Full Truck Season for Raphael Lessard with GMS Racing & Richelieu Hardware returns as a partner

january 7, 2021

Raphael Lessard had a wide smile on his face when he boarded a flight from Montreal on January 5, on his way back to the United States to complete preparations for a full 22-race season in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS). While continuing the search for full race season financing, Raphael Lessard Racing announces today the return of Richelieu Hardware as an associate partner for five races in the 2021 season. Raphael Lessard's #24 Silverado, prepared by GMS Racing, will proudly display the Richelieu Hardware colours, among others on the deck lid. This prominent Quebec corporation is a leading North American distributor, importer and manufacturer of specialty hardware and complementary products.

Richelieu Hardware

The Richelieu Hardware commitment to this project is the logical development of their previous collaboration with the Raphael Lessard Racing team in support of the young driver's professional development program. "Richelieu Hardware is proud to renew its support for Raphael and his team. We all want him to continue his development and achieve his personal and professional goals in 2021," according to Richard Lord, President and CEO of Richelieu Hardware.

Raphael Lessard is most grateful in welcoming Richelieu Hardware as a partner for his second season in the NCWTS series. "We are really happy with the return of Richelieu Hardware to our program for the 2021 season. The favourable results of our first cooperation in 2020 now place both parties in an excellent position to build a stronger win-win partnership throughout the 2021 season," said Raphael Lessard.

NCWTS Full Season

GMS Racing is pleased to welcome Raphael Lessard on a full-time basis for the 2021 season. "We are excited to have Raphael join us for the 2021 season," said Mike Beam, President of GMS Racing. "Raphael is a talented young man, and we are excited to see what he can do with a full season with this team."

After making the most of the difficult health situation over 2020 that greatly complicated Raphael Lessard's learning season in NCWTS, securing a second full season was a hoped-for development, and assuredly a dream come true for the young driver. "I'm really excited to have a second full season in the Truck Series and will certainly aim for victories and even the championship at the wheel of the #24 Chevrolet prepared by GMS Racing. This team finished 1-2-3 in the NCWTS series in 2020, and I know that with everything I learned last season, we will be in a winning position at the end of every race," added the determined young driver.

Raphael Lessard Career Highlights:

Since his on-track debut at the age of 11, Raphael Lessard has raced throughout eastern Canada and the United States, establishing a solid reputation as a driver to watch.

In 2020, the young Beauceron decided to make the jump into a professional series by participating in the 23 races of the NCWTS series (previously NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series). Across 28 career NCWTS starts, Raphael Lessard has scored one win, four top-five (two podiums) and nine top-10 finishes, for an average finish in 14.5th position.

In 2019, Raphael Lessard posted 83 laps led, two top-five and three top-10 finishes across three ARCA Menards Series starts and one win, one top-five and two top-10 finishes in the NASCAR Pinty's Series. His Pinty's Series victory came at his hometown track, Autodrome Chaudiere in Vallee-Jonction, Quebec, on June 29th when he led a race-high 153 laps en route to an emotional win.

The young driver won two marquee events in 2018 aboard KBM's famed No. 51 Super Late Model: The U.S. Short Track Nationals at Bristol Motor Speedway in May and the Red Bud 400 ARCA/CRA Super Series race at Anderson Speedway in July. Raphael Lessard also captured the 2016 CARS Super Late Model Tour Championship after recording four wins, one pole, 157 laps led, eight top-five and nine top-10 finishes across 10 races.

PhotoCredit: Al Wheeler, GMS Racing


Richelieu is a leading North American distributor, importer and manufacturer of specialty hardware and complementary products. Its products are targeted to an extensive customer base of kitchen and bathroom cabinet, storage and closet, home furnishing and office furniture manufacturers, residential and commercial woodworkers, door and window, and hardware retailers including renovation superstores. Richelieu offers customers a broad mix of products sourced from manufacturers worldwide. Its product selection consists of over 130,000 different items targeted to a base of more than 90,000 customers who are served by 82 establishments in North America - 40 distribution centres in Canada, 40 in the United States and 2 manufacturing plants in Canada.


