Chris Guerrieri Mosport race notes

Guerrieri wins season opener at Mosport May 17, 2003 (Bowmanville, ON) -- The Canadian Formula Ford Championship presented by Deringer has begun its season at the world famous Mosport International Raceway under beautiful and sunny...

Guerrieri wins season opener at Mosport

May 17, 2003 (Bowmanville, ON) -- The Canadian Formula Ford Championship presented by Deringer has begun its season at the world famous Mosport International Raceway under beautiful and sunny skies.

Though it was a little cool, Saturday afternoon was a huge improvement over Friday when qualifying was held. Early during that day, Canadian Formula Ford drivers hit the track under rainy skies for their first qualifying run. Taking advantage of s winter practice in ice racing, Pickering, ON's Chris Guerrieri took the provisional pole driving his Vector with a slight difference of 0.128 seconds over veteran driver Didier Schraenen from Mont St-Hilaire who was at the wheel of his Quebec-built CMV car still sporting the NAPA/RDS/Radio Energy colors. Young Olivier Lambert placed third with his yet unsponsered Van Diemen car. It was 19 year old Lambert's first visit to Mosport There was a second qualifying session Friday afternoon but other than David Clubine posting a (slower) third fastest time at that point, official qualifying positions remained unchanged due to extreme wet weather conditions. Unfortunately for Eric Paradis, he crashed during qualifying and suffered too much damage to repair the car in time for the race.

The race started with Guerrieri on the pole and very rapidly, he set the pace followed by veteran Schraenen and Lambert. Already, on lap two, Michel Bonnet lost control and hit the wall putting him out of contention. That brought out a full course yellow that lasted until lap four. Race resumed and on lap five, L.P. Dumoulin put the Be Anything with Barbie AIM Autosport Aero2 car in third place while Steve Pickering who showed promise in the early laps, gently touched the wall in turn 10 trying to pass, ending his race early Cars were getting lighter with fuel, speed was increasing and young Dan Burchill, in the other AIM Autosport car, was making up ground. He was fifth on lap 6. The cars were now lapping roughly 30 seconds a lap faster than qualifying times, on the same Hankook wet/dry tires. Unfortunately for Lambert, a flat tire would sideline him on lap 7. The pace of the race quickened as Guerrieri, Schraenen and Dumoulin were battling in front. Just behind the leaders, Burchill, Clubine and Forest were having a race of their own. Then things started to change around lap 11. Schraenen's CMV car looked slower and Dumoulin passed him. Last lap saw a lot of changes as Dumoulin, who had briefly gotten by Guerrieri to take the race lead, lost third gear and slowed down considerably, giving back the lead and letting Schraenen into second. Finally, Guerrieri crossed the checkered first followed by Schraenen and a very satisfied Burchill in third. It was Burchill's first race in his inaugural "full season" of pro racing.

After the race, an exhausted Guerrieri who told us about his race strategy : " I tried to keep my distance all the time. Dumoulin came by but I still kept my lead. The car held up fine and that is important. I'm very happy" As for second place Schraenen, he came out of his car with a big smile but still said jokingly. " I hate that second place. But with seven laps to go, I lost second gear. Then LP went away and I had to keep the rookie behind me. I kept my line--the inside line". Finally, a very happy Dan Burchill was surprised by his own performance: " So many drivers in front of me went out, I did not even know where I was. Still, I am very happy!"

By the way, Ashley Taws fans will be happy to learn that she is aiming to be back for the Toronto Molson Indy race in July. Ashley still has a surgery scheduled before she can get back to racing, following a nasty traffic accident last winter. Meanwhile, at Lime Rock, Louis-Philippe will be replacing her in the Barbie car again. Round two of the Canadian Formula Ford Championship will be held next Saturday at the Lime Rock Park facility in Connecticut, USA. The Canadian Formula Ford Championship is proudly sponsored by Deringer Complete Logistic Solutions, Ford of Canada, Esso, the Official Fuel of the Championship, Mobil 1, the Official Oil of the Championship, Hankook Tires, Cardinal watches and Basi Autosport.

Race results (provisional)
Race 1, Mosport -- May 17, 2003
1- Chris Guerrieri, Pickering, ON
2- Didier Schraenen, Mont St-Hilaire, QC
3- Dan Burchill, Mitchell, ON
4- Michael Forest, Brantford, ON
5- David Clubine, Brantford, ON
6- Louis-Philippe Dumoulin, Trois-Rivières, QC
7- Dan Denison, Ann Arbor, MI
8- David Thilenius, Howell, MI
9- John Wagner, Ann Arbor, MI
10- Olivier Lambert, Pincourt, QC
11- Steve Pickering, Kingston, ON
12- Michel Bonnet, St-Damase, QC
13- Eric Paradis, Chateauguay, QC DNS


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Series General
Drivers Ashley Taws , Louis-Philippe Dumoulin , Didier Schraenen , Dan Burchill , Dan Denison , Olivier Lambert , David Thilenius , David Clubine , Steve Pickering , Michel Bonnet , John Wagner