In racing, courage and ingenuity are important, but sometimes resourcefulness is what’s needed to win.
Last Saturday, Pirelli World Challenge Driver Tom O’Gorman was in trouble. His 2017 Honda Civic Si race car was sitting in the pits with major damage from a four-car wreck. Since the Civic Si, which was redesigned for 2017, is only just now going on sale, it would be impossible to find the parts to fix it in time for Sunday’s race. Then good fortune literally drove by.
Scott Nicol, a Honda of Canada employee, was attending the race in a brand new Civic Si. O’Gorman and his teammates from Shea Racing asked Nicol if they could strip parts off his car to get their race car running again. Many people would probably cringe at the idea of letting mechanics cannibalize their new car for parts, but Nicol, a consummate team player, said yes.
“He was very accommodating and we started pulling front end parts from his car,” O’Gorman said in a Honda press release. “We basically needed everything forward of the radiator from the passenger car. Bodywork, arm supports, and various front end parts to put the race car back together again. But we were ready for Sunday’s TC race. I can’t thank Scott enough.”
That Sunday race for the TC, or Touring Cars, class threw another curveball at O’Gorman. Early morning rain left the track wet but drying, leaving Shea Racing with the dilemma of whether to start O’Gorman’s car on rain tires, or to put him on performance-enhancing slick tires and hope the track dried out quickly.
O’Gorman went out on slicks, and won the race. Not bad for a driver whose car almost didn’t make the starting grid at all. The cobbled-together Civic Si will race again this weekend at Lime Rock Park in Connecticut. The team will install proper replacement parts eventually, and hopefully Nicol will get his Civic Si road car running again as well.