By Mike Henle

CEDAR CITY -- The Cedar City Grand Prix off-road race scheduled May 31 has a pair of firsts tied to the event set for Three Peaks Recreation Area northwest of here.

First off, the event promoted by the Southern Nevada Off Road Enthusiasts marks the first time that off-road racing has been presented in the city about 65 miles north of St. George.

Second, the race also marks the first time that the entire TJ Flores family has competed in the same off-road event. The Champion Race Works/McMurrough race team from North Las Vegas will certainly be well-represented when Cedar City rolls out the red carpet for the sport of off-road racing.

TJ Flores, 36, will power his Ford Raptor Trophy Truck in the Unlimited Class while wife Kristine Flores will drive the No. 1943 UTV while his sister-in-law Christine Flores will co-pilot the No. 1940 UTV with her sister Amy Lance.

Making the entire family angle even more interesting is the fact that Kristine’s father, Andy Kisner will ride co-pilot with his daughter in No. 1943.

Christine’s sister, Amy Lance, will be the driver of record in the No. 1940 UTV.

“My brother, Brian, and I were out at Lake Mead in early May and decided that we should let the women race the UTVs,” TJ Flores explained. “Normally, the wives help out in the pits watching the kids and make sure we have water. They’re usually our cheerleaders.

“This time we wanted the women to enjoy what we do. This will be their inaugural off-road race as competitors and we think they’re going to have a good time.”

To make sure that the five children are still supervised, TJ and his team will baby-sit the youngsters while the women are racing in the morning. The roles will reverse when TJ and co-driver Jesse Gerlach are competing in the afternoon.

“This very well could be the beginning of a new career for the girls,” TJ said.

Pre-run and tech-inspection are set for Friday. The pre-run is scheduled for noon while tech inspection is set for 3 p.m.

A driver’s meeting is scheduled for 8 p.m. Friday.

The race Saturday begins at 7 a.m. and will include 1-2 1600, 9, Unlimited Sportsman Buggy, Sportsman Truck, UTV and Stock Bug.

The afternoon session starts at 1:30 p.m. and will include Unlimited Truck, Unlimited Buggy, 10, 8 and 1450. The race will include a 37-mile lap with the faster classes running six laps and the slower cars doing three laps.

About 80 entries are expected. The race has received great response.

“I have heard quite a bit of buzz about the event,” said Roger Olcott, a Farmers Insurance agent in Cedar City. “It’s getting the town fired up.

The Cedar City Brian Head Tourism Bureau has been especially excited.

“SNORE events typically bring about 1,000 to 2,000 spectators to their races with an average visitor spending $131 per day,” said the bureau’s Maria Twitchell. “Cedar City should see a very positive impact from this race.”

The race was moved to Cedar City after SNORE lost its date in Caliente when the Bureau of Land Management in Ely, Nev., the area to only two off-road events a year.

Making the trip to the Cedar City Grand Prix May 31 will be, from left, Christine Flores, TJ Flores and his wife Kristine Flores. TJ will drive the No. 80 Unlimited truck while the women will compete in UTVs.

 

TJ Flores of North Las Vegas will compete in the Unlimited truck Division of the Cedar City Grand Prix May 31.


CONTACTS: Mike Henle, The Idea Company Public Relations, 702-279-3483; TJ Flores, Champion Race Works/McMurrough, 702-468-1192; Bonnie Char Hallman, Cedar City Brian Head Tourism Bureau, 435-865-5351

Usually after one of our races, SNORE typically would quickly post an article boasting about the event, giving kudos to the racers, thanking all of our volunteers and sponsors and give highlights of the weekend’s event but this race was different. We felt that time needed to pass in order to reflect, wounds to start to heal, and we needed to take a moment to pause out of respect for Jeff’s family and friends. Yes, it was a weekend of great racing, huge spectating crowds and excitement, but tragically, reality about how dangerous our sport can be and how lives can be changed in an instance, came to be that Saturday afternoon when race car #3002 crashed during Saturday’s afternoon heat.

As soon as the call for the air ambulance came and as you watched it circle around the course to land, you could feel the mood change and actually sense the concern that everyone had for their fellow fallen racer. The focus had changed from enthusiastically watching racers get big air at the dyke jump to one of concern and prayers for the two racers who had crashed in a single car accident on the course. The driver suffered a severe laceration and was taken by ambulance to the hospital but his dear friend and co-driver, suffered injuries so severe, that a few days later, he succumbed to those injuries and tragically passed away on February 28, 2014 with family and friends by his side.

The off road community immediately responded when called upon to assist Jeff’s family and donations from all over the country poured in and within only a few days, over $24,000 had been raised and the amount keeps on increasing because of extremely generous people like you, the off road community. Many of you have never met Jeff or his family, but because he was a fellow off road racer, it didn’t matter, you knew you had to help because of his love for the desert. Fast Aid, an organization that assists racers families has been very instrumental in helping the family as well so helmets off to them for their great work.

