Scott Maxwell

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Over a career in motorsport that has spanned close to four decades, Scott Maxwell has said his defining moment came in 2000 as a team member of Multimatic Motorsports and a class win in the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

“My greatest moment personally was leading the team at Le Mans and standing on the podium there,” Maxwell noted. “There’s just nothing like it.”

While the Le Mans victory may have been the highlight of Maxwell’s career, he worked hard and long to get to that podium as one of Canada’s most respected road racers.

As a youth, Maxwell’s early years were spent at race tracks with his father, an amateur racer and official. Walking around Mosport and meeting racing legends such as Graham Hill and Jack Brabham helped to provide the inspiration to get behind the wheel of a race car.

Maxwell started racing in earnest in open-wheel competition as the CASC’s Formula Vee rookie of the year and through 1984 to 1986 was that series’ champion at several levels. He then started racing endurance cars with national class wins in the early 1990s.
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Paul Tracy

PT 2005 Las Vegas

 

Colorful, controversial at times, and successful describes Paul Tracy’s racing career. With determination, stubbornness, and pushing both himself and his machine to levels others would not, Tracy has amassed a record in open-wheel racing that has done Canada proud. Starting in karts, as most open-wheel racers do, Tracy took his role behind the wheel seriously, and learned his craft well.

At age 16 he became the youngest Formula Ford champion, and a year later he won the final Can-Am road race, held at Mosport in 1986, racing the Horst Kroll Frisbee.  With his sights set on North America’s premier open-wheel series, Tracy started in CART with Dale Coyne and then Penske racing in 1991. He continued on a part-time level with Penske the next season, running in 11 races for the injured Rick Mears and placed 12th.

This gave him a ride with Penske in 1993, and he reciprocated with five race wins, including in front of the home town folk in the Molson Indy Toronto. Although he switched to Newman/Haasin 1995, he went back to Penske for the 1996 season, and then with Team KOOL Green with limited success until 1999 when he went to the podium seven times and placed third in the  championship.

But it was in 2003 that PT had his defining year. Driving for Player’s Forsythe Racing, he won seven of the 18 races on the card, including a popular victory in Toronto. He continued with theteam the next several years, placing fourth in points twice in CART. In 2006 he also raced vehicles with fenders, competing in NASCAR’s Busch Series, and the Grand-Am Rolex Series.

In 2008 he got back into an open-wheeler, now for Vision and Forsythe Racing in the CART-replaced IndyCar Series with limited success. He continued with this until 2011, and a year laterco-piloted a Doran Racing Dallara in the 24 Hours of Daytona, where he helped the team to a satisfying seventh.

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Tracy has commented he is proud of his part in the Toronto IndyCar races, adding his first Toronto win was the turning point in his career.

Tracy returned to Toronto this year, not as a driver, but as the color commentator for the NBC Sports Network, which broadcasts the Verizon IndyCar events.

While some of the hardness has left, Tracy continues to be honest and forthright in his opinions, providing IndyCar television audiences a refreshing and honest view. You know what he tells usis correct and he would probably love the opportunity to get back behind the wheel and show us.

John Magill

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While he may have competed in various road and karting events over the years, John Magill is best remembered for his organization skills and contributions to the Canadian Auto Sport Clubs on a management level, especially in the field of karting.

After racing karts in the early 1970s, the inductee was invited by the CASC to organize its first national karting program in 1978. In 1980 he hosted Canada’s first FIA/CIK-sanctioned event, at the Ontario Goodwood track, as the CASC’s National Karting Director.

For the next five years, between 1980-85, this inductee served as the CASC National President, along with a role on the FIA motorsport executive committee and as the North American representative for the CIK executive committee.

It was also during this time that he helped to establish the Motorsport Foundation of Canada. One of this group was Gilles Villeneuve, who died two weeks before the official introduction, so it was renamed the Gilles Villeneuve Foundation in honor of the legendary Grand Prix driver. The first funds received were used to purchase computer equipment for the McGill University Sport Group to launch its testing of racecar drivers. [Read more…]

Diana Carter

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Before Janet Guthrie, Paula Murphy, and Shirley Muldowney, Diana Carter entered what was at the time a man’s world. 

And she succeeded. 

Like other early women racers, Carter not only competed on the track in a male-oriented environment, she experienced prejudice and small-minded attitudes off the track. 

