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INSIDER REPORT: Canadian drag racer crashes hard and walks away

Drag racing is about the most violent display of mechanical prowess imaginable. Sometimes, though, all of that harnessed violence comes unglued.

Published May 11, 2012

Drag racing is about the most violent display of mechanical prowess imaginable, which is why the fans love it. Sometimes though, all of that harnessed violence comes unglued and things get ugly. That’s what happened to Toronto restaurateur and racer Raymond Commisso last weekend at Maple Grove Raceway. The owner of Dimmi Car & Trattoria in Yorkville was competing in the Pro Mod class when his Camaro turned hard left about 150-200 feet down the strip. The resulting impact was hard enough to break the concrete retaining wall. Thanks to the robust safety equipment, Commisso is in one piece. His car on the other hand was pretty much destroyed.

While the Wheels.ca team was visiting UOIT as part of the AJAC EcoRun, we made an unexpected sighting of the upcoming 2013 Cadillac XTS. While the DTS replacement is hardly a secret, few have seen anything more significant that a show floor model. Production is due to begin in Oshawa later this month, so what you are looking at is an early, pre-production test model. Officially a mid-size model, the XTS looks substantially larger than the current CTS and the rear sail panels look much more substantial than they appeared up close at the Detroit Auto Show. There are apparently several test mules hanging around the tech centre, so sharp-eyed motorists in the east end of the city might just see one soon.

Toronto-based rally driver, “Crazy Leo” Urlichich, who is a fan favourite thanks to his spectacular driving style, finished in 2nd spot in the Oregon Trail Rally last weekend. This was the first Rally America Championship podium for Crazy Leo and his co-driver Carl Williamson on their first attempt at the notoriously tough event. The result is exceptional compared to the winner, David Higgins, in a factory-backed Subaru, considering that Urlichich campaigns a 2007 Subaru, nicknamed The Beast.

“We came into this new for us event with one goal, to go fast and disregard the danger. We’ve done it, we had a blast on some awesome stages, and we have proved that we can be near the top even at the first time of asking,” said Leo. “The Beast, prepped by Can-Jam Motorsports has worked flawlessly, as always.”

Williamson said, “Three stage wins, marshals thanking us for the entertainment and apparently the biggest jump of the rally and to top it all off, 2nd overall! It’s nice not to have to explain to our team boss that he can’t have any sleep before the next rally because he has a car to rebuild. Big thanks to Can-Jam Motorsports for a great car as always.”

Fellow Canuck, X-Games competitor Andrew Comrie-Picard, finished a strong fifth place in a two wheel drive Scion xD.

If you think Motley Crue drummer Tommy Lee’s on-again, off-again relationship with Canadian cutie Pamela Anderson has been a crazy ride, just wait till you see what Ken Block had in store for him recently! Block took Lee for an E-ticket ride around Willow Springs Raceway in California in Block’s 600 horsepower Ford Focus. The look on Lee’s face says it all:

“Little kids do stupid things. You did, you did and I did. I’m not mad.” These are the words of an exceptionally patient Boston area man, with a demolished front porch. His neighbour’s 8-year-old son had just wiped it out with his mom’s BMW. CBS reports that the boy backed up at about 30 mph (48 km/h), down the driveway, between two parked cars and through a hedge before crashing into the porch. The boy was not seriously injured in the crash.

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