Instead of writing about details about the race weekend’s events, we felt that it would be much more important to let you know a little more about Jeff Johnson, the racer who lost his life competing in the sport that all of us love and hold so dear to our hearts. Please read below a note from Jeff’s lovely wife, Kristi, (Posted on the go fund me page)

At age 43, our beloved Jeff enjoyed his last earthly adventure in an off road desert race on Sat., February 22 in Primm, Nevada. Seven days after an accident during the race, Jeff came to rest in I.C.U. surrounded by loved ones on Friday, February 28th. From an early age, Jeff lived life with gusto. He enjoyed working and playing with dune buggies, 4x4 rigs, participating in the annual cornfield race, and his true passion, hunting & fishing. In 2000, Jeff took over his dad's business, Johnson & Sons Excavating, and loved his work as an excavator. In 2006, Jeff and wife Kristi moved from Whatcom County, WA to Harpster, ID and built their dream haven in the hills. In beautiful Idaho, they enjoyed hunting, fishing, and "living off the land", and were blessed with spending a winter month or two in Arizona pretending they were retired. Jeff was admired by many, being a hard working, intelligent, honest, loyal, friendly, and common sense kind of guy. Jeff is survived by his loving wife Kristi Johnson, adoring parents Bob & Barb Johnson, son Jarod Johnson, sisters Tammy Rounds & Bobbie (Marty) Silves, grandparents Bill & Luz Wegley, granddaughter Karmen Johnson, the Barter, Pfullmann, Bailey in-laws (AKA "outlaws"), as well as 4 nieces, a nephew, numerous aunts, uncles, cousins, many loving friends, and good 'ol Maggie dog. In a final gesture of kindness, Jeff donated his heart, liver and kidneys to help others. He will be greatly missed, but will live on in our hearts forever. Memorial service & reception will be held at the Deming Log Show museum (3295 Cedarville Rd., Bellingham WA 98226) on Sunday, March 23rd at 3:00 p.m. Contributions to assist family may be made at any US Bank branch or http://www.gofundme.com/76iy1k.

Our hearts and prayers go out to Kristi Johnson and Jeff’s family and friends. Forever, Jeff and his loved ones, will be remembered in our thoughts and prayers.

Photos courtesy of DezertWife Photography.




The Southern Nevada Off Road Enthusiasts will enter its 45th year with a strong field and a renewed sponsorship promising to make the series one of the sport’s richest payoffs.

Again bolstered by the added points series money of $10,000 provided by Terrible Herbst SNORE’s six-race series kicks off with a bang Feb. 21-23 with the annual Bee Hive Sports Bar Battle at Primm about 30 miles south of Las Vegas. With a field of about 260 entries, the event will be conducted over 13-mile laps adjacent to Buffalo Bill’s.

In fact, response to the event has been so strong that SNORE President Kenny Freeman said room counts have been running extremely high. Just the 1460 class had 62 entries by the first week of February.

“Primm provided a room block of 500 rooms and 60 percent of those rooms were booked in the first few days,” said Freeman, who became SNORE’s president for the third time. “The only thing going on the weekend is the off-road race since there is no concert or slot tournament, so that illustrates the power of not only our club but the sport of off-road racing, too.

“We anticipate that SNORE will fill about 700 rooms by race day.”

SNORE handed out nearly $30,000 last year with overall points champion Cody Freeman of Henderson, Nev., getting about half of the money.

A highly-regarded group founded by several early members of SNORE in 1969, the club has a strong 2014 schedule that also includes the Ridgecrest 300 April 12-13 in Southern California; the inaugural Cedar City Grand Prix May 30-31 about 40 miles north of St. George in Southern Utah; the annual KC HiLites Midnight Special Sept. 20-21 in Johnson Valley, Calif. the SNORE 250 Nov. 1-2 in Jean, Nev.; and the Rage at the River Dec. 12-14 in Laughlin, Nev.

The move to Cedar City has been met with open arms; and so have ideas of SNORE expanding even more in future years.

“The people in Cedar City our outdoorsy types of people anyway,” Freeman explained, “and this event will give the racers and their families the opportunity to enjoy some of the most beautiful country in the country. Zion National Park is only a few miles south and Duck Creek is about 30 miles to the east.

“We are encouraging our fans and competitors to make a weekend out of the experience. They’ll never forget the time spent and the country viewed.”

Among those planning to race in Primm is Mike Montes, who returns after winning the 2013 SNORE Sportsman category.

“We’re doing things a little different this year,” said Montes, 46. “On Saturday, my wife, Tami, and our crew chief Noel Wytko are racing while on Sunday I will run with Austin Wytko before he leaves for the United States Air Force.

Las Vegan Mike Montes, who won the 2013 SNORE Sportsman championship, returns to action Feb. 21-23 in annual Battle at Primm Feb. 21-23 south of Las Vegas.


2014 TERRIBLE HERBST MOTORSPORTS CHAMPIONSHIP SERIES SCHEDULE
Battle at Primm
FEB 21-23
Primm, NV 

RIDGECREST 300   (SNORE/MORE)
APRIL12-13      
RIDGECREST, CA
 
CEDAR CITY GRAND PRIX  
MAY 30-31     
CEDAR CITY, UT
 
KC HI LIGHTS MIDNIGHT   (MORE/SNORE)  
SEPT 20-21     
JOHNSON VALLEY, CA

SNORE 250                         
NOV 1-2      
JEAN, NV
 
Rage at the River
Dec 12-14
Laughlin, NV
 
CONTACTS:

Mike Henle, The Idea Company Public Relations, 702-279-3483; Kenny Freeman, SNORE President, 702-232-6296

By Mike Henle

The Southern Nevada Off Road Enthusiasts – better known in the world of off-road racing as SNORE – wrapped up a banner 2013 season with a yearend banquet recently at the South Point Hotel Casino in Las Vegas.

The 44 year-old group of heart souls doled out about $30,000 at the banquet while promising that 2014 will be even bigger with a six-race schedule kicking off with the annual Battle at Primm Feb. 21-23 in Primm.

