Paul Tracy, a native of Scarborough, Ontario, started racing in go-karts until age 16. At age 16, he became the youngest ever Canadian Formula Ford champion. He worked his way up the North American open-wheel ladder and became the 1990 Indy Lights Champion. The next season, he was selected as a test driver for powerhouse Team Penske.
His first win came in his first full season in the 1993 CART/IndyCar Series Season. Throughout his CART/Champ Car career, he raced for Team Penske, Newman/Haas Racing, Team KOOL Green and Forsythe Racing. He racked up a total of 31 wins, 74 podiums and 25 poles. Other career achievements include the controversial
2nd place finish at the 2002 Indy 500, which may have factored in him being voted CART's most popular driver. When the two top level American open-wheel racing series merged into the IndyCar Series, his future in the cockpit was left in doubt as Forsythe Racing declined to join the new series. He has since made occasional racing appearances driving for KV Racing in select IndyCar events.
Paul Tracy is known as "The Thrill from West Hill", after his hometown and his aggressive driving style. He has been involved in a few transgressions on the track, being involved in two separate fistfights with other drivers. He is also very outspoken, never hesitating to call it as it is. The most famous example occurred during the open wheel split, calling the IRL's inferior Dallara IndyCars "crapwagons". This phrase has since become a rally cry for remaining IRL detractors. It is well documented that Paul Tracy, in his CART career would, either win or crash
out. One notable example is when he was leading a race in Phoenix International Raceway and had lapped
the entire field twice until he made an aggressive move to lap another car and crashed. Despite his relatively old age for racing, he remains a competitive racer with the energy of a driver half his age.