Allgaier Tastes Nationwide Redemption
MONTREAL — Justin Allgaier got redemption in the strangest of ways Saturday afternoon at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve.
Allgaier, who ran out of fuel while leading at Road America during a green-white-checkered situation in 2011, pitted later than the competition and took the lead on the final lap of the NAPA Auto Parts 200 NASCAR Nationwide Series race when leader Jacques Villeneuve’s Dodge stumbled coming off a corner.
Allgair bumped Villeneuve, turning him sideways and powering his Turner Motorsports Chevrolet into the lead. He held off Sam Hornish Jr., who had a wild day of his own, to claim his first victory of the season.
“I feel really bad,” said Allgaier. “I got into the 22 there. I thought he was out of fuel because he was going so slow. I wheel-hopped a little bit there and got into him. Once I got into him, I knew I was going to have to run the best race I ever ran to win the race.
“I can’t even talk. The last lap was just amazing. I didn’t breathe the whole lap. After Road America last year, this is great. I wish I had gotten it then, but this is great.”
It was the second victory of the day for Turner Motorsports as Nelson Piquet Jr. won the Camping World Truck Series race at Michigan Int’l Speedway.
Hornish led four laps earlier in the race and was contending for the lead when he was spun by Michael McDowell, which led to a second accident with backmarkers.
After repairs, he started at the rear of the field (18th) and charged his way to the front, passing Villeneuve on the final lap and getting to Allgaier’s bumper as the pair raced under the checkered flag.
“Prior to that caution where we got spun out, I felt like we had the car to beat today,” said Hornish. “But to come back up through there, I feel pretty good about what I am doing.”
Villeneuve managed to keep his fuel-starved No. 22 running and finished third after a race which saw him bump everything in his sight, including then-race-leader Alex Tagliani, out of his way.
Point leader Elliott Sadler finished fourth with Ron Fellows taking fifth.
Sadler leads the standings by 22 points over Ricky Stenhouse Jr., who finished 12th, and Hornish.