johnson, who was only 12-years-old at the time, paralyzed from the waist down. Since that time, he has been devoted to making a comeback in motorsports via karting and car racing with hand controls. His story is truly incredible and his drive/devotion to self improvement indicates exactly why he’d be a good choice for the Team USA Scholarship. He boasts an incredible work-ethic and has proven that his injury won’t slow him down. Watch for great things from Johnson as he continually adapts to his hand controls and car racing. You can watch a short film on his website here, where he explains exactly how he uses his controls with finesse to extract every ounce of speed from his car.
Related Reading: Team USA Scholarship: 2011 Nominees