DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Sept. 3, 2012) – No one is happier than D.J. Kennington.In the Wahta Springs 300 on Saturday, Sept. 8 at Barrie (Ont.) Speedway the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series presented by Mobil 1 takes to an oval track for the first time since July 25. And Kennington is happy not only because he won that evening in Saskatoon, Sask., but also for the fact that he has emerged victorious in each of the four races on ovals this season.
The 2012 season concludes with three straight circle-track events beginning with the Barrie contest and culminating on Sept. 22 in the Pinty’s 250 presented by Dodge at Kawartha Speedway near Peterborough, Ont.
“We’ve fared pretty well on the ovals this year and have been able to build a points lead,” said Kennington. “I don’t take anything for granted, though.”
Out of St. Thomas, Ont., Kennington leads the championship point standings by 33 points over Andrew Ranger. J.R. Fitzpatrick sits 35 points back while defending series champion Scott Steckly lurks 42 points away. So, there are plenty ready to pounce should Kennington falter.
Coming close only to have the prize snatched away nearly was made an art form by Kennington in years past, but those demons were erased – hopefully for good from his point of view – in 2010 when he claimed the Canadian Tire Series title.
“Coming close was never good enough, but it’s absolutely not an option now,” said Kennington, pilot of the No. 17 Castrol Edge/Mahindra Tractors Dodge. “We’re going to make sure we have everything covered, but try not to be too (crazy) with it.”
The Barrie event can be a wild card, for sure. It’s close quarters racing at its best on the tight .333-mile tri-oval.
“Racing at Barrie can get pretty physical,” said Kennington, a three-time Barrie winner. “Just like a lot of short tracks it’s all about track position and survival. You have to keep your emotions in check because people are hitting you from every angle. There’s lots of stuff going on and you have to keep your mind on the job.”
A year ago, Kennington finished seventh while Mark Dilley claimed a hometown victory in Barrie.
RACE: Wahta Springs 300
PLACE: Barrie (Ont.) Speedway
DATE: Saturday, Sept. 8
TIME: 8 p.m. ET
TV SCHEDULE: TSN, Sat., Sept. 15, Noon ET; RDS2, Wed., Oct. 3, 10 p.m. ET
TRACK LAYOUT: .333-mile paved tri-oval
2011 WINNER: Mark Dilley
2011 POLESITTER: Scott Steckly
EVENT SCHEDULE: Practice 1-1:30 p.m., 2-2:30 p.m.; Qualifying 5:45 p.m.; Autograph Session 6:30 p.m.; Pre-Race Ceremonies 7:25 p.m.
TRACK CONTACT: Diane Cunningham at 705-487-0279 or firstname.lastname@example.org
EVENT TWITTER HASHTAG: #WS300
NASCAR IMC CONTACT: Tim Southers, (386) 235-3634 or email@example.com Twitter: @tsouth1968
If photographs or graphics are needed for the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series presented by Mobil 1, please contact Shon Sbarra at firstname.lastname@example.org or (704) 309-5493.
The Race: This is the 10th event of the 2012 season for the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series presented by Mobil 1 and the fifth of seven oval-track events on the schedule. This is the series’ eighth visit to Barrie.
The Procedure: The starting field is 24 cars, including provisionals. The first 21 cars will qualify through two-lap time trials while the remaining three spots will be awarded through the provisional process. The race will be 300 laps covering 99.99 miles.
The Track: Barrie Speedway opened in 1965 and has had substantial improvements made since 1999. At that time, the track was widened and lengthened from a .25-mile oval to its current unique .333-mile tri-oval configuration. The tri-oval and pit road are situated on the backstretch.
The Records: The one-lap qualifying record for the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series at Barrie is 13.903 seconds (86.226 mph) set by Don Thomson Jr. on June 28, 2008. The 300-lap race record is held by D.J. Kennington at 1 hour, 40 minutes, 8 seconds established on Sept. 11, 2010 for an average speed of 59.860 mph.
The History: Barrie Speedway has hosted more NASCAR Canadian Tire Series presented by Mobil 1 events than any other track. Kennington leads all drivers with three wins including both visits in 2007 – the series’ inaugural season. Last year, Mark Dilley won a caution-filled event with Jason Hathaway in second and Kerry Micks in third.
BARRIE RACE NOTES
Dodge Dominant: Dodge has won six of the seven previous Barrie Speedway events with D.J. Kennington and Scott Steckly accounting for five of those. The only non-Dodge winner was the Chevrolet of Don Thomson Jr. in Sept. 2009.
Leading The Way: While winning two times in Barrie, Scott Steckly has led a series-best 658 laps at the cozy .333-mile tri-oval. Thomson has been out front for 409 laps and Kennington has set the pace for 323 circuits.
Long Haul: The 300-lap Wahta Springs-sponsored event in Barrie is one of three races scheduled for that many laps. The Canadian Tire Series went 300 laps in July at Motoplex Speedway in Vernon, B.C., and will again at Riverside International Speedway in Antigonish, N.S. on Sept. 15.
Home Tracks Update: Dwayne Baker leads the Wahta Springs Limited Late Model division by 99 points over defending track champion Ron Quesnelle. In the Canestoga Sprayers and Asphalt Repair Thunder Cars Rick Walt leads Leonard Johnston by 75 points. Charlie Smith leads Adam Misener in the St. Onge Pure Stocks division.
LAST TIME OUT: MONTREAL
Quick Out Of The Box: Three drivers making their NASCAR Canadian Tire Series presented by Mobil 1 debut at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve ended up with top-10 finishes within the 34-car field. The performances of Timmy Hill, who finished sixth, and Austin Dillon in seventh place weren’t terribly surprising considering both are NASCAR Nationwide Series regulars. However, the ninth-place showing by Xavier Coupal was noticeable. Coupal competes in the Quebec Sportsman Series on a regular basis.
Pole Position Success: J.R. Fitzpatrick won from the pole position at Montreal. It’s the second time this season that the polesitter drover to Victory Lane with D.J. Kennington accomplishing the feat on June 23 at Delaware (Ont.) Speedway.
Three And Three: Despite losing to Fitzpatrick for the second time on his home turf, Andrew Ranger still continued torrid Montreal pace. In six outings, Ranger has three wins and three second-place finishes.
Figure Eight: With a 14th-place finish in the NAPA AUTOPRO 100 Ron Beauchamp Jr. had his streak of four straight eighth-place finishes snapped that dated back to the Vernon, B.C., event in July.
NEXT TIME OUT: ANTIGONISH
The NASCAR Canadian Tire Series makes its annual pilgrimage to the Canadian Maritimes to tackle the high-banked turns of Riverside International Speedway in Antigonish, N.S. Riverside is a .333-mile scale version of the legendary Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway. Last season, Scott Steckly picked up his third win of the season en route to his second series championship.
From NASCAR / IMC