Dalla Lana: People Ask Me, ‘Really? Is that What You Did for Ten Years?’
Paul Dalla Lana looks back on his racing career that saw him become the most successful amateur driver in WEC…
From a track day at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park in 2008 to a decade-long residence in the FIA World Endurance Championship, Paul Dalla Lana’s motorsport career has been quite the journey.
The 57-year-old Canadian, who announced his retirement from racing last month to put full focus on his business commitments, went from being a total rookie to the most successful amateur driver in the series with 17 wins.
A close relationship with Aston Martin Racing was a defining element of his lengthy WEC tenure, which was dovetailed with GT3 outings. But even after several years competing at such a high level, it can be challenging for some people outside of the sport to fully comprehend the magnitude of Dalla Lana’s commitment.
“As I look around my circle of friends and family, it’s almost disbelief,” Dalla Lana tells Sportscar365. “They can kind of understand it and I brought many people to Le Mans and other events, trying to share it as best I could with a pretty big cross-section of family, friends and work colleagues. The overwhelming takeaway was that this is unbelievable.
“I still get asked all the time: ‘Really? Is that what you did for ten years?’ It seems impossible. It’s a theme of the gentleman driver. It’s one of the few sports where a gentleman driver could conceivably compete at the highest level.”