There have been the Andrettis and the Unsers, and then the Rahals, and now the Hertas. There are plenty of times when sons have followed their fathers into motorsports. At times they’ve even shared a car as Mario and Michael did at Le Mans in 1983, and as Bryan and Colton Herta did at the California 8 Hours last year. But Bruce and Sydney McKee break that mold.
Father Daughter Pairing Joined By Driving Coach
What’s far less usual is when a father and daughter both race, and even more unusual, when they share a car for an endurance race. Bruce McKee and Sydney McKee will be making their IMSA professional racing debut next weekend in the four-hour Michelin Pilot Challenge race.
Following an opportunity through driving coach and friend Robby Foley, the familial pairing is entered in the No. 96 Turner Motorsport BMW M4 GT4 alongside Foley for the four-hour BMW Endurance Challenge on Friday, January 25, the day prior to the start of the Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona.
“Will Turner and his team have made this jump to IMSA an absolute blast,” said Bruce. “The folks at BMW Motorsport have been great to work with, have kept us from getting overwhelmed and have delivered a fantastic car and experience for our inaugural IMSA event. We’re lucky to have both them and Robby shepherd us,” according to dad Bruce.
Where it all began was somewhat unconventional. For Bruce, it was a love of cars at a young age that eventually grew into a love of racing that he would come to share with his daughter.
The Roots Of Sydney’s Motorsports Interests
“My start obviously kind of goes hand in hand with dad,” said Sydney, a sophomore at Brown University pursuing an undergraduate double major in engineering and economics. “But the interesting thing was when I was able to go to the Porsche Sport Driving School with him, I was actually in high school and I was taking my first physics class.
“When I was hearing the instructors talk about the forces on the car and the ground and the angle of the turns and stuff like that, it made all these little connections in my brain. So, I initially fell in love with the physics and engineer side. I was 15 at the time.”
With a grounding in Spec Miata, Sydney joined her father for their first race together in 2017 at Daytona International Speedway. She stepped in as the endurance driver for her dad’s PCA Trophy East season finale.
“If you would’ve told me last year at the Roar that I would be doing this race in a year, I wouldn’t have believed you,” said Sydney. “So, it’s a really, really awesome thing for me to be able to do. And this has been my dream a little bit ever since I started racing with dad. To be able to experience this and to experience this with him and with our coach and friend Robby is just a really meaningful way of having our professional debut.”