Dannis Hanratty, Jr.
Eastern Conference, D Sports Racer
Just about every person who has driven a vehicle in a high-performance setting would agree that it is a very hard thing to do. Now, imagine attempting to do control a high-performance car while dealing with a physical handicap. That is exactly what Hanratty, of Mechanichsburg, Penn., did to win his conference title.
“I was born with a cleft lip and club foot,” Hanratty said. “While the cleft lip poses no issues with my racing abilities and has been corrected, my club foot is something that I’d like to shed some light on. When I was born, my left foot did not develop correctly resulting in my foot having some defects and also being turned sideways. I’ve had many surgeries, throughout my life, to correct these problems and I can, now, live life normally.
“My right leg was, and still is, about an inch and a half shorter than my left due to the club foot condition. Also, I am only 5’3” tall, so with these issues pedal adjustments and extensions are usually something that has to be done in order for me to be able to drive racecars.”
While Hanratty was lucky enough not to deal with any mechanical issues throughout the season, living a normal life, much less racing at an extremely high level, with his condition is something not to be overlooked.
“I don’t want to say that I am the only driver in SCCA who was born with a club foot, because I really don’t know if that’s a true fact,” Hanratty said. “But, I would venture to say I am one of only a few. So, I just wanted to share my story to say, you can accomplish anything you want, with patience and determination.”
Hanratty may have been fashionably late to the Eastern Conference party, but he put his mark on the season scoring five podiums, including two wins behind the wheel of the No.18 EPIC Cameras/Kinesyis Sunscreen West WR-1000/McLaren. His wins came at Summit Point and Watkins Glen International Raceway. Hanratty also notched a pair of second-place finishes at New Jersey Motorsports Park and a third-place at Watkins Glen. In addition, he scored a pair of pole positions at Summit Point.
There are some very important people Hanratty would be remiss without thanking.
“First and most importantly, I would like to say ‘thank you’ to my Mom and Dad,” Hanratty said. “They were my crew this season, and without them, none of this would have been possible. Thank you to my wife, Jessica, and my son, Ethan, for putting up with me and my racing aspirations.
“A big thank you to Brad Hollinger for all his help and support over the past six-plus, years. Thank you to my sponsors: EPIC Cameras / GSM Outdoors, as well as KINeSYS Sunscreen and SPY Optics. Thank you to Hoosier Tires, Summit Racing, and Hawk Performance Brakes for their generous sponsor contingencies and support.”
For more information on Hanratty, visit www.hollingergroupmotorsports.com.