RACE 1: The 40 minute Race 1 started late afternoon and ran under sunny conditions. At the drop of the green Blok #33 had an excellent start positioning his car on the inside of corner one. Holding the inside and going 3 abreast through corner one, Blok persevered and took over the 1st place position.
RACE 2: Mid afternoon on Saturday, the CTCC cars returned to the track for the second 40 minute of the weekend. The race saw Blok starting in 2nd, just missing the pole position by .038 seconds, based on the fastest lap from Race 1 . Similar to Race 1, at the start Blok passed Staikos #6 for the lead through corner 1, with Tom Kwok #55 pushing forward into 1st place in corner 3. As if it was deja vu, Blok again took back the lead going down the Andretti straight and then started to pull away.
RACE 1: The 25 minute Race 1 ran under sunny conditions. At the drop of the green Blok still getting familiar with the car added too much power creating wheel spin and allowing Fletcher to edge past him going into corner 1. Blok stayed right on his bumper through to the hairpin at Moss corner, until Fletcher took advantage of his 300+HP difference and pulled away on him down the straight stretch.
RACE 2: Early Sunday morning the GT Sprint/Challenge cars returned to a green track for Race 2 after a steady rain the night before. The race saw Blok starting on pole as the starting grid was based on Race 1 results. This time when the green flag flew, Blok was ready and easily took the lead opening up a gap by the hairpin at Corner 5. However by the end of the Andretti straight going into Corner 8 #111 Terry Fletcher and #601 Leigh Pettipas in his T1 800 HP Corvette were on Blok's bumper.
RACE 3: So with no power steering, Blok took up his pole position behind the pace car for the 20 minute race. The end of Lap 2 saw #125 Blok pulling away from top three T1 cars who were sporting a 300 HP plus advantage; #601 Leigh Pettipas, #01 Bart Slot and #111 Terry Fletcher.
By Lap 4 Fletcher had moved from 4th up to 2nd place and by Lap 7 had gained enough on Blok to make a pass on the inside of Corner 8 taking the lead from Blok. On Lap 8 Corner 5 saw Blok attempting to re-take the lead first on the outside of 5a and then on the inside of 5b but was unable to make it stick.
Fletcher and Blok sped bumper to bumper past the start/finish line overtaking a lap car on Corner 2. Blok moved to the inside of Corner 3 as Fletcher went wide and ran off the track. Making his way back on to the track Fletcher takes up the chase after Blok but unfortunately by Corner 8 of Lap 10 he went off the track again, this time hitting the wall and ending his race.
Blok continued on wrestling with the power steering until Lap 15 when he took the checkered flag 17.9 seconds ahead of 2nd place overall and 54 seconds ahead in class for his 3rd win of the weekend.
This made for a perfect weekend: 3 pole positions, 3 first place finishes and fastest lap of the weekend!
“I've driven many challenging races in my career, but Sunday's finale was easily the most physically challenging I have ever done. Terry (Fletcher) and I raced each other very hard and very clean all weekend and having the pressure behind me for the entire last race made my difficult task harder than it already was. I owe a big thanks to Blaise Csida and the BC Race Cars team. They gave me an excellent handling car, worked to fix the power steering pump right up until that last possible moment. I owe a big thank you to my sponsors who stepped at the last moment to ensure a successful weekend: Woodys MVR, Certified Labs, SunSign Graphics, Belder Tool, H&H Construction, McMillans Transmission, TD Products and auctionacar.ca.
Blok now set his sights on Wojceichowski, and by Corner 11 of Lap 5 makes the pass for the lead. Once Blok had secured a comforable lead he settled in to a rhythm for the rest of the race and brought home the 1st place trophy and the lead in the CTCC series.
Sunday dawn bright and dry and the USF2000 took to the track for the Round 9 final just after noon. Qualifying positions were based on the 2nd fastest time from qualifying, putting Nathan Blok 16th on the grid. At the drop of the green flag, Blok moved to the outside and passed 3 cars by Corner 1 moving him to 13th position.
There was contact in corner 1 between No. 96 and 24, taking them out of the race and moving Blok into 11th place. Before the full course caution came out, Blok passed another car at the end of the straight to bring him to 10th place.
For the next 10 laps it was a steady battle for Blok as he would gain a position, then lose a position . Not giving up at the mid-point of the race, Blok took advantage of a 3-car incident on Lap 16 and jumped up the leaderboard to 7th place. After two more laps under caution, Blok made several passing attempts but was unable to make them stick during the final two laps. The checkered flag dropped with Blok in 7th place, his first top 10 finish in USF2000 and the best result ever for the John Cummiskey Racing Team.
“I reviewed the Race #1 video and data, and went out on the track for Race # 2 on a mission,” laughed Blok. “I made a huge advancement on corner 1 and by the end of lap 1 I had moved up 6 positions. My car developed under-steer about 1/2 way through the race, and I made a sway bar change, but it was too little, too late. A few more laps and a top 5 finish would have been in the cards.”
“I would like to thank all my sponsors for giving me the opportunity to participate this weekend.
And I would like to thank the team for overcoming some technical issues this weekend and providing me with an awesome car. I'm proud to be part of John Cummiskey Racing's first top 10 finish and am looking forward to a full season next year.”
Release prepared by Jim Leggett (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Nathan Blok, a 17-year old racing driver, used a unique approach in seeking sponsorhsip money for his 2011 Formula Tour 1600 season.
Appearing on CBC's Dragon's Den television show, Blok was successful in securing support from Jim Trevling with his motorsports sales pitch.
Over 5,000 candidates auditioned, of which only 250 were chosen and of those only 125 made it to air on the 2011-2012 season.
Blok was one of the 18 “young” entrepreneurs who were picked from the applicants to appear on the 2nd top rated show with 2.7 million viewers.
Accompanied by his personal driving coach, veteran racer Claude Bourbonnais, Blok had his Formula 1600 race car with him during his appearance at the Toronto studios in May. The show was aired that fall.