Fast lane

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P1160864Valérie Chiasson is breaking down barriers on the racetrack. The Repentigny, Que. native has been racing for nearly 15 years. She started her career in karts at the National Karting Championships in 2003. She shifted gears and started racing cars in 2007 and quickly gained recognition. She was the 2007 Reserve Rookie of the Year at the Toyota Cup and the 2009 Reserve Rookie Champion at the ACT Castrol Series.

Screen Shot 2015-12-22 at 2.13.03 PMIn 2014, Chiasson won the 2014 Summer Classic GTD and finished fourth and fifth in the Canadian Grand Prix – the first woman in the history of the Canadian Grand Prix to reach the podium. This year she finished sixth out of 37 drivers at the 2015 Nissan Micra Cup Championship racing series in Quebec — one of only three women in the series. She raced a souped-up Micra – #26 with the Groupe Nissan Gabriel team and plans to reach the podium next year. Chiasson is also an equestrian rider who currently lives in Mont-Saint-Hilaire, Que.

“People laugh a little bit because it’s a small, little car, but when you’re a pro race-car driver it’s really surprising because the car is really fast on the track. In Montreal, we did 170 [kms] on the racetrack in the Micra. It’s very good! The handling is also really good. It’s a fast, fun car. It’s just different and it’s affordable,” said the 27-year-old, who ranked sixth out of 37 drivers at the 2015 Nissan Micra Cup Championship racing series.

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