Just as was the case with the past season, the 2014 season will again be sponsored by Terrible Herbst.

Off-road racing doesn’t get any better than the SNORE schedule and the past season featured a down-to-the wire battle that saw young Class 10 driver Cody Freeman of Henderson collect 4,140 points to capture the overall title by only 53 points over Class 1-2 1600 driver Justin Bean Smith.

Rounding out the top ten overall drivers were Kyle Vizzo, Class 9, 3727; Michael Brenner, Class 11, 3,720; Randy Jones, Class 12, 3,718; Corey Torres, Class 9, 3,588; Richard Boyle, Class 1, 3,455; Keith Minnicks, Class 7, 3,444; Jeff Johnson, Class 9, 3,337; and John Pellissier, Class 18, 3,261.

Freeman pocketed almost $12,000 in cash. In addition, he will receive free entries to all of SNORE’s races this year for a value of about $3,700.

Ken Freeman, who will be president of SNORE for the third time this season, predicted that SNORE will experience an even bigger year.

“Next season is going to be bigger and better than ever,” said Freeman. “We’re already receiving great response from additional sponsors and in addition, the sponsorship will be even bigger.”

Freeman also pointed out that SNORE’s teaming with MORE (Mojave Off Road Racing Enthusiasts) for two events will again prove a win-win for all involved.

“We have teamed up with them the past two years at Lucerne and we’re now starting to see more drivers from Southern California wanting to run our events,” Freeman said. “It’s a great relationship.”

Freeman also said he has some big shoes to fill considering that he’s succeeding Brittany Burgos, who served as president of SNORE for the past two years.

“Brittany really did a tremendous job and I’m sure I am speaking for all of SNORE when I say how much we appreciate what she has done for us,” Freeman said adding that the club gave Burgos several special awards. “We are all very appreciative for what she accomplished for SNORE.”

Others receiving special awards included Dan Bradley, Jimmy Schaeffer/Al Perino Award; Tech Director Bill Shapley, President’s Award and Engine Builder of the Year; Justin Bean Smith, Mechanic of the Year; Dave Folts, Transmission Builder of the Year; Daniel Maurer, Denny Selleck/Don Dayton Award; Bill Burgos, Volunteer of the Year; Keith Minnicks, True Grit Award; Buffalo Bill’s, Hotel Sponsor of the Year; Kartek, Race Sponsor of the Year, Kartek;

SNORE averaged more than 100 cars per race in 2013.


2014 SNORE Terrible Herbst schedule

Feb. 21-23 – Battle at Primm, Primm, Nev.
April 12-13 – Ridgecrest 300, Ridgecrest, Calif.
May 30-31 – Cedar City Grand Prix, Cedar City, Utah.
Sept. 20-21 – KC HiLites Midnight Special, Johnson Valley, Calif.
Nov. 1-2 – SNORE 250, Jean, Nev.
Dec. 12-14 – Rage at the River, Laughlin, Nev.

 

Cody Freeman pocketed about $12,000 for winning the 2013 SNORE Terrible Herbst Motor Sports Garage Series. He is shown being crowned recently at SNORE’s yearend banquet at the South Point Hotel Casino in Las Vegas.

 

Justin Bean Smith grabbed the 1-2 1600 title and finished runner up in the 2013 SNORE Terrible Herbst Motor Sports Garage Series.


Contacts: Mike Henle, The Idea Company Public Relations, 702-279-3483; Kenny Freeman, 702-736-6355.

By Mike Henle

LAUGHLIN, Nev. (Dec. 15, 2013) – Talented Class 10 driver Cody Freeman always competes with a heavy foot, but he won the 2013 SNORE Terrible Herbst Motor Sports Garage championship here Dec. 13-15 with a heavy heart.

Heading into the season’s final event about 100 miles south of Las Vegas along the Colorado River, Freeman held off a late-season charge by Class 16 driver Justin Bean Smith to win Class 10 and finish behind Class 1 finishers Pat Dean and Ryan Mattox in the overall results in SNORE’s sixth race of the season.

The victory was bittersweet considering that only minutes before getting ready to climb into his race car for Sunday’s competition, Freeman learned of the passing of his grandmother, Toni, who had died unexpectedly in Henderson. After first thinking that he would bypass the final round Sunday, Freeman climbed in his Freeman Carpet sponsored car and captured the Class 10 victory by more than two minutes over runner up Richard Glaszczak.

Freeman’s heroic effort on a sad day wrapped up his first overall championship while also earning praise from his fellow racers and racing friends.

Brother Bryan Freeman, who was also the 2007 overall champion, was the first to praise his little brother.

“I want to congratulate my brother for winning class 10 and clinching the SNORE Overall Points Championship this weekend,” Bryan Freeman said. “Sunday was the most courageous display of driving I have ever witnessed. About 25 minutes before Cody had to stage, we found out that our grandma had unexpectedly passed away. With tears in his eyes he gathered himself up and took the green flag, knowing that our grandma would want him to finish the race. Not only did he finish, but he drove like a champion. I know my grandma was watching with Granny, and Papa Freeman, cheering him on, and proud as can be.”

Long known for its dedication to the sport of off-road racing, the Freeman family suffered another heartbreaking setback earlier in December when Cody’s grandfather, Ken, passed away while living east of Cedar City, Utah.

