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MacCachren Wins Pro 2, Second in Pro Buggy,
Rob MacCachren Win in Pro 2 earns his
70th career short-course off-road racing victory,
Bryce Menzies 15th in Pro-2,
Menzies 7th & Bruce Fraley 10th in Pro-Lite,
MacCachren 2nd & Larry Job 6th in Pro Buggy,
Bryan Freeman 2nd & Brock Krahenbuhl 4th in Single Buggy
at Chula Vista International Raceway.
CHULA VISTA, Calif.—Leaving the standing room only crowd on their feet, stunned and in awe, Rob MacCachren got the best of race leader Carl Renezeder on the final green, white, checkered restart to win the Pro 2 race during Sunday’s Round 12 of the 2008 Championship Off-Road Racing Series (CORR) at the Chula Vista International Raceway near San Diego. The leader of the six-driver, eight vehicle Menzies Motorsports team also finished second in the Pro Buggy class Sunday while teammate Bryan Freeman also made the podium with a second place in the Single Buggy Class.
Round 12 of the 2008 CORR Series was held before a capacity crowd at the 10,000-seat dirt raceway that included a .82-mile purpose-built dirt race course hewn out of a working rock quarry.
Leading the point standings in three classes, Menzies Motorsports’ ‘Big Red Machine’ now has 20 individual race wins and 36 total podium finishes through the first 12 races of the 2008 CORR Series season. The team in Chula Vista included six drivers, all from Las Vegas, competing in eight vehicles in four classes. For the second straight race, seven of the eight Menzies Motorsports entries finished in the top 10 of their respective classes.
Starting fifth in the No. 21 Rockstar Ford F-150 in the field of 23 starters in the Pro-2 main event that was extended to 16 laps because of a caution flag, MacCachren stayed in fifth place until the mandatory competition yellow flag on Lap 8 and then began his charge to the front. Near the end of Lap 9, Jerry Whelchel, who was running second at the time, pulled into the hot pits, MacCachren slid by both Jeremy McGrath and Johnny Greaves to move into second place, where he stayed until the next to the last lap.
On the dramatic final restart, MacCachren brought the enthusiastic crowd to its feet as he exploded to the outside of the high-banked Turn 1 when Renezeder took the inside line and had enough momentum to take the lead and then hold of the charging Renezeder to the checkered flag.
With the victory, MacCachren earned the 70th short-course off-road racing win of his brilliant career, including 44 career CORR race wins and six in Pro 2 this season.
After qualifying seventh for the 14-Lap, 25-car Pro Buggy main event in the No. 921 BFG Tires Honda-powered AlumiCraft open-wheel desert race car, MacCachren started fourth with the inverted start, moved to third on Lap 1, then to second place on Lap 3 where he stayed to the finish. It was his eighth podium finish and fourth second in Pro Buggy this season. He ended the weekend with a pair of second-place finishes to Greg George, but Sunday’s race was much closer with the final margin of just 1.028 seconds after MacCachren closed several times on George but was unable to complete a pass.
“I can go home with a smile now that I got a win in Pro 2 here at the Quarry,” said MacCachren, who also races in the No. 1 Riviera Racing Ford F-150 SCORE Trophy-Truck in the SCORE Desert Series. “We’ve been struggling here in Pro 2 here, but today we drove a smooth race for the first half and then let our Rockstar rocketship make its move. On the final restart, I went to the outside in Turn 1 when Carl (Renezeder) went to the inside and our motor had the power and our BFG Tires had the grip to make the pass and stay ahead for the victory.”
“We didn’t have quiet enough in the Pro Buggy race to get the win, but second is good and it helps keep the point lead like the Pro 2 win helps us keep our lead there as well. Now we get to go home, do some testing and then get to race next month on our ‘hometown short-course track’ in Primm.”
After qualifying second, Freeman, a second generation desert racer who is another rookie in short-course racing, started the 21-car, 12-lap Single Buggy feature ninth because of the inverted start, in the No. 307 Nevada Off-Road Buggy Fraley-VW. He quickly moved to fourth place at the end of the first lap, was third for Laps 3 and 4 and ran second the rest of the way to earn his 10th podium finish out of 12 races and his first second place of the season
Brock Krahenbuhl, who qualified sixth and started fifth with the invert, was pinched by two other front-running vehicles on the last turn of the first lap and after falling back to 20th, he was able to patiently work his way back up to the front, finishing fourth in the No. 312 KMC Fraley-VW.
Bryce Menzies, 21, is the son of team owner Steve Menzies raced once again both in Pro 2 and Pro Lite. The 2007 CORR Rookie of the Year in Single Buggy (and season point champ), has moved up in class this year to Pro Lite and the younger Menzies started 10th and finished seventh in his No. 7 Fox Shox Ford Ranger.
In only his third race in Pro 2, Menzies started 18th and finished 15th in his No. 7 Menzies Motorsports Ford F-150.
“We struggled today and you can be sure I will be spending as much time as I can on our test track in Las Vegas before the Primm race,” said Menzies. “The good thing is that Menzies Motorsports is such a great team with such knowledgeable people and such superb equipment it’s like going to school every day when I’m around the team.”
Larry Job, another veteran Southern Nevada desert racer in his first full short-course season, started a distant 19th in Pro Buggy, slipping back to 22nd before scratching his way back to 6th place at the finish in the No. 907 Mastercraft AlumiCraft-Honda caused the gears to slip into neutral unexpectedly which caused him to spin at the end of Lap 10. He also spun out just before the start/finish line at the end of Lap 4 which kept him at the back of the pack a little longer.
Also racing for Menzies Motorsports this year is Bruce Fraley, the veteran race car builder who finished 10th in Pro Lite in the No. 12 MSD Ford Ranger. He had a flat on Lap 7 just before the competition yellow, pulled into the hot pits where the crew changed it quickly, keeping Fraley on the lead lap. He came out in 19th position and steadily worked his way back up 10th place in the final five laps, staying in contention for class Rookie of the Year honors.
The team’s newest driver, veteran desert racer Cameron Steele of San Clemente, Calif., was a backup this weekend and will be a regular team driver in 2009.
The one and one-half hour show from Round 12 is set to air at 11:30 a.m. (PDT) on Sunday, Oct. 5 on NBC.
Next up for Menzies Motorsports will be Rounds 13 and 14 of the 16-race 2008 CORR Series, to be held October 25-26 on the Las Vegas team’s ‘home track’ at the Las Vegas International Off-Road Raceway in Primm, Nev.
2008 CORR Series Round 11 & 12,
Sept. 13-14—Chula Vista International Raceway, Calif.
Sunday (Sept. 14) Round 12 Results
Pro 2 (23 Starters, 16 Laps)
Pro Lite (24 Starters, 14 Laps)
Pro Buggy (25 Starters, 14 laps)
Single Buggy (21 Starters, 12 Laps)
2008 CORR Series
Rounds 13 & 14
Rounds 15 & 16