St. Eustache: Round eight preview

CASCAR set to return to Montreal for the 'Couche-Tard 200' at Autodrome St-Eustache MONTREAL, QC - After a week off, the CASCAR Super Series will be back in action this Saturday night at Autodrome Old Milwaukee St-Eustache for the 'Couche-Tard...

CASCAR set to return to Montreal for the 'Couche-Tard 200' at Autodrome St-Eustache

MONTREAL, QC - After a week off, the CASCAR Super Series will be back in action this Saturday night at Autodrome Old Milwaukee St-Eustache for the 'Couche-Tard 200'. The race will be the eighth of 12 on the 2003 schedule, and will be this season's lone Super Series appearance in Quebec.

Last year's CASCAR National event at St-Eustache was cut short by rain, after 97 of 150 scheduled laps. Polesitter Dave Whitlock was declared the winner after leading all but the first two laps around the flat, 4/10th-mile oval. Later in the season, the three-time National champion won the CASCAR Super Series race at Autodrome Montmagny, to complete the 'Quebec sweep' in 2002.

Entering the Couche-Tard 200, the championship chase couldn't be any closer. In 2002, following seven events, Don Thomson enjoyed a 61-point lead over DJ Kennington. This year, however, Thomson finds himself locked in a heated battle and sits just two points behind Kerry Micks prior to the eighth event of the season. The two have passed the points lead back and fourth in every race since the Toronto Indy.

"Donnie [Thomson] is a hard competitor," said Micks, after the series' last race, in Vancouver. "It's not going to come easy, that's for sure. It was too bad we had a bad break and lost 30 points in Calgary. But that's part of racing; you're going to have good luck and bad luck. Donnie's had some bad luck lately. Hopefully, we can keep some good luck on our side for the rest of the year."

As for Thomson, who is in the hunt for his third straight Super Series National championship and his fifth major CASCAR title in the past five year, he knows he's in a tight contest with Micks. "We're going back and forth. We did this a couple of years ago, too. Kerry's a helluva racer and it's going to come right down to the end. We just have to take this one race at a time and keep things going 'til the end."

EVENT SCHEDULE COUCHE-TARD 200 AUTODROME OLD MILWAUKEE ST-EUSTACHE
SATURDAY, AUGUST 9, 2003
6:00 p.m. CASCAR Super Series Time Trials
8:40 p.m. Driver Introductions
9:00 p.m. START: Couche Tard 200

CASCAR NOTEBOOK: Dave Whitlock earned the pole for last year's CASCAR Super Series race at Autodrome Old Milwaukee St-Eustache with a lap of 18.234 seconds. Don Thomson holds the Super Series qualifying lap record at the track, which he set in 2000, with a single lap time of 18.009 seconds... The CASCAR EMCO Western Series will also be in action this Saturday night. Gold Pan Speedway in Quesnel, BC will play host to the tour for the second race in a row. On July 5, hometown hero Ron Larson rode to victory lane ahead of reigning Western Series champion Daryl Harr and former champion Wade Lee. Kevin Dowler leads the title chase by 18 points, over Larson... The Super Series race at St-Eustache always plays in front of a large crowd of appreciative Quebec racing fans. This Saturday, many of them will be cheering for CARQUEST Chevrolet driver Andre Coursol, of St-Jerome, QC. Coursol is a regular in the CARQUEST Sportsman Series... Two-time National champion Peter Gibbons will be one driver to watch at St-Eustache. The Canadian Tire Chevy pilot drove his battered car to victory at the track in 2000 and won again in '01. Last year, Gibbons was running third, in the drizzle, prior to crashing just moments before the race was called... The MOPAR Parts 300 at Race City Motorsport Park will premier on Rogers SPORTSNET Ontario on Monday, Aug. 11 at 7:00 p.m. Check your local listings for other regions and times for this 90-minute broadcast.

-cascar-

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About this article
Series NASCAR Canada
Drivers Kevin Dowler , Peter Gibbons , Dave Whitlock , André Coursol , Kerry Micks , Daryl Harr