Rzadzinski and Coupal claim Nissan Micra Cup victories at the Grand Prix de Trois-Rivières

- Two spectacular races won by Albertan Stefan Rzadzinski and Quebecker Xavier Coupal -

MISSISSAUGA, ON, Aug. 14, 2016 /CNW/ - This weekend at the Grand Prix de Trois-Rivières, which once again attracted thousands of spectators, the Nissan Micra Cup held its eleventh and twelfth races of the 2016 season. The two races were action-packed and included a number of position changes. In the end, Albertan driver Stefan Rzadzinski claimed his first victory of the season on Saturday, while Xavier Coupal earned the win on Sunday.

Official partner of the 2016 Grand Prix de Trois-Rivières, Nissan was very involved on-site with numerous guests and celebrities in the paddocks and a variety of activities for the public. The most anticipated activity for the fans was naturally the two Nissan Micra Cup races on the schedule and the spectators were not disappointed.

Qualifying in pole position for the first race, championship leader Xavier Coupal hoped this weekend in Trois-Rivières would increase his lead in the overall standings.  But following the formation lap behind the event's safety car, the 2017 Nissan GT-R, the green flag was waved to mark the start of the race and Coupal was passed by Rzadzinski and veteran Richard Spénard, who made his return to the series much to the delight of the fans. Spénard gave up his position shortly after and Coupal moved up, one by one, to reclaim the lead after a fantastic duel with Rzadzinski.

At the end of the race, Xavier Coupal crossed the finish line first but after analyzing the race, officials penalized him for driving outside of the track's limits as he overtook Rzadzinski, dropping him to seventh place. This handed the victory to Stefan Rzadzinski, who was declared the winner for the first time this season. Kevin King finished in second place after a great battle with 2015 champion Olivier Bédard, the third place finisher. 

Jean-Michel Isabelle recorded a fantastic fourth place finish after fending off Nismo GT Academy driver Nic Hammann during the first part of the race. Valérie Limoges completed the top six, followed by Xavier Coupal, Marc-Antoine Demers, Jacques Bélanger, Chris Sahakian, Frédéric Bernier and the top novice, Stéfan Gauthier.

On Sunday, the twenty-five Nissan Micra Cup drivers took to the track for the second race.  After qualifying once again in pole position, Xavier Coupal controlled the event from the start to the finish, albeit under pressure from Olivier Bédard the entire time.

Kevin King completed the podium in third place ahead of Hammann and Rzadzinski, who both started farther back in the pack at the start but benefited from a three-car crash near the end of the race between Isabelle, Limoges and Spénard. Only Spénard was able to finish the race, ahead of Demers, Bélanger, novice Stéfan Gauthier and Normand Boyer.

Two local drivers from Trois-Rivières took part in this event. A regular in the series, Mario Berthiaume finished 13th on Saturday and 11th on Sunday. Paul Dargis, Bertrand Godin's teammate in the United Auto car (#27), was only competing in Saturday's race and finished 20th.  Godin gained eight places in Sunday's race to finish 13th.  

Another highlight of the weekend was the presence of popular comedian and actor Michel Barrette, guest of series promoter Jacques Deshaies. After trying a Nissan Micra S on Friday, Barrette announced his intentions to compete in the 2017 Nissan Micra Cup with his son, Nicolas.

In the drivers' championship, Xavier Coupal remains solidly at the top of the standings with 390 points, ahead of Olivier Bédard (361), Kevin King (331), Stefan Rzadzinksi (330), Nic Hamman (246) and Valérie Limoges (242). For the rookies, Stefan Gauthier claimed victory on both Saturday and Sunday, taking the lead of this class with 67 points.

This weekend at the Grand-Prix de Trois-Rivières was a huge success for Nissan and spectators were kept engaged throughout the entire event. The next race weekend is being held at the Canadian Tire Motorsport Park during NASCAR Weekend on September 2nd, 3rd and 4th, during which the Nissan Micra Cup drivers will compete in the thirteenth and fourteenth races of the season.  

