Sunday, May 9, 2021

Will Cox III

As the youngest member of the Drivers Edge roster, Will Cox III joined JR Motorsports for the 2021 Late Model season after a three-year journey through go-karts, U.S. Legend Cars and Late Models. The 15-year-old Raleigh, N.C. native will race alongside 2020 NASCAR Advance Auto Parts Weekly Series champion Josh Berry for JRM in pursuit of the CARS Racing Tour Late Model Stock Car championship.

Cox first caught the racing bug in 2017 after attending a sports-car race in Virginia with his father, Daniel. Talking to some of the drivers there that day, the 12-year-old asked how they got their starts in the sport, and the most common answer was in go-karts at the age of 12. Thanks to a family friend, Cox was able to test a go-kart at GoPro Motorplex in Mooresville, N.C., and from that point on, Cox was hooked.

Later that year, in October, he competed in his first kart race at GoPro Motorplex and it soon turned into his passion. He spent countless weekends at the kart track being coached by Ashley Rogero, helping him learn the track lines and improving his times. He started working with Carlos Salum of Salum International to learn how to mentally train and process everything on the track. In 2018, William ran the local karting series at GoPro Motorplex and also national events in the World Karting Association, United States Pro Karting Series, ROK, SKUSA, and the Canadian Karting Series. Traveling around the U.S. and Canada every weekend honed his skills and gave the young driver experience.

In 2019, Cox tested a Formula 4 car with Kaizan Autosport and a Mazda Miata with driving coach Tom Long and Panic Motorsports at Virginia International Raceway. He competed in a pair of races at VIR and one at Road Atlanta as the youngest driver in his class and earned his SCCA license.

After talking with Lorin Rainier of Ranier Racing Development, Cox shifted gears to the U.S. Legend Car Series to learn the art of oval racing, competing that summer in the Young Lions division with Ryan Farbo of Farbo Motorsports. He spent the summer racing at Anderson (S.C.) Motor Speedway, Charlotte Motor Speedway, Atlanta Motor Speedway and Carteret County Speedway.

In October 2019, the U.S. Legend Car Nationals were held at Carteret County Speedway in North Carolina, and even though the young driver had competed there just once, Cox led every lap of the race to top a 30-car field and win the Young Lions national championship. The following month, Cox was leading the World Road Course Finals in Atlanta on the final lap when a competitor hooked his left rear and sent him spinning. Despite that, Cox rebounded to finish third. He also earned the Atlanta Fall Five series championship.

In 2020, Cox planned to race for the Young Lions national championship in Legend Cars, dominating the Cook Out Winter Heat Series at Charlotte Motor Speedway in January. The following month, while competing in the U.S. Legend Car Winter Nationals in Florida, the decision was made to move the young driver up to the Pro series against more experienced drivers and he took third place overall. In the midst of his transition to the top series, the pandemic hit and postponed motorsports, leaving Cox with no outlet other than his iRacing simulator.

In April, Cox had the opportunity to test a Late Model Stock Car at Hickory Motor Speedway. One of his teachers that day was Josh Berry, who would go on to win the NASCAR Advance Auto Parts Weekly Series championship and become his teammate for 2021. When Cox turned 15 in June, he started racing in the Carolina Pro Late Model Series. In July, Cox earned his first victory in a Limited Late Model at Tri-County Speedway and moved up to LMSC competition after that.

The young driver made his first CARS Tour start in August of 2020, finishing 15th and on the lead lap in a 125-lap feature at Hickory (N.C.) Motor Speedway.

When not racing, the young driver attends online classes through Liberty University’s LW Away program pioneered by another JRM Late Model driver, William Byron.

Team: JR Motorsports
Series: CARS Tour
Birthday: June 4, 2005
Hometown: Raleigh, N.C.