Montreal, QC – Series: NASCAR Nationwide. Date: Saturday, mile, 14-turn road course. Start time: 2:30 p.m. (et). Laps: 74. Miles: 200.46. 2010 Winner: Boris Said. Television: ESPN. Radio: Motor Racing Network (MRN)/SIRIUS NASCAR Satellite.
The Nationwide Series travels north of the border to Montreal for the third and final road course race of the 2011 season. Reed Sorenson won in June at Road America in Elkhart Lake, WI, while Kurt Busch took the checkered flag this past Saturday at Watkins Glen, NY.
Last year's race at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve ended in thrilling fashion. Boris Said passed Robby Gordon for the lead during a green-white-checkered finish. Max Papis then challenged Said for the win during the final two laps, but he edged Papis at the finish line by only 0.012 seconds, making it the fifth closest margin of victory in series history.
Said captured his first win in his 22nd Nationwide start. He returns for this year's race, driving the No.30 Chevrolet for Turner Motorsports.
"I am excited to go back to Montreal and defend my win with Turner Motorsports," Said commented. "They are a great organization that has proven they can win."
Edwards won at Montreal in 2009. He has also claimed two poles and led the most laps here with 149. Edwards considers this track to be one of the most challenging on the Nationwide schedule.
"Montreal is twice as hard on the brakes as any of these other race tracks we go to," he said. "It has long straightaways, stop, right-left, long straightaway, stop, right-left, it's a very taxing race track on the brakes. It's unlike any other track I've ever driven on."
Nine Canadians are scheduled to compete in this race, including Jacques Villeneuve, who is driving the No.22 Dodge in place of Brad Keselowski. Villeneuve was slated to drive the Penske Racing car well before Keselowski was injured at Road Atlanta.
Villeneuve finished third in front of his home crowd last year. He also placed third in June at Road America.
The 2.710-mile, 14-turn Montreal circuit is named after Villeneuve's late father.
Danica Patrick is expected to make her stock car debut on a road course. It will also be Patrick's first Nationwide race since July at Daytona, where she finished 10th.
Scott Speed will make his first series start since 2009, driving the No.33 Chevrolet for Kevin Harvick Inc.
Ricky Stenhouse Jr. comes to Montreal with a 10-point lead over Sorenson. Elliott Sadler is 24 points behind the leader.
Fifty teams are on the preliminary entry list for the NAPA Auto Parts 200.