Lawson Aschenbach is an American racing driver who achieved the most in the sports car racing. He's the five-time Pirelli World Challenge champion, most recently winning the 2017 title in the GTS class. Previously, he was a champion in 2006 (GT class), 2011 (TC class), 2013 and 2014 (GTS class).
He has two more championship titles on his account, winning the 2010 Grand-Am Continental Sports Car Challenge and winning the World Final of the 2014 Lamborghini Super Trofeo.
Successful start of a career
Born in Gaithersburg, Maryland, Aschenbach started his racing career in karting competition at the age 8. Achieving some success, including 1998 World Karting Association Gold Cup, he switched to car racing in 2001, competing in the SCCA Southeast National Formula Ford and winning a title in his rookie season.
A year later, he won the SCCA Pro FF2000 series ’Road to Indy Oval Crown' and finished 7th overall in the FF2000 Championship. Achenbach stayed in open-wheel competitions for two more years, contesting in the 2003 Formula Ford 2000 (6th place) and in the 2004 Formula BMW USA (9th place).
Sports car racing debut in 2005 and first title in 2006
In 2005, Aschenbach continued a career in the sports car racing, finishing on a podium in his first professional races. That year, he was driving Porsche 996 GT3 Cup for Farnbacher Loles Racing in the IMSA GT3 Cup and Speed World Challenge.
And then, in 2006, in his first full season, he won the GT class title in the Speed World Challenge, driving a Porsche 997 GT3 Cup for Farnbacher Loles. He won at St. Petersburg and added two more podiums in ten races.
2007 - switch to Cadillac, Daytona 24h debut with Pontiac
For the 2007 Speed World Challenge, Aschenbach joined Cadillac Racing to drive a Cadillac CTS-V in the GT class. He was on a podium six times, including a victory at Road Atlanta, finishing third in the points, behind Randy Pobst and teammate Andy Pilgrim.
In 2007, Aschenbach also made a debut in the Grand Am Rolex Series with Racers Edge Motorsports. Driving a Pontiac GXP.R in his debut at Daytona 24 Hours, he didn't reach the finish. He wasn't much more successful in other two races with Pontiac.
2008 – first full season in the Grand Am Rolex Series
In 2008, the Grand Am Rolex Sports Car Series became Aschenbach's main competition. He was driving the #72 Pontiac GXP.R for Autohaus Motorsports, sharing a car with Tim Lewis. Scoring no wins or podiums, he finished 18th in the GT class points. He also recorded few participations in the Grand Am Koni Challenge with Georgian Bay Motorsports, winning two races in a Chevrolet Cobalt SS.
In 2009, Aschenbach stayed with Georgian Bay Motorsports in the Grand Am Koni Challenge, scoring one victory in six races with Chevrolet Cobalt. In the Grand Am Rolex Series, he had a part-time schedule with Orbit Racing's Porsche 997 GT3 Cup and PR1 Motorsports' Pontiac GXP.R.
2010 Grand Am Sports Car Challenge Champion
In 2010, the first year of the Continental Tires-sponsored Grand Am Sports Car Challenge, Aschenbach became the champion in the ST class. Sharing a Compas360 Racing's Honda Civic Si with David Thilenius, he was on a podium five times, including two wins.
Of other competitions, Aschenbach was driving Porsche 997 GT3 Cup for Velox Motorsports in four races of the American Le Mans Series, including Sebring 12 Hours. Aschenbach and Shane Lewis were GTC class winners at Mosport. He was also driving Chevrolet Camaro GT.R for Autohaus Motorsports in one race of the Grand Am Rolex Series.
2011 - one more championship title with Honda
In 2011, Aschenbach captured one more touring class championship title with Honda Civic Si, driving that car in the TC class of the Pirelli World Challenge. He was dominant in the series, scoring ten podiums in twelve races, including five wins.
His other competition in 2011 was the Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge. He was driving Chevrolet Camaro GS.R for Mitchum Motorsports in the GS class, finishing 15th in the points without wins or podiums. In 2012, Aschenbach ended in the fourth place both in the GT class of Pirelli World Challenge (TrueSpeed Motorsports, Porsche 997 GT3 Cup) and GS class of Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge (CKS Autosport, Chevrolet Camaro GS.R).
2013 – first title with Blackdog Racing
In 2013, Aschenbach was a champion for the first time with Blackdog Racing, the team he is still driving for. He dominated in the Pirelli World Challenge GTS class with #10 Chevrolet Camaro by winning six of fourteen races.
In 2013, he also spent a season with another Chevrolet Camaro in the Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge, driving for CKS Autosport. Without wins or podiums, he was 16th in the points.
In 2013, Aschenbach also participated in famous endurance races, joining Competition Motorsports at Sebring 12 Hours and Marsh Racing at Daytona 24 Hours but also at Lime Rock, where he and Eric Curran won the GT class in a Chevrolet Corvette.
2014 - defending PWC title and winning Super Trofeo World Final
In 2014, Aschenbach had one more victorious season in the Pirelli World Challenge, defending the GTS title in the #1 Blackdog Chevrolet Camaro. He was a race winner four times. He continued with a parallel programme in the Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge, driving a Camaro for CKS Autosport and winning one race.
At the end of the season, Aschenbach joined Change Racing in the Lamborghini Super Trofeo World Final at Sepang. Sharing a Lamborghini Gallardo with Kevin Conway, Aschenbach captured Pro-Am class World Final victory.
NASCAR attempt in 2015
The season 2015 was marked by Lawson attempt in the stock car racing. He joined JD Motorsports to drive the #0 Chevrolet at Road America's round of the NASCAR Xfinity Series. He ended a race in 18th place.
In the sports car racing, he participated in just two PWC races with Blackdog Racing and joined Stevenson Motorsports in the Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge, scoring three podiums in a Chevrolet Camaro to finish 4th in the GS class.
2016 – first full season in the IMSA SportsCar Championship
In 2016, Aschenbach stayed with Stevenson Motorsports in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, sharing the #9 Audi R8 LMS with Matt Bell. Their best result was second place at Virginia and they finished 8th in the final standings of the GTD class.
Aschenbach also stayed with Blackdog Speed Shop in the Pirelli World Challenge, driving the #10 Chevrolet Camaro Z/28 in the GTS class. He was a class winner three times to finish third in the championship.
Fifth championship title in the Pirelli World Challenge
In 2017, Aschenbach had a completely same schedule, driving for Stevenson Motorsports and Blackdog Speed Shop. His #10 Camaro GT4.R was a race-winning car two times but it was enough for him to take the PWC GTS class title one more time. It's his third GTS title and generally the fifth World Challenge title.
In the 2017 IMSA SportsCar Championship, Aschenbach's full-time partner in the #57 Audi R8 LMS was Andrew Davis. They were GTD class winners at Mosport, ending a season 7th in the points.