Lucas Oil Off Road Series Roars Back To Phoenix
Corona, California - As the 2010 Lucas Oil Off Road Racing Series turns the page from summer into fall, drivers and teams are sharpening their focus on their championship hopes. Summer saw action at both Miller Motorsport Park in Tooele, Utah, and at Glen Helen Motorsport Park in San Bernardino, where many drivers really hit their stride, and the title fights started to take shape.
With two thirds of the season already in the books, just five rounds of championship points racing remain for drivers to make a push towards the crown in their respective classes. With Rounds 11 and 12 set for September 25th and 26th at Speedworld Off Road Park in Surprise, Arizona near Phoenix fast approaching, here's how the 2010 Pro championship contests are shaking out:
PRO 4 UNLIMITED Riverside driver Rick Huseman's #36 Monster Energy/Traxxas Toyota has been on a tear all year, taking seven wins from the first ten races. Other drivers have shown big potential, with bad luck falling disproportionately the way of Lucas Oil/General Tire driver Carl Renezeder (Montebello) and Rockstar/Makita man Kyle LeDuc (Beaumont). LeDuc pushed Huseman to the brink in both rounds at Glen Helen, and will be looking to do so again in the coming races. Renezeder and LeDuc, along with Adrian Cenni (St. John, US Virgin Islands) and Curt LeDuc (Cherry Valley), are separated by just 24 points in the battle for second, with Renezeder closest to Huseman at a more sizeable 79 points back.
PRO 2 UNLIMITED finds Rockstar/MasterCraft Safety driver Rob MacCachren (Las Vegas) currently enjoying a 53 point advantage over second placed Bryce Menzies (Las Vegas) in the #7 Super Clean/Bully Dog Ford, and the late part of the season has often been when MacCachren has become nearly unbeatable in years past. Menzies, Rodrigo Ampudia (Ensenada, Baja Calif.), and Carl Renezeder are all within 26 points of one another, and must turn their speed into consistency in order to turn the tables on MacCachren. Menzies and Renezeder are both proven winners in Surprise, and Ampudia is lightning fast everywhere, so there is still everything to fight for.
PRO LITE UNLIMITED has five drivers within one win of the championship lead, with just two points separating Marty Hart's (Columbia, Louisiana) #15 Stronghold Motorsports/Kolpin Ford from Chris Brandt (Council Bluffs, Iowa) in the #82 MavTV/Hart and Huntington Toyota. Just behind these two are Matt Loiodice and reigning champion Brian Deegan (Temecula), just 26 and 29 points out respectively. Adam Wik (Las Vegas), also in the hunt is currently fifth at 42 points back. Deegan and Brandt both have multiple wins at Speedworld, while Loiodice and Wik must take their consistency and add a little more speed in order to take the fight to Hart, who currently has three wins in a row.
PRO BUGGY UNLIMITED has proven to be anyone's class this season, with five different drivers taking wins already this year. Larry Job, from Las Vegas, currently sits atop the standings, with Alpine’s Doug Fortin second and Cameron Steele (San Clemente) third, and all three within just 13 points! Three more drivers sit just a bit further back, with Rich Ronco (Peoria, Arizona), Bobby Pecoy (Yorba Linda), and Jerry Whelchel (Portola Hills) all within striking distance of the championship lead. Whelchel has been the man to beat as of late, taking four wins in the last six races, and could be a spoiler despite missing the first four races this year.
With 260 points still up for grabs for every driver, everyone in the top 5 in each of the above divisions is still mathematically alive as the championship chase begins to narrow competitor’s sight lines. Drivers hoping to seize a championship must balance speed with discretion as they fight for wins, yet keep themselves out of trouble. Who’s got the winning combination? Only the events themselves will show.
Racing is truly the ultimate “reality” show always full of surprises, and Surprise, Arizona (especially when LOORRS is there) will most certainly hold true to its name!
The Lucas Oil Off Road Racing Series: THIS IS SHORT COURSE!