Atlantic Series announces All-Star team With the Cooper Tires Presents The Atlantic Championship Powered by Mazda celebrating its 35th Anniversary this season and returning to the Grand Prix de Trois-Rivieres for the first time since 2003, the iconic street race in Quebec served as the perfect backdrop for the series to unveil the 35th Anniversary Atlantic Championship All-Star Team.
The 10-member team was determined in voting by a panel of esteemed auto racing journalists and photographers earlier this year and was selected from a field of 25 finalists. Plans are currently being made to honor the 35th Anniversary Atlantic Championship All-Star Team as part of the 2008 season finale at Road Atlanta on October 3.
“We are thrilled to be back at Trois-Rivieres this weekend for the first time in five years and this was the perfect event for us to announce our 35th Anniversary Atlantic Championship All-Star Team,” said Atlantic Championship President Vicki O’Connor. “This team represents the very best of the Atlantic Championship over the years and every member of the team truly earned the right to be a part of it. I am grateful to our friends in the media who participated in the selection of the team and I offer my sincere congratulations to every driver who was selected.”
Reflective of the series’ long history of developing top drivers from Canada and the United States, the team consists of six Canadian drivers and four Americans. A listing of the members of the 35th Anniversary Atlantic Championship All-Star Team follows below in alphabetical order:
A.J. Allmendinger – Only raced in Atlantic for one season (2003), but won the series championship with seven victories, including the race at Trois-Rivieres, and his nine pole positions tied Gilles Villeneuve for the record for most poles in a single season. Allmendinger went on to win races in the Champ Car World Series and now competes in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in the No. 84 Red Bull Racing Toyota.
Claude Bourbonnais – In an Atlantic career that spanned from 1989-93, the Canadian racer claimed 13 career victories, tying him for second place on the all-time win list with Gilles Villeneuve. Bourbonnais also earned 11 pole positions during his Atlantic career, tying him for fourth on the all-time list with Jacques Villeneuve (the brother of Gilles) and Patrick Carpentier. He finished inside the top-three in the championship three times, including runner-up performances to David Empringham in 1993 and Brian Till in the Atlantic Division of the 1990 season. He went on to compete in the 1997 Indianapolis 500, Champ Cars and other forms of road racing and is now coaching young drivers.
Bill Brack – The Canadian competed in Atlantic from its inception in 1974 through 1979 and won the first two series championships in 1974 and 1975. He owns a total of eight career Atlantic victories, including one Trois-Rivieres triumph, and eight pole positions. He now owns a Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep and Kia dealership in Toronto and his Bill Brack Driving Academy operates from Dunville Autodrome in Dunville, Ontario.
Patrick Carpentier – Another popular Canadian racer, Carpentier competed in Atlantic from 1992 through 1996, and his nine victories in his 1996 championship-winning season tie him with Gilles Villeneuve for the most Atlantic victories in a single season. Carpentier owns a total of 12 career Atlantic victories—including two at Trois-Rivieres—placing him fourth all-time, and he is tied for fourth with Jacques Villeneuve (brother of Gilles) and Claude Bourbonnais on the all-time pole-winners list with 11 career poles. He went on to a successful Champ Car career that yielded five career victories before moving into the Indy Racing League IndyCar Series.
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