Thank you to our Local Presenting Sponsors for this years Congress, AZ event:
Drill Down On Your Results: http://www.moto-tally.com/
2014 Kickoff to W.E. Rock Rock Crawling and Dirt Riot Endurance Racing in Congress, Arizona a Grand Success
BLACKFOOT, ID APRIL 5, 2014: An Arizona a double header this time of year normally means you are going to a baseball game, but on this particular weekend it meant there were two days of professional off-road events in town: Trail-Gear Western W.E. Rock Championship Rock Crawling on Saturday and Dirt Riot Endurance Series on Sunday brought to you by Fly-N-Hi Total Offroad Performance Center and LetzRoll Offroad. The action packed weekend gave all the spectators a lot to watch on the rocks and through the fast sections of dirt on the Thompson’s Ranch in Congress, AZ, a short hour from Phoenix.
“We can’t thank the crowd enough for coming out and letting the drivers put on a spectacular show for you all,” said Rich Klein, President and founder of W.E. Rock Events. “As the awe struck spectators watched the events unfold during both days events, we can certainly say that the drivers literally drove the wheels off their cars! We love being able to bring this type of racing to venues across the country.”
The Trail Gear Western National Pro Series Rock Crawling event kicked off with great showing of drivers, setting up the field for the next event in Rangely, Colorado, the second of three event series. Professional Rock Crawling is one of the most intricate sports in the motorsports arena. It is technical, mechanical and filled with the one day event consisting of six courses of difficult obstacles that the drivers had to complete, followed by a final shoot-out obstacle.
The Dirt Riot Endurance Racing Southwest series puts race buggies, 4×4 trail jeeps, and UTVs on a track to complete as many laps as they can within their group’s set amount of time. Polar opposite to rock crawling, rock racing is a race of speed and endurance to complete as many laps of the rocky terrain as possible. The Arizona race challenged the drivers to complete 3 hours of the 4.5 mile course of challenging rock obstacles, technical and fast sections.
Sunday dawned another spectacular Arizona day and it was time to hear the high horsepower and puts some speed on the track at the LetzRoll Offroad and Fly-N-Hi Total Performance Center sponsored Dirt Riot race. The first race on the track was the UTV class in a re-match from 2013. Frank Minice came out the victor again this year with Trevor Crane matching him lap and Colby Johnsen in the mix.
Eighteen rigs took the track for the next race, including all trail rigs and the 4600 class. In the Pro 4600 class, Jimmy’s 4×4 Cody Folsom in his Jeep Comanche took the honors over Four Corners 4×4 Jason Kaminsky and LetzRoll Offroad Matt Salyers. Ryan Miller won the Unlimited Trail class chased very closely by second place Rawlin McGhie, third Matt Hinitt and fourth Carlos Gonzales. Finishing in fifth place Joe Whitcomb, sixth Paul Kroger, seventh Thomas Jordan, eigth Paul Patel, ninth Paul Tyler and faced with tire changes and co-driver running back and forth to the pits, Jayson Mitchell finished tenth.
In the Modified Trail class, Shannon Goodall took home the honors in her newly built trail rig, followed by Larry Karver of Team Death Wobble and new competitor, John Garrison. In the Stock Trail Class, Captain Rob Flandro drove the wheels off his Toyota, while Mike Florian wasn’t able to complete a lap in his Jeep Cherokee.
When the final race of the day came, the crowd was pearched on the rock pile ready to watch the excitement, while others took the hay truck to the back stretches of desert to watch the high speed passes. Two classes took the field for the final race. Pro 4500 class LetzRoll Offroad Alan Johnson completed nine laps for the win while Kevin Rants had challenges and finished second with eight laps.
The Pro 4400 Unlimited 4×4 class cars had top competitors throughout the field. Lap times for all competitors were less than two minutes apart, but then as with endurance races, the attrition rate started to play a factor and teams started falling out of the race. LetzRoll Offroad Racing Andrew McLaughlin took the lead early and held on throughout, leading all laps. 602 Airen Patrick and Fly-N-Hi Racing Jeremy Hammer chased that lead all day long, putting the pressure on the lead. Odd Angle Paul Garner took fourth, Goodall Racing Kenneth Goodall finished fifth, Desert Fab racing Todd McCullen finished backwards in sixth when he lost all forward gears and Rocking J Racing John Brock finished early in seventh place.
The day ended with the awards ceremony where hundreds of dollars were distributed to winners along with classy trophies made by Artec Industries.
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Results and Photos for the Event
Double Header Weekend in Arizona with W.E. Rock Championship Rock Crawling and Dirt Riot Endurance Racing
Professional Rock Crawling Saturday March 8th Starting at 9am outside Congress, AZ
Dirt Riot Endurance 4×4 Racing Sunday March 9th Starting at 9am outside Congress, AZ
BLACKFOOT, ID MARCH 3, 2014: Enjoying the Arizona sun is the best way to kick off two of the hottest series in the off-road scene. Trail-Gear Western W.E. Rock Championship Rock Crawling will be on Saturday March 8th and Dirt Riot Endurance racing will be on Sunday March 9th at Thompson’s Ranch in Congress, AZ, a short hour from Phoenix. Both races are spectator and family friendly with vendors and food available, small cars will be fine on the 5-mile dirt road to the event entrance. Local Off-Road shops LetzRoll Offroad and Fly-N-Hi Total Offroad Performance Center are joining Maxxis Tires, Artec Industries and Jones Ford Jeep in promoting the event and displaying in vendor row among many others.
