Teenager Austin Bradshaw grew up around Mazda race cars, and now he’s organized the first Rotary Reunion Race at Portland International Raceway
Austin Bradshaw was 2-years old when the last RX-7 was produced, but that didn’t stop him from being a lifelong fan of the RX-7 and even earlier rotary cars, such as the RX-3 and RX-2. He’s such a fan, in fact, that he recently organized a rotary race car reunion at Portland International Raceway, with plans for more in the future.
“I’ve pretty much grown up at the racetrack,” Austin says. “My father [Danny Bradshaw] started racing karts; he grew up at PIR [Portland International Raceway]. My grandfather, his dad [John Bradshaw], was a grand marshal and pace car driver in Portland for many years and a chief steward for SCCA, so my dad grew up at the racetrack similar to me. I was out at the racetrack for the first time when I was 3-months old at the Rose Cup races. It’s become my biggest passion.
“I grew up watching my dad and Gary Bockman,” he continues. “[Bockman’s GT3 RX-3] is my favorite race car I grew up watching. I was surrounded by SCCA racers and RX-7 owners. Growing up around them, Mazda RX-7s and RX-2s and 3s have become my passion.”
Austin is going into his sophomore year at Portland State University. He also has a photography business shooting racing, and he restores street RX-7s on the side. Most of the money he makes goes into his own Mazda race cars and other rotary projects.