Moderator/Lead Reporter - Motorsports News Section
D.J. Kennington heads into the Pinty's presents the Clarington 200 on Sunday, Sept. 1 at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park near Bowmanville, Ontario, trailing Scott Steckly by just four points in the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series presented by Mobil 1 championship standings. Matthew Murnaghan/NASCAR
Canadian Tire Series News & Notes: CTMP[/size]
Kennington Likes Pressure Of Points Race
By Shon Sbarra, NASCAR
August 26, 2013 - 4:16pm
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – There was a time not all that long ago that D.J. Kennington struggled in pressure situations. Now, he thrives on them.
Before winning the 2010 NASCAR Canadian Tire Series presented by Mobil 1 championship Kennington had the proverbial monkey on his back. After several near championship misses in CASCAR – the Canadian Tire Series’ predecessor in Canada – and a couple of tough-luck finishes in the series’ very early years, the St. Thomas, Ont., driver closes with the best of them them these days with two titles and 19 series career victories.
“There was a time when I didn’t get it done at crunch time,” said the driver of the Castrol Edge/Mahindra Tractors Dodge. “Experience is the key to everything, though. You learn what to look out for and know what to expect.”
The championship battle in the Canadian Tire Series has never been closer. Scott Steckly (No. 22 Canadian Tire Dodge) has a slim four-point advantage on Kennington heading into the Pinty’s presents the Clarington 200.
“I love it,” says Kennington of the tight points race. “I think I have the best team in the business, so we’re ready for whatever comes our way down the stretch.”
It has been a season unlike any other in the previous six in series history. While the competition has always been tight, there was always a rabbit out front setting the pace. That’s not the case this year with adversity of some sort striking each of the teams at various points throughout the year.
“We’ve all had some bad luck this year, but everyone has battled back,” said Kennington. “The points lead has never been more than 10 or so. It’s wide open.”
Racing on the road course at CTMP is not a new experience for Kennington, but this event will be a little different from the previous six series events at the track. The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series will make its Canadian debut and a handful of regulars from that series will tackle both races in the first-time companion event.
“I’m not sure how those guys will impact that race,” said the two-time Canadian Tire Series champ. “They’re obviously great drivers and they’ll be in good cars. I know they are just looking for track time, but racers want to win. We’ll just have to wait and see how it plays out.”
With 38 cars on the entry list, a full field of 34 cars is expected to start Sunday’s race in front of a live television audience on TSN2.
“It’s going to be a great show,” said Kennington. “Let’s line them up and get started.”
The Race: This is the 10th event of the 2013 season for the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series presented by Mobil 1 and the last of four road-course events on the schedule. This is the series’ eighth visit to the road course at CTMP. It’s first time for a second visit in a season to the iconic circuit after opening the season there in May.
The Procedure: The starting field is 34 cars, including provisionals. The first 29 cars will qualify through NASCAR road-race style (group) qualifying. The groups will be determined by practice times. The remaining five spots will be awarded through the provisional process. The race will be 51 laps covering 201.8 kilometers (125.4 miles).
The Track: Canadian Tire Motorsport Park, formerly known as Mosport International Raceway, is Canada's largest motorsports complex. The 750-acre, multi-track facility is located within the Greater Toronto Area, north of Bowmanville, Ont. CTMP features the 2.459-mile road course; a half-mile, paved oval; a 2.4-kilometer advanced driver and race driver training facility and a 1.4-kilometer kart track. The facility opened in 1961 and has hosted stock car, Formula 1 and IndyCar events over the years. The road-course track was resurfaced in 2000 and widened to 40 feet. Canadian Tire acquired the naming rights to the facility in early 2012 and new ownership has made several improvements to the facility over the last two years.
The Records: The single-lap qualifying record is held by J.R. Fitzpatrick and was set on May 18, 2013 at 106.289 mph (83.286 seconds). Andrew Ranger holds the race record at 1 hour, 26 minutes, 39 seconds for an average speed of 86.838 mph on June 17, 2007.
The History: In the previous seven NASCAR Canadian Tire Series events on the road course at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park, J.R. Fitzpatrick (2008, 2010 and 2012) and Andrew Ranger (2007, 2009) have accounted for five of the seven wins. D.J. Kennington claimed his first series road-course victory in 2011 while Louis-Philippe Dumoulin scored his first career win in May. Ranger has claimed three starts from the pole while Steckly has two. Fitzpatrick won the pole position in the first visit this year. Qualifying in 2011 was rained out.
