By Paul Brent, CA Magazine, 10/2006
When Bob Gore spun into a concrete barrier wall at Ontario's Mosport International Raceway at 130 km per hour in 1998, he wrote off his family's $40,000 BMW 540 - and broke seven ribs. This was after four years of membership in the BMW Club of Canada and four "uneventful" years of attending performance driving schools.
Rather than hang up his racing gloves, the Toronto CA, who worked in the aerospace industry as a controller and a CFO from 1982 to 1988, decided he simply had to have a better car and converted the other BMW in his driveway ? a 1991 325is ? into a racing machine.
"I ended up putting a safety cage in it and making it a little bit better to handle, safer and more fun in terms of its limits," says the married father of three who is now licenced with the Canadian Automobile Sport Clubs as a race driver.
The accountant in Gore knows what it cost to make the street-legal 3 series into the thoroughbred racer it is today. It began with bigger brakes, offsetting the weight of the safety cage by gutting the car?s interior and replacing most windows with plastic.
He figures he has spent about $40,000 to make it capable of 180 km per hour. That total might be news to his wife, Mary, office manager of Robert Gore & Associates, the business he started 17 years ago in the Beach area of Toronto where they live. "I don't believe I remembered to tell her how much it added up to," Gore says wryly, al-though she has caught hints about the cost of the car she calls the speed mobile. The family car in the driveway now is a BMW 7 series ? with the licence CAFORU.
Eight years after the crash that accelerated his passion for speed instead of ending it, Gore tows his race car to tracks around Ontario and Quebec and participated in a CASC sanctioned event at Mosport on July 1. This year also took him down new roads in both his professional and racing life: he opened another office in Barrie, Ont., where he began articling at A. F. McLaren & Co. in the '70s; received his BMW Club racing licence, and participated in his first club race in August.