Dumoulin delivers a clear message
BOWMANVILLE, Ontario | A thunderstorm of rare intensity disrupted activities on Saturday at the Mosport circuit during the second stop of the 2022 season in the NASCAR Pinty’s series.
• Read also: NASCAR Pinty’s: another Quebec preserve
As a result, the 26 entered were not able to take part in the qualifying session which was to take place at the end of the afternoon. The times recorded during free practice, held in the morning, determined the starting grid for Sunday’s race.
The sky is unleashed
It was around 1:30 p.m. when the weather broke over the motor sports complex located about 100 kilometers east of Toronto.
The heavy rainfall caused extensive damage to the site and caused a power outage. Tents were lifted by the force of the wind and some trailers even overturned on their side.
Many ambulances were dispatched to the scene, particularly in the camping areas, to rescue spectators affected by debris. Injured people have been taken to hospital, some of whom are believed to be in serious but stable condition.
A cameraman perched on a platform at the edge of the track was thrown to the ground, but his state of health, according to the latest news, did not inspire any fear.
It is, in fact, the entire region of southern Ontario that was affected by this sneaky storm which killed at least two people, in Brampton and the suburbs of Hamilton.
In head position
Faster in the only outing of the NASCAR cars, Louis-Philippe Dumoulin would never have thought that his time of 1 min 22.814 s would allow him to start from the lead position.
The leaders of the Canadian series had no choice but to rely on the times of the free practice session to form the field before the green flag was waved on Sunday.
« To leave first is always comforting, but I would have liked to participate in the qualifications, indicated the Trifluvien, in an interview with the Log. For the benefit of small successful adjustments, I think I could have driven even faster. »
This is certainly a clear message from Dumoulin, who is aiming for a fifth victory at Mosport. He was also the only driver to cover the winding track under the 83 second mark.
Rivals on the lookout
Behind, however, the pack is ready to respond. Less than a second separates the first eight drivers on the starting grid.
Winner on the Sunset oval track last week, Treyten Lapcevich will accompany Dumoulin on the front row, although he seriously damaged his bike at the end of the session. He conceded only 257 thousandths of a second to the holder of the leading position.
Marc-Antoine Camirand, who won the most recent visit of the Pinty’s Series cars to Mosport in September 2021, will be third on the starting grid. Alberta’s Brett Taylor and Ontario’s Matthew Scannell posted the fourth and fifth fastest times respectively.
In order, Alex Tagliani, DJ Kennington, Kevin Lacroix, Andrew Ranger and Gary Klutt complete the top ten group. Among the other representatives of the Belle Province, we find Dexter Stacey (12and), Jean-Philippe Bergeron (14and), Ray Junior Shorthand (18and), Louis-Philippe Montour (21and) and Wallace Stacey (24and).
A race in the rain?
The NASCAR Pinty’s Series event could well take place in the rain according to the weather forecast issued for the Bowmanville area.
If the forecast showers are confirmed, the drivers will have to fit their cars with grooved tires. Precipitation (unless there is a deluge) does not prevent the holding of a race on a road circuit, unlike events presented on oval tracks.
« I’m not worried, » said Lacroix, one of the favorites to win the 51-lap event. « Every time it rained, no matter where, I always won, » he recalled proudly.
The driver from Saint-Eustache will try to reach the top step of the podium for the sixth time at Mosport and bring the winning streak of Quebec drivers to 11 on the Ontario circuit.