CTMP RACE NOTES
A Picture Paints A Thousand Words: Fans not able to attend the Pinty’s presents the Clarington 200 can still watch much of the action. Qualifying video from 4-5 p.m. ET on Saturday will be streamed live on the NASCAR page at www.tsn.ca website while the race will be telecast live on TSN2 with coverage beginning at 11 a.m. on Sunday.
Strange Look: Andrew Ranger, a two-time winner on the road course at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park, will not be with his familiar Jacombs Motorsports team. Instead he will be in a DJK Racing entry. He’ll be in the same car that Alex Tagliani drove to the pole at Trois-Rivieres, Que.
Track Time For Truck Drivers: The CTMP road course is familiar turf for Canadian Tire Series competitors, but it’s uncharted territory for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series which is making its Canadian debut. James Buescher, NASCAR Next member Jeb Burton, Ty Dillon and Chad Hackenbracht are making the most of the opportunity to gain valuable track time by doing double duty this weekend. On the flipside, Canadian Tire Series regulars Martin Roy (No. 90 Batteries Expert/Gamache/Veloce Dodge) and rookie Alex Guenette (No. 39 Kawasaki/Motos Illimitées/DLGL Dodge) will make their Camping World Truck Series debuts.
Not Much Wiggle Room: Just 10 points separate the top three drivers in the championship standings. Scott Steckly leads D.J. Kennington by just four points and Jason Hathaway (No. 3 Snap-on Tools/Rockstar Energy Drink Dodge) is a close third. Kennington is the only one of the three with a road-course win at CTMP to his credit having taken the checkered flag there in 2011.
Duking It Out: Series rookie-of-the-year contenders Guenette and Ryley Seibert (No. 09 Lake Excavating/Emco Waterworks Dodge) are in a virtual dead heat for the 2013 honors. The two are tied atop the rookie standings with Seibert holding a slim two-point advantage in the drivers point standings – the tiebreaker for the competition.
RACE: Pinty’s presents the Clarington 200
PLACE: Canadian Tire Motorsport Park, Bowmanville, Ont.
DATE: Sunday, Sept. 1
TIME: 11:06 a.m. ET
TV SCHEDULE: TSN2, Sun., Sept. 1, 11 a.m. ET (LIVE); RDS2, Fri., Sept. 27, 8 p.m. ET
TRACK LAYOUT: 2.459-mile permanent road course
Saturday, Aug. 31
10:40-11:45 a.m. Practice
1:10-1:55 p.m. Final Practice
4 p.m. Qualifying
Sunday, Sept. 1
11 a.m. Pinty's presents the Clarington 200 (51 laps, 125.4 miles, 201.8 kilometers)
Driver Entry List - Dodge Drivers in Bold type
CAR DRIVER/HOMETOWN TEAM OWNER CREW CHIEF
02 Kerry Micks, Mount Albert, Ont. Leland/BDI/Gaunt Collision Ford Susan Micks Rino Montanari
3 Jason Hathaway, Dutton, Ont. Snap-On Tools/Rockstar Energy Drink Dodge Ed Hakonson Craig Masters
04 J.F. Dumoulin, Trois-Rivieres, Que. Bellemare/Bernier Crepeau Dodge Paul Corbeil Dany Emond
4 Ty Dillon, Welcome, N.C. Fitzpatrick Motorsports Chevrolet John Fitzpatrick Ted McAlister
5 Noel Dowler, Sherwood Park, Alta. EMCO/Praxair/Safety Kleen Dodge Kevin Dowler Laurence Roy
7 Jeb Burton, Halifax, Va. State Water Heaters Dodge Sharon Shepherd Don Jacobson
