GRANBY, Que., June 2, 2001---After experiencing more than his share of problems since the beginning of the season, Clement Therrien took advantage of a contact between Claude Brouillard and Mario Lajoie finally to find himself in his usual place,...
GRANBY, Que., June 2, 2001---After experiencing more than his share of problems since the beginning of the season, Clement Therrien took advantage of a contact between Claude Brouillard and Mario Lajoie finally to find himself in his usual place, last Friday night at autodrome Granby after winning the 40-lap Modified feature race of the 16th edition of the Eastern Townships Championship. It was also a busy night for DIRT officials who had to take action against four drivers after the mandatory technical inspection. Robin David (Sportsman), Michel Tessier (Late Model), Jocelyn Cordeau (Tourism) and Yves Beaupre (4 Cylinders) were caught will illegal parts on their cars.
Third at the start, Therrien had fell back in sixth place before making a comeback up front. Fourth on the fifth restart, Therrien took advantage of a light contact between Claude Brouillard and Mario Lajoie to take the lead. Despite another yellow flag with one lap remaining, Therrien managed to keep his spot to have the best on Mario Lajoie, the early leader in that spectacular race and Real Lafrance, the defending champion.
Steve Poirier also made his first appearance of the season at autodrome Granby, driving Marc Nadeau's Bicknell. For the first time with this racecar, he finished fourth followed by Claude Brouillard. It was not an easy night for young drivers Kayle Robidoux and Carl Labonte who were plagued by flat tires. Also, bad luck continued for Richard Chauvin and American driver Chad Miller who experienced mechanical problems. Spectacular Gino Clair also had to quit the challenge due to a motor failure.
Therrien, who before that feature was 13th in the Carquest standings, has now moved up to fourth place behind, Lafrance, Brouillard and Lajoie.
Earlier in the evening, Carl Labonte, Real Lafrance and American driver Leon Gonyo were the winners in their respective heats.
It was a night to remember for veteran driver Alain Mathieu in the Sportsman division. After winning his heat race, Mathieu led all the way to clinch the honors of the 15-lap feature. His victims were Martin Michaud who ran a strong race and Robin David. Later on, David was disqualified because he didn't pass with success the technical inspection. Arnold Cross was then moved up to third place. Because of his disqualification, David lost the lead in the standings and Mathieu replaced him.
Like Mathieu, Yannick Ledoux was intoucheable in the 15-lap feature for Late Models. He had the best on Stephane Larivière, the track champion, and Michel Tessier. For Ledoux, it was his second win this season. Tessier got the same treatment as David for an illegal motor.
For a second week in a row, Michel Coderre took the checkered flag in the Tourism feature race. In that confrontation, fans were witnesses to a good battle with Jean Boissonneault and Jocelyn Cordeau. Coderre was never overpowered by the pressure of those two drivers. As mentionned, Cordeau was also disqualified by DIRT officials.
As if it was not enough, Yves Beaupre, after winning the 4 Cylinders feature, was also excluded from the results due to an illegal suspension. So, Pierre Grondin made it to the higher step of the podium. He was accompanied by Patrick Dupont and Alain Poirier. It is the second time that the winner is disqualified in this class.
Results (40 laps) 16th Eastern Townships Championship
1.. 2, Clement Therrien 2- 72, Mario Lajoie 3- 11, Real Lafrance 4- 61N, Steve Poirier 5- 3, Claude Brouillard 6- 5, Mario Moreau 7- 46, Kayle Robidoux 8- 4, Leon Gonyo 9- 66, Martin Gagne 10- 09, Rejean Fortier 11- 90, Martin Roy 12- 11j, Jerry Pinnock Jr. 13- 66W, Wallace Stacey 14- 26, Jocelyn Perreault 15- 91, Michel Pelletier 16- 61, Chad Miller 17- 24L, Carl Labonte 18- 06, Francis McNeil 19- 31, Richard Chauvin 20- 83, Lloyd Sturtevant 21- 22J, Gino Clair 22- 21S, Bruce Sawyer.