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You need a U.S. certificate issued on the basis of your Canadian license to fly the airplane in U.S. airspace. 14 CFR 61.3(a).
(a) Pilot certificate. A person may not act as pilot in command or in any other capacity as a required pilot flight crewmember of a civil aircraft of U.S. registry, unless that person has a valid pilot certificate or special purpose pilot authorization issued under this part in that person's physical possession or readily accessible in the aircraft when exercising the privileges of that pilot certificate or authorization. However, when the aircraft is operated within a foreign country, a current pilot license issued by the country in which the aircraft is operated may be used.
Here's a link to 14 CFR 61.3: www.risingup.com/fars/info/part61-3-FAR.shtml
It's strictly up to the owner of the airplane, and the insurance company, too, if he feels that you need a checkride before you fly it.