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James Vance Press Releases

Tough Times At Home

STOUFFVILLE, Ontario (July 16, 2014) - “I knew what I had to do and got on with it,” James Vance said about working through the neck injury he received early last weekend at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park.

That was the start of a rough weekend for Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge driver Vance, who also competed in the SCCA Pro Racing Mazda MX-5 Cup Presented by BFGoodrich Tires event last weekend at the track commonly known as Mosport.

Vance was placed 12th on the SCCA Pro Racing Mazda MX-5 Cup Presented by BFGoodrich Tires grid after his third-place qualifying efforts were disqualified for drafting. But when the green flag dropped, his No. 40 Mazda did not go.

A component failure led to Vance being stalled on the grid. All Vance could do was hope the rest of field went around him. That didn’t happen – his car was struck from behind.

The car was heavily damaged by the hit. Vance was unable to continue in the 45-minute sprint race. The contact and a team strategy decision also ended Vance’s weekend in Mazda MX-5 Cup.

“MX-5 race was frustrating,” Vance said. “After the race, the car was fixable. But as a team we decided it would be best to take my motor out of my car, as it was stronger than my teammate, who is going for a championship, and switch motors. Then he has a better shot at winning the next race.”

In Round 7 of the IMSA Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge, the Compass360 Racing team enjoyed its best qualifying effort ever, with Vance’s teammate, Jon Miller, landing the No. 74 ExpoSystems Honda Civic Si in 11th on the Street Tuner starting grid. But Vance and Miller finished the race 13th.

From the beginning of Vance’s stint, the transmission in the No. 74 car was misbehaving.

“I had to nurse a transmission my whole stint, which meant I could not push as hard and run the pace that the car was being capable of,” Vance said. “The other thing I had to be mindful of was everyone around me was driving as if it were a sprint race from the beginning of the stint. The second stint is always a bit more aggressive, but these guys were being a bit ridiculous, to be honest.

“Don't get me wrong: It was hard racing, and at one point we were four-wide through corner two, which at Mosport in an endurance race is insane.”

Vance has faced a string of bad luck at the track lately but has focused on the accomplishment of making it to the SportsCar Challenge level to propel him forward.

“I think the Mosport race was a solid result all things considered,” Vance said. “Jon had a hell of a first stint, and we did the best we could do with the transmission and tire degradation.

“The biggest thing for me to remember is this is my first year in this super-competitive series, and I am pretty proud of how we are doing. We seem to grow as a team and, no matter what, leave the track with our heads held high. This series is so tough, and the drivers are all of such a high caliber, so being able to hold my own against these more experienced guys in a front-wheel-drive car, which I only jumped into the third race of this year, is pretty cool.”

Vance’s next race weekend will be at the storied Indianapolis Motor Speedway for the Super Weekend at the Brickyard. Practice starts at 9 a.m. (ET) Thursday, July 24 with qualifying at 3 p.m. the same day. The race will take place at 2:35 p.m. Friday, July 25.

 

 

VANCE HEADED FOR HOME READY FOR DOUBLE-DUTY

Round 8 of the IMSA Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge takes place at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park in Bowmanville, Ontario, just 40 miles (65 km) from driver James Vance’s home in the Toronto suburb of Stouffville.

Vance considers the beloved, challenging track – known by many by its first name, Mosport – as his home track and is thrilled to race July 12 at a familiar venue.

The knowledge of the 10-turn, 2.459-mile circuit and the area will help ease the stress of the weekend, as Vance will pull his first weekend of double-duty racing with his team Compass360 Racing in the SportsCar Challenge and Sick Sideways in the Playboy Mazda MX-5 Cup. Vance also will race with the MX-5 team in August at Road America and in October at Road Atlanta.

“I am completely excited for this weekend,” Vance said. “I know the MX-5 cars really well, and I love racing them. My team (C360) is supportive of me doing this. I’m excited for the extra track time. I know I’m really fast in the car, and think I can shine in the series because last year I was running up front and now I have more experience.

“The most frustrating part of this season is that I haven’t been able to break out and really show my potential in Continental (Tire SportsCar Challenge). I’ve had to learn to lean on my teammates some. Luckily, I have a great one in Jon Miller.”

With new plans in place with C360 teammate Miller, Vance will be equally as focused on success in his No. 74 ExpoSystems USA Honda Civic Si in the Street Tuner class.

“We’ll be focused on getting the No. 74 back on track,” Vance said. “We’ve got a new plan going into the weekend. Jon and I will have our own engineering plan worked out with the team for our car. We’ll be basing it more of how we feel in the car rather than looking to our teammates.”

Vance’s sponsor ExpoSystems USA will provide homecoming grandeur by setting up a Formula One-style garage structure. The structure is made of aluminum framing and will feature custom graphics. The unique structure will be on display and available for tours throughout the weekend, with dates and times to be announced. Unique setups similar to C360’s are available for purchase on the company’s website, www.exposystems.us.

The race weekend begins for Vance at 8 a.m. (ET) Thursday, July 10 for MX-5 Cup Practice 1. The series will hold two 45-minute sprint races. at 8 a.m. and 4:20 p.m. Saturday, July 12.

