COLUMBIA, Md. – Following a severe bicycle accident that nearly killed him three years ago, Porsche Club of America Chicago Region member David Varwig decided it was time to live life to the fullest.
Varwig was hit by a car in Sarasota, Fla. while riding his bike in 2014. He was in the hospital’s intensive care unit for one week and had his jaw wired shut for six weeks.
“I was looking to do something different after my accident and I was semi-retired so the PCA Club Racing Porsche Cayman GT4 Clubsport Trophy East series was a perfect fit for me,” Varwig said.
A PCA member for more than 20 years, Varwig was no stranger to Porsches. He raced his 944 Turbo since the beginning of his PCA career in 1996 and currently owns seven Porsches, including some of his favorites – a 1987 911 Turbo and a 2004 GT3.
Although Varwig is the first to admit he hasn’t been on the podium yet in the series, he said it’s clear to see that each driver has improved since the series’ inaugural season kicked off in April 2016.
“I think everybody has improved, I mean look at our event at Road Atlanta this year compared to last year,” Varwig said. “Everybody is learning and improving.”
“I especially like the series and the camaraderie of the group – everyone generally knows everybody and it helps because you know what to expect on the track from each driver. I love the new suspension too; the car is amazing to drive.”
Varwig says his number one goal is to have fun.
“This is serious racing, but it’s also gentleman racing,” he said. “I think I’ve got the highest sense of self-preservation out there – I’ve never ran off the track or spun the car. I’m not always up front, but that’s okay, I make it to the finish line.”
He also aims to “stay out of trouble” and of course, improve and move up the ranks – with his ultimate goal to get on the podium in 2017 in his No. 08 Midwest Eurosport Cayman GT4 Clubsport entry.
Anyone who sees Varwig around the PCA club racing paddock during race weekends will quickly find that he’s never alone. His son Sean is always walking around with a headset on, helping his dad with the car, driving technique and more. At 13, Sean serves as a mini coach for his dad.
“Sean is such a race car guy and that’s probably why my wife tolerates all my racing,” Varwig joked. “He’s all about the racetrack.”
During the most recent PCA Club Racing Porsche Cayman GT4 Clubsport Trophy East series event at Road Atlanta, Sean chose to spend that week (his spring break) at the track with his dad.
Varwig and his son also spend quality father/son time at Autobahn Country Club, which is a race track country club in Joliet, Ill., when he isn’t competing in PCA club races.
Brian Weathered, owner of Midwest Eurosport, and Varwig have known each other for decades. Varwig stays in Wethered’s apartments at the Country Club on weekends and works on his craft.
“Midwest Eurosport is probably the biggest team operation in Porsche Club Racing – we had more than 20 cars at Road America last year,” Varwig said. “It’s just fun to race with them.”
Varwig, who lives in North Barrington, Ill., majored in chemistry and economics at Northwestern University. He owns Citadel Group, which owns and manages medical buildings. He also has two older sons: Kyle, 22, and Jeff, 24.
“I love how we know the PCA stewards and they know us,” Varwig said. “I’m looking forward to the 2017 season and Sean is too, of course.”