About Us

Panic’s owners, Becca and Steve Bertok, at the 2019 SCCA Runoffs at Virginia International Raceway

Meet the owners…

Steve Bertok, President and Co-Owner

  • Automotive Interests: Spec Miatas, road racing, LS1 swaps, and muscle cars
  • Education: Midlands Technical College – Business
  • Years in Road Racing: 23
  • Total Years in Automotive Parts, Service, etc: 38
  • Affiliation: South Carolina Region-SCCA and NASA SouthEast
  • Duties: Lead wrench, race director, instructor, Spec Miata driver
  • Website: www.panicmotorsports.com
  • Dream Car: McLaren F1
  • Stats: Charter Panic member, 30+ years in automotive parts sales, Former Drag Racer, 2001 SCR A-Prepared Autocross Champion, 2002 SCR and SeDiv Street Modified Autocross Champion, 2003 SCR Driver and Mechanic of the Year, 2008 SCR Driver of the Year, 2010, 2012, 2013, 2015, and 2016 13 Hour Charge of the Headlight Brigade Spec Miata winner, 2014 13 Hour Charge of the Headlight Brigade Spec Miata podium P2, 2008, 2009, and 2011 Carolina Cup Pro Series Spec Miata Champion, Nov 2018 winner of the Mazda Motorsports Spirit of Mazda Award, 2019 SCCA Runoffs T4 competitor, 2020 SCCA SeDiv T4 Champion, 2022 SCCA SeDiv SMSE Champion

Becca Bertok, Marketing Director and Co-Owner

  • Automotive Interests: Sports car racing as a whole
  • Education: Univ. of South Carolina – Integrated Marketing Communications
  • Years in Road Racing: 35+
  • Affiliation: South Carolina Region-SCCA
  • Duties: Public Relations, Marketing, and Race Communications
  • Website: www.panicmotorsports.com
  • Dream Car: 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO
  • Stats:  Charter Panic member, Artist, Original race track brat, 1997 Performance Driving School at Road Atlanta, 2000 24 Hours of Le Mans course marshal, 2001 D-Stock Autocross Champion, Crew Chief extraordinaire, Former F&C official, Spec Miata driver, SCR-SCCA board member, and a continuous Charcot-Marie-Tooth warrior #cmtstrong
It’s in our DNA: The youngest Bertok calling the race for dad, Steve Bertok, at Charlotte Motor Speedway, 2018.

Our team is comprised of a bunch of gearheads who like to hang out at the racetrack on the weekends: We have racers, autocrossers, workers, and crew…all dedicated to making a weekend at the track a fun and safe event.

Panic customer John Hammer during a NASA Southeast event at Carolina Motor Speedway. Photo credit: Jim Voss

What makes us Panic…

The original idea for Panic Motorsports was, as the story goes, drawn up on a bar napkin about 27 years ago by Steve and a few gearhead friends. Panic became more than just an idea in 2000 when Steve met Becca at an event she was hosting to train new Sports Car Club of America (SCCA) Course Marshals.  Becca’s dad is a former rally driver, and she grew up around sports car racing, so when Steve told her about Panic and how they wanted to put something together, Becca helped to organize the team. Soon there was a logo, then a web site, then T-shirts, and well, the list goes on.

Panic quite simply started as a group of friends who competed in autocross (SCCA Solo 2) and worked club races on the weekend. By 2002, Panic was well known across the Southeast and often called upon to staff races from Road Atlanta to Daytona.  2002 was also the year Steve and Becca built their first Spec Miata, got married, and Steve attended drivers’ school at Roebling Road Raceway; the start of a very successful club racing career.

Steve has always wanted to own his own business, and after more than 15 years in the auto parts industry, he took a leap of faith and opened Panic Motorsports, LLC in September 2006. Panic’s original focus was salvage Miata parts to feed the growing Spec Miata class; keeping in mind a goal to move into race prep and car builds. With his racing and parts contacts, Steve’s salvage business soon outgrew the garage behind the Bertoks’ home and into the first of two shops.  In the past ten years, we’ve added customers, friends, staff, and purchased a large facility, Panic’s current location in West Columbia, SC, where we currently have three aspects to the business:

  • Miata MX-5 race car builds, prep, maintenance, and arrive-and-drive programs including trackside and crew services (Spec Miata, T4, GTA)
  • Dyno tuning for RACECARS ONLY
  • Aftermarket parts for the Mazda Miata MX-5, RX-7 (rotary and LSx swaps)

We work closely with Mazda Motorsports, X-Factor Engine Building, G-Loc Brakes, Hoosier Tire, ZMax, Rossini Racing Engines, Summit Racing, Turn’t Motorsports, and more to offer the absolute best racecar available. Panic clients and crew attend more than 30 race weekends per year and have brought home many race wins and championships. Panic has dominated the Southeast’s endurance racing series with five wins in the Spec Miata class of the 13 Hour Charge of the Headlight Brigade at Virginia International Raceway, as well as multiple Endurance Championship Racing (ECR) and Carolina Cup Pro Series (CCPS) events.

Last updated: 6 June 2023.