The BITD Laughlin Desert Classic would be our 2nd race in our Brenthel Industries Spec TT and we came to Laughlin aiming for better results than our Mint 400 race in March. Justin Sheakley would be filling in as our co-driver for this race as Doug Gonzales was unable to make it.
On Thursday we drove our chase truck down to Laughlin to meet up with the race truck which was being brought over by Jimmy Owens and the rest of our pit crew from Xtreme Machine and Fabrication who had been prepping the truck and adding some goodies from the Mint race.
Friday was tech day and uneventful, we made it through tech and went back to the main pits to get the seat belts all adjusted for Justin’s trek in the co-dawg seat. Then off to dinner and then some rest for race day.
Saturday – We were pitting with the #6066 Safecraft truck so since the Spec TT’s were the 4th race of the day, we went out to the hot pits to watch the 7200 and 6000 race before suiting up for our race. We drew the 22nd starting spot out of 22 trucks so our strategy was to just settle in and get a good pace going, get some more seat time and make it through the day. The track was well groomed with very little dust. The Fox Proving Grounds, well, proved our King Shocks could take a pounding. Day one went well with our steady pace moving us up from 22nd to 11th. We had one minor issue crossing a steel trench plate but it did not stop us from finishing day one.
Sunday – With our Saturday finish we moved up in the field for our starting position. We were also going to try and ratchet up our pace a notch due to our course knowledge from Saturday. Knowing we were only seconds behind the 10th place finish we knew a hole shot would put us immediately into 10th place…goal one was attained. Based upon our pit conversations after day one we were going to try a couple of things to see if we could pick the pace up a bit, we seemed able to do that for a lap and half. On lap 2 the Fox Proving Grounds proved to be a little too much for our sway bar which failed. The break of the sway bar in turn took out our brakes, naturally this slowed our pace. Coming down the hill to the hot pits the steel plate at the road crossing did us wrong again, puncturing a tire. Thanks to our pit crew we were able to get in and out of the hot pits fairly quickly. The lack of brakes slowed us a bit pushing us back from 11th to 15th.
All in all it was a good weekend as we learned a lot about driving the truck and will be able to make a few adjustments for our next race.
Thanks again to Justin Sheakley for jumping into the co-driver seat on short notice, Jimmy Owens and Xtreme Machine and Fabrication for prepping the truck, Jeff Knupp and the Safecraft team and Matt Rhodes as well as all of our sponsors – Xtreme Machine and Fabrication, Cal Custom Trailers, Maxima Oil, Method Race Wheels, King Shocks, BFGoodrich Tires and Wilwood Brakes.