Auburndale, FL (PRWEB) February 19, 2009
Chris Fontaine and the CFI team are shifting gears to run the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series after running their best ever Late Model season in 2008. The team has purchased three trucks from TRG Motorsports and is in the process of preparing them for the March 28 NCWTS race at Martinsville. The race will be televised on FOX network.
Fontaine will be driving the Glenden Enterprises Chevrolet in the team's season debut.
"We think it is the right time to step up it, and given the economy, it made the most sense to start doing it now because of the opportunities that exist with the changes NASCAR has made to make it more affordable," Fontaine said of the team's decision to run trucks this year.
The 27 year old Lakeland,Florida native also plans to run six other NCWTS races in 2009, including Dover, Memphis, Indianapolis, Bristol, Madison, and the fall race at Martinsville. "Unless we can get more money that is all we can run. The lack of sponsorship is holding us back from running more races, and we are able to do what we are doing with the support of Glenden Enterprises," Fontaine said.
Fontaine said his goal for the 2009 NCTWS season is to be able to finish a race in the top ten. Chris ran three NASCAR Craftsman Truck races driving the #4 for Bobby Hamilton Racing in 2005. His best finish was 17th at Mansfield.
He drove the Xpress Motorsports #16 NASCAR Craftsman Truck in races at Mansfield and Memphis during 2007. Once again his best finish was 17th at Mansfield. In 2008, Fontaine and the team had their best Late Model season to date.
He finished out the ASASoutheast Asphalt Tour 2008 season fourth in points with three top fives, six top tens and one pole. Fontaine finished only 13 points out of third, and would have had third place had it not been for getting wrecked in the last points race of the season. In addition to the ASASAT schedule, Fontaine also ran some Late Model, Super Late Model and V-8 Thunderstock dirt races in 2008.
He got four wins, seven top fives and nine top tens of thirteen races in those series'. His qualifying record was five poles, ten top fives and fifteen top tens of 20 ASASAT, Super Late Model and Late Model races. Fontaine's career record from 2003 through 2008 is eight wins, 50 top five's and 85 top ten's out of 160 races. His career qualifying record from 2003 through 2008 is 14 poles, 45 top five's and 86 top ten's out of 132 recorded runs.
Late Model Digest Editor Jim Carson interviewed Chris for the publication's November 19, 2008 article entitled "Late Bloomers":
"Chris Fontaine set out to run the full ASA Southeast schedule. His results on the tour were nothing special, with a pair of fourths as his best finishes. But it was how he spent his off-weekends in his home state of Florida that turned his season around. From mid-August to mid-October, Fontaine ran four times and captured three victories and three fast times.
The list of drivers with Late Model wins at three different racetracks around the country after July 1 is very short, but Fontaine is prominent on it after taking checkered flags at DeSoto Superspeedway, Auburndale Speedway and Charlotte County Motorsports Park.
He'll also count a win in the V-8 stock class on dirt at Ocala Speedway, but the biggest boosts came on pavement.
"It's pretty exciting…nice to put 'em all together," Fontaine said. "It keeps everybody…especially at the shop, everybody gets in a little better mood and gets more confidence in everything that we're doing. We know what we're doing; we've just gotta put it together at some of these tracks out of state."
Reprinted from Late Model Digest
Chris Fontaine began his racing career in 1998 at the age of 16 driving minicup race cars. In his first year of racing, Chris racked up 2 wins, and finished in the top five 13 of 14 races. In 1999, Chris continued his winning ways in mini-cup cars with 12 wins and 23 top five finishes out of 25 races. He took home the 1999 MMRA Mini-cup National Indoor Championship and the 1999 North Florida Region MMRA Championship.
Also in 1999, Chris began racing Late Models taking 3 top five's out of 9 races run for the year in the FASCAR and SARA series.
In 2000, Chris got his first Late Model win in a FASCAR feature race at Orlando Speedworld. His record for that year stands at 11 top ten finishes and 5 top five's out of 20 races run. He took 3rd place in the 2000 FASCAR series points, and 13th in the 2000 SARA series points.
In 2001, ambition took Chris to the NASCAR All Pro series where he got 22nd place in the 2001 Gatorade All Pro, NASCAR Touring points. In 2002, he finished with 26th Place in the 2002 Hills Bros. All Pro, NASCAR Touring points.
Also in 2002, Chris' racing ambitions drove him to enter the NASCAR Busch Series driver ranks. The team purchased a car from veteran driver, Joe Nemacheck, and with the assistance of his team and driver Jeff Fuller, Chris tried out for races at Dover, Memphis and Nashville.
In 2003, Chris and his team decided to make a change in Crewchiefs, and Late Model Champion Kevin Ingram of Auburndale, FL took the reins. Chris designed a new look for the car and team, and they were off!
With Kevin's experience in Late Models and by giving Chris reliable race cars, Chris was able to amass a 2003 record of 16 top tens and 11 top fives out of 35 races run. Chris finished 13th in the 2003 FASCAR points, and 9th in the 2003 AACS points, despite having missed several races in each series.
In 2004, Chris started the year off with a win in the first AACS series race of the season, and new sponsorship from GGR Roofing, BDH Construction, and Frasier Contracting. And Chris ended the 2004 season with another win in the next to last AACS series race of the year.
Throughout the season, Chris drove the GGR Roofing, BDH Construction, Frasier Contracting #47 to two wins, 9 top tens and 6 top fives out of 16 total races in the series.
Chris Fontaine and the Chris Fontaine Racing team clinched the fifth spot in the 2004 AACS series points race at Desoto Speedway. Chris ended the 2004 race season with two wins, 16 top tens and 9 top fives out of 28 races, including FASCAR, USAR, and I-Power Dash races.
In 2005, Chris finished third in the Florida Triple Crown points. He also finished ninth in the 2005 AACS points, and 10th in the FASCAR Sunbelt Super Series points, despite not running the full schedule of races in each series. He amassed 12 top tens and 5 top fives out of the 23 Super Late Model races he raced in during 2005.
In 2006, Fontaine finished 2nd in the AACS points. He finished 10th in the FASCAR Sunbelt Super Series points despite not having run the full race schedule. Fontaine had his best year to date in 2006 with 2 wins, 12 top 5's and 19 top 10's out of 25 races.
In 2007, Chris Fontaine and the CFI Racing Team took on a new challenge of running both the ASALMS Challenge series and the ASALMS South series schedules. Chris Fontaine and team finished out the 2007 ASA Late Model Challenge series Rookie of the Year Points race in fifth place, and 17th in the overall Challenge series points.
With his sixth place finish at Birmingham, AL on October 27, Chris Fontaine wrapped up the 2007 ASALMS Southern Division Points Championship in fifth place and the ASALMS Southern Division Rookie Points in third place.
Fontaine finished out the season only 21 points behind fourth place John Wes Townley and 118 points ahead of sixth place Travis Wilson.