French made his debut in the C Sports Racer class at Road America in May 2008. He also raced against his father Brian in the Central Division SCCA championship. The father-son duo also raced at the June Sprints with Brian winning the class, and James finishing in second place. The following season James won the championship in a Swift 014.a with added bodywork. The younger French won also the June Sprints and placed third at the prestigious SCCA National Championship Runoffs.