Montreal Atlantic race summary

Saturday, June 14, 1997 . Welcome to Montreal and the Player’s Grand Prix du Canada. Today’s Player’s Challenge for the 1997 KOOL/TOYOTA Atlantic Championship is round five of the 12-race series sanctioned by SCCA Pro Racing. .

Saturday, June 14, 1997

. Welcome to Montreal and the Player’s Grand Prix du Canada. Today’s Player’s Challenge for the 1997 KOOL/TOYOTA Atlantic Championship is round five of the 12-race series sanctioned by SCCA Pro Racing. . #6 FRANK ALLERS, of Coquitlam, B.C., qualified 24th overall but has won the pole position within C2 competition in the Johnston Engineering-Keen Engineering Reynard 93H. Allers scores one bonus point in C2 competition and maintains a hold of fifth place in the KOOL/TOYOTA Atlantic C2 Championship with 22 points.

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RACE REPORT (27 laps/74.169 miles/2.747-mile road course) -- Round 5

3:00 p.m. - - Field pulls away for first of two scheduled "reconnaissance" laps - #18 SISKA is struck from behind by #77 SZORTYKA and forced off course - #18 SISKA is unable to race due to crash damage - #77 SZORTYKA suffers front wing damage but continues to the starting grid for the race start - #43 BARBOSA, #10 TAGUE, and #99 PUGLIESE will start from pit lane due to mechanical problems.

3:04 p.m. - - Polesitter #33 GODIN takes the early lead after the "standing start" but loses the lead to an inside pass from #29 MONTGOMERY - #33 GODIN drops to third place followed by #50 WILDEN - #25 AVE moves into second place #34 AUBERLEN makes contact with another car, forcing him into a spin in turn one - #34 AUBERLEN continues following a push start, but minus his car s nose and wing

3:06 Lap 2 #33 GODIN passes #25 AVE for second place - #25 AVE spins in the turn 10 hairpin and loses positions before resuming - #33 GODIN passes #29 MONTGOMERY in the front straight-away to regain the lead.

3:12 Lap 5 The top-five are #33 GODIN, #29 MONTGOMERY, #32 BARRON, #96 SCHROEDER, and #50 WILDEN - #25 AVE returns to pit lane for a right rear tire change.

3:14 Lap 6 #28 SPOSATO and #6 ALLERS make contact in turn 10 - #28 SPOSATO loses his nose piece and is carried down the track by #6 ALLERS #28 SPOSATO returns to pit lane and retires from the race - #6 ALLERS subsequently retires due to damage.

3:15 Lap 7 #33 GODIN increases his lead over #29 MONTGOMERY to over seven seconds.

3:17 Lap 8 #66 TAGLIANI retires with mechanical problems.

3:19 Lap 10 #3 DAVID loses control in turn eight while underbraking and slides into the adjacent gravel pit - car is retired from the race.

3:20 Lap 11 #96 SCHROEDER makes nose-to-tail contact with #29 MONTGOMERY - #29 MONTGOMERY spins and continues - #96 SCHROEDER spins off into the gravel pit in turn 15 and retires.

3:23 Lap 12 The top-five are #33 GODIN, #32 BARRON, #29 MONTGOMERY, #50 WILDEN, and #15 LANG

3:26 Lap 14 #29 MONTGOMERY slows on course through turn 11 before stopping off the course on the front straight-away

3:29 Lap 15 The top-five are #33 GODIN, #32 BARRON, #50 WILDEN, #15 LANG, and #19 GIDLEY

3:33 Lap 18 #32 BARRON moves to within 5.68-seconds of #33 GODIN.

3:35 Lap 19  The difference between #32 BARRON in second place and #50 WILDEN
in third place is    16.38-seconds.

3:37 Lap 20 #32 BARRON continues to chase down #33 GODIN and closes to within 3.87-seconds of the lead the order is #33 GODIN, #32 BARRON, #50 WILDEN, #15 LANG, and #19 GIDLEY

3:38 Lap 21 #14 WEST makes contact with #43 BARBOSA on the approach to turn 10 hairpin - #43 BARBOSA continues to the pits and retires - #14 WEST suffers extensive front wing and suspension damage and retires from the race - the difference between second place #32 BARRON and #50 WILDEN extends to 22.59-seconds.

