Beauchamp 14th at Cayuga MOPAR Dodge driver seventh in the points heading to T.O. Indy WINDSOR, ON - MOPAR Performance Parts Dodge driver Ron Beauchamp Jr. raced to a 14th-place finish in Sunday's Canada Day Shootout at Cayuga Speedway. The ...
Beauchamp 14th at Cayuga
MOPAR Dodge driver seventh in the points heading to T.O. Indy
WINDSOR, ON - MOPAR Performance Parts Dodge driver Ron Beauchamp Jr. raced to a 14th-place finish in Sunday's Canada Day Shootout at Cayuga Speedway. The Windsor, ON driver started 12th in the field of 32 and although he didn't record a top finish, he was encouraged by the results of the team's decision to try a radically new car setup, at Cayuga.
Beauchamp improved to ninth in the running order by lap 50. He fell one position, to 10th, by lap 100. A flurry of early-race cautions left the MOPAR team convinced that there would be more yellow flags displayed, that would afford Beauchamp an opportunity to stop. But it didn't work out that way. The sixth caution period of the race ended on lap 75 and the yellow flag wouldn't be shown again until lap 183, leaving Beauchamp and the majority of the field with deteriorating handling conditions.
Race leader Peter Gibbons lapped Beauchamp on lap 120. On lap 168, the MOPAR Dodge driver brought his car to the pits, under green, for new rubber. After his stop, Beauchamp had one of the quickest cars in the race, but by that point he was already three laps behind the leader and destined for a mid-pack finish.
"The long green run hurt us," said Beauchamp, after the race. "There were a bunch of early cautions and the plan was to ^A'short pit' and stop early. But then the cautions ended and then the race just kept going and going under green. I just got caught out on the track on old tires and that hurt us. But after we stopped, the car was fast again. It was a tough break, but all in all, it was a good day because we tried some new things and learned a lot about the car."
The team used a radically new setup at Cayuga and even though the result wasn't what they were looking for, the new direction showed promise. "We had a whole new setup in the car, which was a first for us. It's kind of a learning curve for us but I think we're going to have a really good racecar once we get a chance to do a little bit of work with it. We'll get it," continued Beauchamp, who is seventh in the Super Series points heading to the season's sixth race, at the Toronto Indy.
NEXT RACE: Turning his attention to the Toronto street circuit race, this coming weekend (July 9-10), Beauchamp is encouraged by his car's performance in the recent road race at Mosport. The event was the first test of the team's new, purpose-built road course car. "We felt really good about the way we ran at Mosport, so we're pretty confident about having a good race in Toronto. There's always room for improvement, but based on our first race with the new road course car, we think it's a good piece." Asked if there's a significant difference in how he approaches the Mosport and Indy tracks, he said, "Definitely. They're very different places. The Indy is a lot of fun and gives us a great opportunity for exposure for the MOPAR Dodge, but it's not as forgiving a track as Mosport. We've run well there in the past, though, but you have to approach it differently."
RACE SUMMARY: CASCAR points leader Peter Gibbons led 150 of the 200 laps that made up the Canada Day Shootout at Cayuga Speedway on Sunday. During an extended green-flag run, he lapped all but two other competitors in the 32-car field. But during a late-race pit stop, Gibbons' crew changed two tires, violating a rule that allows just one to be changed following Lap 150. The infraction forced Gibbons to the pits, under green, for a 'stop and go' penalty, clearing the way for Dodge driver Dave Whitlock to record his first win of the season. Kerry Micks finished second, while Gibbons held on for third.