When Raphaël Lessard joined GMS Racing in November, it was intended to be for at least twelve races with the possibility of the full schedule if sponsorship was produced. Two months later with the 2021 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series season a month away, he got what he wanted. On Thursday, GMS Racing announced that Lessard will drive the #24 Chevrolet Silverado for all twenty-two races in 2021. Richelieu Hardware, which has served as an associate sponsor of Lessard’s, will reunite with him on the #24 in the same capacity.
“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,” Lessard stated.
“I’m really excited to have a second full season in the pickup 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.”
Lessard was ousted from his 2020 ride at Kyle Busch Motorsports after just one season, during which he won at Talladega and finished twelfth in points. He signed with GMS two days later on a twelve-race schedule with the potential for adding the remaining ten if possible, an opportunity that was finally secured in January.
“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,” added Richelieu CEO Richard Lord. Richelieu Hardware is based in Quebec, where Lessard hails from. The Canadian has two starts in the country’s NASCAR Pinty’s Series, winning in his debut in 2019.
Lessard is now the fifth full-time driver for GMS in 2021, joining defending champion Sheldon Creed, runner-up Zane Smith, third-year driver Tyler Ankrum, and rookie Chase Purdy.
“We are excited to have Raphael join us for the 2021 season,” GMS president Mike Beam commented. “Raphael is a talented young man and we are excited to see what he can do with a full season with this team.”