3:42 Lap 23 #33 GODIN jumps to a 6.55-second lead over #32 BARRON - #50 WILDEN retires from the race before completing the lap - #85 KNAPP looses control in turn one and spins into the gravel pit and is forced to retire from the race.

3:44 Lap 24 #32 BARRON makes a mad dash during the lap and closes to within two seconds of #33 GODIN for first place - #19 GIDLEY moves into third place.

3:45 Lap 25 #35 POOK passes # 8 SOLLENSKOG for sixth place.

3:47 Lap 26 #33 GODIN takes the white flag but his lead over #32 BARRON is only 1.13-seconds.

3:48 Lap 27 #33 BERTRAND GODIN, of St. Hyacinthe, Que., takes the checkered flag and wins his FIRST CAREER KOOL/TOYOTA Atlantic Championship race in only his fifth career Atlantic start in the Player’s Forsythe Racing Team Ralt RT-41.

#32 ALEX BARRON, of Vista, Calif., finishes in second place in the Lynx Racing-Victory Circle Racing/Red Line Oil-prepared Ralt RT-41.

#19 MEMO GIDLEY, of San Rafael steps to the podium in third place for the Lynx Racing-prepared Ralt RT-41.

MARGIN OF VICTORY: 4.164-seconds WINNER S AVERAGE SPEED: 98.587 mph TIME OF RACE: 45 minutes, 8.347 seconds LAP LEADERS: 1, Montgomery; 2-27 Godin

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By virtue of today’s victory, BERTRAND GODIN collects a total winner’s purse of $20,000 from the posted purse of $85,000. GODIN also wins a $1,000 bonus as the "KOOL Rookie Challenge" winner for being the highest finishing Atlantic rookie driver.

* * *

JOAO BARBOSA, of Valongo, Portugal will collect a 19th place purse of $500 and $2,000 in bonus awards including $1,000 for being named the "KOOL Move Of The Race" award winner, and $1,000 for winning the "Yokohama Now You’ve Got Control" award for moving from an actual start of 31st due to pre-race mechanical problems, yet finishing in the top-20. Barbosa qualified in sixth place.

* * *

ALEX BARRON has taken over the lead in the KOOL/TOYOTA Atlantic Championship with 60 points following his second place finish today. ANTHONY LAZZARO remains in second place by virtue of his fifth place finish with 57 points, and MEMO GIDLEY has jumped into title contention with 53 points via his third place showing today. ALEXANDRE TAGLIANI is fourth with 49, while GODIN, rounds out the top five with 48 points.

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Today s podium was composed - for the first time this season - of Atlantic rookie drivers. In each case, it is only the fifth career Atlantic race for GODIN, BARRON, and GIDLEY.

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C2 Race and Championship Update

Nine C2 entries, the most C2 entries in 1997, were entered at Montreal and eight took the green flag for the start of the race. JAMES IRVIN, of South Miami, Fla., won in the C2 class and finished 17th overall. C2 points leader JOAQUIN DeSOTO, of Miami, Fla., padded his lead to 30 points over his closest challenger, IRVIN, 66-36. DAN VOSLOO, who finished ninth in today s C2 competition, is in third place with 35 points. GREG HARINGTON and FRANK ALLERS round out the top five with 32 points each.

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Rookie Atlantic drivers BILL AUBERLEN, Redondo Beach, Calif., and BRIAN DUNKEL, of Cary, Ill., distinguished themselves for improving the most positions during the race. AUBERLEN, who started a dismal 36th, made an incredible dash past 24 other cars enroute to a 12th place finish. Meanwhile, DUNKEL was putting on his own firestorm as he flew from 39th on the starting grid to 20th place - an improvement of 19 positions. C2 race winner JAMES IRVIN also showed how to play catch-up as he improved 17 positions and finished 17th after starting 34th.

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Series Atlantic