DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Sept 26, 2022) — Marc-Antoine Camirand capped off a dream NASCAR Pinty’s Series season with his first NASCAR championship. He finished the year with three wins, nine top fives and 11 top 10s in 13 races, including seven podium celebrations.
Camirand’s season was so dominant, he effectively wrapped up the title following the penultimate race at CTMP which he left with a 33-point advantage over Kevin Lacroix. Camirand’s final lead of 27 points is the largest margin since 2016 when Cayden Lapcevich beat Andrew Ranger by 54 points.
Camirand showed speed from the season opener at Sunset Speedway where he led 203 of 252 laps before contact with Raphael Lessard delegated him to a fourth-place finish in NASCAR Overtime. Tire issues derailed his day at the first CTMP race, but Camirand was able to get back on track winning at Eastbound Speedway, the fourth race of the season. The win gave Camirand the points lead for the first time.
Following a back-and-forth battle with Lacroix and D.J. Kennington, Camirand took the points lead for good after Ohsweken. He turned up his performance late in the season, starting on the front-row four races straight, won two consecutive E3 Spark Plug Pole Awards, and finished fourth or better in four of the final five races.
The former open-wheel star made his Pinty’s Series debut in 2013 and completed his first full-time season in 2015. Prior to this season, he had two wins – St. Eustache in 2018 and CTMP in 2021.
Camirand, from Saint-Leonard d’Aston, Quebec, and Andrew Ranger joined the newly formed Paillé Racing Team in the off-season. Camirand’s cars were built in his own shop, Camirand Performance, with crew chief Robin McCluskey. The two had previously worked together on and off for three seasons with McCluskey leading Camirand to his first pole position (GP3R – Aug. 10, 2014) and first podium finish (3rd – CTMP – Aug. 31, 2014).
The 43-year-old Camirand began racing karts at the age of 12. He won the Canadian Formula 1600 title in 1997 and finished second in the US F2000 series in 1999. He has also competed in IMSA, the Canadian Touring Car Championship and was a top ice racing driver.