A journey into the unknown

An ordeal into the unknown


The NASCAR series will experience its first Tuesday evening as its drivers compete on a dirt track. 

Twenty-three competitors have confirmed their participation in this historic event which will be presented on the territory of the Ohsweken Native Reserve, located about forty kilometers southwest of Hamilton, Ontario. 

In addition to the drivers hired full-time in the Canadian series, some big names in the specialty met there to get their hands on the tempting purse of $25,000 awarded to the winner. 

Among them, we find Stewart Friesen, considered as one of the serious candidates for victory even if he has never driven a car from the Pinty's series. The Niagara-on-the-Lake native has been a full-time entrant in the Camping World Truck Series since 2018 and one of his three wins (in 133 starts) came on the Eldora dirt track. , Ohio, in 2019. 

Friesen has made this surface a real playground, on which he can compete in up to five races a week despite his busy schedule. He also has the advantage of knowing the Ohsweken track. 

Two other distinguished guests, and also clay specialists, will make the trip, namely Christopher Bell, full-time NASCAR Cup driver, and 67-year-old veteran Ken Schrader, who ended a career in 2013. 29 years in the NASCAR Cup. 

Confident Lessard 

Among the nine Quebecers present at Ohsweken, Raphaël Lessard wishes to take advantage of his experience of clay to mingle with the favorites. 

The driver from Saint-Joseph-de-Beauce distinguished himself on this surface in Bristol, Tennessee, in the NASCAR pickup series in 2021, finishing third. 

“It's an advantage to have driven on clay, indicated Lessard, but it's still a big challenge. To be competitive, you have to find the right trajectory. The more the event progresses, the more the conditions of the track change. »

For the drivers, it's a race into the unknown since most have practically no experience on this type of road. 

“It's good for visibility,” says Marc – Antoine Camirand. I don't think we'll be able to keep up with the Friesen and Bell, but we regular riders are all in the same boat. » 


Same story from Louis-Philippe Dumoulin.

« We want prove that you can compete with the best and the presence of these renowned drivers will add to the prestige of the series, he says. We are in a race for the championship, so we must first think about collecting precious points. » 

Attentive spectator, Dominic Lussier, co-owner of Autodrome Granby, will make the trip to Ohsweken. “We have been in discussions with NASCAR to host a Pinty's Series race on clay since 2015,” he said. If the experience proves successful, the file could progress over the next few months. We live in hope for next year. »