EDMONTON, AB - John Ryan (J.R.) Fitzpatrick scored his first victory of the season a week ago. The 19 year old obviously liked the winning feeling as he made a dramatic late race pass at the Edmonton City Centre Airport Course to sweep the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series western swing.
As teams made their second road course start of the season J.R. Fitzpatrick renewed the rivalry with former Champ Car racer Andrew Ranger. The two battled earlier in the season at the Mosport Road Course with Fitzpatrick and the Milwaukee Electric Tools Chevy forced to settle for second after a somewhat controversial pass for the win. Fitzpatrick was unable to snatch the pole position away from Ranger but did get the big prize at the end of the day.
As the green flag waved on the first of 32 laps around the very taxing 14 turn course set up on airport runways and taxiways Fitzpatrick did now allow the competition to get too far ahead. “I was just saving my stuff for later in the race” he said afterwards. “Even when the 02 car got by me I didn’t panic because I knew we had a fast race car”.
The 02 car was forced to retire with mechanical problems and the two rivals faced off for the dramatic conclusion. Fitzpatrick hounded the 27 car following a late race caution period looking for an opening. “I saw he was getting loose in a couple of places and was trying to take advantage of any opening”.
On the last lap of the race Fitzpatrick stayed right on the bumper of the leader and when the #27 car got a little wide in corner twelve he pounced on the opportunity. Fitzpatrick would move the Milwaukee Electric Tools Chevy to the front with a clean pass and hold on through the balance of the final lap and score his second straight victory. “I just drove it in and hoped that it held” said a beaming Fitzpatrick afterwards. “This one is for my dad too, he told us to bring home the money and that’s what we did, this is a great victory for the Milwaukee Electric Tools team.”
With their second straight victory JR Fitzpatrick and the Milwaukee Electric Tools team have jumped to second in the championship standings after five events.
The Milwaukee Electric Tools look to make it three straight wins as the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series will race next at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve in Montreal on August 4th. More information on the series can be obtained by visiting www.nascar.ca All twelve races will also be shown on TSN.
This release prepared by TL Sports & Entertainment