A threesome in the family

  • Photo Louis Butcher
    Martin, Michel and Nicolas Strip are brought together in the same race at the Grand Prix of Trois-Rivières.

    Louis Butcher

    Friday, 11 August, 2017 22:11

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    Friday, 11 August, 2017 22:11

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    THREE-RIVERS | On stage, Michel Barrette loves to tell stories that he lives, in the daily adding of course a good dose of humor.

    His first participation in the Grand Prix de Trois-Rivières, which began Friday, could without doubt serve as inspiration to power his new show.

    The comedian and his two sons, Nicholas and Martin (24 and 27 years, respectively), are gathered in Mauricie, in the end of the week, while all three are engaged in the Cutting Nissan Micra, a series of monotype which brings together thirty of the drivers.

    “These are the most beautiful moments of my life, he told in interview to the Newspaper. I was able to share my passion with my two sons. You could ask for better ?

    “I love cars, I collect,” he continues. I find myself racing with them and confront them on a circuit, it is magic. But it is also unique. I don’t know of any category in Canada, where the father and his two sons are part of the same event. “

    This trip is to three, the Module may have first lived for the first time at circuit Mont-Tremblant two weeks ago.

    Not without a certain fright.

    The first two turn of the majestic circuit of the High Laurentian mountains, on two occasions (1968 and 1970) has been the host of the Grand Prix of Canada F1, are particularly daunting.

    The Module could also be seen then that, in fact funny, the three members of the family have been involved in the same accident that destroyed both cars.

    The paternal side has been a privileged witness of the scene which took place after the straight line of departure/arrival.

    “My son Nicholas was in front of Frédéric Bernier, Martin and I, said Michel. I see Nicolas from skidding, we had to ride about 160 km/h. It managed to recover the trajectory of the race, after having spun a second time, but on the other side.

    “Bernier, him, lifts the foot to avoid breakage, but this is the worst place to slow down because the car is unbalanced. He went head-to-tail and finds himself face to face with my other son, Martin, who could not avoid it.

    “Me, I’m behind and I don’t want to hit Martin. I slowed my turn and I hit the guard rail. I had to tear off a hundred feet of fence. The car has been raised before striking another guardrail on the other side. “

    Two cars amochées

    If no driver has been fortunately injured, the damage was significant. It will be necessary to find two other cars to compete in the Grand Prix de Trois-Rivières.

    “We were the three involved in the same accident, said Michel, I guess this is a first. “

    Back in the paddock, Michel however had not lost the smile.

    “Me who loves to tell stories, that’s a very good that I’ll keep,” he said. There was not one, not two, but three concerned.

    “Accidents are part of the race, he noted. I just wish that here in Trois-Rivières, we will still have our three cars on Sunday evening. “

    Forty years later

    Michel Barrette, 60-year-old, comes to see the Grand Prix of Trois-Rivières for the last forty years.

    “It is here,” he said, that my dream of running in a series monotype began, at a time when Jacques Villeneuve (brother of Gilles), Richard Spénard, Marc Dancose and all the other were enrolled in the Honda (known at the time of Driving Quebec).

    These guys were at the time that Gilles Villeneuve had accessed the F1.

    “I failed to make my first season this year [in 1980]. I was running front-to-stock-car in Saint-Félicien. I had just gotten married, but my wife hated the race. “

    When he has confirmed his intentions to run in the Wheel quebecers, he had to make a choice.

    “She told me, it’s me or the race,” he said. I chose… my wife. The following fall, it did. And to say that I had found my car and the financing from sponsors. “

    “Forty years later. I find myself at the Grand Prix of Trois-Rivières not sitting in the stands, but on the track. At the edge of a race car. It is 40 years old dream come true, ” he admits. I never would have thought that I was to run and especially with two of my sons. “

    The quebec artist has two other boys, actor Olivier Barrette (33 years old) who has no interest in cars (it doesn’t) and the youngest, Jonathan, at the age of ten years.

    A child-like smile to Martin Barrette

    “From the age of three years old, I loved to photograph the interior of the cars dad and I was always smiling,” says Martin Barrette, who has had the immense privilege to do a couple of laps of the track on Friday morning aboard a stock-car driven by none other than his father Michel.

    “I experienced an incredible feeling, he said. The noise of the car came to pick me up. I cried for joy in my helmet. My smile was similar to one of my three years. I have lived the most beautiful quarter of an hour of my life. “

    Martin realized, from his first laps of wheel-to-wheel Three-Rivers, that the path was particularly difficult.

    “It is a track extreme, he claimed. In contrast, in Mont-Tremblant, there are no loopholes. Rather, these are walls. There is no room for error. “

    For his part, Nicolas said he was very flattered to run at Three-Rivers, who is currently a rookie for excellence in the mid-season Cup-Nissan Micra.

    “It was our goal to be ready for the Grand Prix of Trois-Rivières, it is the biggest event of the year. And for me, it is a pride to run with my brother and my father. “

    In the show

    Initially, Michel Barrette had been invited to present the singer Kevin Bazinet who will offer his “tour de chant” Saturday evening in the port area in Trois-Rivières.

    “I shouldn’t do the show, but rather to stay a few minutes on the scene, said the comedian. But it is hard to do five or 10 minutes. When I start, I stop. I will not do two hours, but probably a good three quarters of an hour… “

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