2019 Empire Hill Climb driver profile: Evan Weider

Evan Weider of Traverse City, Michigan, has turned his 1993 Honda Civic into a formidable weekend racer.

We’re fast closing in on the 2019 Empire Hill Climb presented by Autoweek in beautiful Empire, Michigan, and we figure it’s never too early to start talking about the cars and hillclimbers who will be taking on the Detroit Region SCCA-sanctioned event that is scheduled for Sept. 14.

Over the next few weeks, we plan to feature several of the 40 drivers who are primed to take on the Empire Hill Climb. The idea is to show would-be hillclimbers around the country that, yes, this could be you. Hillclimbs are just one way to enjoy car culture — and maybe make a few friends along the way.

Here’s a look at Evan Weider, who will be making his second Empire Hill Climb appearance.

Evan Weider

Age: 26

Residence: Traverse City, Michigan

Car: 1993 Honda Civic

Autoweek: How long have you had the car, and where did you get it?

Evan Weider: I have had my car for two years. I purchased it as a shell from Kalamazoo (Michigan).

Home base for this beauty is Traverse City, Michigan.

AW: Any previous Empire Hill Climb experience?

EW: I have competed in only one previous EHC event, 2018.


AW: Do you compete in any other events with this car?

EW: I also compete in the #GRIDLIFE Track Battle series, and SCCA Time Trials events.


AW: Why did you choose to race the Empire Hill Climb:

EW: It’s one of the few (if not, the only) hill climb events that are offered in Michigan. Even though the run is approximately 3/4 of a mile, its tricky. Almost every single turn is blind. It takes a few runs up the hill to gain confidence and lower those times.

AW: What makes the Empire Hill Climb special?

EW: The event is local to me. Usually I trailer my car 3.5 hours downstate for the events that I go to. Instead, I just have to hop into my car and drive 15 minutes.


AW: Favorite Empire Hill Climb moment?

EW: Seeing the event progress and gain popularity. Ever since the revival in 2014, the Empire Hill Climb is starting to become something big. Now that the rules are becoming a little bit “looser,” you are starting to see a more diverse entry list, not just strictly race cars.


AW: What got you into racing?

EW: Ever since I got my driver’s license at 16, I have been tinkering around with cars. Thanks to social networking, I met some friends downstate that tracked their cars at GingerMan Raceway in South Haven. They eventually got me motivated enough to come down there and do a HPDE (High Performance Driver Event) weekend. Let me tell you what, the track bug is real. Once when you get out there on the track (even if it’s for a ride-along), you are immediately hooked. For the past seven years, I have been hooked and don’t see myself taking a break anytime soon.

Evan Weider

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