To gain an advantage, you need to do whatever you can. JR Motorsports is doing that by taking two Canadian drivers to the only NASCAR Nationwide Series Canadian stop.
Missausaga, Ontario, native Ron Fellows will be behind the wheel of a JR Motorsports car for the fifth time in his career.
In those five starts, he has one win, three top-fives and, four top-10 finishes with seven laps led.
Fellows knows his way around Montreal, as proven in 2008, when he qualified sixth and led seven laps en route to becoming the first Canadian to win on Canadian soil.
"Montreal is a great event, not only for the Quebec-based fans, but for the teams too," Fellows said in the team preview. "It's such a change of pace from what we typically deal with. Most of the tracks we visit in the states aren't in the middle of a city like Circuit Gilles Villeneuve. So it's definitely a unique weekend. My family always enjoys going to Montreal, especially all the great restaurants."
In three starts on the 2.71-mile road course, Fellows has one win and two top-fives, with an average finish of fourth.
"As far as the track goes, you need the best of both worlds," Fellows said. "You need good brakes and a lot of power. The track has some very long straightaways followed by high braking corners. Our Canadian Tire Chevrolet will need a lot of horsepower to get off the corners and onto the straightaways with speed, but we'll have to have a good brake package in order to get slowed down enough to make those sharp corners. It's a fast, fun track and you get to do a lot of shifting."
Canadian Tire, one of Canada's most shopped general retailers, will be sponsoring Fellows. They have over 480 stores in Canada and are currently the title sponsor of the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series (NCTS).
NCTS Points Leader J.R. Fitzpatrick will be aboard the second JR Motorsports car, driving the No. 7 Shick Hydro Chevrolet.
This will be Fitzpatrick's third start with JRM this year. Earlier this year, he finished seventh at Road America and 13th at Watkin's Glen International.
"It's been a good experience for me to work with Tony Eury Jr. and all the guys on the Shick Hydro team at JRM," Fitzpatrick said. "We've had one top-10 effort in my two races with the team, but now I want to go out there and get a top-five run at Montreal. I know we're a good enough team to do it. We just need to stay focused and stay out of trouble, which at Montreal cna be a tough thing to do. Sometimes tough just seems to find you there."
Fitzpatrick will compete in the NCTS race Sunday morning before the Nationwide race.
Currently with an average finish of 3.7, Fitzpatrick leads D.J. Kennington by 16 points. He has led 99 laps this year with two road-course wins (Mosport, Edmonton), six top-fives, and nine top-10s in nine starts.
"I think running the Canadian Tire Series race on Sunday morning before the Nationwide race is a good thing," he said. "Not only have we been running great in that series, but as a driver any time you can get more laps at a track you're going to take advantage of it. Plus, we're running full-time in that series and have the championship points lead right now. It's a thrill to have the potential to win that race and the Nationwide Series race. I'm really looking forward to that chance."
Both Fellows and Fitzpatrick look to do well as the No. 88 sits seventh and the No. 7 sits 18th in owner's points.
EVENT: NAPA Auto Parts 200
LENGTH: 74 laps
TRACK: Circuit Gilles Villeneuve (2.709-mile road course)
DATE: Sunday August 29, 2010
TV: ESPN2 (coverage begins at 2:00p.m. EST)
RADIO: MRN (broadcast begins at 2:00p.m. EST)