SCORE Journal Issue 3 - 2016

SCORE Journal - The Official Publication of SCORE Off-Road Racing

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1600 class was the competition." Ampudia's ultimate goal is to follow that path into a SCORE Trophy Truck if the opportunity arises. "I think anyone in the off-road racing industry, who gets an opportunity to move up to a bigger race car with more horsepower, wouldn't think twice about it," said Ampudia. For now, however, Ampudia came off his championship season and moved up into a Class 8 truck, with his brother Alan as co-driver. It's a move that he believes will help him learn how to handle a more powerful vehicle with greater capabilities. His first test in an actual SCORE race proved he could be fast and preserve the vehicle. This ultimately led to his first victory in the class during the 2016 SCORE San Felipe 250. "That was a really fun race. The game plan was to finish the race, so we weren't really pushing the truck," said Ampudia. "By the time my brother Alan gave me the truck we had a one hour lead over second place, so I just made sure to take it easy and bring it home." Some SCORE fans may recall the Ampudia Class 8 truck, as it's been raced in SCORE in the past, and was slightly ahead of its time when it first appeared. The truck was built by the Geiser Brothers back in 2006 and is equipped with a 700 horsepower Patton Ford V8 built by Randy Davis, a Rancho transmission, Fox shocks, Method wheels and Toyo Tires. But the truck was originally built with a modified chassis that had some Class 8 racers complaining about its construction at that time. "The incident was in Laughlin when my dad debuted the truck," said Ampudia. "The ingenuity of the Geiser Brothers allowed us to build the truck so that the Class 8 chassis would pass through the cabin. This made the truck look shorter compared to the old style Class 8's at the time. No other truck builder had done this before and everyone in the class complained about it. Ultimately we had to cut the body (not the chassis) and make it taller." The trucks resurrection in the hands of Ampudia and his brother Alan can perhaps be sweet revenge after winning the class. But aside from a great first race, Ampudia is still in a learning curve. "Driving the Class 8 truck is way nicer than the 1/2 1600," he said. "Especially the horsepower, getting through the whoops and being able to hit the three digits on the dashboard. But I do miss racing my 1/2 1600. There are some techniques that carry over, but for the most part, it's different driving a truck than a buggy." With his older brother Rodrigo Jr. in a Pro2 vehicle, Ampudia can rely on yet another family member for advice that can help him succeed in his SCORE Class 8 experience. "My brother Rodrigo races in Pro2 and has lots of experience in that class and in Class 8. So he was giving Alan and me pointers when we went testing." While it seems like that advice was a definite help, Ampudia is focused on learning the fine points of the truck to continue winning, and ultimately seeking the goal of another SCORE championship in a faster class for 2016. SJ AMPUDIA MOVED FROM 1/2 1600 INTO A CLASS 8 TRUCK FOR THE 2016 SEASON. 069 SCORE JOURNAL

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