Throughout the 1960s Carter proved to the racing world she could compete, and win, in road racing and major rally events. From her Toronto base, she earned her successful reputation as a racer in the Shell 4000 Cross-Canada Rally with her Volvo, winning three consecutive Coupe des Dames from 1963 to 1965 in what has been considered the toughest rally in North America. 

At a time when women competed in female-only events on road circuits in their husbands’ or boyfriends’ race cars, Carter teamed with Jerry Polivka in establishing her racing credentials along working with Polivka with the Canadian enthusiast magazine Track and Traffic. In 1963 she won the sedan championship and a three-hour endurance event at Mosport driving a Mini-Cooper with Shirley Bowes. She also competed in road events in a Lotus 9, a Studebaker Hawk, and her own personal race car, a Sunbeam Alpine, while competing in the Shell 4000 rallies. 

Driving a Volvo 122 she won the CDRA Touring Class championship in 1963, the first woman to do so. She also raced in the Bahamas Speed Week in Nassau in 1966, winning that event over other pioneering women drivers such as Guthrie and Denise McCluggage. 

 

DC wins 1st race231Carter retired from racing in 1967, and took an advertising position with the new owners of Mosport. She also filed racing stories for major Canadian newspapers at this time. After leaving Track and Traffic, Carter went to work as public relations director for the Michigan and Texas International Speedways in 1968, then after three years went into advertising work in Detroit. In 1976 she left the business world, living in Wyoming and Oregon before returning to Canadian soil, ending up on Vancouver Island. 

Due to her success in racing, Carter was able to help promote the sport through the mainstream media, and her reputation evolved as a successful competitor who raced because she enjoyed the sport. 

She also helped to break down the barriers for women in the sport, helping to open doors for future generations of women racers. 

Please welcome Diana Carter into the Canadian Motorsport Hall of Fame.

 

Bob Armstrong

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Inducted 2012

A true competitor and a gentleman in the world of Canadian road racing, the late Bob Armstrong excelled in the sport in a wide variety of classes, from Formula Fords through to V8-powered Triumph TR8 and later raced a turbocharged Nissan.

While his credentials on the track are exemplary, it was his work behind the scenes where Armstrong made his biggest influence on the sport.

Armstrong’s formative years were ones of Formula One racing on the European circuits of the 1960s witnessing greats such as Dan Gurney, Graham Hill, and Jim Clark. Motorcycle racing and sports endurance racing also influenced the young Armstrong.

His vocation was an air traffic controller, but his passion was at the race track. In 1969 he became a track marshal at Mosport and four years later was able to start his racing career with a Toyota-supported Corona in the Canadian Showroom Stock Championship, placing a respectable third in his rookie year.

In 1974 he bought and climbed into a Merlyn Formula Ford, and took well to the open-wheeled class, taking nine top-fives in his first year of competition. He then raced a Lola T-340 at this time while winning the Formula Ford championship in 1976. For the next two years he raced with his Crossle, a car that helped him with numerous victories and lap records, including a posting at Mosport that stood in the class for the next 20 years.

Armstrong returned to a full-bodied car in 1980 with a sponsored ride driving a Sunoco CAM2 Motor Oil TR8, a team that included such racing luminaries as Scott Goodyear, John Buffum, and Don Prudhomme. There were some teething issues with the Triumph, but in true Armstrong style he percevered and placed fourth in the CASC National Championships.

Following that there was some racing in the Canadian Molyslip Enduro Series, a ride in the IMSA GT series, and more Formula Ford racing.

In 1985 Armstrong was appointed Chief Steward for the Canadian Professional F2000 Series working with the CASC and ASN Canada FIA. He was also the head of the Rothmans Porsche Cup where he firmly but fairly dealt with the on and off-track temperaments of racers such as Bill Adam, Paul Tracy, and Ron Fellows.

In 1990 Armstrong took on an important role as Director of track Safety for Canada’s involvement in Formula One activities, maintaining track safety, fire requirements and emergency services. In 1997 he was elected a Director and Vice-President of the Automobile Club de I’lle Notre-Dame, the FIA-delegated organizing club of the Canadian Grand Prix, where he applied his track coordination and services skills to not only the F1 races but to the popular NASCAR races which came to the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve from 2008 through 2012.
Armstrong continued to wear his racing helmet while working behind the scenes, competing in the World Challenge Endurance Series, the Firestone Firehawk Series and the Honda Michelin Series in the late 1980s and early 1990s, winning races and a few championships along the way. He continued to race a full schedule into 2005 with his Armstrong Motorsports Nissan, dominating the Touring GT class.