The SportsCar Challenge schedule begins at 1:40 p.m. Thursday, July 10 for Practice 1. Qualifying for the Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge Series takes place at 2:40 p.m. Friday, July 11. Finally, the green flag drops over Round 8 at 1:15 p.m. Saturday, July 12. Live timing will be available at scoring.imsa.com, with live updates @IMSALive on Twitter. The race will be broadcast on FOX Sports 1 at 10 a.m. Sunday, July 20.

For updates on Vance, follow him on Facebook and Twitter @James_Vance. 

   

Frustrated Vance Looks For Advantages At Home

STOUFVILLE, Ontario (July 2, 2014) - James Vance finished 15th with teammate Jon Miller in Round 6 of the Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge on June 28 at Watkins Glen International.
Vance improved upon his starting position of 22nd, but he was unable to find the momentum needed to compete at the front of the Street Tuner (ST) class in his No. 74 ExpoSystems Honda Civic Si fielded byCompass360 Racing.

Vance and Miller both were fighting to gain position when they received a pass-around under caution, a call from officials that allows a car to advance to the tail end of the field on a restart if the class leader was behind it at the time of the caution.

The team reacted quickly and gained position during the pass-around. Later in the race, Miller served a drive-through penalty for a pit speed violation, halting any further progress.

"The race was very frustrating," Vance said. "I tried to be as consistent as possible and move forward during my stint. Jon did a great job despite receiving a drive-through penalty for speeding in the pits.

"That was probably the most frustrating part of our day, as we nailed the strategy and the got the drive-through, but then we got that penalty, which ultimately took us out of a possible top-10 finish and concluded with us finishing P15. From the get-go we were struggling, as nailing the setup for my teammate and I seemed a lot harder at WGI than any other track this year."

Brushing off the difficulties of the weekend, Vance looks ahead to Round 8 at his home track, Canadian Tire Motorsport Park in Bowmanville, Ontario, only 45 miles from his home in the Toronto suburb of Stouffville. Racing on a familiar track where he has proven speed will shrink his to-do list for the weekend.

"Home races are always awesome," Vance said. "Having friends and family come out to support me as we travel to all the different destinations throughout the year is never easy. Having more people there is definitely a positive going into CTMP. Also, I love the track, and I have always been quick, which is comforting. And it also means I do not have to learn the track, which takes a lot of uncertainty out of the weekend."

The event at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park - the only Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge race of the year in Canada - also is big for Vance's sponsor ExpoSystems USA. The sponsor has created a state-of-the-art, unique pit setup for C360 Racing.

On-track action for Vance begins at 1:40 p.m. (ET) Thursday, July 10 with the first practice session of the weekend. Qualifying takes place at 2:40 p.m. Friday, July 11. The green flag drops at 1:15 p.m. Saturday, July 12 for Round 8 of the Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge. The race will be broadcast at 10 a.m. Sunday, July 20 on FOX Sports 1.

For updates on James Vance, follow him on Facebook and Twitter at@James_Vance.

 

All Work, No Play Makes Vance A Success Story

STOUFFVILLE, Ontario (June 25, 2014) - In the summer months, a few weeks off may be a welcome vacation to some. Instead, it's a perfect time to focus on building a business for Compass360 Racing driver James Vance.

Vance suffered his first DNF of the 2014 IMSA Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge season June 7 at Kansas Speedway after qualifying a season-best 12th. 
 
To shake off that tough weekend, Vance has focused on his business of selling sponsorship and making deals that allow him to continue moving forward in his racing career.

"I knew I had to say something to give me closure," Vance said. "And I did. You can't control everything. It's so easy as a driver to get caught up in the excitement of the four days leading up to the race. You get hyped up, and at the end of the weekend you can be like, 'Man, what happened?'

"I had to make sure I didn't let myself focus on that. So I got back to work and focused on the projects that allow me to race. I looked at this year and everything that I've accomplished, and I was proud. Some driver coaching, I deal with sponsors, and I have worked for everything that I've spent this year. That accomplishment just made me proud of my work.

"The business side of things is exciting work to me. In university, I majored in business and minored in finance, so I have some background. To me, seeing that email or message that starts with that positive subject line is exciting. Landing that deal is the same feeling as throwing down a perfect lap. I'm addicted to it."

Vance's next step is to conquer Round 6 of the Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge June 26-28 at Watkins Glen International in his No. 74ExpoSystems USA Honda Civic Si.

Vance, 21, from Stouffville, Ontario, finds himself in an all-too-familiar situation, having never raced at the next venue on the schedule. But he has logged plenty of miles on the 11-turn, 3.4-mile circuit on a simulator and through online racing.

"For whatever reason, there was always a lot of online racing of MX-5's at Watkins Glen," Vance said. "Now when I get there, it'll be different, as it always is when you're actually in the car. However, I'll have my reference points to help me out.

"I think I look at new tracks differently than other drivers. Going into a new track seems advantageous. I'm going in neutral with no expectations of how well I'll do in one turn or how difficult I may find another. New tracks excite me. I think it can be an advantage to not have been there."

On-track action starts at 2:20 p.m. (ET) Thursday, June 26 with Practice 1 of the weekend. The 150-minute race takes place at 11:35 a.m. Saturday, June 28 for the Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge field. Follow along with live streaming on imsa.com that begins at 11:35 a.m. Saturday, June 28 or tune in to FOX Sports 1 to catch the encore presentation at 10 a.m. (ET), Sunday, July 6.

For updates on James Vance, follow him on Facebook and Twitter at @James_Vance

   

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