SCORE Journal

SCORE Journal Issue - APRIL 2017

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

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Page 68 of 107

TEAM HERBST SMITH’S MUTATION ONE THOUSAND POUNDS LIGHTER THAN BEFORE, TEAM HERBST SMITH PREPARES TO TAKE ON THE DESERT IN TWO NEW TROPHY TRUCKS By Stephen Romero Photography: Stephen Romero SCORE International Trophy Trucks are the fastest, most agile machines to race the desert, but some SCORE competitors believe there’s still room to push the threshold of performance into the stratosphere. That was exactly the motivation behind Herbst Smith Fabrication’s totally new Trophy Trucks, sponsored by Monster Energy, which will run the upcoming SCORE Baja 500 and SCORE Baja 1000 in 2017. “The idea behind our new Trophy Trucks was to shave off one thousand pounds of weight from the previous designs, lower the center of gravity without sacrificing any ground clearance and make improvements on the geometry,” said Mike Smith of Team Herbst. Smith feels this will put the new Monster Mutant Super Soda-sponsored Trophy Trucks in the position necessary to win some of the biggest races in Baja. “We made a lot of design improvements to make the two trucks much simpler, easier to work on and easier to prep,” said Smith. “We also made improvements that make the trucks and components much easier to manufacture, which means our new Trophy Trucks are less expensive to maintain.” With four SCORE Trophy Truck Championships and a growing list of other prestigious SCORE wins as their benchmark, Team Herbst Smith went to work on the all-new Monster Mutant Super Soda-sponsored Trophy Truck months ago to be ready for the kick-off to the 2017 SCORE racing season. While it proved challenging, Smith and his crew of technical wizards pulled it off on time and under budget, allowing us to get a detailed look at the vehicles before they set tread on the dirt. The Mutant Is Definitely Race Bred The new Trophy Truck body, designed by Herbst Smith Fabrication, is centered around the Patton-built V8 850 horsepower engine and a Culhane Turbo 400 automatic transmission with a Herbst Smith Fabrication differential and drivetrain. Alcon vented rotors and calipers are mated to ProAM/Herbst Smith Fabrication hubs, which are outfitted with 17-inch forged aluminum ProAM wheels and 39x13.5-inch BFGoodrich Baja T/A KR2 tires. Lighting up the night are four KC HiLITES LED driving lights, while eight King IBP internal bypass shocks deliver velocity and position sensitivity dampening. The stroke length of these King shocks is 16-inches out front and 18-inches out back, which complements the new 28-inch (front) and 30-inch (rear) suspension travel. Lastly, hundreds of feet of chromoly tubing, superior welds, and hundreds of aircraft-grade nuts and bolts are there to make this chassis a one-of-a-kind creation. A Refined Attitude Several shake-down events already revealed what Team Herbst suggest they wanted to accomplish from the new truck, so they continue to refine them with everything leading up to the 2017 SCORE Baja 500 and the 50th Anniversary of the SCORE Baja 1000, where Team Herbst will likely cut the Mutants loose as the SCORE season wraps it up. Judging by their reputation at previous high-stakes events, rest assured, Team Herbst Smith won’t be satisfied by anything other than taking the most coveted checkered flag of all.

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