Bruce Canepa doesn’t do things in half measures. If he’s going at it, he’s going whole hog. That’s true in his restoration business, and that’s true in his fanatical style of vintage racing. He was on an absolute flyer in this session, and I’m so glad that it was all on video. This is masterfully produced, by the way, as the commentary is even added, which helps to tell the narrative of the race. It’s a great video, so give it a watch right here!
In case you didn’t catch it, Canepa’s car suffered a transmission failure in the Saturday morning session after getting off to a great lead. During the lunch break, Bruce’s crew swapped in a new cog-box and had the car ready to go in time for the afternoon session. Unfortunately, the afternoon session starting grid is based on your finishing position in the morning heat race, meaning Canepa had to start in 35th position.
This set up a fantastic challenge for Bruce to work out, trying to throw his 935 back up to the front of the pack. It doesn’t take long, as he is on a charge from the drop of the flag, passing some 20 cars in the first lap alone. As he charges toward the front, the cars get harder and harder to pass, but he makes a job of it, to be sure. From there, its 20 minutes of popping, banging, turbo whoosh, blow off valve shuush, and flames shot on every shift. That final pass for the lead of the race is one of the best executed passes I’ve seen in racing, let alone vintage racing. There was a bit of contact between Bruce and the Greenwood Corvette, but like I said, Canepa doesn’t do half measures.