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Jun 25, 2014 - 04:51 PM
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All Work, No Play Makes Vance A Success Story
Posted by: newsla on Jun 25, 2014 - 04:46 PM
Sports Cars
All Work, No Play Makes Vance A Success Story


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.

 

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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. 74 ExpoSystems 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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