Arriving at Cayuga shortly after 7:00 am on Sunday morning, the team had no idea what to expect of the day. Demaras Racing drivers have been in races, auto-crosses and track days, but this would be their first Time Attack competition. Round 1 of the 2023 CASC Ontario Time Attack season would be the first time Chris and Daniel got to compete against each other on track in equal machinery since K1 Speed karts years ago.

After tech inspection and registration, the guys set up their old karting canopy, toolbox, table and chairs for a day of fun in the sun. Chris was on track first, elegantly folding himself (like an origami crane) into the No. 16 MagiSeal Miata. Morning practice was broken into twenty-minute sessions, giving drivers a chance to acclimatize to the track and conditions.

Demaras Sr. was not very fast, as he kept off the curbs and lifted early in several corners. Some seat time with a driving coach would have helped, because despite visiting TMP several times last year for Daniel to drive the No. 12 MagiSeal Formula 1200 car, Chris hasn’t actually been on track here since driving a Corvette Stingray in August 2021.

Ontario Time Attack uses a complex formula to BoP (balance of performance) very different cars and drivers to compete simultaneously. For the sake of safety, the turbocharged WRXs aren’t on track at the same time as a vintage Toyota MR-S, but the scoring matrix allows everyone to compete. Very inclusive.

The No. 16 MagiSeal Miata was one of five Miatas competing in OTA on this day. Despite never having driven this car at this track, Daniel had enough laps around Cayuga to get himself up to speed very quickly.

Again, the morning sessions were more of a feeling out process, to see how much curb to take without upsetting the car. Daniel even got a helping hand from the Miata’s builder Mark, who stopped by to say ‘hi’. Mark helped point out that dropping down to 2nd gear in the final sequence of corners would improve lap times, as he has plenty of experience in this car at this track.

After lunch break, it was down to serious business. By the end of the competition portion of the day, Daniel set the fastest time of any Mazda Miata, and had to feel proud of the achievement.

  1. Daniel Demaras (No. 16 Miata) 1:27.225
  2. Rob Hall (No. 6 Miata) 1:28.996
  3. Terry Wooe-Chung (No. 144 Miata) 1:28.428
  4. Matthew Clough (No. 83 Miata) 1:29.551
  5. Chris Demaras (No.16 Miata) 1:39.924

The young racer even commented about how relaxed he felt at the OTA event. Being at a track he’s done so many laps on, and competing in one of his ‘daily drivers‘ made everything seem effortless. There was no pressure to win. He could just enjoy the drive.

Check out the video on YouTube.

Neither of the Demaras racers won, or even walked away with a trophy for impressive rookie performances, but that didn’t matter. Any day at the race track is a good day. The OTA crew ran a well-organized event, and Demaras Racing’s No. 16 MagiSeal Miata is next scheduled to compete in time attack on the Canada Day long weekend, for Round 2 of the 2023 OTA Championship.

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