The event drew more than 200 competitors in several classes. Other winners included Jim Riley, Unlimited Truck; Daniel Folts, 12; Jordan Poole, 13; Jonathon Libby, 1450; Scott Rasmussen, 15; Curt Geer, 16; Tammie Gubler, 18; Braden Abatti, 3000; Billy Gereghty, 5 Unlimited; Raul Solano, 5/1600; Jason Rodriguez, 7; Robert Cockrell, 7S; Don Herbert, 8; Jimmy Taranto, 9; Michael Brenner, Stock Bug; Dave Morrison, Stock Full; Adam Bosch, TrophyLite; and Travanon Ash, VORE VC.

Southern Nevada Off Road Enthusiasts
2013 Terrible Herbst Motorsports Garage Series
Rage at the River unofficial results

Dec. 13-15
Two-day totals
Laughlin, Nev.

Overall – 1. No. 125 Pat Dean 10 laps, 1 hour 54.59 minutes; 2. No. 123 Ryan Mattox, 10 laps, 1:57.44; 3. No. 1002 Cody Freeman, Henderson, 1:57.50.578.

Unlimited Truck – 1. No. 61 Jim Riley, 10 laps, 2:11.09; 2. No. 29 Kevin Lyons, 10 laps, 2:13.42; No. 11 Nick Tonelli, 10 laps, 2:45.54.

Class 1 Unlimited – 1. No. 125 Pat Dean, 10 laps, 1:54.59; 2. No. 123 Ryan Mattox, 10 laps, 1:57.44; 3. No. 102 Tom Mather, 10 laps, 1:58.51; 4. No. 170 Kevin Thompson 2:03.34; 5. No. 156 Richard Boyle, 10 laps, 2:08.55.

Class 10 – 1. No. 1002 Cody Freeman, 5 laps, 1:57.50; 2. No. 1073 Richard Glaszcak, 5 laps, 2:00.41; 3. No. 1021 Jay Watson, 5 laps, 2:06.40; 4. No. 1087 Troy Messer, 5 laps, 2:07.46; 5. No. 1005 Todd Stemmerman, 10 laps, 2:17.07; 6. No. 1040 David Norris 2:19.27; 7. No. 1081 Jason Saran, 5 laps, 2:25.23; 8. No.1022 Hyles Hersley, 10 laps, 2:30.31.

Class 12 – 1. No. 1268, Daniel Folts, 10 laps, 2:10.31; 2. No. 1216 Randy Jones, 10 laps, 2:11.20; 3. No. 1227 Justin Buckley, 10 laps, 2:24.03; 4. No. 1238 Stuart Baxter, 10 laps, 2:28.38;

Class 13 – 1. No. 1300 Jordan Poole, 8 laps, 1:57.32; 2. No. 1360 Mike Montes, 8 laps, 2:00.58; 3. No. 1307, Richard Robinson, 8 laps, 2:03.20; 4. No. 1375 Michael Brister, 8 laps, 2:08.38; 5. No. 1378 Dave Nelson, 8 laps, 2:13.10; 6. No. 1380 Billy Shapley, 8 laps, 2:13.22.

Class 1450 – 1. No. 1406 Jonathon Libby, 8 laps, 1:45.26; 2. No. 1448 Ryan Aguis, 8 laps; 1:53.34; 3. No. 1424 Mavrick Gaunt, 8 laps, 1:54.06; 4. No. 1470 Robbie Cockrell, 8 laps, 1:54.52; 5. No. 1405 Nick Isenhouer, 8 laps, 1:55.47; 6. No. 1453 Spenser Smith, 8 laps, 1:55.59; 7. No. 1443 Jeremy Deakins, 8 laps, 1:56.10; 8. No. 1444 Josh Taylor, 8 laps, 2:03.52; 9. No. 1416 Kevin Knight, 8 laps, 2:07.06; 10. No. 1479 Chris Freas, 8 laps, 2:08.40; 11. No. 1413 Sal Gomez 8 laps, 2:12.52.

Class 15 – 1. No. 1565 Scott Rasmussen, 8 laps, 1:43.42; 2. No, 1545 John Morgan, 8 laps, 1:47.41; 3. No. 1505 Kelly Suiter, 8 laps, 1:58.39; 4. No. 1522 Travis Howard, 8 laps, 2:03.55; 5. No. 1509 Johnny Burns, 8 laps, 2:07.52; 6. No. 1551 Samantha Richard, 8 laps, 2:14.16.

Class 1600 – 1. No. 1634 Curt Geer, 10 laps, 1:07.04; 2. No. 1616 Cory Boyer, 10 laps, 2:17.42; 3. No. 1614 Andrew Neal, 10 laps, 2:18.33; 4. No. 1632 Fernie Padilla, 10 laps, 2:19.14; 5. No. 1617 Mattox Ross, 10 laps, 2:22.33; 6. No. 1664 Jonathan Burnworth, 10 laps, 2:26.16; 7. No. 1685 Vince Viola, 10 laps, 2:29.16; 8. No. 1620 Matt Ferrato, 10 laps, 2:29.31; 9. No. 1663 Chris Adamik, 10 laps, 2:33.30; 10. No. 1669 Mario Iannucci, 10 laps, 3:08.40.

Class 18 – 1. No. 1866 Colton Gubler, 8 laps, 2:12.03.

Class 2000 – 1. No. 2083 Trevor Messina, 8 laps, 2:09.47; 2. No.2028 Kevin McKeown, 8 laps, 2:14.50; 3. No. 2055 Derek Tenney, 8 laps, 2:23.43.

Class 3000 – 1. No. 3060 Braden Abatti, 10 laps, 2:28.21; 2. Dana Dague, 10 laps, 2:51.00.

