Dumoulin Snags First Career Win

BOWMANVILLE, Ont. – Louis-Philippe Dumoulin won the Pinty’s presents the Vortex Brake Pads 200 on Sunday in NASCAR Canadian Tire Series presented by Mobil 1 action at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park.

Dumoulin, out of Trois-Rivieres, Que., handled all comers on the 2.459-mile road course to pick up his first series career win while leading a race-high 32 laps. The 2011 series rookie of the year had a previous best finish of second last season in his hometown the event – the Grand Prix de Trois-Rivieres.

After leading four laps early Dumoulin bided his time behind the wheel of his No. 47 WeatherTech.ca/Bellemare Dodge while everyone cycled through pit stops for tires and fuel. He took the lead from fellow Quebecer Martin Roy on Lap 24 and was out front for the rest of the 51-lap affair.

“I’m really proud of my team and the car was great all weekend,” said Dumoulin. “My crew chief Tyler Case was on top of everything and making sure we made the right decisions. We’re really happy to get out first win.”

In three of the six seasons in series history the winner of the season opener has gone on to win the points championship. However, Dumoulin is in just his second full season of Canadian Tire Series competition and the road course specialist will need to prove his mettle on the eight oval track events on the schedule this season.

1 L.P. Dumoulin
2 Jeff Lapcevich
3 Jason Hathaway
4 D.J. Kennington
5 Robin Buck

“I learned quite a bit last year on the ovals, but it’s pretty tough to beat some of these guys,” he said. “This is a good win and we’ll continue to build on it.”

Runner-up Jeff Lapcevich seemed to be within striking distance after taking the white flag, but a bobble in Turn 1 effectively ended his challenge. The result equaled his best series finish established in 2009 at Riverside International Speedway in Antigonish, N.S., and helped raise the spirits of the Lapcevich Racing team after Lapcevich’s father passed away unexpectedly in early April.

“Everything with my dad really set us back,” he said. “I wasn’t even sure we were going to come here and I told the team to get everything ready just a couple of weeks ago. They’ve worked extremely hard and I appreciate it.”

On the final lap the veteran Lapcevich tried some gamesmanship to get past Dumoulin.

“I thought maybe I could rattle him, but I just ended up rattling myself,” said the pilot of the No. 76 Tim Hortons Dodge out of Grimsby, Ont. “After that it was over. He would have had to have done something really wrong for me to catch him.”

Jason Hathaway finished third and scored his best Canadian Tire Motorsport Park finish in seven starts on the road course.

“We put a lot of emphasis on our road course program over the offseason and it certainly paid off in running up front most of the day,” Hathaway said.

Defending series champion D.J. Kennington and Robin Buck in fourth and fifth, respectively and Kerry Micks, NASCAR Camping World Truck Series regular Ty Dillon, Noel Dowler, Trevor Seibert and Brad Graham rounded out the top-10 finishers.

Dillon gained some valuable experience on the track that will host its first NASCAR Camping World Truck Series event on Sunday, Sept. 1.

Pole sitter J.R. Fitzpatrick broke a drive shaft early on and finished a disappointing 27th in the 28-car field. He set a track record in Saturday’s qualifying and led the race’s first six laps before the untimely mechanical difficulty.

The race lead was exchanged six times among six drivers while the action was slowed due to caution three times for 13 laps.

The NASCAR Canadian Tire Series presented by Mobil 1 is back in action next on Saturday, June 15 for the EMCO 200 at Delaware (Ont.) Speedway.