Feb 01

The Mazda Stage will once again be the focus of attention at the CME

Watkins Glen Int’l to feature its 2013 race dates and the #69 AIM Ferrari at the CME

Watkins Glen International logo#69 AIM Autosport Ferrari 458 Italia ‘More Mazdas are raced every weekend than any other car brand’ is far from a hollow, advertising cutline. Considering Mazda’s historical contributions to motorsports, which includes an overall win in the 1991 24 Hours of Le Mans, along with their continued support of grassroots road racing and of such divisions as the North American MX-5 Cup and the Pro Mazda Championship, it is hard-earned and well-deserved recognition. WGI’s booth will feature the #69 AIM Autosport Ferrari 458 Italia that finished 3rd in the Rolex 24 at Daytona.


The Canadian Racing Season Begins February 8, 9 & 10, 2013 at Toronto’s International Centre

At the 7th Annual Canadian Motorsports Expo Powered by Inside Track Motorsport News, the Japanese-based marque will once again be literally centre stage as the proud, presenting sponsor of the Mazda Stage.

“Mazda Canada’s sponsorship of the Mazda Stage reflects the importance that the company places on motorsports, especially grassroots racing.”

Over the three day (February 8-10) Canadian Motorsports Expo, the Mazda Stage will be the central focus for the fans as it plays host to the show’s headlining celebrities, including NASCAR stars Kyle Busch and two-time Daytona 500 champion Michael Waltrip, and offers a fan-friendly destination for autograph sessions and interactive, expert forums.

Mazda Canada representatives will also make an appearance on the Mazda Stage to make an announcement regarding the expansion of their motorsports contingency program that was announced at last year’s CME.

“Exactly one year ago at the 2012 Canadian Motorsports Expo, Mazda Canada made a commitment to increase support for Canadian motorsports by offering a contingency program for several racing series in Canada,” said Sandra Lemaitre, National Manager, Public Relations at Mazda Canada. “With the success of last year’s program, we are excited to be coming back here again to grow the program and support even more grassroots racing in Canada.”

Mazda’s profile at the Canadian Motorsports Expo will extend well beyond The Mazda Stage, as it will also feature the Mazda2 B-Spec Media Race Car, a car that participated in the 2012 Canadian Touring car Championship (CTCC) under the command of a variety of prominent Canadian automotive journalists. Also on display will be a modified 1993 Mazda RX-7, which is raced locally in the Sigma Racing Time Attack Series.

Watkins Glen Int’l to feature its 2013 race dates and the #69 AIM Ferrari at the CME

WGI’s booth will feature the #69 AIM Autosport Ferrari 458 Italia that finished 3rd in the Rolex 24 at Daytona. This summer, the car will compete at WGI in the Sahlen’s Six Hours of the GlenWatkins Glen International is deservedly billed as ‘the Soul of American Road Racing,’ having been the site for competition in virtually every discipline of motorsports, from Formula One and Indy cars, to NASCAR stockers and Can Am and World Sports Cars.

This historic 3.45-mile, 11-turn road course, which will celebrate its 56th year of operation at its current location, has always been a destination for fans from north of the 49th parallel. This year, ‘The Glen’ will return the favour and make the trek from upstate New York State to the 7th Annual Canadian Motorsports Expo Powered by Inside Track Motorsport News.

“We’re very fortunate that a lot of race goers know the name Watkins Glen, in a large part due to our history,” explains Elizabeth (Betsy) Mayer, Public Relations Manager for Watkins Glen International. “We have many fans coming back year after year, but some people may not realize that we run events from April to October. The Canadian Motorsports Expo gives us a chance to showcase everything that we have to offer, both to our regular visitors and to the others who might not be too familiar with the Glen.”

In addition to the eagerly anticipated Finger Lakes Wine Festival, the Watkins Glen facility will also host four major race weekends in 2013. The SCCA Glen Double Nationals and the Glenora Wine Cellars US Vintage Grand Prix Presented by Welliver are high priorities for many Canadian visitors, but the undoubted highlights for this year would have to be shared between the NASCAR CHEEZ-IT ™ 355 at the Glen (August 8-11) for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, and the legendary Sahlen’s Six Hours of the Glen (June 28-30) for the Grand Am Rolex competitors.

All four racing events draw a large portion of their audience from Canada due to the close proximity of the track to the Canada/ US border.

“Canadians discovered us very early on, we have always enjoyed a strong presence from north of the border,” states Mayer. “We are not some distant destination; we can be reached very easily. And when Canadians come here, we want to ensure that they come back, so we strive to make their visits as enjoyable as possible with our on-site camping and our Thunder Road Tours.”

Sharing the Watkins Glen International display at the CME will be the Woodbridge, ON-based #69 AIM Autosport Ferrari 458 Italia, directly from its third place, GT class finish in this year’s Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona. The #69 Ferrari, along with its sister #61 R. Ferri / AIM Motorsports Italia, will be competing in June’s six hour enduro at the Glen.

“There are no Grand Am events in Canada yet, so the Glen has become our ‘home away from home’ race,” explains AIM Autosport co-owner Ian Willis. “Our car is very well suited to that track, so we hope to do very well in June.”

Willis is working towards having one of his AIM Autosport team drivers on hand to sign autographs and answer questions about their Grand Am program, with staff from Watkins Glen International in attendance offering information regarding ticket sales, camping opportunities and other trackside attractions.

For race fans seeking further information about Watkins Glen International, they can visit that track’s website, www.TheGlen.com.

ABOUT WATKINS GLEN INTERNATIONAL: Literally born as a ‘through the streets’ track in 1948, the Watkins Glen race course eventually moved to a temporary location after five years of operation, before ultimately settling on their current site in 1956. Officially opened in 1957, the Glen’s first race was a NASCAR Grand National event won by Buck Baker over Fireball Roberts. Over the ensuing 55 years, Watkins Glen has hosted races on the Formula One and NASCAR tours, as well as events from the SCCA Can-Am, Trans-Am and Formula 5000 calendars along with dates for the Indy cars and various Sports Car divisions.

ABOUT AIM AUTOSPORT: Established in 1995, AIM Autosport is a professional Canadian sports team campaigning Ferrari 458 Italia GT race cars in the Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series. AIM will defend its 2012 Grand-Am Rolex Series GT championship by entering two Ferrari 458 Italia GT cars for the full 2013 season. AIM’s success has been achieved through the dedication of its employees and the continuous support of the team’s commercial and technical partners. Away from the track, AIM Autosport’s technical and administrative headquarters are situated in the Toronto suburb of Woodbridge, Ontario. For more information visit www.aimautosport.com  and www.facebook.com/AIMautosport.

ABOUT MAZDA CANADA: Celebrating its 45th anniversary this year, Mazda Canada Inc. is a subsidiary of the Mazda Motor Corporation, based in Hiroshima, Japan, and is the Canadian distributor of Mazda vehicles in Canada. Mazda Canada’s head office is located in Richmond Hill, ON, with regional offices in Montreal, Vancouver, and Richmond Hill. A Mazda Parts Distribution Centre, serving all of Canada, is located in Mississauga, ON. Mazda Canada employs 140 people across Canada at these locations. As of January 2012, there were 165 independently owned, franchised dealers across Canada. Visit www.Mazda.ca for more information.

source: CanadianMotorsportsExpo.com