Montreal (August 20, 2003) - At least 10 drivers are still in the game for the Dodge Trans Canada Challenge special scholarships that will be awarded to the top three drivers in the Molson Indy Canadian race standings. The third round of the Dodge...
Montreal (August 20, 2003) - At least 10 drivers are still in the game for the Dodge Trans Canada Challenge special scholarships that will be awarded to the top three drivers in the Molson Indy Canadian race standings. The third round of the Dodge Trans Canada Challenge, which will also be the tenth and final round of the Barber Dodge Pro Series, will be held this Sunday at le Circuit Gilles-Villeneuve in Montreal.
Following his win at the Molson Indy Vancouver on July 27, Leonardo Maia, from Oakland, California, moved into the top spot in the standings with 30 points. His fifth win of the season also secured the Barber Dodge Pro Series Championship. Maia finished ninth in the Challenge opener in Toronto, following a race incident while fighting for the lead. He leads Memo Rojas from Mexico by three points. Maia scored extra championship points with two poles and one fastest race lap in Toronto. Rojas won the opener on July 13, but finished ninth in Vancouver. David Martinez is third in the Challenge standings with 25 points. The Monterrey Mexico native, third in Toronto, spun while trying to move into the lead past Canadian Dan Di Leo in Vancouver. He finished eighth.
Burt Friselle of Hawaii, fifth in Toronto and Vancouver, is fourth in the standings with 22 points. Following in fifth place is Canadian Ward Imrie with 19 points. The Winnipeg driver leads American drivers Colin Fleming and Scott Poirier by two points. With a fourth place finish in Vancouver, Dan Di Leo is now in eighth place with 15 points. The Markham, Ontario driver was hit with hard luck in the first two races of the Dodge Challenge. He retired in his hometown race in Toronto after making contact with the wall. Di Leo was fighting for the lead when the incident occurred. In Vancouver, he led 18 of the 32-lap race, but finished fourth after the Barber Dodge stewards determined that Di Leo had been blocking Martinez who was making a move for first place. Even though the two cars never touched, the CART officials gave the young Canadian the black flag for obstruction and a drive through penalty, handing the lead, the win and the championship to Maia. The Dodge Trans Canada Challenge The Dodge Trans Canada Challenge, a championship within a championship, is one that rewards the three drivers who perform best in the three Molson Indy Barber Dodge races - Toronto, Vancouver and Montreal. The Molson Indy Toronto marked the debut of this all-new racing scholarship, thanks to Dodge Canada and its dealers.
The top three in the standings win scholarships, which are valued at a total of more than $42,000 U.S, to compete in next year's three Molson Indy Barber Dodge events. The Dodge Trans Canada Challenge winner earns the equivalent of the entry fee for two Molson Indy Barber Dodge races ($24,000 U.S.). Second place earns one Molson Indy Barber Dodge race, and third place, 50 percent of one event.