GRANBY, Que., June 7, 1998 -- Steve Poirier, the driver of the Teo/Advance/Concrete Rive-Sud car, had quite a night last Friday at Autodrome Granby. He was in the winner's circle in the rescheduled 13th Eastern Townships Championship to register his first career win at Granby since he graduated from the sportsman class and finished second in the second feature race of the evening. Poirier made a big step in the overall standings for the Molson championship in the modified division. He move up from the seventh to the second spot with only nine points behind American driver Todd Stone. Dave Camara is the other driver who did pretty well by winning the second feature and with a second place finish in the 13th Eastern Townships Championship.
At the beginning of the evening in the rescheduled features of the Championship, Dave Camara took the early lead in the 35-lap race. But, on the second restart on lap 16, Poirier who was second since the third lap, surprised Camara to fly home with his first victory. Camara finished second followed by Todd Stone, Luke Plante and Robert Ranger.
On the very first lap, an accident involving many cars put an end to Denis Labonte's evening. Claude Brouillard, Mario Lajoie, Gardner Stone and Renald Daoust were able to go back in the race but were never in contention.
In the sportsman division, Mario Moreau led all the way to claim his first win of the 1998 season. His victims were Mario Clair and Alain Mathieu. Stephane Messier, the defending champion in the late models class, had the best on Daniel Belanger and Marcel Godbout while eric Archambault was able to do the same in front of Stephane Ruel and Ernie Bray in the tourism category.
Tenth at the green flag of the other modified feature race, Poirier impressed by making his way through the second spot, just in the back bumper of Dave Camara who for once saw the bad luck leaving him for the night.
Young Gino Clair who had the pole, led during five laps before being overtaken by Marco Potvin. During that time, like Poirier, Camara who was eighth at the start, found himself just behind Potvin on lap 8. Camara needed only three laps to pass Potvin and visit the winner's circle for the first time this season. Potvin finished third followed by Dominic Dufault and Mike Romano.
In that race, favorites like Luke Plante, Claude Brouillard and Robert Ranger had more than their share of problems.
Fourth in the 13th Eastern Townships Championship, Gerry Patenaude won the second feature race in the sportsman class in front of eric Sundborg and Mario Clair. It's only with two laps remaining that Patenaude was able to get by Sundborg for his second victory of the season.
Daniel Belanger was the winner in the late models category and Andre Gauthier the sole driver to drive a pick-up truck in the tourism division was able to take his first checkered flag.
Next Friday, it will be a special night at Autodrome Granby. For the 11th season, Granby is the site of a special race involving blind people at the steering wheel of a racecar. They are guided by personalities from the media, television and radio and the stands are always overpacked. It's a must to be seen and a crowd of over 10,000 fans is expected. The profits of the Defi-Vision will go to the Mira Foundation who train dogs for blind people.
13th Eastern Townships Championship (35 laps) 1- 28, Steve Poirier, 2- 26, Dave Camara, 3- 1x, Todd Stone 4- L50, Luke Plante 5- LP2, Marco Potvin, 6- 63, Dominic Dufault, 7- D50, Mike Romano, 8- 27, Robert Ranger, 9- 39, Clement Therrien, 10- 4, Leon Gonyo, 11- 87, Paul Hamel, 12- 50, Hugues Mercier, 13- 3, Claude Brouillard, 14- 44J, Gino Clair, 15- 73, Alain Boisvert, 16- 6, Pierre Hebert, 17- 7, Denis Labonte, 18- X1, Gardner Stone, 19- X50, Renald Daoust, 20- 72, Mario Lajoie.
Second feature (25 laps)-- 1- 26, Dave Camara, 2- 28, Steve Poirier, 3- LP2, Marco Potvin, 4- 63, Dominic Dufault, 5- D50, Mike Romano, 6- 44J, Gino Clair, 7- 73, Alain Boisvert, 8- 1X, Todd Stone, 9- 50, Hugues Mercier, 10- X1, Gardner Stone (disqualified), 11- 72, Mario Lajoie, 12- 71, Pierre Hebert, 13- 4, Leon Gonyo, 14- X5, Jean-Guy Primeau, 15- 87, Paul Hamel, 16- L50, Luke Plante, 17- 3, Claude Brouillard, 18- 27, Robert Ranger.
Internet site: www.citenet.net/autodrome-granby