By Jennifer Heebner, Editor in Chief
Roland Krainz has long loved fast cars, but it wasn’t until his Krainz Creations business took off that he could get involved with racing.
The Austrian-born jeweler started working in the industry in 1981. He spent four years learning as an apprentice overseas, then emigrated to the U.S. in 1989 for more opportunities. He founded Krainz Creations in 1995 out of his apartment, repairing and designing jewelry.
Krainz maintains two mantras: Treat others as you want to be treated and deliver quality at a fair price. “That simple and powerful approach is still how I run my business today,” he explains on his website. The moves have helped him craft high-end colored gemstone designs for well-known brands, some of which have landed on stars on red carpets all over the world.
Once his stateside business was on strong footing, he joined a race club in New York. After a decade of dabbling in the sport, he got more serious about it in 2021. That year, he joined a series called the Porsche Sprint Challenge, where he finished in the No. 2 spot for the year. This year he will race with his son Austin in a series called SRO Motorsports, an hourlong race where drivers change midway through.
Krainz has two race cars, both Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 RS Clubsports. “One is the main car, and one is a backup,” he says.
In a year’s time, he and his son will compete in about seven SRO series races, though they compete in up to 11 more races of other types. His favorite track? Sebring International Raceway in Sebring, Fla. “It is a track that requires a lot of driver skill,” he explains.
And while racing and jewelry design may not appear to have commonalities, they do, insists Krainz.
“Both require patience, taking calculated risk, precision, having self-confidence, and being well organized and reliable,” says Krainz. “That is what my company is about. We use technology and engineering from racing in my jewelry. I have a patented self-sizing ring that is using something like a car suspension.”
Racing also intersects with jewelry when it comes to philanthropy. As a child and into his teenage years, Krainz’s son was sick with Juvenile Myositis or JM, an autoimmune disease primarily affecting muscles and skin. Krainz now uses racing to support and promote charities like CURE JM, an endeavor with which Austin is also involved. “He’s in remission but it’s a disease that can come back at any time,” says Krainz.
Each month, Austin hops on a Zoom call with families with children who have JM. He offers inspiration to battle the illness and invites families to racetracks where he and his dad compete.
“It’s truly magical to see the kids when they get to sit in a real race car and see Austin so happy doing it,” adds Krainz.
More charitable efforts occur for the Michael Ann & Saquon Barkley Hope Foundation, the Big Vision Foundation, the ASCENT Foundation, the Robin Hood Foundation, the Coalition for the Homeless, Safe Horizon, and Jewelers For Children.
“We try to give back whenever possible, including helping out groups when it’s time for kids to go back to school, around Thanksgiving, and during the Christmas season,” says Krainz.
This is proprietary content for AGTA and may not be reproduced.