How will CTMP NASCAR Truck race match its first one of last year?

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A year ago, Chase Elliott won the first NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park, but the win was secondary to a crazy story post-race when after contact between Mike Skeen and Max Papis, Skeen’s girlfriend slapped Papis post-race.

So what the heck does CTMP have in store for an encore?

“I wish I knew! That first one was a hard one to top,” Ron Fellows told MotorSportsTalk at Le Mans this year. Fellows is part of the track’s new ownership group, who have made sizable capital investments to the facility since taking over a couple years ago.

Track improvements include better viewing areas for fans at Turn 1, and additional corporate enhancements.

“As a race fan and as a kid, you’re always searching for where you want to watch and what’s important to be able to see,” Fellows said. “There are some things we’ve done have been done to improve viewing areas. Now having the outfield side of Turn 1 for corporate hosting available too has enhanced the overall experience.”

On-track, there’s only 29 Trucks entered this weekend for Sunday’s Chevrolet Silverado 250.

The two “ringers” you’d expect to fight for the win are Canadian locals Alex Tagliani, recently announced for Brad Keselowski Racing, and Andrew Ranger, a NASCAR Canadian Tire two-time champ who’ll be in NDS Motorsports’ No. 53 RAM.

As for the season-long regulars, any of young guns Ryan Blaney, Darrell Wallace Jr., or Erik Jones could hassle the usual Truck veterans.

But it’s doubtful in terms of drama and surprise, that the post-race dustup will match up. Still, there’s something cool about seeing Trucks away from a standard oval, and we’ll see if the 2014 edition can live up to the inaugural event.

Verstappen doesn’t want F1 season to end after recent run of form

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Max Verstappen says he is not ready for the 2017 Formula 1 season to come to an end after enjoying a run of strong form through the closing stages of the campaign.

Verstappen endured a rocky run of form through to the end of the European season that saw him suffer a number of reliability issues and score just a single podium finish, taking third in China back in April.

However, the Dutchman has rallied to score more points than any other driver in the last five races, including victories in Malaysia and Mexico, as well as a podium finish in Japan.

Verstappen heads into next weekend’s Abu Dhabi Grand Prix chasing a third win of the year to sign off, but joked he does not want the season to end just as he’s got into a good groove.

“We will, of course, try and end the season with a strong result in Abu Dhabi,” Verstappen said. “Last year was actually quite a good race after skipping a pit stop following a spin at Turn 1, it was hard to manage the tires to the end of the race but we did it and finished fourth.

“I would say that my favorite part of the track is at Turns 2 and 3, the fast left, right. It’s also very cool driving underneath the hotel and racing in the darkness with all the lights.

“The final sector at Yas Marina is actually quite technical so you have to be really precise there, but it should also be our strongest part of the track.

“There are quite a few overtaking opportunities to make the race interesting, before the long straight at the hairpin and then at the end of the straight under braking for the next chicane section.

“Abu Dhabi is the last race on the calendar, but I don’t actually want the season to end. I’m really fired up at the moment and I just want to keep going.

“The nice thing will be to spend some time with friends and family over the winter break and then I will look ahead to January and get back into training before it all starts again.”