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NEWS & NOTES: All Eyes Focus on the Grand Prix de Trois-Rivières

For competitors in the NASCAR Pinty’s Series, a victory in Sunday’s Les 60 Tours Rousseau Metal at the Grand Prix de Trois-Rivières would mean everything.

The event, which typically draws one of the strongest fields every season, takes place on the streets of Trois-Rivières, Quebec.

The 11 turn, 1.53-mile course that carves through the Terrain de l’Exposition and the Porte Duplessis presents unique challenges for drivers and teams, making it perhaps the most sought-after victory in the NASCAR Pinty’s Series.

Since the series began racing at Trois-Rivières in 2007, eight drivers have been fortunate enough to earn trips to Victory Lane at the event.

The most recent of those is Alex Guenette, who led only the final six laps last year to earn what remains his only NASCAR Pinty’s Series victory to date. His 10th-place starting position is the deepest a winner has ever started at Trois-Rivières.

The driver who can look back on the 2022 edition of Trois-Rivières with regret is defending NASCAR Pinty’s Series champion Marc-Antoine Camirand. He led a race-high 51 laps but contact while battling for the race lead with J.F. Dumoulin allowed Guenette to slip through and secure the lead, and subsequently, the win.

A win for Camirand would mark his first at the circuit he considers his home track. It’s also the place where he got his first experience racing in the series in 2013.

In addition to defending race winner Guenette, five other previous Trois-Rivières winners will also be in action this Sunday.

They include Andrew Ranger, who has a record four victories at Trois-Rivières. Ranger, who has started all 15 previous events at the track, won three-consecutive races at GP3R from 2008 to 2010 and added a fourth victory in 2012.

Stunningly, from 2007 to 2017, his worst finish at Trois-Rivières was second.

Next on the list is Alex Tagliani, who has won three times at GP3R. He claimed back-to-back triumphs in 2017 and 2018 and added a third triumph in 2021. He already has a victory on a street circuit this year in Toronto, making him a likely favorite this weekend.

L.P. Dumoulin is a two-time Trois-Rivières victor, having claimed victories in 2014 and 2019. Hailing from Trois-Rivières makes him an obvious choice and a fan favorite this weekend.

Kevin Lacroix is also a two-time Trois-Rivières winner. His victories came in his first two visits to the facility in 2015 and 2016. He was fast in 2022, claiming the pole before an engine failure relegated him a 19th-place finish.

Lastly, D.J. Kennington will be in search of his second Trois-Rivières triumph this weekend. The two-time Pinty’s Series champion claimed his lone Trois-Rivières victory in 2013 and finished second one year ago.

Other previous winners at Trois-Rivières who are not entered Sunday are Kerry Micks (2007) and Robin Buck (2011).


Big Field Expected For Trois-Rivières

It’s been since 2014 that a race in the NASCAR Pinty’s Series has featured more than 30 entries.

That’s going to change this weekend as 30 drivers have filed entries to compete at Trois-Rivières.

The solid turnout can be attributed to the prestige that comes with racing – and winning at – Trois-Rivières. With more than 50 years of racing history, the event is widely considered the most historic race on the NASCAR Pinty’s Series schedule.

The event at Trois-Rivières has traditionally drawn strong fields, with the inaugural event at the track featuring 28 entries. At least 25 cars have competed in the Pinty’s Series events at Trois-Rivières on 10 occasions.

Among those 10 occasions are four events that featured at least 30 entries. Those events took place consecutively from 2011 to 2014 and were won by Robin Buck (2011), Andrew Ranger (2012), D.J. Kennington (2013) and L.P. Dumoulin (2014).

The record for entries at Trois-Rivières is 33, which was set in 2011 and tied in 2014.


Lessard, Labbe Return To Pinty’s Series Competition

A pair of drivers who have enjoyed a bit of success in the United States are returning to the NASCAR Pinty’s Series this weekend.

Raphael Lessard and Alex Labbe are returning to their stock car, racing roots with the series at GP3R and both have their sights set on a trip to Victory Lane.

Lessard is best known for his time racing in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series, where he scored a victory for Kyle Busch Motorsports at Talladega Superspeedway in 2020. He also claimed a championship with the popular CARS Tour in 2016.

While Lessard has not made an official start in the series this season, he did fill in for Dexter Stacey at the halfway break at Autodrome Chaudiere, bring the No. 92 ReCap Chevrolet home in third.

He’ll be at the wheel of Mathieu Kingsbury’s No. 12 Dodge this weekend.

Labbe, the 2017 NASCAR Pinty’s Series champion, is set to make his second start of the season and first at Trois-Rivières since 2019. Labbe has been a familiar face in the NASCAR Xfinity Series since 2018, where he has one top-five (fourth at the Charlotte Motor Speedway ROVAL in 2020) and 13 top-10 finishes.

This weekend Labbe will drive the No. 36 Chevrolet owned by Teresa Dupuis.


NASCAR Pinty’s Series etc.

  • Trois-Rivières always brings out the road course ringers and this year is no exception. Gary Klutt, J.F. Dumoulin, Herby Drescher, Louis-Philippe Montour, and Jocelyn Fecteau are among the road course experts scheduled to compete.
  • Sam Fellows, son of veteran Canadian road course racer Ron Fellows, is slated to make his third start of the season at Trois-Rivières. He finished sixth at GP3R in 2022 and made his series debut at the track in 2021.
  • Dave Coursol, who last raced in the NASCAR Pinty’s Series in 2015, is returning for Sunday’s race at Trois-Rivières. His career-best finish came in 2015 at GP3R when he finished 12th.
  • Darryl Timmers will be back in the No. 98 Chevrolet for Bray Autosports, for his second career start. He made his debut on the streets of Toronto earlier this year, and finished 14th.
  • Fans in Quebec who are unable to attend Sunday’s race but want to see it live are in luck. The event will be broadcast live on RDS2 at 2 p.m. ET.