Teenager Raphaël Lessard takes 8th place at Rattler 250
Canadian teenager Raphaël Lessard finished 8th at the Rattler 250 stock car race in Alabama following a great comeback from a 25th starting position.
In this Southern Super Series (SSS) 250-lap race which took place at the South Alabama Speedway on Sunday, the 15-year-old Canadian competed against some experienced rivals such as Ty Majeski, winner of the Rattler 250 for a second year in a row, Harrison Burton, son of the NASCAR driver Jeff Burton, and veteran Jeff Choquette.
Lessard, the driver of the No. 99 FRL Express/Toyota-TRD/JBL Audio Toyota Camry owned by David Gilliland Racing endured a tough qualifying session, ending up a disappointing 25th.
“In the qualifying round, I pushed the car too much and was unsuccessful and that’s why I only made the 25th position,” Lessard declared.
It turned out to be a different story during the race as Lessard advanced to 14th-place in just 14 laps and charging. Taking advantage of the numerous yellow flags, the young Quebecker ran in the top 10 after 100 laps.
Lessard continued to push hard, making it to fifth position before crossing the line in eighth place at the finish.
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“At the beginning of the race, my Toyota Camry was running really well. We probably had a car capable of winning at that stage and we managed an exciting push to fifth place. Unfortunately, the car could not keep the speed,” Lessard explained.
“I made a few good passes and there were some good battles on the track to try to comeback but there was a little something missing to hope for the victory. We will come back strongly next week. I cannot thank Toyota enough for their help as well as Team Gilliland Racing and crew chief Seth Smith. I would also like to thank FRL Express, JBL Audio and my agent Robert Desrosiers for their invaluable help.”
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