CAITLIN PATRICK | NASCAR.COM
INNISFIL, ON — In his return to the NASCAR Pinty’s Series, Raphael Lessard fended off veteran and rookie alike.
In the Frontline Workers 125, series veteran Pete Shepherd III claimed his first pole since 2012 and led the field to green. Seven laps into the race, the rain arrived and began a nearly four-hour delay.
Once the race was restarted, the lead swapped between Shepherd, rookie Treyten Lapcevich and 2019 Champion Andrew Ranger for more than 100 laps.
With 20 to go, it was Lessard up front, battling Shepherd for the first position. Just 3 laps later contact between the No. 80 Theetge Chevrolet/XPN Chevrolet and the No. 7 APC Chevrolet, spun Shepherd and sent him to the rear.
Lessard led the final 18 laps of the Frontline Workers 125 claiming his second series victory and first for team Wight Motorsports Inc. while Shepherd finished in 12th.
Ranger finished second while Alex Tagliani rounded out the podium, followed by Kevin Lacroix in fourth and Shae Gemmell in fifth for his series debut.
RESULTS: Frontline Workers 125
But the night wasn’t over yet.
Ranger in his No. 51 Miles for Migraine/Canadian Super Sellers Dodge brought the field to green, but it didn’t take long for Lessard to get back out front.
Many tried to stop the 20-year-old from St.-Joseph de Beauce, Que., including Lapcevich in his No. 20 RGC Sports/QwickWick Chevrolet.
With 5 to go, the gap had finally closed between the two young guns, and Lapcevich attempted a pass. Contact ensued and the 17-year-old rookie went around, ending his chance of claiming his first career win and sending the race into overtime.
In the end, Lessard swept both 125 twin races at Sunset, making him three-for-three on ovals in the series.
Despite mechanical issues in race one, D.J. Kennington finished second in the General Tire 125, his best finish at Sunset in six starts, followed by L.P. Dumoulin who won at the track in 2020.
Lapcevich managed to rebound and finish fourth while Brett Taylor rounded out the top-five.
After a good finish in the Frontline Workers 125, Lacroix came home in 17th after retiring from race two early.
RESULTS: General Tire 125
The Frontline Workers 125 will air on TSN on Sunday, Aug. 8, at 1:00 p.m. ET, and the General Tire 125 will air on TSN on Sunday, Aug. 15 at 11 a.m. Each race also will air on RDS/RDS2. Fans in the United States can stream races after they air on TrackPass on NBC Sports Gold.
The NASCAR Pinty’s Series will head to the Grand Prix de Trois-Rivieres for the first time since 2019, on Sunday, August 15.