What an incredible event! The ALMS Grand Prix of Mosport at the Canadian Tire Motorsport Park was my second year in a row participating with MMS – Motorsport Marshalling Services crew from Ontario, Canada there. And although the racing itself was probably less exciting than it was last year, I had a far better time participating this year. And this is why: friends!
I had signed up to volunteer Toronto Indy to optimize my time spent in Canada. As usual going into Ontario was a breeze which is always refreshing. I got super lucky to be hosted for the Toronto Indy by CouchSurfing friends that I first met in Korea during the F1 event there last year. The Indy race was OK, I was assigned a wonderful corner, but I didn’t really work it except for one day when I kind of got to play at the crash zone. Long story short, the true reason I went up to Canada was ALMS. This was my fourth time participating in the series this year, and they’re only up to five races so far, not bad! The only one I missed was Sebring because it was the same weekend as Australian GP.
So heading to Bowmanville for ALMS at Mosport, I was again hosted by a wonderful CouchSurfer who let me use her house for a few days between the races where I had absolutely nothing to do but eat poutine for lunch and surf the web. That worked out really well. What was also nice is the fact she got a new pet, a nice beagle named Kip that sounds exactly like my Maxi Max. For the actual ALMS race I crashed in the marshal camping area using Frank and Judy’s pop up, which was very nice of them to let me use. I had worked with these awesome Canadians for the past two Montreal F1 races, as well as the ALMS last year and Toronto Indy a week prior. Great people!
Once the race weekend rolled around, some more new friends showed up from the States, specifically a trio of Detroit marshals whom I have invited to blog on this web site. I feel silly confessing I was wrong by making semi-sarcastic comments on my facebook about Canada being predictable. Of course I didn’t get selected to work the paid test day for ALMS weekend, but I was encouraged to volunteer which is what I came to do in the first place. And of course I wouldn’t get to blue flag because that’s a speciality typically reserved for the locals, but I was wrong on both accounts. I got some gas money for working the test day and was the designated blue flagger for the entire ALMS weekend. Which was beyond fantastic, special thanks to Richard and Barbara Dobbs of MMS whom I had the pleasure of working Detroit GP together with, whom I’m sure made this all happen for me. Thank you!
The weather over the weekend went from extreme heat to extreme rain, to moderate cold. Racing was good, but not very spectacular. And I was very much busy the entire time blue flagging. Happy beyond belief! Wish more race weekends were like this one. My CouchSurfer friends were also recruited to try their hand working the Start/Finish stand with Judy, which is awesome… they came out to the race to spectate and we spend a lot of quality time together hanging out, including a quick trip for more poutine, my last meal before heading home to New Jersey.
CouchSurfers Will & Holly, my recent recruits to marshal at Mosport doing Start/Finish