SCORE Journal


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

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 41 of 124

A FOUR-HOUR BATTLE SCORE Trophy Trucks Pour On The Speed In San Felipe By Dan Sanchez The record-setting field of 31 SCORE Trophy Trucks roared into the San Felipe desert at full-throttle to take on the 280.2-mile course. After qualifying, Bryce Menzies, Andy McMillin, Luke McMillin, Gus Vildosola and Alan Ampudia were the first to start the race for the field. The McMillin cousins continued a relentless pace chasing Menzies in the #7 AWD Red Bull truck, each trying to avoid any potentially time soaking mistake that would slow them down and cost them the win. After the first 60-miles, Andy McMillin caught up to Menzies through the Azufre Wash, but hit a rock that slowed him down the rest of the race. “I got up into Menzies’ dust cloud and took a different line than he did and I hit a rock that I didn’t see,” said McMillin. “ I got a right front flat and bent the steering sector shaft. I was nervous about that the rest of the day.” Luke McMillin surged into the second position on the course and continued to put pressure on Menzies the entire rest of the course. “We knew it was going to be a sprint but that was an understatement,” said McMillin. “Bryce was about 2.5-minutes in front of me and with our two-wheel drive we pushed the truck all day. The course was super tough and we actually tried to make up time through the rocks.” The top three racers on the course continued to push the pace faster, each keeping ahead of the other and maintained their positions, leaving Menzies to cross the finish line with a time of 4:28:01. Luke McMillin was 16 seconds behind to finish in second place, followed by Andy McMillin with a time of 4:35:17 to finish in third. Alan Ampudia who had started fifth in the #10 Papas & Beer SCORE Trophy Truck hit a rock and couldn’t catch up with the fastest three on the course. “We pushed hard after we got a flat and we got passed while changing the flat after hitting a large rock,” said Alan Ampudia. “We began catching up but the truck was beginning to overheat so we had to back-off a little to cross the finish line.” Ampudia finished fourth ahead of 16-year-old Jax Redline who ran an impressive race after starting 10th in the field. HELLAND SPEEDS THROUGH SCORE TT LEGEND CLASS Rolf Helland in the #37L Mason truck made quick time of the San Felipe course to take the win within the SCORE TT Legend class. Helland with co-driver Rick D. Johnson finished in a time of 5:28:16 ahead of Nick Vanderway in the #5L RPM Off-Road truck for driver of record Clyde Stacy. Vanderway drove solo and finished with a time of 6:25:42. “We had a little problem with the front end but got it fixed and kept going,” said Vanderway. “We hit a rock and got a flat which put us a little off the pace.” Finishing third in class was Russel Buehler in the #79L truck with Neil Buehler as co-driver. 34 TT SPEC TRUCKS MAKE FOR HEAVY COMPETITION With the largest field of competitors in the SCORE Trophy Truck divisions, the TT Spec racers had a difficult time not only with a tough course, but having to contend with lots of traffic ahead of them. Kyle Jergensen in the #227 truck qualified fastest to start first, followed by Pierce Herbst in the #264 truck, and Jason McNeil in the #234 truck. At the race start, Jason Coleman in the #292 truck started in 10th position and began a blistering pace picking-off competitors in front of him. Right with Coleman was Ryan Hancock in the #228 truck who actually took the lead around race mile 195. “We made our way through the washes and ended up getting the lead,” said Coleman. Meanwhile Jergensen had fallen back due to some electrical and gearing issues, but managed to pull through. “We made a gearing mistake and it bit us,” said Jergensen. “The truck was geared to do 160 mph but the motor wasn’t up to that. It had a negative effect and we were only able to go 80 mph. We held on to what we could.” The Herbst brothers, Pierce and co-driver Thor, also had problems on the course which kept them from retaining their second-on-course position. “At some point we hit the driveline and had a vibration on the long straightaways,” said Pierce Herbst. “We didn’t feel comfortable going above 90 mph, and then got a flat around race mile 250.” Luck also wasn’t with Jason McNeil who hit a tree at race mile 15 and had to remove the torn hood from the vehicle. “From there it went downhill as the tranny started spiking in temperature and we had to baby it a couple of times. We also had four flats and that’s what killed our chances of winning.” At the finish line Coleman kept the pace to finish first, followed by Hancock in second, and Jergensen who finished third in class. Herbst ultimately finished fifth and McNeil hung on to finish in sixth place. Despite the amount of competition 27 of the 34 competitors finished the race. SJ

Articles in this issue

Archives of this issue

view archives of SCORE Journal - SCORE-Journal-May-2021