Winchester, Indiana, Monday, September 3, 2018 – Raphaël Lessard had a busy Labor Day weekend ahead of him as he was racing at the Jukasa Motor Speedwayin Ontario this past Sunday, and at the Winchester Speedwaythis Monday in the ARCA/CRAseries. His Canadian campaign didn’t go as planned as he finished the race 27th, although he had led for several laps. A slow leak prevented him from claiming victory.
This Monday, in the United-States, Raphaël was starting from the 16thspot of the 100-lap World Stock Car Festival race. Having missed the practice and qualifying sessions because of the race in Ontario, Lessard was starting from the back of the field. However, the driver of the ToyotaCamry #51 FRL Express/Mobil 1/Toyota prepared by Kyle Busch Motorsports (KBM) did not stay long in that position, as he is used to this track.
Right from the start, Lessard lost no time in climbing the field. Already claiming a spot in the Top 10 after only ten laps, Raphaël went up to the third place after 38 laps. The two leaders had a big gap on the rest of the field, so it was going to be hard for the Saint-Joseph-de-Beauce native to catch them.
However, after a caution flag at the halfway point, a suspension issue made Raphaël fall back in 4thplace, then in the 5thspot. He then had a great battle with the car #20 of Jack Dossey for the 4thspot. A red flag put a halt to the race with only ten laps remaining. After a long while, the race finally started again, but during the warm-up laps, Raphaël came down pit road because of a mechanical issue. He lost his 5thplace and went to the back of the field, and finished the race in 7thplace.
“I am disappointed by the result because we could have fought for a podium finish and even the victory. We had a great come back at the beginning of the race. I had an excellent car until the mechanical issue. We will do better for the next race!” explained Raphaël.
“I want to thank my parents, my sponsors FRL Express, Mobil 1 and Toyota, and Kyle Busch Motorsports. I also need to thank the investors in my limited partnership, and all the fans who came out to watch the race at the Cage-Brasserie Sportive and at Resto L’Express.”
Next race on the calendar:
Raphaël Lessard’s next race will be on September 8 in the CARS Response Energy TOUR at the Orange County Speedwayin Rougemont in North Carolina. Raphaël is currently runner-up in the championship standings in this series, 8 points behind the leader.