SCORE Journal

SCORE Journal - June 2018

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

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Page 115 of 134

ADAPT AND CONQUER Sara Price and Erica Sacks are poised to conquer Baja as the newest members of RPM Off-Road Racing’s Team By Dan Sanchez Photos by Dick Gray The SCORE World Desert Championship series has seen its share of racers who have attempted to take on the harsh Baja terrain. While some try to jump in head first driving a high-powered vehicle like a SCORE Trophy Truck, others ease into it by gaining experience in lower speed vehicles, which help them learn to see the terrain differently to react to its changing conditions more effectively. It’s a key factor that legendary veterans of the sport have used to go faster and dominate the competition. With a background in motorcycle, UTV, rally car, stadium truck racing, and even stunt driving, Sara Price isn’t a novice behind the wheel. SCORE fans saw for the first time at the 2018 SCORE San Felipe 250 and didn’t know much about her and navigator Erica Sacks who had both recently became a part of the RPM Off-Road team, piloting the number 204 Geiser built Chevy Trophy Truck Spec. In their first Baja race of the season, they finished in 12th place but knew they could have done much better. “Our first race in Baja with the RPM Off-Road team was truly humbling,” said Pierce. “The enthusiasm of the fans was overwhelming and at the start of the race, I felt 100 percent ready, and the truck felt great. During the race, however, we had electrical issues, but we didn’t want to give up.” Price and Sacks had to restart the vehicle hundreds of times but the effort shows the determination and fierce competitiveness of these two emerging racers. For RPM Off-Road team owners Justin Matney and Clyde Stacey, the determination to finish was one of the reasons they brought Price and Sacks on to the team. “Clyde and I have watched Sara and her performance for a while,” said Matney. “Coming from a motorcycle background she did really well in testing and we put together a good Trophy Truck Spec team. We’re always trying to develop new drivers. We did it with Lalo Laguna and Apdaly. We think Sara is another one who will do well in SCORE.” The 25-year-old from Lake Elsinore, California began her career on horseback, barrel racing before moving onto two-wheels at age eight. “My brother raced motocross and of course, I had to get into it too,” said Price. “It was all over from there, and I eventually climbed through the ranks and won the Amateur National title and kept winning. I turned pro at 16 and medaled at the X-Games.” Although motocross flowed through her veins, the allure of racing in Baja was not foreign to her. “My dad had raced SCORE and that’s what eventually got me into four-wheels,” said Price. “I began racing side-by-sides and one thing led to another and I was racing in a variety of disciplines, including stadium trucks, rally cars and I also became a precision stunt driver.” “Justin and Clyde are some of the most amazing people,” said Price. “They are so giving and supportive. RPM Off-Road is an amazing team to be a part of, and I’m very grateful.” Although it normally takes a few years to learn how to race in Baja, Price has proven she can adapt quickly to a new vehicle and environment. “We brought Sara on to develop her skills,” said Matney. “We haven’t been in Trophy Truck Spec in a while and Sara is a perfect fit. Getting adapted to desert racing seems second nature to her.” While Sara has quickly taken to the Trophy Truck Spec class, she still relies on her teammate Erica Sacks, who is an experienced navigator in her own right. “Erica and I have been friends for a long time,” said Price. “Her dad races SCORE in Class 1 and she knew quite a bit about Baja racing.” According to Price, the two have always been ready to take on any challenge. “I was reading a magazine and saw that there was a rally race in Africa for women drivers,” said Price. “I asked Erica if she wanted to do this and she also jumped at the chance. We went to a UTV manufacturer and they gave us a car! That’s an example of how we work together as a team. She’s evolved with me over the years and we know each other very well. Erica’s been very well trained in navigation and takes it very seriously. I’m glad she’s with me in the Trophy Truck Spec car.” Price and Sacks are definitely getting noticed within SCORE, the two don’t necessarily want to be known as the “female” race team. “We definitely have the tools to reach other females and we want them to chase their dreams and make it happen,” says Price. “But when the helmet is on I’m a racer, and I want to be treated that way. I want to gain respect as a racer, not a female driver. I want to be looked at as a competitor.” Price and Sacks competed at the 50th BFGoodrich Tires SCORE Baja 500 and had an impressive fifth place finish. “The best part of the day was finishing,” said Price. Among a field of 25 competitors in the Trophy Truck Spec Class, price drove the entire 542.12 miles solo and didn’t seem to miss a beat. It’s likely we’re going to see more of Price in the top five during the remaining SCORE races of the 2018 season. SJ

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