Lucas Off Road Racing Series Rounds 7 & 8
July 25 & 26, 2009 Lake Elsinore Motorsports Complex, Lake Elsinore, CA
SuperLite - Round 7
The Bully Dog SuperLites were next on track, and the story of the night was most certainly that of paraplegic driver Ricky James. Despite being paralyzed from the chest down, James took the pole position in Friday’s qualifying session, but would start further back thanks to the inversion of start positions. John Harrah took the early lead in his Speed Technologies truck, ahead of Chad Leising, Jason Patison, Joey Granatelli, and James. Action was fairly quiet in the first half of the race, as only Patison faltered, falling from third to fifth in his Geico Powersports truck by the competition yellow. But as the green flag waved again, Granatelli, Leising, and James all got past Harrah, while Patison rolled over behind them. Leising moved to the lead, and Harrah re-took third, only to roll over as well, and as the white flag waved, it was still Leising, Granatelli, and James in the top three. In turn three of the final lap, Granatelli rolled his #20 Granatelli Motorsports truck, and Leising somehow piled his Lucas Oil/Hart and Huntington truck into Granatelli and had nowhere to go, getting stuck for a long time and allowing James’ SoCal SuperTrucks machine to move into the lead and four other drivers into the top five! James went on to take an emotional win in his first ever LOORRS race, ahead of Dawson Kirchner in second, Andrew Comriepicard in third, David Reyes in fourth and Brandon Bailey in fifth.
Unlimited 4 - Round 7
What a difference an addition of four more trucks has made to the Unlimited 4 division! If racing was already good here, it was made incredible by the likes of Kyle LeDuc and Mike Johnson. Usual favorite Carl Renezeder now had his hands full with young LeDuc, who narrowly missed the pole position in Friday’s qualifying session, and it was LeDuc who had the best start of all on Saturday night, moving from seventh to second on the first lap alone. #19 Troy Herbst, in his first LOORRS Unlimited 4 race, was the only man still ahead of LeDuc’s #99 Rockstar/Makita Ford, while Bryce Menzies (driving Travis Coyne’s old truck), Mike Johnson (filling in for Alan Pflueger) and Tim Herbst filled third through fifth. LeDuc made short work of the leader Troy Herbst to take the lead, while a hard-charging Renezeder moved all the way to second in pretty short order, only to have a major mechanical failure burn up his chances of a battle for the win with LeDuc. At the competition yellow, it was still LeDuc out front, ahead of Johnson in the #71 K&N/KMC Wheels Chevrolet, Troy Herbst, # 18 Tim Herbst, and Bryce Menzies in the Team Associated Ford #51. As green flag racing resumed, it was apparent that something was not right with LeDuc’s truck, as gray smoke was first streaming, then pouring out the back of his machine. Behind him, Troy Herbst spun in turn one to drop back to fifth, then rolled in the same turn a few laps later, but barely missed a beat and still retained fifth. Menzies dropped out, allowing Kent Brascho’s #8 XDP/R&L Carriers Chevrolet into fourth, and up front, the crowd was audibly willing LeDuc’s truck home. LeDuc’s truck hung on just long enough to come home first, ahead of Johnson (who drove extremely well in his first ever Unlimited 4 race), Tim Herbst in his Terrible Herbst/Lucas Oil Chevrolet, Brascho, and Troy Herbst in the other Terrible Herbst/Lucas Oil Chevrolet. In thanks to the adoring crowd, LeDuc drove down the front straight while hanging out his driver window, drawing an uproarious cheer from the fans who’d seen this young man take a brilliant win.
SuperLite - Round 8
After taking the SuperLite win in his first ever LOORRS race on Saturday night, all eyes were on Ricky James for Sunday night’s race in the Bully Dog SuperLite division. #77 David Reyes took the early lead, ahead of Chad Leising’s #17 Geico Powersports/Rockstar truck, James in the #24 SoCal SuperTrucks machine, John Harrah in the #13 Speed Technologies truck, and Joey Granatelli in the #20 Granatelli Motorsports truck. James did some great driving and took the lead on lap two, with Leising close behind in second. As James began to check out up front, Reyes, Granatelli, and Harrah piled wide and into each other in turn one, and though Reyes remained third and Harrah actually moved up to fourth, it was now the #15 NOS Energy Drink machine of Andrew Comriepicard in fifth. The running order was the same as the competition yellow flag came out, with the top five being held by James, Leising, Reyes, Harrah, and Comriepicard, in that order. Green came out again and Harrah moved past Reyes and into third, and by the drop of the white flag, Granatelli had also moved back up, taking over fifth spot. Harrah muscled by Leising on the final lap to snag second, but nobody could stop James from taking back to back wins in his debut weekend of LOORRS competition. Leising finished third, ahead of Reyes in fourth, and Brandon Bailey wound up fifth in the #72 Lamb Energy machine.
Unlimited 4 - Round 8
After taking a terrific win in his first round of LOORRS Unlimited 4 competition on Saturday night, Kyle LeDuc was out to take a clean sweep of the weekend on Sunday night. LeDuc put his best foot forward (and to the floor) from the drop of the green flag, and moved from seventh to third on the first lap. LeDuc was having to come from the back, just as Renezeder had tried to do on Saturday night, and despite Renezeder’s season-long dominance of this class, LeDuc was doing an even better job of moving through the field. He out-jumped Jerry Daugherty from the turn four bowl on the second lap and took over second spot, with only Renezeder left out in front. Daugherty then spun in turn three and fell to sixth, leaving a top five running order of Renezeder, LeDuc, Kent Brascho, Troy Herbst, and Travis Coyne. Coyne lost his steering and dropped out of the race, putting Daugherty back in the top five, but by the competition yellow, Tim Herbst had gotten by him, and followed Renezeder, LeDuc, Brascho, and his brother, Troy Herbst. Under the caution lap, Renezeder ducked his #1 Lucas Oil/General Tires Ford into the hot pits, and was not able to get back out in time to join the leaders for the restart. Renezeder did return to competition about two thirds of a lap down, but pulled off track with what were rumored to be overheating issues. LeDuc was now looking like the clear candidate for victory, and he pulled clear of the rest of the field in his Rockstar/Kal Gard Ford as green flag racing resumed. Tim Herbst was now second in his #18 Terrible Herbst/Miller Lite Chevrolet, with Brascho third in his #8 R&L Carriers/XDP Chevrolet, Troy Herbst fourth in his #19 Terrible Herbst/Coors Light Chevrolet, and Mike Johnson, once again filling in for Alan Pflueger, lying fifth in the #71 K&N/KMC Wheels Chevrolet. Brascho bobbled in turn one to hand third place to Troy Herbst, and a roll and subsequent slide along the outside barrier of turn two by Daugherty brought out a full course yellow and the call for a green-white-checkers finish. Green waved again and Troy Herbst now hit trouble as he spun out through the rhythm section and fell to last place. Brascho was also in trouble, pulling off the course with a mechanical failure. With the white flag waving it was LeDuc well out in front, ahead of Tim Herbst, Johnson, Bryce Menzies in the #51 Team Associated Ford, and Troy Herbst. LeDuc cruised to the finish to take back to back wins in his first weekend of LOORRS Unlimited 4 competition, ahead of Tim Herbst, Johnson, Menzies, and Troy Herbst.