One of the most popular multi-race swings on the Super DIRTcar Series is the annual summer trip north of the border, and this year the tour is making back-to-back stops at Autodrome Granby and Autodrome Drummond in Quebec, Canada, on July 23-24.
Last year saw “Lightning” Larry Wight take the checkers at Autodrome Granby in front of a packed house to hold off the local favorite, Steve Bernard. With Wight running halftime on the tour, who will reclaim the throne come Monday night at Granby?
The Super DIRTcar Series has invaded Granby 30 times since its first visit back in 1986 which was won by Jimmy Horton. Current SDS points leader “Super” Matt Sheppard has collected the most victories at Granby in the last 10 years, with four wins. Meanwhile, Brett Hearn and Wight have both collected two victories at the fast track in Quebec.
Erick Rudolph is also looking to jump into contention this week as he aims for his first series victory of the season. Rudolph only has two series victories under his belt, but both of which have been clinched in Canada. Will Rudolph grab his first Super DIRTcar Series victory this season north of the border?
“I’m feeling good about our program,” Rudolph said. “We haven’t gotten any wins yet, but we’ve had a winning car though. We keep hanging on the front.”
Rudolph, who was a series regular back in 2014, hasn’t made the trek to Quebec in a few years.
“I’m looking forward to getting up there,” he added. “The last race I ran in Quebec we won which was four years ago at Drummond, so I’m looking forward to going back there.”
The Super DIRTcar Series’ trip to Canada is one of the most anticipated events for the Quebec fans.
“They pack the place up there,” he said. “They like it when the series come. They have a lot of good talent up there that don’t come our way as much so it’s fun to see them and see the fans you don’t normally get to see.”
One thing in particular Rudolph is looking forward to, other than returning to Victory Lane, is the food.
“I’m one of those that like to eat track food here and there, but when you do go to Canada, there are a few different menu items that you don’t normally get in the states, so I look forward to that,” he said.
The series’ reigning champ, Matt Sheppard, dominated the field in super fashion last year at Autodrome Drummond over two track locals, Steve Bernard and Steve Bernier.
Bernard collected a victory at Autodrome Granby earlier in the season, while Bernier has recently grabbed a win at Autodrome Drummond.
The series has made 47 visits to Autodrome Drummond since its first stop back in 1978 which was won by Kenny Brightbill. Since then, Sheppard has been the man to beat as he’s shown the locals the way around the track five times since his first victory at Drummond back in 2004.
Will the Canadians be able to defend their home turf or will the Super DIRTcar Series stars and cars show them the way around their town?
With the current Series points battle being so close, the top eight drivers still have a great chance of taking the coveted championship, with Sheppard, Rudolph, Max McLaughlin, Danny Johnson, Jimmy Phelps, Peter Britten, Brett Hearn, and Tim Fuller right in the mix.
We can expect to see several local runners with Big-Block power plants in their machines come Monday and Tuesday.
Last season a solid field of 39 cars filled up the pits at Granby and 39 cars made the trek to Drummond. The series can expect similar figures for the 100-lap events once again this year.
This visit is a marquee event for fans in Quebec. Not only will the pits be full of contenders, but the stands will also be at full capacity all for the Super DIRTcar Series’ invasion.