“The rock terrain in Arizona gives us a perfect platform to build some of the hardest rock crawling courses in the US,” said Rich Klein, President and founder of W.E. Rock Events. “Then on Sunday we are having the Dirt Riot race that will put speed on the track. Of course we welcome local UTV’s and Trail Class drivers to come and race, everyone is welcome!”
The Trail-Gear Professional Rock Crawling Series will start at 9am on Saturday March 9th. The Professional Unlimited Class will have many of the well-known names in the rock crawling world, but will also host two daughters of champions: Trail-Gear’s Matt Messer’s daughter Olivia Messer and Campbell Racing’s Shannon Campbell’s daughter Bailey Campbell. Both girls will have their Dad’s as spotters. Competing against them in the Unlimited Class will be 2013 Unlimited Class Winner Team Rock Hard Justin Hall, 360 Racing Justin Keilman, Trail-Gear Matt Messer, Team Moab Steve Nantz, Mission Snow Dion Wakefield from Canada among others not yet pre-registered.
The Pro Modified Class will also be packed with stiff competition from across the western United States. The 2013 year long battle between Team Superchips Aaron Sykes and Hooked Triangle Racing Jared Neff will continue into 2014. Aaron Sykes took the final points win in 2013 by a mere one point. The Sportsman Class is open to any offroad enthusiast in the area that would like to compete. There are minimal safety requirements to take on the courses. You can join the already registered Chris Nazarewicz, Rolling Gnomes Paul Tyler and 602 Racing Charlie Vacha among many others.
Dirt Riot Racing picks up the speed and puts race buggies, 4×4 trail jeeps, and UTVs on a track to complete as many laps as they can within their groups set amount of time on Sunday. The course is 4.5 miles of rocks, technical and fast sections. Pre-registered racers include 2013 Dirt Riot Southwest Series Winner LetzRoll Offroad Andrew McLaughlin and second place Fly-N-Hi Jeremy Hammer. Both companies are sponsors of this weekend’s event and they will be going head-to-head to see who will start the season with the top points position. Also pre-registered for the Unlimited Class are 602 Racing Airen Patrick, Goodall Racing Kenneth Goodall, Odd Angle Paul Garner, Rocking J Offroad John Brock and many others.
UTV Drivers and Trail Class competitors are welcome to pre-register or register onsite. They are more of a run-what-you-bring class with some safety requirements. The Unlimited Trail Class looks to have a large contingent coming to race out of the local Arizona Undertakers Club including Miller Racing Ryan Miller, Short Bus Mafia Racing Carlos Gonzales, Kroger Racing Paul Kroger, McGhie Offroad Racing Rawlin McGhie, Jones Auto / Select Glass Team Jayson Mitchell, Paul Patel, Rolling Gnomes Paul Tyler, JSE Racing Joe Whitcomb and Modified Trail Class pre-registers Team MMI Trevor Crane and Scrap Metal Racing John Garrison. Or join the pre-registered SXS racer ColeCar Motorsports Colby Johnsen.
Both days’ events have classes that are built to encourage local 4×4 or UTV participants to join in a day of fun competition and racing. For registration information go to http://www.werocklive.com/2014-registration. W.E. Rock is a Professional Rock Crawling series composed of 2 series of 3 events each that crisscross the country. Dirt Riot is an Endurance Racing series that is composed of 5 series of 3 races each that stretch across the country.
Spectators are encouraged to come and enjoy the day of entertainment on Saturday March 8th with Rock Crawling starting at 9am, and the final shootout expected to begin about 5pm. On Sunday March 9th, qualifying for the 4400 professional group starts at 9am followed by racing all day. The professional 4400 4×4 is scheduled to start at 2pm for three hours with a grand prix finish at approximately 5pm. All times are subject to change. The winners of each class are determined by the most number of laps completed in the set amount of time. The awards ceremony immediately follows the final race.
Admission is $25 for a two day pass, $15 for adults, $5 for ages 8-15, children 7 and under free and Military with ID get $5 off. There are vendors, food and amenities on site, and we encourage you to bring chairs and shade structures. There is camping available onsite. For additional details go to http://www.werocklive.com/2014/w-e-rock-western-series-1-congress-az-2
After the event we will have the results, pictures and stories posted at http://www.werocklive.com/2014/dirt-riot-southwest-round-1-congress-az for the Dirt Riot Race and http://www.werocklive.com/2014/w-e-rock-western-series-1-congress-az-2 for the W.E. Rock Rock Crawl.
Past Event Coverage: http://www.werocklive.com
Event Sponsors: Maxxis Tires, Artec Industries, Nitro Gear & Axle, Trail Gear, Branik Motorsports, ASR Offroad, Crown Performance, Superchips, Dirt Skins, MetalCloak, PSC Motorsports, Currie Enterprises, Spidertrax Off-Road, Axel Off Road Gear & Apparel, PCI Race Radios, The SickLine.com, Race Team Store