09 Ryley Seibert, Williams Lake, B.C. * Lake Excavating/Emco Waterworks Dodge Trevor Seibert Keenan Magnant
9 Curtis Fielding, Minden, Ont. * Fielding Estate Winery Ford Susan Micks Terry Wilson
14 James Van Domselaar, Fort Saskatchewan, Alta. Steel-Craft Door Products Chevrolet James Van Domselaar Steve Yakimchuk
15 Steven Mathews, New Liskeard, Ont. Bill Mathews Motors Ford Bill Mathews Steve Mifsud
17 D.J. Kennington, St. Thomas, Ont. Castrol Edge/Mahindra Tractors Dodge Doug Kennington Dave Wight
19 Brad Graham, Glencoe, Ont. Holmar Plumbing Ford Reginald Arseneault Jeff Wernham
21 Jason White, Sun Peaks, B.C. Bowers & Wilkins/Cathcart Trucking Dodge Melissa McKenzie Brian Ellas
22 Scott Steckly, Milverton, Ont. Canadian Tire Dodge Scott Steckly Randy Steckly
24 James Buescher, Plano, Texas TBA Dodge Scott Steckly Brian MacDonald
25 Joey McColm, Ajax, Ont. TSC Stores/Canada's Best Store Fixtures Dodge Bud Morris Frank Millman
27 Chad Hackenbracht, New Philadelphia, Ohio Jacombs Racing Dodge Dave Jacombs Bill Burns
28 Andrew Ranger, Roxton Pond, Que. La Cité de Mirabel Inc./Plancher2000.ca Dodge D.J. Kennington TBA
29 Ray Courtemanche Jr., Montreal, Que. La Cite De Mirabel Inc. Dodge Ray Courtemanche Jr. Tim Ellas
39 Alex Guenette, Terrebonne, Que. * Motos Illimitées/DLGL Dodge Dave Jacombs Mike Knott
42 Peter Klutt, Halton Hills, Ont. Legendary Motorcar Chevrolet Peter Klutt John Fletcher
47 L.P. Dumoulin, Trois-Rivieres, Que. WeatherTech Canada/Bellemare Dodge Marc Andre Bergeron Tyler Case
55 Dexter Stacey, Kahnawake, Que. Bully’s Truck Stop Dodge Kristin Hamelin Dave Ingram
56 Howie Scannell Jr., Milton, Ont. IGPC Ethanol/K&B Auto Dodge Daniel Bray Kevin Blacklock
59 Gary Klutt, Halton Hills, Ont. * K-Line/Legendary Motorcar Chevrolet Peter Klutt Bob Roney
60 Ron Beauchamp, Jr., Windsor, Ont. Mopar/Exide/Pennzoil Dodge Ronald Beauchamp, Sr Deon Deneau
66 Robin Buck, Campbellville, Ont. Quaker State Dodge Sandra D'Angelo Frasor Bull
67 David Thorndyke, Oshawa, Ont. LubeSource/Thorsons EVT Chevrolet David Thorndyke Adam Thorndyke
69 Trevor Seibert, Williams Lake, B.C. Lake Excavating/Emco Waterworks Dodge Trevor Seibert Al Lebert
71 Daniel Bois, Bracebridge, Ont. * Thermal Technology Services Dodge Patrice Brisebois TBA
76 Jeff Lapcevich, Grimsby, Ont. Tim Hortons Dodge Sherri Lapcevich Chris Couvillon
81 Larry Jackson, Oakville, Ont. B&B Decals/Touchwood Cabinets Dodge Brian Barton Ron Easton
84 J.R. Fitzpatrick, Ayr, Ont. Equipment Express Chevrolet John Fitzpatrick Don Thomson Jr.
88 Marc-Antoine Camirand, St. Léonard-d'Aston, Que. * White Motorsports Chevrolet Derek White Robin McCluskey
90 Martin Roy, Napierville, Que. Batteries Expert/Gamache/Veloce Dodge Normand Roy Mario Gosselin
97 Hugo Vannini, Repentigny, Que. VTI Motorsports Ford Yvon Vannini Yvon Vannini
98 Matthew Scannell, Milton, Ont. * Trailers by Jim Bray Dodge James Bray TBA
99 Paul Jean, Mirabel, Que. * BFI Canada/VIP Poker Chevrolet Derek White Brandon White
Dodge - 25 cars
Chevrolet - 7 cars
Ford - 4 cars
Total - 35 cars
If you look at the driver entry list, Truck Series regulars Jeb Burton, Chad Hackenbracht, & James Buescher who usually drive Chevrolet or Toyota are drive in a Dodge this week!