On August 17, 1980, Mosport Park hosted the Molson Canadian 1000, a six-hour contest for the FIA World Championship of Makes and the IMSA GT Series. Both organizations used the same rules for their premier class. In addition to the Mosport event, they share a North American race date with Daytona International Speedway.

The World Championship of Makes season began in February at Daytona International. After Daytona, teams returned to Europe to compete at Brands Hatch, Mugello, Monza, Silverstone, Nurburging and the 24-Hours of Le Mans, before returning to North America. The championship’s first stop was Watkins Glen International, followed by Mosport Park. The penultimate round was held at Vallelunga, with the finale taking place at Dijon.

The IMSA GT Series also kicked off with the 24-Hour event at Daytona International Speedway. Next on the schedule were the 12-Hours of Sebring followed by events held at Road Atlanta, Riverside International Raceway, Laguna Seca, Lime Rock Park, Brainerd International Raceway and a second stop at Daytona. Prior to the 6-hour event at Mosport in August, the teams visited Golden State International Raceway and Portland International Raceway. After the series only Canadian event, the championship competed at Road America and made a second visit to Road Atlanta for the penultimate race of 1980. Daytona hosted the final contest of the season.

Competitors in the IMSA GT Series collect points in the GTU, GTO or GTX divisions.

  • GTU - The GTU category is for vehicles prepared to FIA Group 4 rules with an engine displacement of less than 2.5-liters. The Mazda RX-7, Porsche 911 and Datsun 280ZX compete in this group.
  • GTO – GTO is for cars over 2.5-liters and built in accordance to FIA Group 4 regulations. This division is home to the Triumph TR8, Chevrolet Corvette, Porsche Carrera and 934.
  • GTX – GTX and FIA Group 5 automobiles share the same rules. However, the World Championship of Makes has an over and under 2.0-liter classes. In both IMSA GTX and the FIA Group 5 over 2.0-liter category, Porsche is the dominant manufacturer. Lancia owns the under 2.0-liter division with their Montecarlo model.

Round nine for the FIA World Championship of Makes and race eleven for the IMSA GT Series were conducted during the Molson Canadian 1000 at Mosport Park. Teams would compete in a six-hour contest around the ten turn 2.459-mile road course.

The start of the Molson Canadian 1000 at Mosport Park. On the pole is the point-leading Dick Barbour Racing Porsche 935 K3 shared by John Fitzpatrick, Brian Redman and team principal Dick Barbour. Starting on the outside is the second Barbour entry driven by Bobby Rahal and Bob Garretson. Occupying row two is the No. 18 JLP Racing Porsche 935 and the first of three Lancia Beta Montecarlos.
During the 1980 racing season, John Fitzpatrick was competing on both sides of the Atlantic, but his main focus was the IMSA GT Series with Dick Barbour Racing. Before Mosport, Fitzpatrick had six IMSA victories in nine starts driving the No. 6 Porsche 935K. He was partnered with Brian Redman at Mosport and the duo started on the pole with Fitzpatrick earning his first World Championship of Makes win of the year.
The GTO winners make a pitstop at the Molson Canadian 1000. Canadian Bill Adam stands ready to jump into the Group 44 Triumph TR8 and relieve the team owner, Bob Tullius. The Mendez Racing team dominated the category this season, but the Group 44 entry won at the 12-Hours of Sebring and the second Daytona event. Adam and Tullius were dominant at Mosport, winning by a margin of eight laps.
Racing Beat brought two Mazda RX-7 to the Molson Canadian 1000. Their No. 7 entry had five GTU victories before the Mosport event. Unfortunately, the car shared by Jim Downing, Walt Bohren and Jeff Kline was eliminated from the race on lap-32 when it was involved in a crash at corner three. The No. 17, which had two wins this season, driven by John Morton, Kline and Bohren, would dominate the category.
Finishing second overall and in the Group 5 and IMSA GTX classes was the No. 18 JLP Racing Porsche 935 JLP-2. The only car to finish on the same lap as the winners was shared by the father and son team of John Paul Sr. and Jr. Paul senior won the 1979 Tran Am championship. At Lime Rock Park, earlier this season, the pair became the first father and son duo to win an IMSA GT Series race.
The No. 46 DeNarvaez Racing Porsche Carrera RSR opened the season at the 24-Hours of Daytona with a runner-up result in the GTO category. It wasn’t until round eleven at Mosport Park that the team collected their second podium finish. Mauricio DeNarvaez was paired with Tony Garcia. The duo started twenty-first overall and sixth in class. After 6-hours of racing, they were eleventh overall and second in GTO.
The No. 00 Interscope Racing Porsche 935 K3 of team owner Ted Field and Danny Ongais finished third overall and in the Group 5 and IMSA GTX categories at the Molson Canadian 1000. The duo collected rostrum results at the 24-Hours of Daytona and 12-Hours of Sebring. They were gridded in the sixth position for the start of the race and finished one lap behind the winners.
In the first two rounds of the season, Brad Frisselle drove the Mandeville Racing GTU Mazda RX-7 with Roger Mandeville. By race three, Frisselle was competing in his own entry, the No. 47 Frisselle Racing Mazda RX-7 and would share the driving duties with Mandeville at Mosport. They qualified second in class at the Molson Canadian 1000 and earned a runner-up result, albeit four laps behind the category winners.
The Group 5 Lancia Beta Montecarlos, entered by Lancia Corse Italia, were dominant in the previous round at Watkins Glen. Of the three cars in the event, two of them finished first and second. Mosport would be more of a challenge for the team. On lap-186, an accident led to the retirement of the No. 15 Lancia. The ‘best of the rest’ was the No. 14 car, shared by Hans Heyer and Walter Rohrl, who finished fourth.

