Speedway, IN – Aaron Telitz picked up right where he left off last year at the 2.4 mile Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course. Even though he is a rookie at his third weekend, Telitz put himself at the top of the speed charts in both Mazda Pro Series practices at a track where he almost won last season in the USF2000 Series.
Both the USF2000 and Mazda Pro Series are part of the Mazda Road to Indy the official ladder system of INDYCAR.
Telitz has been climbing that ladder.
So, how does a kid from Birchwood in northwestern Wisconsin find the Road to Indy?
“It’s a long journey,” explained Telitz. “I started racing karts at John Menards kart track in Eau Claire Wisconsin and did that till I was 14 years old. Then I started running road racing karts in SKUSA and went around to all the big tracks. When I was a freshman in college I entered the Skip Barber Racing Karting Scholarship Shootout and won a scholarship.”
That was the break that Telitz needed. As he says, “professional racing costs a lot of money and my parents aren’t millionaires.”
With the scholarship money Telitz entered a few races in the Skip Barber Racing Summer Series in 2012, which turned out to be a good idea.
“I won my first race, at Road America, so I thought I might be pretty good at this.”
Good is an understatement, with four more wins and four more podium finishes, it was time to make a decision.
“I took a year off of college and focused on trying to raise funds and find sponsors,” said Telitz. “I had to figure out a way to do it and I did. I got an awesome sponsor, Rice Lake Weighing Systems which makes scales for many industries, if you fly Delta, you are weighing your bags on a Rice Lake scale.”
Next up on his path to the “Road” was another Skip Barber Series.
“I went from Formula Ford racing in F1600 to winning the Skip Barber Championship Shootout which gave me a $200,000 MAZDASPEED scholarship to make it on to the MAZDA Road to Indy. And the rest, is sorta history I guess.”
Telitz found success on the Road to Indy right away and continues to find success each rung of the ladder he climbs.
“I had two great seasons in USF2000 and now I’m in Pro MAZDA doing really well in my rookie season. I haven’t finished outside of second place in the first four races.”
This weekend continues with two races on at a track Telitz has not missed finding the podium at the finish. And he is fast this weekend.
“Things are going well today,” said Telitz. “We’ve been fastest in practice, but it’s just practice. Tomorrow is when it counts so I gotta go make it happen.”
Making it happen is what he has been doing all along.