A Tale of Inches and Miles
Canadian Tire MotorSport Park
Saturday, July 6, 2019
Sometimes the true essence of a tale is in the numbers.
That’s how long the Legistics/Racing To End Alzheimer’s/FastMd/Speed Syndicate team had to repair major damage to their #23 Audi RS3 (affectionately dubbed “Violet” by those who’ve come to know and love her) before qualifying rounds for the next crucial race in the IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge series. After a catastrophic crash in their race at Watkins Glen International Raceway in upstate New York, the team knew they were facing a challenge of epic proportions.
With such a tight turnaround time, returning to their own repair shop more than 1300 miles away was clearly not an option. Luckily, driver James Vance had friends he could count on in the vicinity of the upcoming race. Audi Midtown Toronto and Audi super tech Jayson Van Eerdewijk stepped up to provide the team with a state-of-the-art “home away from home” to make the necessary repairs. With the shop closed for Canada Day, the Speed Syndicate Motorsports team threw mind and muscle into making the near-impossible happen.
By the time qualifying day rolled around, Violet was once again ready for prime time. Driver Nick Galante placed in 10th position on the high-speed technical track formerly known as Mosport. After working his way up to 7th during the first half of the two-hour race, Nick dove into the pits for the hand-over to James Vance.
Nick was already out of the car when IMSA officials made the determination that the #23 had overshot the pit spot by 6 inches and would have to be rolled back before servicing. A nightmare scenario ensued, with precious seconds lost as the team rushed to comply with the IMSA directive. When James Vance finally took the wheel, he drove an amazing stint, clawing his way up to 6th place before time simply ran out.
With 5 races remaining in 2019, the team is currently 8th in the overall point standings. But as this roller-coaster of a series has proven, anything can – and very likely will – happen before this hard-fought season comes to a rip-roaring, nail-biting close.