In September 2006, NASCAR announced the purchase of Canada’s premier stock car series - CASCAR.
They also revealed a long-term sponsorship agreement with the Canadian Tire Corporation.
This signaled a new era for professional stock car racing in Canada.
The series debuted in late May at Cayuga Speedway. The opening round was followed by races at Mosport International Raceway and Barrie Speedway. The teams then traveled west competing at SunValley Speedway in British Columbia and the Edmonton City Center Airport. In August, the series made its first visit to Quebec with an event at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve. Round seven was another weekend at Mosport but this time it was on the oval which was followed by Circuit Trois Rivieres, Quebec. The championship returned to Cayuga and Barrie in early September. The penultimate round was at Riverside Speedway in Nova Scotia with the finale being held at Kawartha Speedway. There was a total of twelve race weekends in five different provinces.
The first season included many of the teams that had previously participated in the CASCAR series and some new faces. The switch to NASCAR also meant changes to event procedures, technical inspections and the cars.
The series cars are a constructed using a steel tube frame design covered with a fiberglass body and are required to weigh no less than 3000-lbs with the driver. Eligible body styles are the 2005-2007 Dodge (Avenger and Charger), Ford (Fusion and Taurus), Pontiac (Grand Prix) and Chevrolet (Monte Carlo SS). Engine displacement which can range from 350-360-cu.in. is dictated by the make and model of the vehicle. The carbureted eight-cylinder motors produce approximately 550-horsepower at 6,500-rpm and depending on gearing can achieve a speed of 160-mph.
Round ten of the 2007 NASCAR Canadian Tire series was held at Barrie Speedway on the 1/3-mile oval track. Drivers would compete for 300-laps in a race sponsored by ATTO Insurance.
|Twenty cars are gridded on Barrie Speedway’s front straight for the ATTO 300. The fastest qualifier was the No. 02 Beyond Digital Imaging sponsored Ford Taurus of Kerry Micks. Micks had two victories this season both of them on street courses – Trois-Rivieres and Montreal. Sharing the front row with Micks is Don Thomson, Jr. in the No. 4 Chevrolet Monte Carlo. Thomson also had a pair of wins – Mosport and Cayuga.|
|D.J. Kennington driving the No. 17 Dodge Charger won both races at Barrie Speedway. But Kennington’s second victory was much tougher. On Friday night, he competed in the NASCAR Busch event at Richmond, Virginia. A very tired, Kennington made it to Barrie in time for the Driver’s meeting. He broke a throttle return spring during the race but the crew was able to use a bungee cord to keep the gas pedal off the floor.|
|The No. 39 Dodge Charger was driven by Dave Whitlock. Whitlock was the 1998 CASCAR Super Series champion but was yet to earn a victory in the NASCAR Canadian Tire series. At Barrie Speedway, he qualified the Dickies sponsored Dodge fifteenth. The team’s pit-stop strategy allowed, Whitlock to move up the race order. By lap-275, he was second but could not match Kennington’s pace and settled for the runner-up spot.|
|Entering round ten, the driver of the Home Hardware Chevrolet Monte Carlo, Don Thomson, Jr. had four top-five finishes which included victories at the Mosport oval and Cayuga International Speedway. At Barrie Speedway, Thomson qualified on the outside of the front row. A solid performance netted, him a third-place finish. Thomson’s result moved him from fifth to fourth in the Driver Standings.|
|Running in fourth-place just fifty-laps into the ATTO 300, Mark Dilley driving the No. 9 Dodge Avenger was hit by the Chevrolet of Peter Gibbons. The impact sent Dilley backwards into the tire barrier at the entrance of the pit lane. The track services crew was required to remove him from the barrier. Repairs were needed to fix the Dodge’s suspension. Dilley rejoined the race forty-laps behind the leaders in thirteenth place.|
|Fresh off his victory one-week earlier at Cayuga International Speedway was, Derek Lynch. Lynch drove the No. 77 Dodge Charger with backing from Allied Steel Buildings and Canadian Shield. At Barrie Speedway, he started in the eighteenth-position in the twenty car field. Lynch made good progress during the event and was in seventh place at the checkered flag.|
|Veteran, Kerry Micks had two victories in the 2007 season and was second in the championship standings – 122-points behind the leader, Andrew Ranger. Micks was the pole-sitter for the ATTO 300 and well positioned to close the gap on Ranger who qualified fourteenth. He led the first sixty-five-laps but fate would intervene and Micks finished nineteenth. He dropped to fifth in the title chase.|
|Another former CASCAR champion (1999 and 2000) looking for his first victory of the season was Peter Gibbons. Gibbons driving the No. 1 Canadian Tire-sponsored Chevrolet Monte Carlo qualified tenth quickest at Barrie Speedway. He moved to the front of the field on lap-91 and maintained first place for 119-circuits. But in the second half of the race, Gibbons was unable to match the pace of the leaders and finished fourth.|
|FINISH||START||DRIVERS||SPONSOR / CAR||LAPS||RETIREMENTS|
|1||7||D.J. Kennington||Castrol / Dodge Charger||300||-|
|2||15||Dave Whitlock||Dickies / Dodge Charger||300||-|
|3||2||Don Thomson, Jr.||Home Hardware / Chevrolet Monte Carlo||300||-|
|4||10||Peter Gibbons||Canadian Tire / Chevrolet Monte Carlo SS||300||-|
|5||3||John Gaunt||Centennial Chrysler / Dodge Avenger||300||-|
|6||14||Andrew Ranger||WAL-MART / Ford Fusion||300||-|
|7||18||Derek Lynch||Allied Steel / Dodge Charger||300||-|
|8||16||Jason Hathaway||Snap-on / Dodge Charger||300||-|
|9||12||J.R. Fitzpatrick||Milwaukee Tools / Chevrolet Monte Carlo||300||-|
|10||5||Scott Steckly||Erb Group / Dodge Charger||300||-|
|11||11||Bob Merrifield||Brimar Homes / Dodge Avenger||288||-|
|12||6||Doug Brown||Haldex / Dodge Charger||264||Differential|
|13||8||Mark Dilley||Leland / Dodge Avenger||261||-|
|14||17||Ron Beauchamp, Jr.||Mopar / Dodge Avenger||253||-|
|15||13||Kent Nuhn||Fuel Genie / Pontiac Grand Prix||249||-|
|16||9||Brad Graham||Full Throttle / Dodge Charger||240||-|
|17||19||Joey McColm||ATTO Insurance / Dodge Charger||210||Suspension|
|18||20||Trevor Monaghan||Seven Star / Dodge Avenger||191||Clutch|
|19||1||Kerry Micks||Beyond Digital / Ford Taurus||183||-|
|20||4||Jim Lapcevich||Tim Hortons / Chevrolet Monte Carlo||46||Suspension|
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