Quebec native celebrates ninth Pinty’s Series triumph with first oval track victory at Jukasa Motor Speedway.
After finishing second in a hard battle for the championship last season, Kevin Lacroix entered the 2018 season as the odds on favorite to contend for the championship this season. So far he hasn’t given anyone any reason to think otherwise.
After a frustrating finish in the season opener last month, Lacroix finally had a reason to celebrate holding off Cole Powell in a green-white-checkered finish to win the Rankin Construction 200 at Jukasa Motor Speedway on Saturday.
While it’s his ninth Pinty’s Series win for his career, it was his first on an oval track and he did it in dominating fashion Saturday. He took the lead on Lap 79 and never looked back.
“The team and I have been working on our oval track program for two years and today we had a great car and everything worked out for us,” said Lacroix. “It was nice to break through that wall (of a first oval track win) and I can’t wait to get to the next oval race.”
Lacroix was enjoying a healthy lead of over two seconds when the last caution of the race was given to the field to set up the late restart.
“I was a little nervous on that last restart but I knew we had a fast car and I knew he (Powell) had a fast car but I knew he had to get by (Alex) Tagliani too to get to me.”
Powell, making just his second Pinty’s Series start, led 67 laps and finished second. Alex Tagliani rounded out the top three for his first podium finish of 2018.
Marc-Antoine Camirand and Andrew Ranger were fourth and fifth, respectively.
D.J Kennington finished sixth, while CTMP winner LP Dumoulin rebounded after a flat tire on lap 140 and a jumping the restart penalty on lap 149 to finish seventh.
Josten's Rookie of the Year candidate Brett Taylor, Peter Shepherd III and Connor James rounded out the top 10.
Lacroix used the win to jump past Dumoulin for the points lead by five points. Marc-Antoine Camirand sits in third with Powell fourth.
The NASCAR Pinty's Series will be back in action Saturday, June 30, at Quebec's Autodrome Chaudiere.
NASCAR Pinty's Series-Rankin Construction 200 Results
At Jukasa Motor Speedway
Lap length: 0.625 miles
(Start position in parentheses)
1. (4) Kevin Lacroix, Saint-Eustache, Que., Dodge, 206 laps, 82.341 mph.
2. (3) Cole Powell, MT. Brydes, Ontario, Chevrolet, 206.
3. (6) Alex Tagliani, Lachenaie, Que., Chevrolet, 206.
4. (5) Marc-Antoine Camirand, Saint-Leonard-d'Aston, Que., Chevrolet, 206.
5. (1) Andrew Ranger, Roxton Pond, Que., Dodge, 206.
6. (7) D.J. Kennington, St. Thomas, Ont., Dodge, 206.
7. (9) L.P. Dumoulin, Trois-Rivieres, Que., Dodge, 206.
8. (12) Brett Taylor, Calgary, Alta., Dodge, 206.
9. (10) Peter Shepherd III, Brampton, Ont., Ford, 206.
10. (11) Connor James, Bradford, On, Dodge, 206.
11. (17) Jason White, Sun Peaks, B.C., Dodge, 206.
12. (13) Adam Martin, Ayr, Ont., Ford, 203.
13. (8) Anthony Simone, Aurora, Ont., Dodge, 183.
14. (16) Brad Graham, Glencoe, Ont., Chevrolet, 160, electrical.
15. (14) J.F. Dumoulin, Trois-Rivieres, Que., Dodge, 149, suspension.
16. (2) Donald Theetge, Boischatel, Que., Chevrolet, 95, accident.
17. (18) Joey McColm, Ajax, Ont., Dodge, 71, suspension.
18. (15) Kerry Micks, Mount Albert, Ont., Ford, 32, engine.
Time of Race: 1 hour 33 minutes 49 seconds
Margin of Victory: .365 seconds
Fastest Qualifier: A.Ranger (119.522 mph, 18.825 seconds)
Caution Flags: 5 for 26 laps.
Lead Changes: 2 among 3 drivers.
Lap Leaders: A. Ranger 1-11; C. Powell 12-78; K. Lacroix 79-206.
Standings: 1. K. Lacroix, 89; 2. L. Dumoulin, 84; 3. M. Camirand, 82; 4. C. Powell, 81; 5. D. Kennington, 78; 6. A. Ranger, 73; 7. A. Tagliani, 72; 8. B. Taylor, 71; 9. A. Martin, 66; 10. K. Micks, 63.