Along with his on-track activities, Armstrong was a director of the Canadian Motorsport Hall of Fame, and as with everything else he did in life, rolled up his sleeves and performed his duties on many projects, including working tirelessly with the CMHF’s Induction process and new members.

Among the many tributes for Armstrong after his passing in April of this year, ASN-FIA Canada Vice-President summed this man’s contributions best:

“If there is a Royal Family of Canadian Racing, it is certainly the Armstrongs. On any given weekend it was not unusual to find Bob the father, Cindy the mother, and Jennifer the daughter at a race event in any number of roles from track preparation, race driving, officiating, training, or whatever needed to be done. To know Bob was to respect his wealth of experience, knowledge, and willingness and ability to share with others. More importantly, to know him was to like him.

“Motorsport in Canada is better because Bob was here.”

Ron Fellows

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Inducted 2012

Few Canadians have raced in NASCAR’s top division. Few Canadians have raced in the iconic Le Mans 24-hours. And even fewer Canadian racers have cars named after them.

But Ron Fellows has accomplished all of the above, and a whole bunch more. From his Windsor home where he started in karting and then advanced to Formula Ford and the Players Challenge Series, Fellows became a dominant name in SCCA Trans-Am racing in the late 1980s, along with competing in the IMSA GT series. He also drove in the Cadillac LMP program of the early 2000s.

Less than 10 years later, he became involved with Corvette’s racing program, and was a driver of the team that took the racing world by storm in IMSA, ALMS, and Le Mans racing with the GTS CR-5 and CR-6 Corvettes, highlighted with a class win twice at Le Mans, a class win at Daytona, and a class win at Sebring.

Fellows shifted camps so to speak during this time, racing in NASCAR’s Cup, Nationwide, and Truck series from 2002 to the present, where he has won two truck races and four Nationwide events, including the NAPA 200 on the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve in Montreal in 2008, perhaps his most memorable and satisfying accomplishment in the sport.

Ron Fellows has had a racing career as one of North America’s most versatile and successful road racers in several racing venues. As a patron of Canadian motorsport, he has quietly counseled and mentored young racers with his Sunoco Ron Fellows Karting Championship, and of late, has helped in the rejuvenation of one of Canada’s most iconic road racing tracks, the former Mosport Park, now known as Canadian Tire Motorsports Park.

And the car named after him? The Ron Fellows edition Corvette Z06 of 2008, compete with a signature trim package. This Corvette was the first signed special edition in the history of the US sports car, and with only 399 samples produced is a fitting tribute to one of Canada’s top racing ambassadors.

Ben Docktor

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Inducted 2011

As a distraction from his business activities, North Dakota native Ben Docktor started to race stock cars on the dirt ovals of Alberta and Montana. He also competed as an IMCA open-wheel racer and the Players/GM Challenge. The former oil field roughneck also fielded teams in the local stock car arena.

But his goal in racing was to provide others with a facility, and the original plan of a small oval track grew to a race facility that would become a showpiece for motorsport in Western Canada. Preliminary work started in 1982, and the oval track was completed in 1985. By 1987, and using his own capital, Docktor was ready to share his dream amid the racing world with the multi-purpose Race City in Calgary.
Along with the half-mile oval track, a 2.1-mile road circuit, and a quarter-mile drag strip were built at the complex, and for the next 20 years fans were able to watch their racing heroes from several types of racing, including NASCAR, NHRA, IRL, CASCAR, and CASC events. Along with the sports cars and dragsters and stock cars, motorcycle racing was also a big attraction. Fans were able to watch such notables as Bobby Unser, Michael Waltrip, Mark Martin, and Shirley Muldowney compete at Race City.

Until 1995, when the facility was sold to Art MacKenzie, Docktor was at Race City every weekend as the track’s biggest fan. During his time with Race City, Docktor brought the best in major-league racing to Western Canada as one of the country’s biggest boosters of motorsport.

Rudy Bartling

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Inducted 2011

He had 20 years of racing behind him in 1981, but he had another 20 to go. Rudy Bartling has been described as Canada’s most experienced endurance racer, and Sebring was his second home, as he started that Florida endurance classic 17 times, between 1972 and 1996, the most of any Canadian driver and fifth among all drivers.

Bartling hired himself out for various racing teams throughout his career, driving a series of Porsches not only at Sebring, but in such major venues as the IMSA Camel GT races, the BF Goodrich Sundown Grand Prix, and the Molyslip Endurance Series.