Class 5 Unlimited --- No. 522 Billy Gereghty, 10 laps, 2:29.23.

Class 5 – 1. No. 554 Raul Solano, 8 laps, 2:04.34; 2. No. 558 Brent Shermak, 2:08.35; 3. No. 562 Jerry Fisher, 8 laps, 2:10.45; 4. No. 575 Chuck Eichelberger, 8 laps, 2:22.07; 5. No. 555 Michael King, 8 laps, 2:23.53; 6. No. 556 Leroy Lozano, 8 laps, 2:26.12.

Class 7 – 1. No. 7209 Jason Rodriguez, 10 laps, 2:22.58.

Class 7S – 1. No. 7129 Robert Cockrell; 2. No.7149 Steve Jacketti.

Class 9 – 1. No. 996 Jimmy Taranto, 8 laps, 2:01.14; 2. No. 989 Corey Torres, 8 laps, 2:01.23; 3. No. 928 Kyle Vizzo, 8 laps, 2:07.08; 4. No. 918 Travis Staley, 2:08.30; 5. No. 990 Matt Creveling, 8 laps, 2:20.51; 6. No. 910 Thomas McAdams, 8 laps, 2:30.43; 7. No. 966 Jeff Johnson, 8 laps, 2:35.49.

Stock Bug – 1. No. 1179 Michael Brenner, 6 laps, 1:51.44; 2. No. 1168 Cory Vandermark, 6 laps, 1:52.16; 3. No. 1100 Robert Johnson, 6 laps, 6 laps, 1:52.55; 4. No. 1189 Ed Mahoney, 6 laps, 1:56.27; 5. No. 1125 Michael Cote, 6 laps, 1:59.49; 6. No. 1166 Ryan McCrory, 6 laps, 2:08.52.

VORE – 1. No. VC41 Travanon Ash, 8 laps, 2:02.34; 2. No. VC40 Reginald Buck, 8 laps, 2:04.19.

Southern Nevada Class 10 driver Cody Freeman captured the 2013 Southern Nevada Off Road Enthusiasts Terrible Herbst Motor Sports Garage series with a spirited performance during the annual Rage at the River in Laughlin, Nev. (Trackside Photo)

 

Las Vegas driver Pat Dean captured overall and Class 1 titles during SNORE’s annual Rage at the River Dec. 13-15 in Laughlin south of Las Vegas (Trackside Photo).

 
Contacts: Mike Henle, The Idea Company Public Relations, 702-279-3483; Brittany Burgos, SNORE president, 702-325-9623; MJ Smith, Executive Director, Laughlin Tourism Commission, 702-298-2214 or 702-298-0459.

By Mike Henle

LAUGHLIN, Nev. -- The Southern Nevada Off Road Enthusiasts will round out a banner season here Dec. 13-15 with the annual running of the Rage at the River.

Expected to draw more than 200 entries, the Rage at the River will be highlighted by two days of heat races beginning at 6:30 a.m. Dec. 14-15 at Laughlin Events Park.

Classes will include 1300, 1500, 7s, 5, 5-1600, 1450, 2000, VORE, 1600, 10, 12, 3000, TL, Unlimited Truck, 8 and Heavy Metal.

Sponsored by the Laughlin Tourism Commission, the Rage at the River is considered a valuable shot in the arm to this city situated about 100 miles south of Las Vegas along the Colorado River.

The 2012 Rage at the River was dominated by Southern California contractor Josh Daniel, who powered his 700 horsepower Danzio Performance Engineering Class 1 entry to fast time and heat race and overall victories.

The event is the sixth race in the Terrible Herbst Motor Sports Garage season which has also included the BeeHive Sports Bar Battle at Primm Feb. 22-24; the Motion Tire Ridgecrest 300 April 12-14 in Ridgecrest, Calif.; the KC Hilites 250 June 7-9 in Jean and Primm; and the John Calvin Memorial SNORE 250 Nov. 1-3 in Jean.

Currently leading the overall points chase are a pair of Southern Nevada drivers including Class 10 driver Cody Freeman and 1600 charger Justin Smith. Freeman holds a 3,623-3,587 lead heading into the season finale which will see drivers competing over a 13.5-mile course.

Fans will be able to watch the race from on top of the hill along with the rhythm section.

The LTC is a non-profit organization dedicated to increasing tourism in Laughlin. Comprised of the Edgewater Casino Resort, Colorado Bell Hotel Casino, Tropicana Laughlin, River Palms Hotel and Casino, Golden Nugget Laughlin and Harrah’s Laughlin, LTC contributes more than $30 million in economic impact through events.

Laughlin attracts thousands of outdoor enthusiasts each year who flock to its shores to enjoy the water and relax with all the amenities of a resort destination.  From riding the waves on jet skis, to relaxing on a scenic cruise, there is something for everyone on the waters of the Colorado. For more information, go to http://www.visitlaughlin.com/www.VisitLaughlin.com.

SNORE’s annual Rage at the River off-road event will culminate the 2013 Terrible Herbst Motor Sports Garage season Dec. 13-15 in Laughlin. Among the top competitors in the event will be Class 1 charger Richard Boyle of Ridgecrest, Calif. (Trackside Photography).


Contacts: Mike Henle, The Idea Company Public Relations, 702-279-3483; Brittany Burgos, SNORE president, 702-325-9623; MJ Smith, Executive Director, Laughlin Tourism Commission, 702-298-2214 or 702-298-0459.



