Edmonton seniors take ride of a lifetime at Castrol Raceway

About a dozen Edmonton seniors put their need for speed to the test Friday at Castrol Raceway.

Nancy and Bob Jameson moved to Edmonton three weeks ago and are already crossing things off their bucket list.

They took part in an event arranged by Track Junkies and staff from the retirement community Touchmark at Wedgewood. 

Though their son and other family members used to race stock cars, the Jamesons had ever been for a ride until Friday.

A blue Porsche was one of the cars that made laps around the Castrol Raceway road course on Friday. (Travis McEwan/CBC)

Bob Jameson showed up hoping to ride in a Porsche. His wish was granted, and he got to cruise the 2.7-kilometre course in a white Boxster.

“I don’t drive anymore,” he said. “I lost my driver’s licence because of my eyesight. So, it’s quite a treat for me to go with a professional driver.” 

With his wife next to him, he added: “She does the diving [now] … but she doesn’t go as fast as these guys.”

Instructor Michel Laroux has been driving professionally for 35 years. His father lives in a Touchmark retirement facility. 

“They asked me to do a talk at Touchmark and I thought it would be more exciting to come to the track,” Laroux said. 

Track Junkie driving instructor Michel Laroux helped organize the day at the track. (Travis McEwan/CBC)

He wanted to give the seniors an opportunity to experience the track and get close to the cars, while getting them out of the facility for the day. 

“It’s been fun to watch their responses,” Laroux said. “Some of them wanted to come in after two laps. Some of them just said faster.” 

It’s Pat Davidson’s job to arrange experiences for seniors living in Touchmark residences. The life enrichment/wellness co-ordinator is focused on bringing residents’ dreams and passions to life. That includes helping them make their bucket list dreams come true

“It’s not your great-great grandma’s seniors home anymore,” Davidson said. “We’re out there having fun, living life to the fullest. I totally believe 80 is the new 50.”

Life enrichment and wellness coordinator Pat Davidson wants to help residents make their bucket list dreams a reality. (Travis McEwan/CBC)

She said some people question whether outings like this are safe for the seniors.

“You’re never too old to try something new,” she said.

Twelve residents attended the event and 10 of them rode cars around the track. The youngest was 80 years old.

Nancy Jameson gives a wave as she heads out on the road course at the Castrol Raceway. (Travis McEwan/CBC)

The ride around the track got a glowing review from Nancy Jameson.

“It was wonderful! It gave you quite a rush, I’ll tell you. Going around the corners especially. It was fun.”

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