For Immediate Release
NASCAR Canadian Tire Series News & Notes: St-Eustache
· Series Returns To Quebec For Back-To-Back Events
· Labbe Looks For First Checkered Flag
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (July 20, 2015) – As the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series presented by Mobil 1 returns to Quebec for the next two events, province native Alex Labbe faces what may be his best shots at a breakthrough trip to Victory Lane.
Labbe, from Victoriaville, has been knocking on the door as of late. In three starts this year the 22-year-old has posted finishes of second, seventh and sixth.
The first of those back-to-back Quebec events is this Saturday at Autodrome St-Eustache, a .4-mile oval. Labbe set the track qualifying record there last year but was forced to retire from the race early with suspension problems. Since then he's twice finished as a runner-up on ovals – last summer at Nova Scotia's Riverside International Speedway and this spring at Quebec's Autodrome Chaudiere.
So does he stand a better chance at attaining that first win on an oval than a road course?
"I think my oval program is a little stronger," Labbe said. "We're still good on the road, but I'm more used to ovals. I run a lot of ovals. I think we can get a win on both types of tracks this year."
He'll get a shot at both in the upcoming two-week stretch as the Canadian Tire Series will move northeast for the Grand Prix de Trois-Rivieres on Aug. 2. Labbe has had mixed results at the famed street course with one top 10 in three appearances, but he's fared well at the series' other Quebec road course – Circuit ICAR – with an average finish of seventh in four starts.
Labbe will carry a little extra motivation into this week's Lucas Oil National 250 presented by Lacroix Tuning, however. In the series' eight all-time oval events in Quebec, a province native has yet to reach Victory Lane.
RACE: Lucas Oil National 250 pres. by Lacroix Tuning
PLACE: Autodrome St-Eustache (Quebec)
DATE: Saturday, July 25
TIME: 8 p.m. ET
TRACK LAYOUT: .4-mile semi-banked asphalt oval
2014 POLESITTER: Alex Labbe
2014 WINNER: Scott Steckly
EVENT TWITTER HASHTAG: #LucasOil250
If photographs or graphics are needed for the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series, please contact Jason Cunningham.
The Race: The 2015 NASCAR Canadian Tire Series presented by Mobil 1 schedule will return to Quebec for the first of back-to-back events with the Lucas Oil National 250 presented by Lacroix Tuning at Autodrome St-Eustache.
The Procedure: The maximum starting field is 22 cars, including provisionals. The first 19 cars will have secured starting positions through two-lap time trials while the remaining three spots will be awarded through the provisional process. The race is scheduled for 250 laps (100 miles), and is an impound race with four change tires allotted for the event.
The Track: The Autodrome St-Eustache racing complex, located west of Montreal, consists of a .4-mile oval, a road course and a drag strip. There is also a karting track on the premises. The track was founded in 1965 as Fury Speedway de Fabreville, and the current configuration has played host to various types of racing since 1970. The track was purchased by Alan Labrosse prior to the 2008 race season.
Pole Winners: The first six St-Eustache races have produced five different pole winners. Alex Labbe has the track qualifying record at 17.139 seconds (84.019 mph), set in 2014.
Race Winners: Two-time defending race winner Scott Steckly leads the way with four wins in six all-time St-Eustache events.
St-Eustache Race Notes
Steckly Looks to Match Ranger's Mark: Andrew Ranger is the only driver in NASCAR Canadian Tire Series presented by Mobil 1 history to win three-consecutive races at a track. Scott Steckly will look to match that this week at Autodrome St-Eustache. Steckly has been quite dominant at the Quebec oval with four wins and two additional top fives through the six events there. The last two victories have come in consecutive fashion. Ranger's record applies to two road courses – both in Quebec – as he won three-consecutive times at Circuit de Trois-Rivieres (2008-10) and Circuit ICAR (2012-14).
Steckly Sweeps Western Swing: In addition to Steckly's past achievements at St-Eustache, he's bringing a pretty solid record of 2015 success into this week's Lucas Oil National 250 presented by Lacroix Tuning. The Ontario racer swept both ends of the recent western swing to Edmonton (Alberta) International Raceway and Auto Clearing Motor Speedway (Saskatchewan) to move into the points lead for the first time since the 2013 season finale when he celebrated the championship.
First Series Oval Race for ICAR Winner Lacroix: St-Eustache native Kevin Lacroix is set to make his Canadian Tire Series oval debut this week at his home track. Lacroix grew up in the sport in karting and road racing, and the experience served him well as he won at Circuit ICAR earlier this month in just his second NASCAR start. He has made one oval start this year, a super late model race at Autodrome Chaudiere in June.
Camirand Finding Oval Success: Marc-Antoine Camirand's first six Canadian Tire Series starts came on road courses, and like Lacroix, his background is primarily in road racing. The Jostens Rookie of the Year contender is finding oval success in 2015, however. In the recent western swing the St-Leonard d'Aston, Quebec, driver posted top-five finishes in both outings, and he has an average finish of seventh in four such races this year.