By Mike Henle

JEAN, Nev. -- Utilizing a storyline that has become almost commonplace for the Southern Nevada Off Road Enthusiasts, the 44th annual John Calvin Memorial SNORE 250 established another milestone here about 35 miles south of Las Vegas on Nov. 2.

Established in 1969, SNORE overcame challenges related to the government shutdown to draw a good field while also boosting the Gold Strike Hotel Casino in Jean.

Driving home its always-consistent effort, SNORE about 80 entries from several states to a tough desert layout dominated by Unlimited Truck and overall winning TJ Flores of Las Vegas.

Every successful off-road race requires intense planning and dedication on the part of the promoting body and the SNORE 250 wasn’t any different although the government shut down before the race made the challenges even tougher to overcome.

However, the end result was a happy hotel casino that appreciated what the event did for its bottom line.

Long-time Southern Nevada hotel executive Curt Thompson, who serves as executive director of both the Gold Strike and Railroad Pass hotel casinos in Southern Nevada, wanted the event badly – and he showered praise at what the event did for the Gold Strike.

“We were delighted with the final result,” said Thompson, whose days in off-road racing stretch back to the Mint 400 and Frontier 500 in the 1970s and 1980s. “The race was very good for us and we booked about 100 rooms even with the threat of the government shutdown.

“Considering the first weekend of November when all of Southern Nevada is usually a little soft, we did well. We’d absolutely love to have SNORE back again.”

From the tech inspection the day before the race to the main event Saturday and the awards on Sunday, the response was very positive.

“We had rave reviews from everyone,” Thompson added. “I even spoke with some of the people with the Bureau of Land Management; and they said there were no problems at all. We also own two gas stations and two convenience stores and they were busy all weekend. Special events especially during weaker dates are important to hotel casinos and this one was excellent.”

Thompson also had good things to say about the Gold Strike personnel that enthusiastically embraced the race and its competitors, pit crews and sponsors.

In a nutshell, the event was a true team effort on every conceivable front.

While the dedicated members of SNORE worked behind the scenes to deliver a homerun, the drivers in the event gladly accepted the challenging course. In particular, Flores roared to a four-lap time of 3 hours, 53.04 minutes in a performance that saw the native Southern Nevadan continue a sparkling career.

Pat Dean of Las Vegas captured Class 1 Unlimited and was second overall with a time of 4:00.53 while Cody Freeman of Henderson shot to the Class 10 and third overall spot with a time of 4:08.30.

Flores also captured the KC HiLites 250 last June in Jean.

Other John Calvin Memorial SNORE 250 class winners included Michael Duenas, 12; Mike Montes, 13; Darren Parsons, 1450; John Morgan, 15; Justin Smith, 1600; John Pellissier, 18; Trevor Messina, 2000; Eric Trondle, 3000; Ben Swift, 5; Michael King, 5/1600; Jason Cobb, 7; Nick Lantz, 7S; Arturo Benavides, 8; Kyle Vizzo, 9; and Ed Mahoney, Stock Bug.

“We did three laps,” said Montes. “We led the entire race from start to finish although we did have a spare tire issue on the second lap and on the third lap we had a flat.”

The 45 year-old Montes, a former stock car racer, said he’s enjoying his new career in off-road racing.

“I really like the camaraderie of the sport,” said Montes, a native Las Vegan. “When we had our challenges this past weekend, there were members of other teams coming over to help us at. That’s the biggest thing I like about he sport.”

Montes said he’ll be back for the Rage at the River in December.

“The people who race off-roading must be dedicated,” said Montes. “This isn’t anything like stock car racing, that’s for sure.”

The event was also the 44th running of the SNORE 250 for the off road auto racing group that was founded in 1969.

The race was the fifth of six events in the Terrible Herbst Motor Sports Garage Series. SNORE will wrap up the season Dec. 13-15 with the Rage at the River in Laughlin.

Race Director Kenny Freeman said the always-popular Rage at the River race would probably draw about 200 entries.

Southern Nevada Off Road Enthusiast
John Calvin Memorial SNORE 250 race results
Saturday, at Jean, Nev.

Unlimited Truck – 1. No. 80 TJ Flores 3:53.04, four laps, first overall; 2. No. 61 L Smiley 4:26.18, four laps; 3. No. 86 Gregg Hempel 5:11.22.

Class 1 Unlimited – 1. No. 157 Pat Dean 4:00.53, four laps, second overall; 2. No. 151 Mike Mitchell 4:09.50, four laps; 3. No. 156 Richard Boyle 4:09.50, four laps; 4. No. 166 Billy Worthing 5:09.36, four laps; 5. No. 192 Allen Cluck 6:03.43, four laps.

Class 10 – 1. No. 1002 Cody Freeman 4:08.30, four laps, third overall; 2. No. 1048 John Hsu 4:23.38, four laps, 4:23.38; 3. No. 1022 Keith Waibel 5:01.42, four laps; 4. No. 1015 Ken Flippin 5:40.23, four laps; 5. No. 1047 Joseph Gunning 5:52.40, four laps,

Class 12 – 1. No. 1298 – Michael Duenas 4:53.28, four laps; 2. No. 1216 Randy Jones 4:55.29, four laps; 3. No. 1227 Justin Buckley 4:59.13, four laps; 4. No. 1215 Michael Benedict 5:50.46, four laps.

Class 13 – 1. No. 1360 Mike Montes 4:09.21, three laps; 2. No. 1336 Bree Cloud, 4:15.41, three laps; 3. No. 1307 Richard Robinson 4:23.16, three laps.

