It was just over a year ago when Leighton Irwin asked if he could share some of his racing stories with the readers of The Garage. Since that time, we have been treated to some great tales of the early days of racing in Ontario, right up to the professional ranks in the Formula Atlantic series.
Last night, Leighton passed away at Soldier’s Memorial Hospital in Orillia, where he had been for the past couple of weeks due to kidney failure.
Irwin’s love affair with racing began 1952, when he convinced his parents to take him to see the races at Edenvale airport. He was 14 years old.
In the years that followed, Leighton became a corner marshal, even working Mosport’s Turn 10 at the very first race at the now iconic track. Eventually, he took up racing himself, first in an MGB and graduating to an Elva sports racer. Like most racers in those days, Leighton even tried his hand at a bit of road rallying, entering a Corvair in the Ontario Winter Rally.