~ by Chris #16 Demaras ~

A couple days ago, Daniel and I were driving up to Sunset Speedway, and I managed to run the truck out of fuel near Bradford. We took the first exit and ended up at a Shell station at 412 Holland St.

Parked in front was a fully restored 1987 PROTEC Chevy Camaro Z28 from the old Player’s Challenge Series which ran in Eastern Canada from 1986 to 1992.

Each year, 90-100 factory-prepared, purpose-built race cars were manufactured by GM to run in this “showroom stock” racing series. Top drivers from across Canada competed at Shannonville, Race City, Mosport, Trois-Rivieres, and Cayuga Speedway. The races were televised on CTV’s “Wide World of Sports” and were often part of a larger race weekend such as the Molson Indy There was an average of 7 races per season with 40 to 50 drivers competing in each race.

To think, cigarette money paid for all that racing. Today the series is long gone, the money is dried up, and news outlets announced this week that Health Canada will soon require warning labels on each individual cigarette. Wow!

2 thoughts on “The Positive Side of Cigarette Sponsorship

  1. Holy smokes!!! Tobacco sponsorship worked wonders in the past. I remember some high school friends having a hard time deciding between JPS, Senna’s sponsor in F-One, and Camel, the sponsor for the Camel Trophy.

    1. Rubens
      As much as I hate to admit it, I chose Camel cigarettes (not always EZ to find in Toronto) because of motorsports. How else would teenage me know which brand to smoke.


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