~ by Daniel Demaras ~
With a successful Saturday in the books, we headed back to Calabogie for two more races on Sunday. Luckily, we weren’t on track until 12:30 pm, so I had plenty of time to sleep in.
There regional road races are like a rolling car show. Even when you’re not on track you’ll get to see everything from vintage Mini Coopers to fiberglass-bodied tube-frame Camaros.
While Race 1 on Saturday was largely uneventful, I had a feeling things would become much more difficult as the weekend went along.
In Race 2, I started from pole position, and at the drop of the green flag I was immediately under attack from Bob Patterson in the first braking zone. He used the draft effectively to get by me into Turn 5, but I followed him out of the corner and got into his draft down the straight. As we head into turn 6, I felt like I was too far back to make a pass, but I carried more speed into the corner and just sent it up the inside of Bob. I held on as my car tried to fight the line I was forcing it to take.
Later in the lap, Bob had a spin in the Quarry Corner, which allowed me to open a bit of a gap to 2nd place Jason Abrams. I broke the tow and extended my lead to take a second win.
There was a 4 hour gap until our Feature Race, so I had a chance to watch Peter Hanson, who I raced against in F1200 last year and even shared a podium with. This year he is piloting his RySpec Radical in the FEL Radical Cup Canada series. Glad to see my friend doing so well!
One last race before the end of the weekend, and this one would determine who gets to take the trophy.
Jason Abrams took the lead from me into Turn 2 with a late braking maneuver, but down the straight into turn 5 he would get swamped by Bob and I on either side of him. I used the inside line to get ahead of Bob, then went defensive into turn 6 to hold on to my lead.
Bob stuck with me thoughout the race, and I remained wary of the threat he posed. He kept within overtaking distance, but didn’t make a move. I gauged the gap, determining when to defend and when to just push.
When a group of Formula Libres came to lap us, I lost time letting them through and had to defend into turn 6 as Bob looked around the outside. The next group of Libres would help me out, and as I built a gap to Bob I enjoyed less pressure for the final two laps, coming home for my 3rd win of the weekend.
A truly awesome weekend of racing at Calabogie. Pole position, 3 wins, lead every lap and set 3 fastest laps!
Hearing my name called as I stepped on the top step of the podium was a surreal feeling. It’s been a long road! It was satisfying to share the podium with my Vallis Motor Sports teammates Bob and Jason, as this really is a team effort.
Spraying that champagne was even more satisfying!
The No. 12 MagiSeal / K1 Speed / Scarboro Subaru / F1200 car was quick and felt comfortable all weekend long, and gave me the grip I needed to make passes when I had to. With this successful weekend, I now head into the last two rounds with the championship lead.