Flashing a wide grin after zooming by three of his friends, Meek Mill declares "I won!" from his red go-kart at RPM Raceway in Jersey City, N.J. A seasoned racer who likes to bring his 6-year-old son, Rihmeek, to the track, the rapper born Robert Williams is blowing off steam following a hectic album release week and displaying a giddiness distinct from his hardened stage persona. Mill sees a parallel between racing and his trajectory within hip-hop: Following a high-profile beef with Drake and a public breakup with Nicki Minaj, the 30-year-old MC says that he has had to maneuver around obstacles before accelerating professionally. To wit: His third album, Wins & Losses, debuted at No. 3 on the Billboard 200 in July. "Today, I lost the first race — I crashed a couple of times,” he points out. “It gave me the ambition to win the second one. That has always been my life: Whether it's prison, being caught up in the system, making it out of the hood, it was ups and downs. I didn’t start off driving nice cars or living in a nice area. I started off with zero."