Exhibition Place, Toronto We're live at the 2013 Honda Indy!
Honda Canada graciously invited us down to the Honda Indy in Toronto for a behind-the-scenes look at the operations of such an intricate event.
The tour started at the Honda World pavilion, where Honda had three different engines on display, including the latest prototype V6 for IndyCar as well as various cars from different generations of racing starting in the 1960s right through the present.
From there on, we were separated into groups and our group went over to the Paddocks. Here, we had a chance to meet Alex Tagliani from Barracuda Racing. Oddly enough, the bulk of the conversation surrounded the relative fullness of one’s bladder while on the race track. “Don’t crash with a full bladder,” added Tagliani. “If you’re over 65% full, you should just go.”
Partnered with Sportsnet, 680News and Newsdesk 1010, the event mainly focused on Tagliani and recorded the entire scrum.
From the Paddocks, we ventured over to BMO Field and had the opportunity to observe the top floor “command center” set up. It was jerry-rigged for the event but allowed all key teams to be present in the same location, including police as well as security with race operations. In the event of an emergency, radio channels would typically be flooded so having face-to-face support is quite beneficial.
There weren’t many cars on the track while we were moving around but when we moved over to the pit area, there was a Ford Mustang Boss 302, Cadillac CTS-V Coupe and station wagon (yes, one of the coolest wagons currently on the market) going around giving people the opportunity to partake in hot laps. Additionally, there was a Cadillac in full race-spec making some very loud noises around the track. The type of noises that make men go weak in the knees. Pure, raw, V8 goodness.
Once we got to the pits, Takuma Sato from A.J. Foyt Racing walked everyone through the details of adjusting/adapting effectively each track, ensuring a car is responsive enough for the tight track that the Toronto Indy features. No questions were brought up about Sato’s experience with Formula One and his transition to IndyCar. Canadian politeness reigned supreme on that front.
The new Honda Civic and Accord HFP models were also on display at the Indy. We reviewed the 2012 Civic Si HFP last year and the excitement to drive the new models is consistent throughout the Double Clutch team.
The Honda Indy Toronto is billed as a doubleheader, featuring back-to-back races. It will be interesting to see how the cars cope with the grueling conditions.
The Indy took place from July 12 to the 14th at the Exhibition Grounds in Toronto. More information can be found at www.hondaindytoronto.com.
Honda Indy Gallery