Mont Tremblant Makes The List

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June 18, 2014

The early stages of a new game project are always exciting, it’s the point where all the ideas meetings happen and we discuss what tracks and cars we want to include.  This is where THE LIST comes into play.  We all have one, that wish list of tracks or cars that we’d love to see brought to life in the next project.

…right up there on my wish list was the classic Mont Tremblant circuit in Quebec

In my case I have a passion for classic road circuits and especially the tracks that defined the Trans Am and Can Am series in the late sixties, and right up there on my wish list was the classic Mont Tremblant circuit in Quebec.

Originally known as St Jovite, this Canadian track opened in 1964 and was one of the key venues during the heyday of Group 7 racing when legends like Bruce McLaren, John Surtees, Peter Revson and George Follmer piloted the most advanced sports cars of the time in an unrestricted race for speed.

The circuit also hosted some of the classic battles of the Trans Am series in the 1960s with the likes of Parnelli Jones, Dan Gurney and Mark Donohue racing V8 Boss Mustangs and Plymouth Barracudas wheel to wheel at the height of the pony car wars.  The racing was wild and a monumental crash at Mont Tremblant in August 1969 resulted in an eight car pileup that took out three of the four factory prepared mustangs and changed the course of that year’s Trans Am season.

Mont_Tremblant_01

Unlike some of the circuits from that era, Mont Tremblant is still with us, the track fell out of use in the late seventies but where some of the lost classic tracks were turned into malls or golf courses it simply hibernated until 2001 when it was purchased by new owners and modernised so the track could began to host events like the Champ Car World Series once again.

But how does it play? Lead Level Designer Graham Bromley has all the details:

The variety of corners coupled with multiple gradient changes make for an intimidating and challenging circuit, packed with interesting corners. Michael Schumacher, famously, once described it as the Little Nurburgring.

Right from the start Circuit Mont Tremblant hits you with challenges

Right from the start Circuit Mont Tremblant hits you with challenges; as you sweep right through the dip and climb on turn 1 , you’ll find bags of grip, then you’ll reach the crest and steep downhill at turn 2, the car will get very light and the grip evaporates; it’s very easy to run out of track here, as the car slides left whilst the track continues right. If you’ve survived that, you’ll be flying downhill through the fast curve at turn 3 and into a severe braking zone for turn 4.

Just those first four turns will test you as a driver, and there are still plenty of challenges to come such as the hump (9) where cars used to get airborne in the 60s, Bridge Turn (12) with its blind apex as its crests with the car getting light mid corner and Namerows Hairpin (14) where the track rises uphill and crests before immediately dropping away into a blind, right hand hairpin. Braking on the uphill is essential here if you want stay on the track.Mont_Tremblant_Map

Circuit Mont Tremblant is not only a circuit that requires a lot of bravery, but also plenty of precision – getting a perfect lap here will take some doing.

Mont Tremblant is a truly classic road course, nestled in a valley deep in the Laurentian Mountains of Quebec, the track winds through maple forest and rocky hillsides following the natural contours of the landscape, the road surface rises and falls through sweeping bends and fast straights giving a racing experience that is truly unlike anything you’ve experienced before.

We have used the famous fall colours of the Canadian forests

We have used the famous fall colours of the Canadian forests to give this track a visual style that stands out with vivid red, gold and orange trees against a deep blue sky.

You definitely won’t forget the thrill of powering a sports prototype through the esses and up into bridge turn as the autumn sunlight glints off the asphalt and the leaves kicked up behind you.

Unless perhaps you’re a Trans Am fan like me, in which case maybe you will more likely be taking the AAR ‘Cuda into battle against the Boss Mustang and letting the roar of the V8 shake the trees bare!

We are really proud to be bringing this superb track to our fans for the first time, and once you drive it I’m sure you will understand why it was on the list for all those years. See you on the track!

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About John Lewis

Lead environment artist at Codemasters recreating the world’s best racing tracks for the world’s best racing games.

View all posts by John Lewis

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