For the past two years, Demaras Racing has become part of the F1200 paddock. It’s an open, helpful environment where veteran drivers mentor the rookies. And if an independent driver has a mechanical issue, all the teams jump in to get that car back on track. A small but friendly group of self-funded drivers enjoying racing.
This past weekend, at Sunset Speedway, we got to see a completely different kind of environment. First off, there’s a larger number of drivers on a much smaller track. The banked oval in Innisfil is only ⅓ of a mile long, tiny compared to the monster 2½ mile long Grand Prix circuit at Mosport. The result is side-by-side racing action all around the oval.
Every car / driver ran sponsor logos and there’s a 9,000 seat grandstand full of spectators, plus G-Force TV live-streaming the race (including a drone camera). Under the floodlights, competing in the ‘Feature Race’ at night, makes drivers feel like they’re part of the big show.
The other really interesting thing is the merchandise. Almost every team and driver have souvenirs available., and the number of fans wearing a T-shirt with their favourite on it was surprising. To top it all, Sunset Speedway produced a set of trading cards!
The Saturday Night HERO SERIES cards were a massive hit, selling out shortly after the gate opened. Fans and drivers were trading duplicates of No. 9 Austyn Jennett to complete their set.
I’ve always known that short-oval racing was popular, and that stock-car racing series are the biggest in North America. With so much fan interaction, and driver accessibility, I’m starting to understand why.
~ by Chris #16 Demaras ~