Inside Mazda MX-5 Cup: Alex Bachoura, MX-5 Iron Man

When Alex Bachoura took the green flag for Round 3 of the Whelen Mazda MX-5 Cup Presented by Michelin at Sebring International Raceway last March, he became the all-time leader in MX-5 Cup starts with 117 and counting to his credit. He’s not one bit tired of doing this, so that record is sure to be extended well beyond the current number.

“I didn’t have any motorsports experience, but once I started earning enough money to get on track, I wondered why I didn’t start when I was 18,” recalls Bachoura.

Born in Russia and after spending part of his childhood in Syria, Bachoura and the rest of his family came to live in Glendora, Calif., a suburb of Los Angeles, when he was 14 years old. He got his first car in high school and it needed some work, so armed with a printed repair manual and some help from his father, he began to rebuild it piece by piece.


“I just loved working on cars and have kept doing so ever since,” says Bachoura. “At the time I didn’t know anything about driving, but I was hooked on cars.”

He attended USC for both his undergrad and medical school studies, training to become an oral surgeon. Medical residency took him to Houston, Texas, which he has called home ever since. As a resident, money was tight, but he found a great deal on a Honda S2000, bought it, and soon began showing up at local track events. He found he had a knack for driving, so much so that he was continually placed in faster run groups.

Eventually, track days weren’t enough, so he purchased a Mazda Miata and began racing in the Spec series.

“At first, I thought I was going to beat everybody, but of course that wasn’t the case,” he laughs. “I raced more and more,and eventually I did start winning.”

A few years later, Bachoura was introduced to the Mazda MX-5 Cup.

“The first season of MX-5 Cup scared me. My skill level wasn’t there,” he says.

But despite that initial bout of intimidation, Bachoura stuck with it.

“Even after medical school, residency and starting my own practice, racing in Mazda MX-5 Cup is one of the hardest things I’ve ever done,” he says. “Besides the skill and the hard work, you need the confidence, and that took a long time to develop.”

For the 2022 season, Bachoura switched teams to Spark Performance and immediately saw an improvement in his own performance.

“The switch just elevated me, and I started performing better,” he states. “I’m realistic, I know I probably won’t podium, but my goal is to finish in the top 10 regularly.”

It’s so far, so good on that goal in 2024, with Bachoura already earning two top-10 finishes in the first six rounds — a sixth in race two at the Daytona season opener (above), then eighth in WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca’s second race — and sitting a stout 11th in the overall points.

A pair of early-season top-10 finishes have put Alex Bachoura 11th in points after six 2024 MX-5 Cup rounds.

He did in fact score a career-best third place finish in St. Petersburg in 2023 as the result of persistence, clean driving and — not easy on a street track — staying out of trouble. That event so far marks the highlight of his career in MX-5 Cup. Nevertheless, Bachoura isn’t really racing for the accolades.

“When I’m in the race car, it’s like my form of meditation, my escape from life’s daily pressures,” he concludes. “But I’m also getting better, and I feel like my driving has really improved, and that’s a personal challenge because I’m not in MX-5 Cup to win it — but of course it would be nice to, right?”

• All Whelen Mazda MX-5 Cup Presented by Michelin races are streamed live on and archived on The RACER Channel on YouTube. Coming up next, it’s rounds 7 & 8 from Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. The action kicks off on Saturday, June 8, at 3:25pm ET, followed by the second race on Sunday, June 9, at 10:25am ET.

To view the full schedule and learn more about the series, visit

Story originally appeared on Racer