Calabogie, Ont (May 11 , 2011) Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Drivers will have their hands full keeping their eyes on the road and off the landscape at the scenic and challenging Calabogie Motorsports Park, chosen as the debut event of the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Canada.
The 3.05-mile Calabogie Motorsports Park (CMP) is situated in the Calabogie ski resort area of Ontario, east of Ottawa. Track designer Alan Wilson decided early in the planning process that the track must meld into its surroundings, taking advantage of the rolling hills and tree-lined countryside. Bruce Gregory, co-founder and partner of CMP, worked with Wilson on the creation of the scenic track which opened in 2006.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“When we first envisioned the track, we had to tramp through the woods, looking for areas we thought we could put the track without getting into larger problems, such as wetlands,Ã¢â‚¬Â explained Gregory [the name Calabogie is purportedly derived from the Gaelic words calladh bogaidh, which mean Ã¢â‚¬Ëœmarshy bayÃ¢â‚¬â„¢]. Ã¢â‚¬Å“Alan was out there with us, with a GPS and a topographical map and came up with a fantastic layout for the track. As the build progressed, we made subtle modifications in order to work the track into the geography. There is no construction issue that dynamite canÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t solve but we didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t want to take that route unless necessary so rather than forcing the geography into the exact form on the plans, we forced the track to fit the geography. The whole facility is moulded into the landscape.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Canada Race Director Terry Dale, who has obviously spent a great deal of time at the track nearest his Ottawa home, appreciates CalabogieÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s distinctive style.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“Calabogie is reminiscent of the classic road racing facilities from the past in that it is away from the urban built-up areas with their inherent concrete and traffic issues,Ã¢â‚¬Â says Dale. Ã¢â‚¬Å“Calabogie was designed specifically as a world class racing facility and literally crafted and designed around the existing landscape. Mountains, rocks and streams all come together to create a natural feel, like European circuits such as the NÃƒÂ¼rburgring in Germany. A driver can really feel like he is challenging nature at the same time as he is challenging his fellow competitors. Spectators can find vantage points sitting on a rock looking down at the track and see several corners at the same time. There are many turns on the track, all of them unique and challenging.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Ã¢â‚¬Å“I think there are a number of things that make Calabogie unique,Ã¢â‚¬Â comments Gregory. Ã¢â‚¬Å“First, itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s the first new track in Canada in decades. ItÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s also the longest track in Canada at 3.05 miles. The track was designed to challenge drivers of all skill levels and it does that with a series of elevation changes, blind corners and complex corners that demand total concentration to put in a really good lap. For example, turn eight is called Temptation Ã¢â‚¬â€œ itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s a decreasing radius left hander that just dares drivers to carry too much speed to the apex. However, if you can resist temptation then turn nine is called Deliverance – and you really are delivered from temptation when you do it right!Ã¢â‚¬Â
The new series will be contested in the Porsche 911 GT3 Cup car, one of the worldÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s most successful race cars. Developed for Porsche one-make cups worldwide, the 911 GT3 Cup car is based on the production 911 GT3 RS road car, with the same output of 450 bhp and the same maximum engine speed of 8,500 rpm. Each Porsche will compete on Michelin racing tires.
Three events comprise the inaugural season of the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Canada: May 14-15 at Calabogie Motorsports Park (Calabogie, Ontario), June 3-5 at Circuit ICAR (Mirabel, Quebec) and ending the season on the same racing card as their American counterparts July 23-24 at the Mobil 1 Presents the Grand Prix of Mosport. For news updates throughout the race weekend, competitor regulations and live timing, visit www.imsaracing.net.
Entry list as of May 6, 2011