Chris Green Wins Canadian Formula Ford Finale Mont-Tremblant, QC - September 28, 2002 -- Chris Green, the 18-year old rookie driver of the Bombardier/Olco Heating Oil/DVAC Aviation Key Motorsport Van Diemen captured a sensational victory today...
Chris Green Wins Canadian Formula Ford Finale
Mont-Tremblant, QC - September 28, 2002 -- Chris Green, the 18-year old rookie driver of the Bombardier/Olco Heating Oil/DVAC Aviation Key Motorsport Van Diemen captured a sensational victory today in the eighth and last round of the 2002 Canadian Formula Ford Championship presented by Deringer. Green, who competed this year in the Quebec regional Formula 1600 series and contested selected rounds of the national pro series, finished first in the 15-lap race held at the Circuit Mont-Tremblant, beating veteran Didier Schraenen in the Radio Energie/RDS/NAPA CMV car and rookie teammate Antoine Bessette in the Key Motorpsort Van Diemen. Third Key Motorsport car of Sam Fayer, sponsored by PaySystems & Imperial Travel Consultants finished in the eleventh spot. A great result for the twenty-six-year-old driver, who is in remission of a acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (read previous story).
The action-filled race started on a strange note when new series' champion and pole sitter Louis-Philippe Dumoulin, the 23-year old driver of the AutoValue/MCI/Michel Lebrun Aero-2 entered by AIM Autosport and second place starter Christopher Guerrieri, who drives the NGCL Cherry Beach Sound Vector were nose to tail during the opening lap of the race, when Dumoulin's rear suspension broke (at the time of writing, it is not clear whether it was a result of contact or simply a mechanical failure). Dumoulin's car spun and was hit by Jean-Philippe Papineau, and both retired on the spot. Meanwhile, Guerrieri moved up one place. On lap 2, Guerrieri was in the lead, followed by Chris Green and Ashley Taws, the 18-year old driver of the Barbie at Wal-Mart/Ray-O-Vac Aero-2.
One lap later, Green powered into the lead with Guerrieri in hot pursuit. On lap 6, Marc-Antoine Camirand -- the 1997 Canadian Formula Ford Champion who started the race in eighth place - powered ahead of rookie Antoine Bessette to take third place. Two laps later the top three cars were running together. On lap 10, Guerrieri lost five places when he went off course while Green and Camirand battled it out fiercely out in front, trading the lead back and forth. Moments later, Camirand tried to pass Green but carried too much speed into the corner and spun, leaving Green with just enough room to pass.
Green controlled the race until the end despite the fact that Camirand, who had recovered from his spin, was making impressive progress. On the last lap, Camirand went off, leaving the hard charging Schraenen to take second place. Bessette finished third, beating Olivier Lambert (Fenetre Magistral/Musee Gilles Villeneuve), Chris Guerrieri, Frederick Lelievre (Savico Ltee/Bleau Ltee Vector) and Eric Paradis ( Hydrojet/Permatex Van Diemen).
Race winner Chris GREEN
"It was a tough race and people were quite aggressive out there. I decided to drive intelligently because I knew that something was going to happen in front of me. Marc-Antoine Camirand was fast and we traded the lead a few times before he came into the corner way too quickly while trying to pass me. He spun and I managed to take the lead for good. It was my first visit to Mont-Tremblant and I'm extremely happy to have won my first pro Formula Ford race here."
Third place Antoine BESSETTE
"I never expected to finish third in my first professional race. The car was handling great and I had a really good fight with Frederick Lelievre. I was very entertaining and it was fun to run side by side. Near the end of the race, I was hoping that he would leave me alone ! At certain points, we were really close to one another and I was just hoping that he would play it safe. I finally moved ahead to cross the line in third."
Eleventh place Sam FAYER
"Eleventh place normally wouldn't make me very happy, but I made some really good passes. It was pretty thrilling. I could have been quicker, but for a first race and considering the year I've just had, I am glad to be in Tremblant."