Double podium for Team Octane at Icar
When team Octane arrived to the Icar race track, the expectations were high. It was the site where they clinched their 2009 Castrol Canadian Touring Car Championship in dramatic fashion. And the July 2010 edition of Grand Prix de Mirabel proved full of action once again.
CCTCC rookie driver Michel Sallenbach was up to the task, bringing his #46 Original MINI Parts Cooper S to podium finishes in both of the weekend's events. Michel proved that he will be a championship contender, by posting some of the fastest race laps during the entire weekend.
While his Saturday race was somewhat uneventful, his second race was totally the opposite. Taking advantage of a great start, Michel took the lead by corner 2 and was mastering the Touring field by a substantial margin before the field bunched-up together for a full-course yellow. After the restart, he was bumped from the back, but recovered to hold-on to the third position. On lap 14, the Mitsubishi evo of M&S racing's Gary Kwok came to an abrupt end after crashing and landing on it's roof in the last corner. At the same time, Sallenbach was once again bumped from the back by a lapped back-marker in a Hyundai Genesis. The race was red-flagged due to the severity of the evo's accident, which was a good thing for Michel, as his incident cut a tire and he finished the race with a flat tire. He would keep his third position.
Driving the #47 Castrol/Fix Auto MINI Cooper S, Sylvain Laporte made his debut with the team this weekend. After a very deserving fifth qualifying position, Sylvain was having a heated battle with 2 touring class competitors, when he was hit extremely hard from the back in race #1. His race ended in the guard-rail with bent suspension. The car was fixed overnight but Sylvain would have to start from the back of the pack, due to his finishing position in the first race. Making steady progress, Sylvain was running in fifth position, after having passed eight competitors, but his charge to the front was unfortunately interrupted prematurely when the race was red-flagged.
Michel Sallenbach is now in third position in the championship with 616 points, only 21 points behind Karl Thomson. "I would like to thank my Octane team members. They gave me once again a perfect car this weekend. They worked extremely hard since last race to ensure we would be ready". Team Octane is proud to partner with MINI Original Parts, Castrol, Simone Performance Imports, Birchmount Collision, Trimo, Cruisecanada.com and BULLY clutches. Sylvain Laporte is sponsored by Fix-Auto. Michel Sallenbach is sponsored by Carrefour Icra, Carrosserie Touchette, La Clinique du Pneu, Lettrage Raoul et ASG.
Sylvain and Michel will be back for Team Octane's next event, the Toronto Indy on July 16-18.
-source: team octane