Back to the track on Sunday morning. The stress of qualifying behind him, Daniel could focus on maximizing his result. Sunday at the BARC Touring Trophy Race would include two more races, and Demaras felt confident.

A new mechanical issue cropped up this weekend. The F1200 car is only a 4-speed gearbox, but on track only 3rd and 4th are ever used. When shifting into top-gear on the back straight, the clutch slipped badly, initially seeming to engage, before the revs would drop (and the engine would bog down) when the clutch would fully lock up. Daniel had to ‘drive around the problem’ against an ever-aggressive Bob Patterson, snatching P2 on the 2nd to last corner of the race.

To mix things us a little, the GoPro was mounted low on the front beam, giving a new look to close-quarters racing in the Canadian Formula 1200 Championship.

During the three-hour break between sessions, the team really took apart the car to find the mechanical gremlin. The entire body was stripped off the car, so that Bill Vallis and Bill Davis could get a good look at pedal position.

Daniel’s left-foot braking technique requires more movement in the narrow footwell, and VMS tried to adjust the pedals to make sure that ‘riding the clutch’ was eliminated as a possible source of the problem.

With the car buttoned up again, Daniel warmed up the No. 12 MagiSeal Formula 1200 car for the final race of the weekend. While clutch engagement had been adjusted, Bill Vallis wasn’t sure if the issue had been properly diagnosed and rectified. So, he gave permission to Daniel to rev the little 1200 cc engine to 6,300 RPM before shifting up to high gear.

At the drop of the green flag, Vallis’ technique worked. Yes, the clutch was still slipping, but those higher revs allowed lock-up to (finally) occur at 4,500 RPM, allowing Demaras to maintain speed. Daniel.

Chasing down the No. 24, Demaras stuck to his rear bumper of the championship leader for multiple laps, gaining in the corners, losing out on the straights, but he had the pace.

It should be noted that Patterson’s No. 38 was a rocket at the start. Bob zoomed past everyone, and took the lead on the opening lap. But once Balbosa and Demaras overhauled him, it was a two-car race, until the unthinkable happened.

Two of the most experienced drivers on the grid (in very fast Formula 4 equipment) made contact at the apex of Turn 3. The sound of crunching fiberglass and twisting metal suspension components pierced the air. The cars got hooked together, and skidded sideways, narrowly missing the inside wall when they finally came to a halt.

A full-course caution was called, and passing drivers had to veer around the stricken cars, which stopped on the inside of the track, right on the racing line. Sadly, the race would not resume and Daniel never got a chance to attack for the lead. Gosh…what might have been!

It was still a fantastic weekend for Daniel, Vallis Motor Sport and Demaras Racing. A second place finish in all three races, a big trophy, and the first pole position of Daniel’s open-wheel racing career are highlights that won’t soon be forgotten.

2 thoughts on “On The Podium at 2023 BARC Touring Trophy Race

  1. Wow, what a race!!! Full of excitement!!! Congratulations again Daniel and the team.
    Boy, how cool is that? The Classic Machines decal is on Demaras #12!!!
    This is a real honor, thank you guys!!!

    1. In that final race, the rain clouds were rolling in, and Daniel was running in P2. We hoped there would be a 2-3 lap fight to the checkered flag.

      But it just took too gosh-darned long to recover the crashed F4 cars…so the race ended under yellow. Too bad.

      We hoped you’d like the overhead picture of the No. 12 with the Brazilian flags on display… plus The Classic Machines decal on the engine cover!

      A couplr more weeks, and we’re racing at Calabogie Motorsports Park near Ottawa.

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