I love track driving. Taking your fast car (or even your not-so-fast car) to the race track is the only legal way to really see what it can do.
Yes, there are risks. You could crash. But at least everybody else is paying 10/10 attention, and you can’t say the same for the roads we drive every day. I’ve been to the track on many occasions and never had anything eventful happen aside from a really good time and a lot of learning. (okay, so there was that one time I blew a turbo in my Supra… but I drove home, so it doesn’t count)
So, when the opportunity came up to head out to Atlantic Motorsports Park in Shubenacadie, Nova Scotia for a track day, I was keen to get out there and wring out my new Ford Fiesta ST. Together with my friend Scott, we set out at 4am in the morning to make the 15 hour drive to Moncton, New Brunswick, which would be our jumping off point for the track the next day. 8 hours into the journey, somewhere in between Montreal and Trois-Rivières, our trip to the track was abruptly cut short by a large chunk of metal on the highway.
We swerved to avoid it, but *BANG* it went right under out front wheel, tore through the tire, and punctured the alloy wheel. After a few hours calling and visiting Ford Dealers for what turn out to be rare parts, and with 9 hours left to drive to Moncton, we came to the realization that our track day was not going to happen. To say it was disappointing only begins to cover it.
At our lowest point, Scott put it nicely in perspective. He said: “this is racing”. The getting there is part of the race. Showing up and being ready to roll with your helmet on and your car in working order is part of the process. So we hobbled back to Montreal on our spare, went out for a killer steak dinner at Moishes Steakhouse and drowned our sorrows in beer.
Can’t wait for next time.
Bonus: My favourite racing quote is at the 20 second mark: