Boris Said survived a spin — and aberration — and edged Max Papis by a nose in a drag race to the finish to win the NAPA Auto Parts 200 at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve. The win is Said’s first career victory in the Nationwide Series.
The beginning of the race saw more caution laps than green-flag laps, with three caution flags flying in the first 12 laps. Marcos Ambrose and Jacques Villeneuve had the strongest cars to start the race, with Ambrose dominating. But, the pit strategy of some of their competitors put Ambrose and Villeneuve in 14th and 15th after pitting.
Ambrose powered through the field, as did Villeneuve albeit a little less aggressively than Ambrose. As Villeneuve made his way to the front, he got into the corner a little too hot behind Said and started wheel-hopping. He made contact with Said, sending him around. Both were able to right their cars and continue on.
Ambrose took the lead from Carl Edwards on lap 36, but one lap later, he reported that he thought there was something wrong with the battery or alternator. Edwards was able to get by him for the lead, and Ambrose pitted on lap 45 for a battery change. But, damage to the car prevented the crew from making a quick change, resulting in Ambrose losing two laps on pit road under green.
About six laps later, Ambrose broke something in the suspension, ending his day. He finished 33rd.
With 10 laps to go, Edwards, who looked poised for victory with Ambrose out, was leading when he broke a track bar mount. He went behind the wall for repairs. He finished 20th.
Robby Gordon assumed the lead when Edwards had his problem, but was iffy on fuel. He conserved over the last two cautions. But, when Trevor Bayne hit the wall and Jason Leffler wrecked, the race was red flagged. Gordon didn’t have enough fuel for the upcoming green-white-checkered finish.
On the restart, Said got by Gordon for the lead. Gordon gave him a shot in the rear bumper before running out of fuel and coasting while cars blew by him. He finished 14th.
Said took the lead, but Max Papis was all over Said’s rear. Papis passed him under braking heading into the final two turns. But, Papis swung a little wide coming off of the final turn allowing Said to pull along side of him. The two had a drag race to the finish with Said getting the edge by a nose.
Top 5: Said, Papis, Villeneuve, Brad Keselowski, and Paul Menard.
Joey Logano, JR Fitzpatrick, Parker Kligerman, Justin Allgaier, and Trevor Bayne rounded out the top 10.
Notables: Kenny Wallace (13th), Robby Gordon (14th), Mike Bliss (15th), Mike Wallace (17th), Carl Edwards (20th), Jason Leffler (21st), Colin Braun (22nd), Tayler Malsam (23rd), Ricky Stenhouse Jr (24th), Michael Annett (25th), Brendan Gaughan (27th), Joe Nemechek (28th), Ron Fellows (30th), Patrick Carpentier (32nd), Marcos Ambrose (33rd), and Steve Wallace (38th).