He began racing in the early 1960s, and was the 1962 under two-liter Canadian champion with his Porsche Carrera. After numerous victories including the Oak Cup at Mosport, he placed fourth in the 1968 Road America race with co-driver Ludwig Heimrath in a McLaren Elva.

In his first appearance at Sebring, he placed seventh overall, and took four top-ten finishes at the ex-airport road course, his best placing a sixth overall in 1977.

During his career, Bartling proved he could work on cars successfully as well as drive them. He turned the wrenches for noted California Porsche racer Vasek Polak, first in 1965, and again in 1973 with the Porsche 917 Turbo that was driven by Jody Scheckter.

He continued to race in endurance contests throughout the 1980s and into the 1990s, driving with Klaus Bytzek, and the team won four of five Molyslip races in 1997 to win this championship. Also in the same year he was campaigning a Porsche 911 of his own, placing third in the Canada GT Challenge Cup.

Bartling’s success as a racer is only a part of his career. Along with his mechanical skills, the respect from his fellow racers and teams mark his achievements in the world of Canadian motorsport.

Image by Jerry Melton via Etceterini

Jacques Duval

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Inducted 2011

As road racing became big in Quebec, Jacques Duval was its biggest star prior to the Villeneuve era. He began at the St. Eugene, Ontario airport circuit in an Alfa Romeo Sprint Veloce. By the time the Mont-Tremblant road racing circuit opened in the fall of 1964, he was winning in one Porsche after another.

For four consecutive years, 1963-1966, Duval won the Sterling Moss Trophy as the outstanding sports car driver of Quebec while racing against the likes of Roger Peart (long-time head of Canadian racing through CASC and ASN), Jacques Bienvenue, Tom Graham and John Sambrook. Victory in the inaugural Grand Prix de Trois-Rivieres in 1967 in his Porsche 906 ahead of Rudy Bartling in another 906 and Serge Adam in a Sunbeam Tiger confirmed his prominence.

Canada’s Centennial year was among his best. At the first Grand Prix of Canada at Mosport, he dominated his class ahead of Craig Hill’s Triumph GT6 for 9th overall in the support race won by John Cordts’s McLaren. That year he collected wins both at Mosport and Mont-Tremblant. Notably, he was second to noted American Chuck Dietrich in an Elva BMW in a six-hour race at Trembland and traveled to Riverside, CA, hoping to add to his points in the Doug Revson Trophy series. On the unfamiliar California track, he finished behind Joe Buzzetta, Scooter Patrick and Monte Shelton, all of them ranking American racers. But it was with Hall-of-Famer Horst Kroll as co-driver that Duval’s international stature blossomed.

In 1966, Kroll and Duval finished second in class in the 12 Hours of Sebring in Duval’s Porsche 904 GTS behind class winners George Follmer and Peter Gregg in another 904 GTS, and 16th overall.

Returning in 1968, Duval/kroll drove a 911S to 9th overall, third in class behind Alan Johnson and Gregg Loomis.

In 1971 he was the first Canadian to win his class in the 24 Hours of Daytona, taking 7th overall. With co-drivers George Nicholas, a Canadian, and American Bob Bailey, the Sunoco 914-6 finished eight laps head of the second GT2 car, another 914-6 driven by among others Erwin Kremer. Pedro Rodriguez and Jackie Oliver won overall in a Porsche 917K, as Ferrari 512s and a pair of racing Corvettes completed the top six finishers ahead of Duval in the overall results.

Among other successes, Duval drove a 911 to 7th in a Trans-Am event at Tremblant in 1968 behind such ponycar stars as Mark Donohue and George Follmer, Sam Posey and Craig Fisher. That year Duval also won a six-hour Tremblant race partnered with Quebecer Jean-Guy Ostiguy. He also co-drove a 906 in the BOAC 500 at Brands Hatch, England. Originally his teammate was to be world champion Jimmy Clark, but the Scotsman opted to race in a Formula Two event at Hockenheim, where he died in a solo crash. Duval and co-driver Mario Cabral, a -1 part-timer, finished 19th in the outdated 906, while Jacky Ickx and Brian Redman won in a Ford GT40.

Duval remained prominent as a track announcer in the early years of Montreal’s Canadian Grand Prix.

He continued racing occasionally, winning at St. Eustache as Jacques Bienvenue’s teammate in 1978 in the latter’s Carrera, and in recent years runs for fun with his son, Francois, as co-driver in Quebec vintage events.