For full race results, visit:
http://www.micracup.com/Results_2016_Race?RID=11 (race 11)
http://www.micracup.com/Results_2016_Race?RID=12 (race 12)

General overall championship standings after 12 races:

For more information on the Nissan Micra Cup, please visit: www.nissan.ca/micracup

Nissan Micra Cup 2016 Season Calendar :

May 13 - 15

Calabogie Motorsports Park, Ontario

May 27 - 29

Spring Classic, Circuit Mont-Tremblant, Québec

June 19

Autodrome St-Eustache, Québec

July 8 - 10

IMSA Weekend, Canadian Tire Motorsport Park, Ontario  

July 22 - 24

Summer Classic, Circuit Mont-Tremblant, Québec

August 12 - 14

Grand Prix de Trois-Rivières, Québec

September 2 - 4

NASCAR Weekend, Canadian Tire Motorsport Park, Ontario  

September 23 - 25

Fall Classic, Circuit Mont-Tremblant, Québec


About the Nissan Micra Cup
Sanctioned by Auto Sport Québec (ASQ) and presented by JD Promotion & Compétition with the support of Nissan Canada, the 2016 Nissan Micra Cup exclusively features the stock Micra 1.6 S M/T model with minor modifications, including NISMO suspension - to render it race-ready.

Unlike most motorsport events, each competing Nissan Micra race vehicle has the exact same specifications, resulting in a competition that truly reveals the most skilled drivers. The Nissan Micra Cup race vehicles were equipped with the Nissan Micra's stock 1.6-litre DOHC 4-cylinder engine with dual fuel injection and Twin CVTC (Continuously Variable Timing Control) and stock 5-speed manual transmission. In its inaugural season last year, more than 25 Nissan Micras competed on each race weekend which included two hours of track time consisting of: a 30-minute trial, a 30-minute qualifying session and two 30-minute races.

Young karting drivers, the average Canadian looking for an entry point into motorsport competition, or anyone who wants to experience the rush of adrenaline inherent with racing cars are all well-suited to this series. In summary, the Nissan Micra Cup is for people who are passionate about motorsports, want to experience all the fun and thrills of racing, but without spending staggering amounts of money.

For more information on the Nissan Micra Cup, please go to the website www.nissan.ca/micracup.

About Nissan North America
In North America, Nissan's operations include automotive styling, engineering, consumer and corporate financing, sales and marketing, distribution and manufacturing. Nissan is dedicated to improving the environment under the Nissan Green Program and has been recognized annually by the U.S Environmental Protection Agency as an ENERGY STAR® Partner of the Year since 2010. More information on Nissan in North America and the complete line of Nissan and Infiniti vehicles can be found online at www.NissanUSA.com and www.InfinitiUSA.com, or visit the U.S. media sites NissanNews.com and InfinitiNews.com.

About Nissan Motor Co.
Nissan Motor Co., Ltd., Japan's second-largest automotive company, is headquartered in Yokohama, Japan, and is part of the Renault-Nissan Alliance. Operating with more than 247,500 employees globally, Nissan sold 5.32 million vehicles and generated revenue of 11.38 trillion yen (USD 103.6 billion) in fiscal year 2014. Nissan delivers a comprehensive range of more than 60 models under the Nissan, Infiniti and Datsun brands. Nissan leads the world in zero-emission mobility, dominated by sales of the LEAF, the first mass-market, pure-electric vehicle. It is the best-selling EV in history with almost 50% share of the zero-emission vehicle segment.

For more information on our products, services and commitment to sustainable mobility, visit our website at http://www.nissan-global.com/EN/.

About Nissan Canada Inc.
Nissan Canada Inc. (NCI) is the Canadian sales, marketing and distribution subsidiary of Nissan Motor Limited and Nissan North America, Inc. NCI directly employs 306 full-time staff across offices in Vancouver (BC), Mississauga (ON), and Kirkland (QC). There are 191 independent Nissan dealerships, 39 Infiniti retailers and 45 Nissan Commercial Vehicle dealers across Canada. A pioneer in zero emission mobility, Nissan made history with the introduction of the Nissan LEAF, the first affordable, mass-market, pure-electric vehicle and winner of numerous international accolades including the prestigious 2011 European Car of the Year and World Car of the Year awards.

More information about Nissan in Canada and the complete line of Nissan and Infiniti vehicles can be found online at www.nissan.ca and www.infiniti.ca.

SOURCE Nissan Canada Inc.

Image with caption: "Two action-packed races this weekend in Trois-Rivières (CNW Group/Nissan Canada Inc.)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20160814_C8057_PHOTO_EN_752342.jpg

Image with caption: "The podium following the second race, with Bédard (second), Coupal (first), King (third) and Gauthier (first rookie) (CNW Group/Nissan Canada Inc.)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20160814_C8057_PHOTO_EN_752344.jpg

For further information: Media contacts: Didier Marsaud, Director, Corporate Communications, Nissan Canada, Tel: 905-629-6400, Email: didier.marsaud@nissancanada.com; Stephanie Ronson, Cohn & Wolfe, Tel: 647-259-3278, Email: stephanie.ronson@cohnwolfe.ca


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