Class 1450 – 1. No. 1447 Darren Parsons 3:30.30, three laps; 2. No. 1444 Josh Taylor 3:47.17, three laps; 3. No. 1413 Sal Gomez 6:11.56, three laps.

Class 15 – 1. No. 1545 John Morgan 5:42.10, three laps; 2. No. 1551 Samantha Richard 6:08.21, three laps; 4. No. 1529 Steve Carbone 6:24.56, three laps.

Class 1600 – 1. No. 1619 Justin Smith 4:52.50, four laps; 2. No. 1685 Vince Viola 5:08.34, four laps; 3. No. 1621 James Dean 5:25.01; 4. No. 1641 Robbie Madison, 5:27.20, four laps; 5. Lucas Knecht 5:35.46, four laps.

Class 18 – 1. No. 1800 John Pellissier 3:59.52, three laps; 2. No. 1802 Anthony Perrucci 4:15.52, three laps; No. 1877 Thomas Morales 5:30.22, three laps.

Class 2000 – 1. No. 2083 Trevor Messina 4:18.57, three laps; 2. No. 2028 Kevin McKeown 4:26.05, three laps; No. 2015 3. No. 2015 Ken Leavitt 6:54.56, three laps.

Class 3000 – 1. No. 3003 Eric Trondle 5:35.32.

Class 5 Unlimited -- 1. No. 555 Ben Swift 6:02.02, four laps.

Class 5/1600 – 1. No. 555 Michael King 4:40.37, four laps; 2. No. 566 Nicholas Gross 5:31.58, three laps.

Class 7 – 1. No. 7277 Jason Cobb 5:39.05.

Class 7S – No. 7177 Nick Lantz 6:23.35, three laps.

Class 8 – 1. No. 809 Arturo Benavides 2:50.24, two laps.

Class 9 – 1. No. 928 Kyle Vizzo 4:09.45, three laps; 2. No. 989 Corey Torres 4:16.42; 3. No. 966 Jeff Johnson 4:42.14, three laps.

Stock Bug – 1. No. 1189 Ed Mahoney 3:50.24, two laps; 2. No. 1179 Michael Brenner 6:08.38, two laps.

Next race – Rage at the River, Laughlin, Nev., Dec. 13-15.

 

The 44th John Calvin Memorial SNORE 250 drew a good field of about 80 entries along with a huge welcome sign at the Gold Strike Hotel Casino in Jean, Nev. The race Nov. 2 was won by Unlimited Truck racer TJ Flores of Las Vegas.

 

Mike Montes of Las Vegas powers to the Class 13 victory during the Nov. 2 running of the 44th annual John Calvin Memorial SNORE 250 at Jean, Nev. (Phil Kaos photography)



 


By Mike Henle

To most auto racing journalists, off-road racing would have to be considered one of the toughest assignments. Considering the logistical challenges along with the fact that the sport is based on individual times, the sport is unique.

However, to the late John Calvin who died at the age of 81 July 29, off-road was the best assignment of all for the man who racked up thousands of miles covering events in Nevada, Arizona, California and Mexico.

Thus, the John Calvin Memorial SNORE 250 scheduled Saturday beginning at 8 a.m. in Jean, Nev. has aptly been named in honor of the man.

Calvin didn’t just attend off road races. His love of the sport and the field of journalism combined to make him a huge part of the off-road industry. He could commonly be seen giving out copies of Dusty Times at tech inspections throughout the Southwest; and when the green flag dropped to start a race, you could be sure that he would be near the start-finish line getting quotes for the next edition of Dusty Times.

Racers, their friends and every pit crew member within many miles knew that Dusty Times was the Bible of off-road racing. Until only recently, the newspaper was published monthly before finally going on-line at www.dustytimes.net.

Journalism and off-road racing were definitely in the man’s blood. A quiet gentleman who wasn’t one to talk about his own personal successes in various arenas, Calvin worked day-in and day-out doing what he loved – following off-road racing and the people who make the sport so wildly-popular.

When Jean died more than a decade ago, John Calvin carried on in spite of the fact that he had just lost his best friend.

“He was always happy to be in the shadows,” said his wife, Pat, “except when he was story telling. He was always extremely proud of Jean and all of her accomplishments.

“In fact, John raced cars about 50 years ago,” Pat added. “Many people didn’t realize that John was multi-talented.

“Dusty Times was Jean’s innovation and she was the one who nurtured it and made it what it is today.”

John carried on the legacy of the publication.

“He did so much for off-road racing,” said Bill Shapley, tech director for SNORE and an enthusiast of off-road racing since 1974. “Off-road racing simply does not get a lot of credit when it comes to the traditional media; and John filled a huge void. It is true that off-road racing requires a special kind of person and John was that person the sport needed.

“He was definitely passionate about off-road racing. He covered every major off-road racing sanctioning body and he didn’t play any favorites; he was good to all of us.”

Shapley said SNORE’s board of directors decided to name its oldest race after John Calvin not long after the man’s death.

“It was the fitting thing to do,” said Shapley adding that the race will draw about 100 entries from several states.

In fact, a flyover has been scheduled at the race with Calvin’s ashes being spread where Jean’s were spread several years ago. The plane will waggle its wings over the race course to pay tribute to SNORE and all of those attending.

Bekki Wikel has worked for Dusty Times since 1994.

“John was more than a boss,” Wikel said. “He was my neighbor and a friend of our family for 37 years.