Image via La Presse

Professor Sid Watkins

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Inducted 2010

Professor Sid Watkins, “the Prof”, is a virtual icon in motorsport worlwide and, of course, is well known to all involved in motorsport Canada because of his many years involvement with the Formula 1 race initially at Mosport and St. Jovite and then at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve in Montreal.

Sid Watkins has always been interested in motoring, growing up around cars in his father’s garage, situated not far from Silverstone. He began to attend Formula 1 and other events in Silverstone in 1958 and subsequently ran the medical services of Silverstone for the Aston Martin racing weekend in 1962. During his time as a Professor of Neurosurgery in Syracuse, New York, commencing in 1962, he joined the administrative team of the American Grand Prix at Watkins Glen. He was really the first in the world to take a team of appropriate specialists trackside to provide immediate, high class medical attention, management and direction. Upon his return to the United Kingdom as the Professor of Neurosurgery at the London Hospital, he provided the medical and related safety services for the British Grand Prix from 1971 through 1977. Sid encouraged and supported Dr. Hugh Scully, with the support of Harvey Hudes, to establish at Mosport, one of the most advanced race medical intervention teams in the world at the time. (The Ontario Race Physicians continue to provide expert medical and related safety services at Mosport today).

In the spring of 1978, Sid was appointed the Medical Delegate for Formula 1 by Bernie Ecclestone and in fact attended virtually every Formula 1 race in the world for the next 25 years. Sid was elected the President of the FISA (Federation Internationale du Sport Automobile Medical Commission) in 1981 where he worked again with Dr. Hugh Scully to continue to improve the services in Montreal and, by association throughout Canada.

Labatts was a major sponsor of the Formula 1 enterprise in Montreal. In 1992, there was a ceremony in Montreal where Sid Watkins was presented with the “Labatts Award for Safety” by the Duke of Kent. (Sid was the second recipient of this award. The first had been Sir Jackie Stewart).

From 1992 through July of 2007, Sid continued to work actively with Dr. Jacques Bouchard and Ronald Denis as the Co-Medical Director’s of the Formula 1 race in Montreal. Without question, Sid’s support of the “Montreal model” was instrumental in establishing and maintaining a high standard of medical care in motorsport. The model created initially at Mosport and subsequently in Montreal has had significant positive effect on motorsport medicine and safety at virtually all motorsport events in Canada.

Professor Sid Watkins went on to become the President of the new FIA Medical Commission until his retirement from that position in 2007. In 1994, he was appointed Chairman of the FIA Expert Advisory Committee reporting to the President of the FIA. Organizing research groups for open cockpit, closed cockpit, rally and karting events, he was the founding President of the FIA Institute for Motorsport Safety in 2004. The “Institute” continues to do leading research in motorsport safety in all categories. In his capacity as President of the Medical Commission and President of the Institute, he served with distinction on the FIA World Motorsport Council.

Sid has bee the recipient of many awards related to his leadership in motorsport safety. In 1996, he was awarded the Motorsport Industry Association Achievement Award and also the Mario Andretti High Performance Award for Medicine. In 1997, he was given the R.A.C. Centennial Prince Michael of Kent Award. In 1998, he received the British Racing and Sports Car Club Silver Trophy for services to racing and in 1999, the Autosport Gregor Grant Trophy for Outstanding Contribution to Motor Sport. In December of 2006, on behalf of the FIA Institute for Motor Sport Safety, he received the Society of American Engineering (S.A.E.) Award for Excellence in Safety Engineering. In July 2007, he was unanimously elected to membership in the International Council of Motorsport Sciences (ICMS) and to a position as Honorary Member of the Board. Remarkable, in July of 2008, he received the Motor Industry Association Award for Outstanding Contribution to Motorsport Industry in the House of Lords in London, England.

In his professional career as a neurosurgeon, Professor Sid Watkins has been recognized as an outstanding surgeon, scholar, teacher and leader with a determined commitment to excellence which facilitated expert care to those injured in motorsport virtually anywhere in the world. It was recognition for the combination of world leadership in neurosurgery and in the development of motorsport medicine and safety that Sid Watkins was awarded the prestigious Order of the British Empire at the Jubilee Honours Ceremonies by the Queen in June 2002.

Professor Sid Watkins is unquestionably the leader of the past quarter century in the development of motorsport medicine and safety not only in Formula 1 races in Canada but across the country in all forms of racing.

Image via The Telegraph