Date: Feb. 21, 2020
Event: Strat 200 (Race 2 of 23)
Series: NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series
Location: Las Vegas (Nev.) Motor Speedway (1.5-mile tri-oval)
Format: Three Segments; 30 laps/30 laps/74 laps
Start/Finish: 8th / 30th (Accident, completed 90 of 134 laps)
Winner: Kyle Busch of Kyle Busch Motorsports (Toyota)
Raphael Lessard was relegated to a 30th-place finish in the Strat 200 at Las Vegas (Nev.) Motor Speedway in his first start on a 1.5-mile speedway. The young driver qualified eighth in one round of single-vehicle qualifying, and then was running in the top-10 before a pit stop miscue cost him track position. The Canadian teenager was able to climb back into the top-10, but then lost control of the No. 4 Mobil 1 Tundra and hit the wall, ending his evening.
Stage One Recap:
- Lessard earned the eighth starting spot in one lap of single vehicle qualifying on Friday afternoon.
- In the opening laps, Lessard reported that his truck was loose, but he was able to maintain position in the top-10.
- Lessard finished the first stage in sixth.
- Crew chief Mike Hillman Jr. called the talented teenager to pit road for four tires and fuel during the stage break.
Stage Two Recap:
- Lessard started the second stage in fifth.
- Lessard worked his way up to third, but then was hung out of the draft and shuffled back to tenth.
- The young driver was able to finish the second stage in eighth.
- Following the conclusion of Stage 2, Hillman Jr. brought the Canadian driver to pit road for four Goodyear tires and Sunoco fuel, but the pit crew did not tighten enough lug nuts on one wheel and Hillman called the No. 4 back down pit road to fix it.
Stage Three Recap:
- Lessard began the final stage in 20th position, but quickly began to move toward the front of the pack.
- By lap 84, Lessard managed to return to the top-10.
- Only six laps later while riding in the top-10, Lessard lost control of the No. 4 Mobil 1 Tundra and hit the wall, causing him to retire the machine and resulting in a 30th-place finish.
Raphael Lessard, driver of the No. 4 Mobil 1 Tundra for Kyle Busch Motorsports:
How was your night?
“We had a really good run going, but we just had a couple of mistakes that caused us to get back in traffic and then we ended up in the wall and we just couldn’t continue. It’s not the result we were looking for, but I want to thank Kyle Busch Motorsports, my crew chief Mike Hillman Jr., Mobil 1 and Toyota for all of their support. We’re still learning and getting better every time we go to the track, so in a few weeks, we’ll get back at it at Atlanta.”
Strat 200 Recap:
- Kyle Busch won the race by 5.958 seconds followed by Johnny Sauter, Austin Hill, Matt Crafton and Ben Rhodes rounded out the top-five finishers.
- The race featured five cautions for 25 laps and 15 lead changes among five drivers.
How Lessard’s KBM Teammates Fared:
Christian Eckes, driver of the No. 18 Toyota Tundra, finished 23rd
Kyle Busch, driver of the No. 51 Toyota Tundra, finished first
Gander Trucks Championship Standings:
Raphael Lessard is ranked 18th in NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series standings with two races in the books.
Raphael Lessard and the No. 4 Mobil 1 team will return to action when the Truck Series returns Saturday, March 14 at Atlanta (Ga.) Motor Speedway. Live coverage of the Georgia 200 begins at 1:30 p.m. EST on FS1.