Photo: Stephen A. Arce/ASP, Inc.

Labbe Earns First Career Top-10 Finish at Mid-Ohio

By Seth Eggert, Staff Writer

Sunoco Rookie of the Year contender Alex Labbe earned a career-first at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. The DGM Racing driver earned his first top-10 finish in the NASCAR Xfinity Series Rock N Roll Tequila 170.

Labbe had to claw the way through the field in his No. 36 Larue Chevrolet Camaro SS throughout the waning laps. After sliding off course with about 20 laps to go, timely cautions benefitted the St. Albert, Quebec, Canada native. Labbe battled drivers in equipment that is better funded, including Ryan Reed, Christopher Bell, and Spencer Gallagher. By the time the checkered flag waved, he had recovered to finish ninth.

The 2017 NASCAR Pinty’s Series Champion faced adversity from the drop of the green flag. Like others, Labbe faced brake issues. However, where Dylan Murcott crashed on lap one, and Katherine Legge went off course multiple times, Labbe kept his car on the pavement for the bulk of the race. He also nursed a loose tire rod throughout the event.

“It was a good ending,” Labbe admitted. “We fought through a lot of adversity early on, had a loose tire rod, brake issues early. Got us pretty (far) back in the pack. Really happy with all of my guys, we fought back and got a top-10 at the end. Pretty solid day.”

“I had a little mistake with 20, 25 to go. I messed up a bit going into corner nine. I wanted to get too much out of the car. I went back, and we moved through the field. Just being patient, smart, that’s the most important part of every restart because there’s a lot to gain there. Got to stay on track. There were a couple of guys who were fast that got off track. If you’re there at the end, then the results should be pretty easy.”

The ninth-place finish was not only the first top-10 for Labbe but was just the second top-10 in DGM Racing’s history. The top-10 has the Canadian driver tied with Spencer Gallagher for 18thin the Championship Points Standings, 444-Points behind Points Leader Christopher Bell. Labbe is 78-Points behind Ross Chastain, who holds the cutoff for the Playoffs.

Now Labbe and his DGM Racing team will prepare to return to Bristol, the site of Labbe’s first career top-15 finish.

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Seth Eggert has followed NASCAR his entire life. Seth is currently pursuing a writing career and is majoring in Communications and Journalism. He is an avid iRacer and video gamer. Seth also tutors students at Mitchell Community College in multiple subjects. He has an Associate's Degree in History.