Team AMSOIL/Torchmate off-road racers Brad and Roger Lovell recently competed at the We-Rock Grand Nationals at Miller Motorsports Park in Tooele, Utah. After becoming wedged in a notch on the first course and tipping upside down on the second course, the duo found their groove and set the low score on four of the next six courses. Holding fourth place entering the final round, they put together another strong effort to finish third.
Having always lived in the shadow of Pikes Peak, the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb has always been part of Brad Lovell’s life, even though he’s never taken the 12-mile trip up the mountain. After building a formidable racer for the TORC Series presented by AMSOIL, this year was different.
“I never thought the V-8 powered AMSOIL Pro-Light would be competitive in the Pikes Peak Open class but I knew I needed seat time” said Lovell. “Especially after two tough rounds of racing at Crandon.”
Lovell rushed back home to Colorado from Crandon, Wis. only to complete tech and make the drivers meeting with two minutes to spare. There are no breaks for latecomers at Pikes Peak International Hill Climb. Even a poor sole from Hungary was turned away after his car was stuck in customs during the practice days. The Pikes Peak Open class for the 88th running consisted of nine vehicles including a modified Cobra, a dedicated hill climb car from New Zealand, a WRC rally car from Luxembourg, and a Honda Ridgeline outfitted for Baja.
“I can’t say too much about the run itself as I was really trying to concentrate,” said Lovell. “At one point I got to jerking the wheel around way too much and needed to slow my hands. I could feel tension in my body and several times told myself to relax and focus. On the narrow exposed turns it occurred to me that my tires were actively saving my life.”
After getting through some early nerves, Lovell finally reached the pavement near the top and knew there wasn’t much holding him back. He rounded the last corner to see the checkered flag and a third place trophy. His total time was 13:17 over 12.42miles with an elevation gain of 4,720 ft and average speed of 56 mph.
Pikes Peak is an amazing race. It is the second oldest race in the country and has been sustainable longer than most of us have been alive. It has big names and unknowns, record setters and adventure seekers.
“I was there for seat time in my new truck but fell in love with a phenomenal local race that I have neglected my whole life,” continued Lovell. “It has the same airs of adventure that attract people to the Baja. I don’t care if they pave it, I almost now welcome it. Either way, I can’t wait to get back up the mountain next year.”
Lovell Unveils New Pro Lite
Brad Lovell is considered one of the most versatile off-road drivers in North America. He has won championships in rock crawling, rock racing and has recently piloted a top running team in the Best In The Desert series. In 2010, Lovell will look to tackle the short course world. He will be racing alongside AMSOIL Super Team members, Scott Douglas, Mike Oberg and Chad Hord in the Traxxas TORC Series presented by AMSOIL. Lovell will put his new AMSOIL Pro Lite through the paces at Crandon International Raceway this week. Lovell sent us a picture of the new Pro Lite, which will debut at the TORC opener on June 19-20 in Crandon.