1Gr. 5/ GTXFitzpatrick / RedmanPorsche 935 K3Dick Barbour Racing245-
2Gr. 5/ GTXPaul, Jr. / PaulPorsche 935 JLP-2JLP Racing245-
3Gr. 5/ GTXField / OngaisPorsche 935K3Interscope Racing244-
4Gr. 5/ GTXHeyer / RohrlLancia Beta MontecarloLancia Squadra Corse241-
5Gr. 5/ GTXMcKitterick / MearsPorsche 935 K3Dick Barbour Racing237-
6Gr. 5/ GTXMiller / Akin / NieropPorsche 935 K3Racing Associates234-
7Gr. 5/ GTXFacetti / FinottoLancia Beta MontecarloJolly Club232-
8GTOTullius / AdamTriumph TR8Group 44223-
NRAFGr. 5/ GTXWhittington / HennPorsche 935 K3Thunderbird Swap Shop219Spin
10GTUMorton / Kline / BohrenMazda RX-7Racing Beat218-
11GTOde Narvaez / GarciaPorsche CarreraDe Narvaez Racing215-
12GTUFrisselle / MandevilleMazda RX-7Brad Frisselle Racing214-
13GTUSoto / HoneggerMazda RX-7Z&W Enterprises Racing208-
14GTXHaywood / LevenPorsche 935-77ABayside Disposal Racing205-
15GTOHochreuter / Brezinka / RidgelyPorsche 911Fritz Hochreuter204-
16GTOKoll / CookPorsche 911Koll Motorsport202-
17GTOCurrin / CarussoChevrolet CorvetteDynasales195-
NRAFGr. 5/ GTXGhinzani / DarnicheLancia Beta MontecarloLancia Squadra Corse186Accident
NCGTXHeimrath / Hardacre / ReskiPorsche 911Climax Racing155-
DNFGTUDavenport / CarneyDatsun 280ZXRaytown Datsun136Accident
DNFGTXHeimrath / RutherfordPorsche 935Heimrath Racing127Suspension
NCGTOBulkowski / KulczykTriumph TR8Bruce Kulczyk120-
DNFGTXCarter / ValentineChevrolet CamaroCarter Racing Services104Accident
DNFGTOBytzek / BartlingPorsche CarreraBytzek/Litens Automotive103Accident
DNFGTXRahal / GarretsonPorsche 935Dick Barbour Racing98Spin
DNFGTOHerman / NaonPorsche CarreraMontura Racing64Accident
DNFGTOWietzes / BienvenueChevrolet CorvetteFifth Essence Racing59Suspension
DNFGTUDrolsom / DavenportPorsche 911Drolsom Racing59Clutch
DNFGTUStiff / PoseyDatsun 240ZNTS Racing58-
DNFGTOMendez / GonzalezPorsche CarreraHector Huerta Racing56Accident
DNFGTOEdwards / CarterChevrolet CorvetteMurray Edwards54Transmission
DNFGTUDowning / Bohren / KlineMazda RX-7Racing Beat32Accident

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