American-Canadian Tour (ACT) President Tom Curley thanked all involved with the Série ACT-Castrol in his remarks during the evening, and announced a nine-event schedule for 2009.
ive diverse tracks will host the Série ACT-Castrol in 2009, and as in 2008, the season will begin and end at the flat, 4/10-mile Autodrome St-Eustache oval near Montréal. The series will open there with a 100-lap event on Saturday, May 23, and close with the 15th Annual St-Eustache 300 on Sunday, September 20. Autodrome Montmagny, a high-banked 3/8-mile oval east of Québec City, will also host the series twice, with a 100-lap race on Saturday, May 30, and the annual Montmagny 250 on Saturday, July 4.
Autodrome Chaudière, a high-banked 1/4-mile oval in Vallée-Jonction, QC, will hold two 150-lap Série ACT-Castrol Championship events; the first on Saturday, June 6, the second on Saturday, August 8. Autodrome Chaudière will also host the second annual “Showdown at Chaudière,” a non-points, all-star invitational event for the top ACT drivers in Canada and the United States, on Saturday, August 29.
The 3/8-mile, semi-banked Capital City Speedway in Ottawa will host a 100-lap event for the third consecutive season, on Saturday, June 13, as the track's weekly Late Model competitors take on the touring Série ACT-Castrol teams.
The 5/8-mile, high-banked Riverside Speedway (formerly Circuit Ste-Croix) on the banks of the St. Lawrence River in Ste-Croix, QC, will return to the Série ACT-Castrol schedule for the first time in two years. Riverside Speedway will host a 100-lap event on Saturday, June 20, and a 150-lap contest on Saturday, August 22.
In addition to the special “Showdown at Chaudière” event, the weekend of July 18/19 has been reserved for the annual TD Banknorth 250 at Oxford Plains Speedway in Maine. Many Série ACT-Castrol competitors competed at the event in 2008, considered the richest one-day short track race in North America.
Série ACT-Castrol - 2009 Schedule
Event No. - Day/Date - Track - Location - Laps
1. Sat., May 23 - Autodrome St-Eustache - St-Eustache, QC (Montréal) - 100
2. Sat., May 30 - Autodrome Montmagny - Montmagny, QC - 100
3. Sat., June 6 - Autodrome Chaudière - Vallée-Jonction, QC - 150
4. Sat., June 13 - Capital City Speedway - Ottawa, ON - 100
5. Sat., June 20 - Riverside Speedway - Ste-Croix, QC - 100
6. Sat., July 4 - Autodrome Montmagny - Montmagny, QC - 250
*** Sun., July 19 - Oxford Plains Speedway - Oxford, ME, USA - 250
7. Sat., Aug. 8 - Autodrome Chaudière - Vallée-Jonction, QC - 150
8. Sat., Aug. 22 - Riverside Speedway - Ste-Croix, QC - 150
*** Sat., Aug. 29 - Autodrome Chaudière - Vallée-Jonction, QC - 200
9. Sun., Sept. 20 - Autodrome St-Eustache - St-Eustache, QC (Montréal) - 300
*** - denotes non-championship events
Schedule subject to change
Gingras's #27 SkyJet Chevrolet Impala was steady and consistent in winning the Castrol championship, posting six top-ten finishes in eight starts, including a best finish of second at the Luminaire Napert 150 at Autodrome Chaudière in August. Gingras was also in the top-five at Ottawa's Capital City Speedway and Autodrome St-Félicien in northern Québec, and had strong runs at Autodrome St-Eustache near Montréal, and Autodrome Montmagny Speedway near Québec City.
Karl Allard of St-Félicien, QC was given runner-up honors at the Série ACT-Castrol Banquet of Champions. Allard finished just three points behind Gingras (643-640) for the championship. Jean-François Déry of Québec finished third overall, with Lanoraie, QC veteran Claude Leclerc finishing fourth. Martin Lacombe of Terrebonne, QC and Yvon Bédard of St-Nicolas, QC tied for fifth place overall.
Nineteen year-old Patrick Hamel of St-Édourard-de-Lotbiniçre, QC was honored as the Série ACT-Castrol Rookie of the Year. Hamel completed his first full season of Late Model stock car racing in 7th place overall on the Série ACT-Castrol, with a top result of fourth place at Autodrome Chaudière.
Sophomore driver Stéphane Durand of Québec was voted by competitors as the Série ACT-Castrol “Most Improved Driver” for 2008. Durand earned his first-ever top-ten finish at Chaudière in the Coors Light 100 in June and finished in 11th place in the championship standings.
Éric St-Gelais of St-Nicolas was named the winner of the Série ACT-Castrol “Sportsmanship” award, as voted by competitors and officials. The second-year Late Model racer was on hand at all events in 2008, and was seen repairing the car of his competitors on many occasions.