On tap this week:
- Tagliani shares honour
- Hinch heads to Europe
- Stroll wins in F3
- Rossi closer to title No. 8
- Quote of the Week: New DTM champ goes crazy
- Stewart's sudden cancellation disappoints
Racer Alex Tagliani isn't planning on slowing down anytime soon, but being inducted into the Canadian Motorsport Hall of Fame did make him pause for a few minutes.
When the Montreal native learned he would be recognized, he couldn't help taking stock of his "racing addiction."
"I've never raced for a piece of hardware or glamour or trophies or fame, I drove because I just love the sport to death," he said minutes before being inducted on Saturday at CBC's Glenn Gould Studio in Toronto.
"You never stop and look at all the things you've done and accomplished, but honestly when I got the call it was probably the first time I did it — I sat down and realized that I've done some pretty amazing things."
Also inducted with Tagliani were Riverside Speedway founder John Chisholm, Honda-Michelin Challenge Series creator and motorsport public relations professional Ralph Luciw, and NASCAR Canadian Tire Series (NCTS) racer Don Thomson Jr. The International Category inductee was three-time world champion Sir Jackie Stewart.
Near the top of Tagliani's list of proudest accomplishments is driving with the Canadian Player's Team in the Championship Auto Racing Teams (CART) Series, receiving the pole trophy from late Canadian racer Greg Moore's dad Rick at the 2001 Vancouver Indy, being the only Canadian to take pole at the Indianapolis 500 and leading the field to green in the 2011 race, and becoming the only driver in a NASCAR series to lap the field when he won the NCTS' Leland Industries 300 at Sunset Speedway in June.
Tagliani also stressed that none of these would have ever happened if it weren't for the unsung heroes who helped him along the way. He likened it to a pyramid: if just one block were removed, the whole thing would have come crashing down.
"The truth is when you really look at the sport, it's about people who are unselfish and have the same passion as you, but they are willing to help you because they can live their passion through you," said Tagliani, who turned 42 on Sunday.
"Those people are your family, sponsors, mechanics, friends, the media, and the fans. I hope that everybody who I mentioned will see themselves and will take this recognition with me as a team. You always have to remember that there is a ton of people behind you."
IndyCar driver James Hinchcliffe travelled to Germany to watch fellow Canadian Robert Wickens race for Mercedes in the Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters (DTM) Series finale at the Hockenheim Circuit on the weekend. He left impressed by the cars as well as the "extraordinary amount" of effort and resources the manufacturers put into their programs. "It was great being able to see Robbie at a race," Hinchcliffe said. "It wasn't long before I was thinking, 'maybe I should've brought my helmet and tried to talk my way into one of these beasts'."
By the numbers
Montreal teen Lance Stroll took his maiden win in the F3 EuroSeries on Saturday at the Hockenheim Circuit, leading every lap on his way to victory. It was a redemption for Ferrari Academy Driver Stroll who was roundly criticized and penalized for his aggressive and sometimes reckless driving earlier this season. The win in the series' final weekend helped Stroll secure fifth overall in the points and third in the rookie standings. "Winning my first F3 race feels so good," Stroll said. "At the beginning of the year I set the bar high for myself in terms of wanting to finish in the top-five of the championship ... so I'm hugely delighted to have accomplished that goal."
With two races left in the 2015 MotoGP season, Valentino Rossi's 11-point lead over teammate Jorge Lorenzo means he can wrap up his eighth elite class title in the penultimate race in Malaysia on Oct. 25 with a finish of third or better combined with a non-score from his rival. A pair of second place finishes in the last two rounds would also do the trick no matter what Lorenzo does. "We already said that race results was going to be important 10 rounds ago," Rossi said after a fourth place finish in Australia on Sunday. "But now it's really important and it will be very tough until the last race."
Quote of the week
"He is (expletive deleted) crazy this idiot."
— Audi DTM racer Nico Müller on the radio immediately after Mercedes driver and newly crowned 2015 champion Pascal Wehrlein locked up all four wheels in a wildly optimistic pass attempt on Sunday in the final race of the season that ended in contact with both cars pushed off the track.
The last word
Some fans attending the Canadian Motorsport Hall of Fame induction ceremony on Saturday went away unhappy after international inductee Sir Jackie Stewart was unable to attend due to undisclosed health reasons. Manoj Amuzuri travelled from Alberta hoping to meet the Formula One legend, but left disappointed. "Having had the pleasure to see Mario Andretti and Nigel Mansell be inducted into the Canadian Motorsport Hall of Fame the last two years as international inductees, I was looking forward just as much to see Sir Jackie Stewart have his turn," Amuzuri said. "Sadly, we weren't able to hear from the legendary racing driver; however, Jackie keeping good health is a whole lot more important and hope he has many good years in front of him."
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