NASCAR: Pinty’s Series Clarington 200 Preview

Source: Twitter (@CautionClock20)

To say Kevin Lacroix, pole sitter for today’s Clarington 200 at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park (CTMP), is uncertain what to expect once the green flag flies, would perhaps be the understatement of the year. Lacroix secured the pole position without turning a single lap around the famed road course. Due to rain and fog Saturday, Pinty’s Series officials elected to set the field based on previous results.

Lacroix is no stranger to the Bowmanville, Ontario course, having won three previous races at CTMP, however this year he enters the season opening race with very little understanding of the current conditions. The silver lining for Lacroix may be the fact that last season he started on pole and won both CTMP races.

Lining up alongside Lacroix is L.P. Dumoulin in the #47 WeatherTech Canada Dodge, who led the way in Saturday’s only practice session. Dumoulin enters the 2018 Pinty’s Series having registered nine top-five finishes in 2017 without a single win. Dumoulin last won at CTMP in 2013.

D.J. Kennington, who splits his time between a full season effort in the Pinty’s Series and a part-time ride in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series, will line up fourth in Sunday’s race. The driver of the #17 Castrol Edge Dodge earned his only CTMP victory back in 2011.

Kennington was the highest finishing Canadian driver in last year’s NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race at CTMP, finishing 14th.

Fan favourite driver, and 2011 Indy 500 pole winner Alex Tagliani will line up fifth in his #18 Epipen Chevrolet. In six Pinty’s Series starts at CTMP, Tagliani has registered two top-fives, but has yet been able to find his way to Victory Lane.

NASCAR Camping World Truck Series star Noah Gragson, who finished eighth in Friday night’s race at Charlotte Motor Speedway, will start 13th in Sunday’s race. Gragson, who finished runner-up in last year’s Chevy Silverado 250, is using this weekend’s Pinty’s Series race to prepare himself for August’s Truck Series event.