They may be tough opponents on the track, drivers, NASCAR Pinty’s, contacted by The Journal de Montréal, say they are deeply sorry to see that the name of Andrew Ranger will probably be scratched from the list in 2020.
The loss of his sponsor MOPAR, this subsidiary of Chrysler, which has confirmed its intentions to put an end to all of its funding arrangements because of the COVID-19, costing him his flying in the series canadian NASCAR Pinty’s in 2020.
For one, Alexandre Tagliani, wishes the best of luck to a rival with which it has held discussions very muscular on the circuit in the past.
“I sent him a text message of encouragement, said the driver from Lachenaie, in a telephone interview with the Journal. I found myself in this situation many times in the past and it is very frustrating.
“I respect a lot, said Tagliani, and you don’t like to ever lose a competitor of his caliber who contributes to the popularity of his sport. Andrew is a master player of our championship. ”
Tagliani had proceeded with the launch of its new car in the framework of the auto Show of Quebec on march 3 before the pandemic does not occur in the country.
“We must keep hope,” he said. When it’s going to leave again, I have this impression that the fans are going to have the taste of returning to the races or watching any other sport. I want to believe that we will manage to get out of it. It is for that reason that we made lots of sacrifices currently. ”
Flowers for Canada
Double champion of the NASCAR Pinty’s, Louis-Philippe Dumoulin has held the same discourse that Tagliani.
“I don’t like to learn that Andrew had lost his sponsor, has recognized the driver of Trois-Rivières. I remain positive. I think that the situation in Canada is less worse than elsewhere in the world. The authorities of our countries have adopted the right measures.
“Andrew won the championship last year, and it would be very unfortunate for the series as it is not there,” said Dumoulin. I’ve always had a lot of fun to the face, you respect a lot. We want the good competition, Andrew is part of the best. In order for our series to be healthy, it takes guys like him. ”
For the moment, the first race of the NASCAR Pinty’s, scheduled for may 17 at Mosport, in Ontario, has not yet been rescheduled. The session of private testing, open to all stables and which was to be held on 29 April, however has been cancelled.
Camirand less worried
For his part, Marc-Antoine Camirand, also contacted by The Journal, says he is less worried about that Ranger.
“We spoke on Saturday, said the driver of Saint-Léonard-d’aston, to tell him that I was very disappointed for him. It is a major player in our series.
“This is not funny what he saw and I imagine that it will not be the last to suffer such a fate. In my case, I recently contacted my sponsor, Jean-Claude Paillé (GM dealer Paillé in Berthierville), which is reassuring. Let’s say I am less concerned about Andrew.”
Camirand wondered when the season of the NASCAR Pinty’s will start.
“I don’t know what will happen, if he asked. Will we have an early season or a whole season short ? It would be surprising that it all starts in may as planned.”
The heart-wrenching decisions
The time to is the reflection for Donald Theetge, who, in the company of his brother Benedict, is leading a prosperous network of four dealerships in the Quebec city region.
After two seasons full-time in NASCAR Pinty’s, he chose to limit his schedule of races in the events held on the traced oval, and, perhaps, the Grand Prix of Trois-Rivières in August.
“It is difficult for everyone and you can’t escape it,” he admits. We are following the situation closely, and follow instructions. We had maintained a good volume of sales, but everything has been suspended until 13 April on the orders of our prime minister.
“If this deadline is extended, says he, we will have big decisions to make. The NASCAR Pinty’s, it is a big business. It wants to all run as quickly as possible, but the important thing is the health of the whole world. ”
With Ranger ?
Theetge has left the team of Scott Steckly in the last year to join a new organization orchestrated by David Wight, a figure known in NASCAR.
“If our agreement is based on oval racing, I would not see why the services of Andrew (Ranger) would not be sought in circuit road. I will be very flattered to see him join our organization.
“David and Andrew have worked together in the past, recalled Theetge. I am certain that it will make every effort to be together.”
Theetge is also glad of the steps carried out in Quebec and in Canada to address the pandemic.
“It gives the example,” he said. It may be that NASCAR races will start earlier in Canada than in the United States ? This would be a great opportunity for a network like TSN to show our races live on their airwaves ?”.
Lacroix bit optimistic
Also contacted by The Newspaper of Montreal, Kevin Lacroix, another tenor from the series NASCAR Pinty’s, showed, him, little optimism about the future.
“In all candor, he recounted, I don’t think that there will be a season. I’m not in the area of health, but we realize that it is at the beginning of the pandemic. The situation will evolve.
“The important thing is to slow the spread and eventually finding a vaccine. However, this vaccine, it will take a year to find it. I think that any gathering will not be possible during this time. This is my opinion.”
Lacroix, as well as some others, however, is not worried for his career in NASCAR.
“Our contract is still valid,” he says. We talked to our sponsors and everything is in place. We are more dependent on the calendar.”