F.R.L. Express Inc. is a general transportation company founded in 2004 by François Lessard. Its main field of activity over the last 15 years is general transport in closed trailers over short and long distances in Canada and the United States. FRL currently have about 50 employees in addition to about ten tow carriers. FRL owners are proud of the progress made in recent years thanks to the FRL team members and wishes to continue on this positive note. "Our employees, customer service and satisfaction are our priorities. We are all proud to be partners in the success and achievements of our son Raphael Lessard," state the proud parents.


In 2021, GMS Racing will compete full-time in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series with drivers Sheldon Creed, Zane Smith, Tyler Ankrum, Chase Purdy and Raphael Lessard. The team also competes in the ARCA Racing Series with Jack Wood. Since the team began in 2014, GMS Racing won the 2016 and 2020 Camping World Trucks Championship, the 2015 ARCA Racing Series Championship as well as the 2019 & 2020 ARCA East Championship. GMS has grown to occupy several buildings located in Statesville, N.C. The campus also includes operations for GMS Fabrication. More information can be found at


Born on July 5, 2001, in Saint-Joseph-de-Beauce, Quebec, Canada, Raphael Lessard is one of the most promising prospects in North American oval racing. Raphael made his debut in stock-cars in 2013, on local tracks in the Quebec City area. His exceptional talent quickly allowed him to climb the ladder and attract the attention of David Gilliland, a former NASCAR Monster Energy Series driver and now a team owner, in 2015. An agreement then allowed Lessard to participate in the last four races of the season in the PASS North Tour Series.

In 2016, his first full-time season with Gilliland Racing, Lessard won the CARS Super Late Model Tour title with four wins, 8 top five and 9 top drivers to win a major stock car series title in the United States. Since 2016, Lessard has been part of the Toyota Racing Development (TRD) prestigious driver development program. To date, he is the only Canadian to have been recruited into this program.

2020 - Full season in NCWTS - 23 Races

  • 1 win
  • 4 top-5s
  • 6 top-10s

2019 - 22 Races - 7 different types of vehicles:

  • 6 podiums including 2 wins
  • 10 top-5s
  • 18 top-10s

Several Series :

  • 5 NASCAR Gander Outdoors pickup races: two top-10 finishes & fastest time in Dover
  • 3 ARCA races
  • 1 race in K&N Pro East
  • 2 races in NASCAR Pinty's, 1 victory
  • 5 races in NASCAR Late Model, 3 podiums
  • 1 race in Super Late Model, double track record
  • 2 races in Sportsman Dirt, 2 podiums
  • 2 races in LMS
  • 1 race in Pro Late Model

2018 - 16 races - Super Late Model with Kyle Busch Motorsports

  • Two wins, seven top-5s and 13 top-10s
  • Wins the U.S. Short Track Nationals race at Bristol Motor Speedway
  • Wins the Red Bull 400 at Anderson Speedway
  • Leads 60 laps at the famous Snowball Derby in December, before a mechanical problem puts him out of the race with only six (6) laps to go.

2017 - Competes in 20 Super Late Model races and two ARCA series races

  • Two wins and eight top-5 finishes in the Super Late Model category
  • A top-10 from two races in the ARCA series
  • Voted the most popular driver in North America by
  • Voted as one of the top 10 drivers to watch in 2017 by
  • Named by Short Track Power Ranking as 7th best driver in the United States

2016 - Participates in 10 races

  • CARS Super Late Model Series Champion
  • Youngest Canadian driver to win a prestigious stock-car series in the United States
  • Four wins, eight top-5s and nine top-10s in 10 races

2021 Season - GMS Racing - NCWTS

Laps Led
Driver Pts./Pos.
Friday, February 12
Friday, February 19
Daytona (Road)
Friday, March 5
Las Vegas
Saturday, March 20
Saturday, March 27
Bristol (Dirt)
Saturday, April 17
Saturday, May 1
Friday, May 7
Saturday, May 22
COTA (Road)
Friday, May 28
Saturday, June 12
Friday, June 18
Saturday, June 26
Friday, July 9
Knoxville (Dirt)
Saturday, August 7
Watkins Glen (Road)
Friday, August 20
Sunday, September 5
Canadian Tire Motorsport Park (Road)
Thursday, September 16
Friday, September 24
Las Vegas
Saturday, October 2
Saturday, October 30
Friday, November 5