SCORE Journal

SCORE Journal Issue - NOVEMBER 2017

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

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THEheTeenage Threat 16 Year-Old Broc Dickerson Turns Up the Heat in Class 10 By Stephen Romero Photo courtesy of Jeff Dickerson SCORE Class 10 competitor, Broc Dickerson, is three for three as he heads into the final race of the 2017 SCORE season, putting him in contention for the SCORE Class 10 Championship. By winning the SCORE San Felipe 250, the SCORE Baja 500 and the Tijuana SCORE Desert Challenge this year, Dickerson is looking for a good showing at the 50th BFGoodrich Tires SCORE Baja 1000 to clinch the title. What’s more amazing than his three consecutive wins, is that this Brawley, California native is only 16 years-old. He is the youngest competitor to race SCORE in 2017, and while technically he’s a rookie in desert racing, he’ll be the first to tell you that he practically grew up in off-road motorsports. “I started racing at eight years-old,” said Dickerson. “I raced short course, but I grew up in the desert and I know how the terrain works. In some ways, desert racing is not that much different from racing short course. But what’s helping me to win is the setup of my Alumi Craft Chevy. They have their program figured out.” Although he’s done the improbable in his rookie season, Dickerson is the first to say that he’s just an average kid. He’s a high school Junior and it’s a challenge to go racing when he’s also studying for classes. His high school principal is very understanding, however, and allows Dickerson some well-deserved time off to compete in SCORE events. “I’m a Junior right now, and I have a bunch of AP classes,” Dickerson said. “I have to help out at the shop, while trying to maintain my school work, my dad insists on it.” A Racing Family To better understand how a teenager from a small-town can come to dominate a class mostly made up of seasoned off-road racers, you’ve got to know his family. Dickerson has the has the unwavering support of his father Jeff and mother Tracy that travel with him and serve as team managers and do what’s necessary on race day. His 14-year-old sister Kamrin is also alongside her brother, offering encouragement before every race. For this fourth-generation Baja racer, however, the story really began with his great-grandfather, Wally Pankratz, who raced Baja in the early ‘70s. Dickerson’s grandmother, Tina Dickerson-Pankratz, also won the Baja 500 with Dick Lee during the ‘70s. Of course, his father is a former SCORE Pro Truck champion that understands the sport well enough to give his son the kind of advice needed to be a champion on and off the course. “My dad’s career in Pro Truck had a definite influence on me wanting to race the desert,” said Dickerson. From Short to Long Course While he’s no stranger to success, especially in short-course events, Dickerson has raced three different vehicles in three different series at the national and regional levels, and has walked away with numerous championships throughout the years. But the transition from short course to SCORE desert racing can be dramatic. Given that this was Dickerson’s first year in desert racing, distance and time spent in the car were two factors he’s had to face head-on. While Dickerson has a solid racing background, and has a healthy respect for what’s involved, he understands he’s on a learning curve of sorts, and tries not to put too much pressure on himself. “In short course you have to be on your game all the time, there is no room for error,” said Dickerson. “I would say that desert racing is probably harder in some ways because of the amount of time you’re in the car. But being young helps. I don’t have the fear. My responses are little quicker; the terrain doesn’t take as much toll on me because I seem to recover fast.” At the BFGoodrich Tires 50th SCORE Baja 1000 it will take everything Dickerson has to make a run for the checkered flag and an ultimate top podium finish. After all, he’s had his share of mishaps and close-calls, like during a recent race when he rolled his buggy early on. He’s optimistic and enthusiastic, nevertheless, about the outcome this season. “I’d have to say that Cody Reid is the one I will be watching,” said Dickerson. “Rafael Navarro IV and Justin Davis are fast. But I have to focus on beating Reid in the Baja 1000. I will start the race and run for 400 miles before a driver change, and then I will take the wheel again to the finish.” The MacCachren Influence So who does a teenage driver look up to for inspiration? Dickerson quickly referenced Rob MacCachren, the leading Trophy Truck driver. “My number one idol is MacCachren,” said Dickerson. “He is just as fast as all the young guys, and you can’t beat Rob for being smart on the course. MacCachren is fast, not rough on parts, and makes his race car last. That’s important. Especially, in races like the SCORE Baja 1000. MacCachren is always on point. It’s a very mental game out there. You don’t want to overdrive the car. That’s huge.” Dickerson is well-aware that the SCORE Baja 1000 is all about endurance, and is prepared for it after winning and driving the SCORE Baja 500 solo this year. “I was so tired that by the end of that race I felt like I was ready to fall asleep, so you have to be really focused inside the car. I know it’s a huge mental thing and I will find ways of keeping myself relaxed like stretching whenever possible.” Dickerson has no shortage of other supporters; he currently has up to 20 people volunteer to see him win. Then there’s a little matter of race car prep, which is critical to winning. That role goes to Jake Velasco of Jake Velasco Race Prep in El Cajon, California. “These are some of the best people that have helped my dad when he raced, we can’t do it without them,” said Dickerson. “The 50th BFGoodrich Tires SCORE Baja 1000 is going to be a handful and there’s going to be a lot of fuel stops. My dad is going to be following me from stage to stage. We will definitely be stopping at the BFGoodrich Tires pits once. They are a sponsor and we’ve won on their tires.” So what does the future hold for Dickerson? Well, that depends on the outcome of 50th BFGoodrich Tires SCORE Baja 1000 race and who you ask. But according to his father Jeff, “Broc is looking for a professional Trophy Truck team to continue his racing career.” SJ

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