NASCAR PINTY’S SERIES: NASCAR Canada’s Pinty’s Series finally got underway with a double header at Sunset Speedway on Sunday night. It was held up by rain and got started late, but it was a great show once the sky cleared and the track dried.
Quebec youngster Raphael Lessard won both 125-lap chases, giving him a perfect ‘3 for 3’ record in NPS oval outings in his career. Previously, he won his NPS debut, at Chaudière.
FORMULA ONE: The clutching of pearls will be rampant this week following the weekend’s race at the Hungaroring.
Hamilton started on the pole, Bottas second and Verstappen third. On the start, Bottas fell back then dove too deep into the corner taking out himself, Stroll, Leclerc, Norris and Perez as well causing damage to Mad Max’s car.
This brought out a full course yellow and somebody in the Mercedes camp must have suffered a brain cramp as they did not tell Lewis to ‘box, box, box’ and every other car went in to switch tires due to the change in the weather.
The restart looked funny as Hamilton was the only car on the grid as all the others had to start from pit road. Of course he soon had to pit for tires and came out near the back of the pack. He didn’t exactly charge through the field having a hard time passing cars especially Alonso.
Esteban Ocon won in an Alpine Renault, Sebastian Vettel was second in his Aston Martin while Hamilton finished third.
Vettel’s second place finish is ‘under review’ as the post race technical inspection could not get the required one liter of race fuel out of the fuel cell for testing. Initially, the spot was taken away and then later reinstated. Stay tuned on that one.
Verstappen ended up tenth and now trails Hamilton by six points in the Driver’s Championship. Hamilton did not look well on the podium and reports indicate that they feel it could be due to remnants of his bout with COVID.
8They now have their summer break and go to the legendary Spa for the Belgium Grand Prix in four weeks.
NHRA: The COVID-delayed (from February) Winternationals were finally completed on the weekend at Pomona Raceway, California and there was nothing ‘winter’ about them as the temperatures were hot, hot, hot.
How hot you ask? In the Top Fuel final, Justin Ashley shut his car down before staging and climbed out as he was overcome by the heat.
Leah Pruett thus made a single pass for the win making boyfriend Tony Stewart very happy.
Sadly, Top Fuel only had thirteen entries, Pro Stock car and Pro Stock Motorcycle had fifteen while Funny Car had a full field. Ron Capps qualified number one in the floppers and took out points leader Bob Tasca in the second round and then bettered John Force in the semis.
He had a very close win over J.R. Todd in the final to take over the points lead. In Pro Stock second generation driver Aaron Stanfield continues to be the one to beat as he took out veteran Greg Anderson in the final.
Matt Smith got his 29th win in Pro Stock Motorcycle over Angelle Sampey. The series will be back in action at Topeka, Kansas in two weeks.
GRAND BEND MOTORPLEX: Wow, talk about knocking it out of the park. Their Canadian Nationals event on the weekend was a tremendous success.
The park was full of race cars and spectators, so good to see after the dreaded COVID shutdowns the sport has been forced to endure over the past year and a half. They even had to make runs to the Beer Store to ‘satisfy demand’!
If somebody had told me that there would be thirteen outstanding CANADIAN Pro Mods to try and qualify for an eight-car show, I doubt I would have believed them.
But there they were. And it was the first time an eight car show had qualified with all cars under four seconds.
Scotty Wildgust’s new Smokies Garage car was drop dead beautiful.
Kenny Lang towed in from Manitoba and he told me that the Manitoba/Ontario border had just opened up a couple of weeks ago thus allowing him to come to The Bend but he still, sadly, can’t race in the US.
Todd Paton kept the candles lit all the way on a very impressive run in the Paton Family Top Fuel dragster delighting the fans! The Jet Truck was amazing and stunned many first time fans!!
The Quick 32 class had sixteen door cars and sixteen open cars with some bad fast bikes thrown in for good measure. The Mountain Motor Pro Stocks were very impressive as well.
PINTY’S KNIGHTS OF THUNDER: Jordan Poirier passed Jim Huppunen on the last lap to win Saturday’s Pinty’s Knights of Thunder 360 Sprint Car series A-Main at Humberstone Speedway. The win gave Poirier a sweep the Knights of Thunder portion of All-Canadian Championship weekend. The finale was postponed a week, by rain, and will be wrapped up next weekend at Humberstone.
CUP SERIES: They resume after the Olympics this weekend at Watkins Glen, New York, normally a race with thousands of Canadian fans. Nope, not this year, sadly!
XFINITY SERIES & CAMPING WORLD TRUCKS: They also race this weekend at Watkins Glen, New York.
IMSA: They return to action this weekend at the very long and very fast Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin.
INDYCAR: IndyCar will run its inaugural Big Machine Music City street course at Nashville, Tennessee this weekend. I’m looking forward to the race. It runs on a street circuit around downtown Music City.
DID YOU KNOW? The forest fires in British Columbia came dangerously close to the beautiful new Area 27 racing circuit near Oliver? Fortunately reports indicate that no damage was suffered.
I was very impressed with the wonderful choir that sang both national anthems at the Blue Jays return to Toronto on Friday night. So much better than hearing the often time crucifying of the anthem at NASCAR races. Just saying.
Until next week!!