Raphael Lessard Finishes A Fighting Fourth At Pocono Raceway

may 31, 2019

Pocono (Pennsylvania, United States) - May 31st, 2019. For his first race on the triangular circuit of the Pocono Raceway, and also on a 2.5-mile circuit, Raphaël Lessard, at the wheel of car #28 FRL Express| Les cuisines Thermo-Bois, gave us a great show. Seventh on the grid, the young driver had moved up to second place on lap 31 of the 80-lap race, then dropped back due to tire problems and clawed his way back late in the race to finish the race in fourth place right behind the third-place car after some effective setup changes by the KBR team gave the driver a quicker car than the leaders.

"Team leader Jeff Stankiewicz and the crew knew exactly what to do, and every change made during pit stops improved the car," explains the driver of car #28 FRL Express| Les cuisines Thermo-Bois.

An Intense Flag-to-Flag Race

The rain the day before the race (Thursday, May 30th) caused the Friday morning practice session to be postponed and the qualifying session to be cancelled. The drivers all started according to their best time from the morning practice session. The changes made to the car for this morning's tests (Friday) did not produce the desired effect at first, and the team reacted quickly by returning to the settings from the successful Wednesday test session (May 29th).

In second position during the first caution period (lap 30), the car started understeering badly right off the restart due to a technical problem with the right front tire, forcing Raphaël Lessard to adapt his driving so he could maintain a pace that limited the loss of efficiency in corners. His second visit was under green on lap 60, and the team changed all four tires. Back on track, Raphaël Lessard then mentioned now having "a car that could beat the other quick guys".

With only fifteen laps to go, Raphaël Lessard was fourth, 15 seconds behind the third-place car. The time has come to attack as hard as possible and the young driver delivered the goods in a promising demonstration of all-out committed driving. Cutting the third-place driver's lead by one second a lap moved Raphaël Lessard up to a strong fourth-place finish, just two seconds behind the car in front of him.

"For the most part, the car was fast and easy to drive. The pit stops went very well, and I only needed one late yellow flag to close to the end of the race to close up to the three cars in front of me and attack them on the restart. But it was not to be. My car had become unbeatable! Thanks to the whole KBR team for the excellent work, to my partners Les cuisines Thermo-Bois and the investors who allow me to live my passion," concluded a driver who was looking for more but convinced that he left nothing on the track.

Read the complete press release here.

Photo credit: Interview Kevtron Media

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