It's no secret that Toronto has been a bit of a hotbed for illegal street racing during quarantine, with speeders running rampant on the Canadian city's highways. However, even as local racetracks open back up, buffoonery among the area's speed enthusiasts still appears to be running rampant—and a major issue.
As part of the province of Ontario's first phase of economic reopening this week, "individual outdoor recreational sports" including motorsport tracks were permitted to open for business again as of Tuesday. On Wednesday, Toronto Motorsports Park held its very first open lapping day of the season, and, as the photos and videos below prove, it was absolute mayhem.
Shared across Facebook and other social media outlets, no less than six cars sustained some pretty expensive-looking damage. As someone who has visited TMP numerous times, dashcam videos show some deeply bone-headed moves and an astounding lack of regard for track etiquette, rules, and outright safety by multiple drivers—including a Fiat 500 Abarth passing on the left on the big straight while two Subaru WRXs cut it way too close on the right. Another car can be seen clipping another Subaru on the infield as if it was just another pesky AI opponent in Gran Turismo.
One incident even came to blows in the pit lane when tempers flared and a #Worldstar-worthy melee broke out. It's a sad and frustrating sight not just because of the violence and piss-poor representation of Asian-Canadian car enthusiasts (and that's coming from an Asian-Canadian car enthusiast), but also because these folks are undoubtedly breaking all kinds of physical distancing rules.
To cap things off, a C7 Corvette Z06 can be seen going up in flames in the paddock probably not as a result of any sort of bad track behavior but likely just a Z06 doing Z06 things. "Safe to say it's not my best track day, given my f---ing car is on fire," its presumed owner quips in an Instagram story. To be fair to him, this wasn't anybody's best track day.
In response to the carnage, Toronto Motorsports Park swiftly announced a zero-tolerance policy for poor on-track behavior. "Due to the events at yesterday's open lapping, TMP is implementing new rules," organizers posted to social media Thursday morning. "Maximum 45 cars at any open lapping event. Any rules being broken i.e. passing zones, aggressive driving, ignoring flags will now be zero tolerance! If you break the rules, you are going home."
For Toronto-area enthusiasts who actually know what they're doing and value their own cars and their personal safety, it may be best to hold off on hitting the track for a few more weeks until all the bad eggs have exhausted themselves and/or have taken their vehicles out of operation.
This is why we can't have nice things. Drive safe.
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