“John took great pleasure in helping others. If it was in his power, he would assist his friends. He often talked (and bragged) about his off-road family like they were his children. They were all the best, the smartest, the fastest. I will forever miss his knack of story telling. His memory was like none other.”

Former Mint 400 Race Director KJ Howe said Calvin was as instrumental as anyone when popularizing the sport of off-road racing.

“His reportage of every race was a significant factor in gleaning publicity for drivers, sponsors and manufacturers,” Howe said. “Along with his late wife, Jean, an Off-Road Motorsports Hall Of Fame inductee, they seemed to be everywhere. Their presence was felt in every race of any significance throughout the years.”

Now in its 44th year, the SNORE 250 hosted by the Gold Strike Hotel and Casino will be staged behind Gold Strike about 30 miles south of Las Vegas.

CAPTION: John Calvin, left, was a huge proponent of off-road racing and the 44th annual John Calvin SNORE 250 Saturday in Jean has been named in his memory. (Photo courtesy of Trackside).


CONTACTS: Mike Henle, The Idea Company Public Relations, 702-279-3483.

 
VW STUFF, DUNE BUGGY STUFF, TRUCK STUFF, CAR STUFF

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LOCATION: NEVADA PIC A PART 

110 W. Rolly St. Henderson ,NV

SATURDAY September 28th. 2013

FROM 7 TO 5

CONTACT INFO TOM HIGH 702-683-6957 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

BILL SHAPLEY 702-438-4689 OR This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Nevada Pic-A-Part

This is the second in a series of SNORE old-timers.

Today: Ken Freeman, Sr.

 

By Mike Henle

Ken Freeman may be the best-ever example of a desert rat who for decades not only lived in the open spaces, but raced in them, too.

While the 81 year-old native of Riggs, Ida. is now living more than 200 miles away from his old stomping grounds in Las Vegas, his home on State Route 14 east of Cedar City is filled with memories of the old days of SNORE.

When the man ran in off-road races, no one was more determined to win. One photo shows him flying high over a Highway 93 road crossing north of Apex. Yesteryear can be seen throughout the house and a garden in front of the home is flush with every conceivable vegetable.

Only a few miles south of his home is a Southern Utah cabin that is utilized with friends and family during the spring, summer and fall before the cold winters send the man down the hill for State Route 14. Freeman bought his house in 2003 before the boom and the bust and he’s undoubtedly one of the happiest men on earth.

The man doesn’t want anything to do with computers and while he has a cell phone, you’re going to have a tough time getting him to answer it. He loves the quiet life and doesn’t miss Vegas although he will attend an occasional off-road race in the area.

While serving as a fan of off-road racing back in the 1960s, the energetic Freeman caught the bug. The next thing he knew, he had left the sidelines and jumped behind the wheel of a Class 9 entry in a sport that may look easy, but is very difficult to master.

All of Freeman’s competitors remember him as a fierce competitor and a good-hearted man, too.  From the early days of SNORE when the club was founded in 1969, the man was part of a dedicated group that also included Denny Selleck, Don Dayton, Bert Vaughan, Charlie Crunden, Walt Lott, Ray Potter, Bob and Ruthe Jensen and Bob MacCachren, among others. 

In fact, one of his favorite stories revolves around the time he escaped to the desert in his dune buggy; only to be seen by the local law enforcement which never caught him. One of the founders of SNORE, Freeman may not attend each of the races nowadays, but he still reigns as one of the toughest-ever drivers who has a houseful of stories.

“They never caught me,” laughed Freeman of law enforcement officers.

His own story might be the off-road version of “Smokey and the Bandit.”

If Freeman wasn’t foot-to-the-floor in his off-road car, he was telling anyone and everyone about the sport and its benefits. He’d work hard to beat his competition before joining those same people at SNORE meetings to keep the club alive. 

The old Mint 400 used to run near his home in Vegas and Freeman couldn’t wait for the race. The legendary Parnelli Jones ran out of water in his race truck near the Freeman home and Ken responded by providing the badly-needed water. 

“He was really thankful for helping him out,” Freeman recalled. “He had someone fly us a case of beer to our house.”

MacCachren, who has lived in Las Vegas since 1961, still operates Nevada Off Road Buggy, a 33-year-old business with endless stories about the sport of off-road racing. Once he jumped into an off-road buggy, he didn’t want anyone beating him, especially the young kids.

“Ken was a very competitive gentleman,” said MacCachren, whose son, Rob, is now one of the nation’s top Trophy Truck drivers. “He was very aggressive and he didn’t take very well to losing.

“The entire Freeman family was very tight knit. They were a terrific family.”

Indeed, the Freeman family has been one of the reasons for SNORE’s long existence dating back to the club’s formation in 1969. While many others living in the desert escape to other parts of the country, the Freeman family has been either competing in the sport or volunteering to run hundreds of race events for more than 40 years.

“My dad is really something,” said Freeman’s son, Kenny, who gave up the sport for the past two years to become race steward for the club. “He’s a wonderful inspiration and Lord knows, he’s also one of the toughest men on earth.

SNORE has survived its share of ups and downs over the years and it has most definitely created memories that won’t soon be forgotten.

“Those of us now involved with SNORE now are really thankful to our parents who paved the way for us to be involved,” said the younger Freeman. “We all have jobs and responsibilities and I know that every one of us is thankful for our parents who combined to start SNORE more than 40 years ago.”

Ken Freeman Sr., 81, shown at his home just east of Cedar City, Utah, remains one of SNORE’s all-time greats.

 

 

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