Sunday, February 10, 2013

Canadian Motorsports Expo 2013

@NASCAR star Michael Waltrip was the @CME_racing show VIP on Saturday, February 9 at the #Toronto International Centre. See more of his visit on my post here. The carstravaganza continues on Sunday with appearances by NASCAR star Kyle Busch and the Trailer Park Boys (JP, Mike and Robb). 'Meet the Stars and see the Cars at Canada's ultimate racing show!' There was also a lot to see on the Mazda Stage and in the Jones Brown Seminars at the show put on by Inside Track Motorsport News Magazine with editor and show manager Greg MacPherson along with Mike Galipeau, Rob Morton and David Weber.
NASCAR Canadian Tire Series - driver Robin Buck, below
Canada's stock car series brand of NASCAR was a big hit of the show with several cars on display. "For the third year in a row, the massive race hauler that is the base of operations for all NASCAR Canadian Tire Series presented by Mobil 1 race events will be the core of the series’ display at the Canadian Motorsports Expo (CME). In a new twist for this year’s show, the hauler will be accompanied by eight of the series’ race cars. The 2013 NCTS schedule opens May 19 at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park and continues through until late September.
A cool Ferrari race car

The show takes place February 8-10 at Toronto’s International Centre, across from Pearson Airport. The NASCAR Canadian Tire Series is Canada’s top professional racing series. Since 2007, the series has travelled across Canada, thrilling fans while earning a reputation for exciting racing on ovals and road courses, at some of the country’s top motorsports events."
Unigirl calendar ladies
One of my favorite parts of the Expo is the Meet the Media full of the big boys of Canadian race reporters: Erik Tomas, Tim Miller, Norris McDonald, Todd Lewis and Dean McNulty. Also joining the panel this year was Michele-Marie Beer. The panel seemed united in the fact that more promotion and sponsorship opportunities need to be found for all levels of the sport. The upcoming double header Honda Indy Toronto was discussed at length with Todd Lewis loving the double header and would like to see the Honda Indy promoting how exciting the race event is. Norris McDonald suggesting that tor reinvigorate the event and even suggested running the race clockwise the first day and counterclockwise on the second day. Michele-Marie Beer said that the double header details will be worked out ahead of time in Detroit and Toronto will benefit from any lessons learned. Dean McNulty mentioned that the Honda Indy has progressed from the biggest race in Canada to the third most attended race in 2012. Erik Tomas talked business and said that sponsorship must be sold with a Return on Investment (ROI), whether for drivers or race series.
The panel also agreed that costs for upper echelon racing has skyrocketed and the ability for a driver to bring in sponsorship money is starting to impact racing. No longer do they seek the best drivers whom the teams have to pay, they look for people that can drive while bringing in big sponsorship dollars.

See more after the jump.

Helmets, suits and race accessories along with books, models and insurance were available for browsing and purchase at the show. The Pink Panther was checking out the cars, below.

The show has most forms of motorsports filling the Hall with enough variety to keep everyone happy. You could also check out the large group of race track representatives with booths and contests. The Canadian Motor Speedway, which will be a Jeff Gordon designed track, continues its 6 year progress through the approvals process. If approved the Fort Erie, Ontario (15 minutes from Niagara Falls) site will be the countrys first 1.6 km (1 mile) oval track that will also feature a 4.2 km road course.
Canadian Tire Motorsport Park (formerly Mosport)
Barrie Speedway
Michigan International Speedway and NASCAR Sprint trophy

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