News & Media

In the Draft: Allgaier victorious in Montreal

August 21, 2012, Justin Allgaier, Special to NASCAR.COM,

Hey there guys! How is everyone doing? I can honestly say that our whole BRANDT team is still on "cloud nine" after the weekend in Montreal. Before I say anything else, I just want to thank all of the BRANDT folks and our fans for the support we've received through email, Facebook and Twitter. You guys are the best fans on the planet and it's because of you all that we can race every weekend. Thank you!

I think it goes without being said that Montreal was absolutely awesome. I was just a little bit restless on race day because the schedule was such that we practiced and qualified on Friday, leaving little to do but wait around for the start of the race on Saturday afternoon. I just wanted to get in the car and get going. We had decided beforehand that we were going to kind of run our own race, regardless of how the cautions came out and I honestly believe that it was Jimmy's [Elledge, crew chief] planning that allowed us be in a position at the end to win that race. Had we not been patient and let the laps play out like they did, who knows what would have happened! Jimmy planned on needing enough fuel to go three green-white-checkered attempts and we almost needed it. He also kept everyone cool and collected, especially after the pit road speeding penalty.

"I think it goes without being said that Montreal was absolutely awesome."


On the final green-white-checkered attempt, I was pretty sure I could get around Elliott [Sadler], I just needed to be close enough to him in the passing zone. I saw an opportunity there in turn six and took it. At that point, I was getting pretty anxious. My crew had been keeping track all afternoon and we knew that Jacques [Villeneuve] was close to being out of fuel. I wanted to be prepared for that because cars just kind of stall when they run out of gas. Honestly, that's what I thought had happened when I got around him during that final lap. As soon as I saw clean track, I just took off and kept digging. I only had to make it around eight more turns. But at that point, I saw Sam [Hornish, Jr.] behind me and knew how good of a road course racer he is and so I couldn't make any mistakes. Fortunately, my best was good enough and I held him off to get the win. It was just an incredible feeling. I don't know that words can describe it.

Since Saturday, it's kind of been business as usual to be honest. I've obviously had the opportunity to do quite a bit more media over the last 48 hours, but I'll do that all day long after a win. Ashley and I again got to take the team out for lunch on Monday. We invited the over-the-wall guys to come as well and it was great to have the entire team together one more time to just celebrate what we had accomplished as a group. Pictures and video were all passed around and laughs shared -- especially regarding video of a certain crew member getting thrown into the Olympic rowing basin in Montreal.

We had a nice time up in Quebec, even before getting to the race track. I had the opportunity to join my teammate for the weekend, Alex Tagliani, along with Nationwide Series Director Joe Balash, and the NAPA 200 race promoter François Dumontier at Montreal City Hall on Thursday morning. We got to meet the Mayor of Montreal, Gérald Tremblay and sign the City Book of Montreal, an honor reserved for the city's important guests. These folks really rolled out the red carpet for us which made us feel very welcomed up there.

On Thursday night, we had a really nice team dinner at a great steakhouse in Montreal and Rick Brandt and his family joined us too. We were out for one last 'hurrah' as one of the guys on my team has been offered another position and has decided to make a change. It's definitely sad to see him go, but we're also excited at the new opportunity he has. It's pretty cool that the Montreal race was his last weekend so he could be there for the win. I really enjoy the fact that this team is a lot like a family. We have ups and downs, but we are all here trying to achieve the same goals. Ashley and I always like to make sure the guys know how much we appreciate them too!

Now, we have just a couple days to get ready to head up to Bristol Motor Speedway. While it's definitely fun and very necessary to celebrate our success, it's important to prepare for what's ahead. I would like nothing more than to repeat again at Bristol. It is one of my favorite tracks and a special place for me as it's the spot of my first series win. Ashley and I will be heading up on Wednesday to watch the Camping World Truck Series race. I'm going to be cheering on my fellow Turner Motorsports teammates -- special congrats to Nelson Piquet, Jr. on his win last week! -- as well as Allgaier Motorsports, who will be fielding an entry in the race. Should be a fun night and weekend!

Well, I hope everyone has a great week. Thanks again for all your support and thanks for checking in with me!

In the Draft with Justin Allgaier is a twice-monthly blog and the opinions expressed are solely those of the writer. Follow him and the No. 31 BRANDT Racing team on Twitter: @J_Allgaier, @BrandtRacing or @No31TurnerNNS.