Automotive journalist and friend of Road & Track had a front-row seat to a wild first-lap crash during a Nissan Micra Cup race this weekend at Calabogie Motorsports Park. You'll clench everything watching Makse cooly thread his way through the chaotic scene. Amazingly, everyone walked away from this massive wreck.
Micra Cup is Nissan's incredible low-budget Canadian spec racing series, using factory-prepped, race-ready versions of Nissan's charmingly cheap Canadian-market hatchback. When we drove one last summer, we found the 109-horsepower racer slow, stout, and brilliant.
Turns out, the factory-built racers, with their full roll cages, FIA-approved driver's seat, and NISMO suspension, are astoundingly stout when things get crashy. Just watch:
What happened here? Judging by this grandstand video, it was just a matter of the front-runners going into Turn One shoulder-to-shoulder, someone getting loose, and mayhem ensuing. Heavy rollovers and at least one very heavy wall hit were the fallout.
We really have to commend Makse's driving prowess here—he kept his eyes up, focused on his escape route, and threaded the needle through an impossibly tiny gap, keeping his inputs precise and never doing anything to upset his car's balance. But the truly amazing news here is that everyone, including the driver whose Micra barrel-rolled like a tumbleweed, walked away from this big-time crash.
, for plenty of video car reviews and on-track footage with less destructive outcomes. And take a second to appreciate just how safe modern race cars have become—even at the affordable, economy car end of the spectrum.