Bittersweet Lucas Oil ESS Victory for Steve Poirier at Canandaigua

ess 2011 empire super sprints


By Dean Reynolds

CANANDAIGUA, NY – For Steve Poirier, another trip to victory lane makes a big statement towards his fourth Lucas Oil Empire Super Sprint Championship as he went wire to wire in winning the 25 lap A-Main at CanandaiguaMotorsportsPark. But, the victory lane was a bit subdued as good friend and championship rival Michael Parent was spending the night in a RochesterHospital.

ess 2011 empire super sprints

Parent went through a vicious series of flips at the start of heat one injuring his upper back. He was take to the hospital by helicopter to avoid further injuries but was conscious and had movement in all arms and legs during the procedure.


The victory was the fifth for the driver of the FM Industries #28FM and with Parent looking to miss time all but secures his fourth title. He also gained valuable points towards the Today’s Options Stars and Stripes Tour.


“Are car was real good tonight and we are very happy to get the win but we are thinking about our friend Michael tonight.” said Poirier shortly after “The track was nice and wide tonight and with our draw I felt we had a good chance and maybe getting the win.”


Poirier started in position four and when the field came down to record lap one he was already in the lead and pulling away some from the field. But, as slower traffic came into play, the race changed totally as young Dylan Swiernik entered into the equation.


Just shortly before half way Swiernik’s #7C pulled alongside Poirier on the outside but the Quebec star had the better low line to again open up a slight lead.


But, as the closing laps approached, Swiernik had another chance and the two were side by side coming off turn two. As they raced down the back stretch the two cars made contact and Swiernik’s font end gave way causing him to spin and out of the race.


“When you have so many green flag laps you just don’t know what is going on behind you.” Poirier noted. “I wasn’t sure if it was a lap car or someone trying to pass me.  We were right next to each other and we touched then I saw it knocked him out. I feel bad; I didn’t want that to happen at all as he (Dylan) drove a great race.”


The late race restart is what the doctor ordered for Poirier and also 10th place starting Shawn Donath. It was Poirier now having young Joe Trenca alongside for the waving of the green flag.  When the field went green Poirier quickly opened up his lead again while Donath went from tenth to fifth in one lap and he wasn’t done there.


Cory Sparks slipped by Trenca for second but as the field came down to the white flag; Donath was all the way up and making his move on Sparks. When the checkered fell it was Poirier winning over Donath and Sparks.


“We needed this, plain and simple, man what a year!” exclaimed Donath. “We just have had everything go wrong this year and it’s basically been a write off. But, my guys just never give up and they gave me just a great car. It’s the best I felt all year, we will take this second home and hope to build on it.”


For Sparks, while having Donath slip by on the last lap was a little hit, the third place was a big comeback after his wild flip last week at Albany-Saratoga.


“Yea, darn Shawn got me there at the end but we are real happy. This is the other car but to come back after last week and get third we will go home with a smile.” Sparks said. “The car had a ton of forward bite and we were good. We hope to keep it going here in the last few races.”


Finishing behind the podium three-some were Matt Tanner and Jason Barney continuing a string of good finishes to take home a top five. The next five were Kevin Ward Jr., Trenca for his best career ESS night, Jessica Zemken, Lance Yonge and Bryan Howland.


ESS/Canandaigua Notes: A nice field of 33 sprints filled the Ontario County Fairgrounds…The night was in tribute to Kramer Williamson who passed away from injuries last weekend. All teams had their Hoosier lettering in pink, sported pink 73’s on their sprints and special missing man formation during the four abreast was moving for all on hand…Bruce DeWick, Don Adamczyk, Scott Wagner and Steve Glover made their first ESS starts of 2013…The night for DeWick was a tough one with a flip during the B-Main. He was ok, but the car was heavily damaged…Next week, the Lucas Oil Tour visits the Brewerton Speedway.


Lucas Oil ESS A-Main – Steve Poirier ($1,775), Shawn Donath, Cory Sparks, Matt Tanner, Jason Barney, Kevin Ward Jr., Joe Trenca, Jessica Zemken, Lance Yonge, Bryan Howland, Jared Zimbardi, Paul Kinney, Sammy Reakes IV, Blake Breen, Chuck Hebing, Tommy Wickham, Charlie Donk, Jeff Cook, Paul Habeck, Dylan Swiernik, Etienne Girard, Patrick Vigneault, James Hanson.


Did Not Qualify – Michael Parent, Steve Glover, Scott Wagner, Justin Barger, Mike Stelter, Dave Wickham, Dave Axton, Don Adamczyk, Vinnie Vitale.


Lap Leaders – Poirier 1-25.


Car Mate Custom Built Trailers Heat 1 – Trenca, Breen, Swiernik, Cook, Habeck, Donk

Car Mate Custom Built Trailers Heat 2 – Poirier, Howland, Ward Jr., Zimbardi, Barney, Kinney

Car Mate Custom Built Trailers Heat 3 – Yonge, Swiernik, Zemken, Tanner, Donath, Reakes IV

PC Repair Center /Cobra Coaches Dash – Howland

Lacaillade Masonry B-Main – Vigneault, Hebing, T. Wickham, Girard


Added Starter – Hanson



Westward Painting Company Halfway – Poirier $100

Ohsweken Speedway Winners Bonus – Poirier $100

Fondations 4 Saisons Hard Charger – Donath (13 Pos.) $50

Fondations 55 Pick 5 – Barney $50

North Eastern Pool and Spa Power Pick – Tanner, Habeck $50

Lacaillade Masonry B-Main – Vigneault $50

Car Mate Custom Built Trailers – Yonge, Trenca, Poirier $25

Go Nuclear Go Fast Award – Poirier (16.982) $25

JImmy D’s Speed and Machine Fast Time –  Trenca (16.800) $25



For more information on the Lucas Oil Empire Super Sprints:
Twitter: @ESSprints
Android App: Empire Super Sprints


The Lucas Oil Empire Super Sprints are brought to you by: Lucas Oil, Le Groupe Ultra, SUNY Canton, Mach 1 Chassis, Today’s Options, Hoosier Racing Tires, Fondations 4 Saisons, Cobra Coaches, Westward Painting Company, Fondations 55, Camara Slate, North Eastern Pool and Spa, Lacaillade Masonry, Car Mate Trailers, Brodix Cylinder Heads, Ohsweken Speedway, Dover Brake and Clutch, FX Chevy and many, many associate sponsors!!