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Canadian Tire Motorsport Park (formerly Mosport Park and Mosport International Raceway) is a multi-track motorsport venue located north of Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada. The facility features a 2.459-mile (3.957 km), The name "Mosport" is a contraction of Motor Sport, came from the enterprise formed to build the track; it is pronounced as the two words actually sound, "Mo-Sport" (but is often incorrectly pronounced "Moss-Port")
The circuit was the second purpose-built road race course in Canada after Westwood Motorsport Park in Coquitlam, British Columbia, succeeding Edenvale (Stayner, Ontario), Port Albert, Ontario's Green Acres (ex-British Commonwealth Air Training Plan), and Nanticoke, Ontario's Harewood Acres (ex-British Commonwealth Air Training Plan Number One Bombing and Gunnery School), all airport circuits, as Ontario racing venues.
The track was designed and built in the late 1950s. The first race to be held on the track was a local event organized by the Oakville Light Car Club in June 1961. Shortly thereafter, on June 35, the venue held its first major race, the Player's 200, a sports car race bringing drivers from the world over to rural Ontario. Stirling Moss won the two-heat event in a Lotus 19. Second was Joakim Bonnier with Olivier Gendebien third. The proposed hairpin was expanded into two discrete corners, to be of greater challenge to the drivers and more interesting for the spectators, at his suggestion, and is named Moss Corner in his honour. This is a source of lingering confusion as many people call the track Mossport.
Mosport has had a succession of owners since the original public company created to build the track. Two of those prior owners, Norm Namerow (who owned the track through his publishing company, CanTrack, until his death) and Harvey Hudes, have both been inducted into the Canadian Motorsport Hall of Fame for their contribution to the sport in Canada. In 1998, Panoz Motorsports purchased the facility, and in 1999, the newly formed American Le Mans Series visited Mosport for the first time. For 2001, the entire circuit was repaved to meet FIA specifications, and is now 42 feet (12.8 m) wide. Drivers were consulted to ensure the character of the "old" track was kept; almost all the "racing lines" have been maintained.
Mosport achieved acclaim though a series of international sports car races under the title "Canadian Grand Prix" normally reserved for Formula 1 races. Many events were wildly popular, breaking Canadian sports attendance records with each successive race. The success of these races led Mosport to be seen as a key component in the founding of the Can Am Series.
The CanAm first visited the track in its inaugural season in 1966, and Mosport hosted at least one event in every year of the series' history, except 1968. In 1967, Canada's centennial year, Mosport hosted Formula One, USAC, and a 500cc Motorcycle Grand Prix. F1's Grand Prix of Canada remained at the track until 1977, until it was moved to Montreal. Mosport has hosted a wide variety of series throughout its history. The circuit has held Formula One, USAC, World Sportscar Championship, Can-Am, Formula 5000, and many other sports car, open-wheel, and motorcycle series.
Mosport has had several fatalities, both track crew, drivers, and riders, the most recognized being German Formula One driver Manfred Winkelhock who was killed in 1985 when his Porsche 962C crashed into a concrete wall. The most recent fatality at the track was in 2008 during the 29th annual Vintage Automobile Racing Association of Canada Racing Festival. Driver Dino Crescentini of Rochester Hills, MI – a ten-year veteran of vintage racing – lost control of his 1977 Wolf Dallara Can-Am car, which previously had been driven by Gilles Villeneuve.
Unlike many historic motorsport venues, Mosport's track layout has remained mostly unchanged from its original form.
Canadian Motorsports Ventures Ltd. (CMV) which includes Orlando Corp. Chairman Carlo Fidani and Canadian road racing legend Ron Fellows, purchased the facility in June 2011.
In February 2012, a partnership between Mosport and Canadian Tire was announced. The partnership includes a renaming of the track to Canadian Tire Motorsport Park. The partnership will help to upgrade the facility, and improve the experience for spectators, participants, race teams, and corporate sponsors.
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