CRANDON, Wis. – The 2010 Traxxas TORC Series Presented by AMSOIL season ended Sunday with the crowning of its champions as Johnny Greaves (PRO 4WD), Ricky Johnson (PRO 2WD), and Casey Currie (PRO Light) earned titles in their respective classes. In the final event of the weekend, Scott Douglas brought home the newly-christened AMSOIL Cup, an annual battle pitting the best PRO 4 and PRO 2 drivers against one another.
At the AMSOIL Cup Winner’s Circle, Douglas showed his respect for Jack Flannery, the late off road legend who lost his battle with cancer earlier this year.
“I did it the way Jack Flannery would’ve did it,” Douglas said, beaming. “Wide open, throw it in every corner, total commit, and don’t worry about nothin’ and that’s the way we did it!”
PRO race winners at the “Big House” Sunday were Casey Currie (PRO Light), Dan Vanden Heuvel (PRO 2), and Rick Huseman (PRO 4).
His son Mike won the Limited 2 championship earlier in the day and Dan Vanden Heuvel, the “Flying Dutchman,” finished what may be the last points race of his long career on top of the podium. Vanden Heuvel dominated the PRO 2WD race after taking the holeshot and leading every single lap.
“What a place to (win), at Crandon, in front of all these fans where I’ve been racing for 34 years,” said an elated Vanden Heuvel after the race. “My son was up here earlier today, my grandkids are here. My crew put together one heckuva truck.”
On the podium after the race, Vanden Heuvel said unless sponsorship money is found in the offseason, he has probably run his final race.
“More than likely, if something major doesn’t happen, it’s my last race. I’m going to hand it over to my boys unless we can get some funding. It’s just too hard to do it against all these teams that have funding behind them.”
Rob MacCachren came into Sunday needing a great day on the track and a bad day for PRO 2 points leader Johnson. Unfortunately for Rob Mac, his championship hopes came to an end before the first lap was completed when he, NASCAR driver Robby Gordon, Chad Hord, and Jeremy McGrath were involved in a pileup in the final corner before the stripe. Ricky Johnson ran a strong race, finishing second and taking home the class title. Scott Taylor rounded out the podium with a third-place run.
“We got into second place,” Johnson said, “we were able to pass Chad and I heard a little miss. I don’t know if I took a rock into the header and it was missing on me, but I was thinking, ‘Oh, God, here we go.’ The championship was on the line, Rob was behind me, but after the restart I just said, ‘I gotta give it a go.’
“We worked our ass off,” Johnson continued, regarding his conquest of the PRO 2 title. “We lost the championship by a few points last year, but we got it this year. And finally, to my mom and dad who are watching out there, thanks for putting me on motorcycles, to my wife, Stephanie, and to my kids, Luke, Jake, and Cassidy.”
After the melee on the first lap, Gordon took his truck back to the garage and MacCachren nursed a flat tire until the mandatory caution. His crew was able to change the tire and kept him on the lead lap. He knifed his way through the field for a respectable fourth-place finish.
Hord was penalized with a black flag for aggressive driving after contact with McGrath, but was still able to take home the Oakley Bomb Award with a fast lap time of 1:22.355.
The PRO Lights’ points battle ended quickly in Sunday’s season finale. Currie took the holeshot for the second day in a row and never gave up the lead. Andrew Caddell, who was fighting Currie for the points title, was close on the No. 2 Monster Ford’s tail, but broke early in the race, effectively handing the championship to Currie. In what was a sign of how Marty Hart’s season declined, he was right behind Caddell when Caddell broke, causing severe front end damage to the No. 15 machine. Hart pitted to have the sheet metal removed from the front of the truck, but was never a factor for the win.
Currie, who earned his first win of the season here, swept the top spot both days this weekend and was emotional on the podium as he collected his race trophy, his championship, and the Traxxas Maxx Cash Award with his fast lap of 1:28.137.
“It was great to come to Crandon to finish the year here,” he said, tears of joy in his eyes. “The crowd’s incredible, everyone’s incredible! We had a flawless weekend. We won the championship! My first ever!”
Currie went on to say he is planning to defend his title in 2011. “I’m stoked for next year,” he said after the title presentation. “I cannot wait to wear that no. 1 plate next year. I’m staying in PRO Light for now, I think. I want to come back and do it again.”
Over the 2010 TORC Series season, the PRO 4 class has gained a reputation for some of the most physical racing in the sport. Sunday, however, with the championship on the line, their race was a relatively quiet affair. Ken Kincaid took the holeshot, but his lead didn’t last long as he rolled hard off the straightaway turn.
From that point on, it was Rick Huseman’s race. He earned the Oakley Bomb Award with a track-record fast lap of 1:19.447 and earned the two points for leading at the mandatory caution, but it wasn’t enough to prevent Johnny Greaves from winning the season title.
“That was a good race for us, the track was awesome,” Huseman said in the Winner’s Circle. “Look at all these fans, it’s crazy how many people are here! It’s just awesome. And to have a good race like this for all these people, it’s always great.
“We tried our hardest to win that championship. We were a couple, three points behind or something, but we did everything we could to try to get it from Johnny, but he was right there and stole it.”
As Greaves accepted the PRO 4 championship amid the cheers from his fellow Wisconsin natives, he immediately thanked the 15,000 fans in attendance all three days for their support of his team and the series.
“I can’t say enough about these people up here,” Greaves said during the title presentation. “They keep coming back and no matter how different this season seems from time to time…they keep coming back to see what we got for them. As long as they keep coming back to see us, we’re going to keep putting it on. We wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for all these fans.
“It’s just a great day for us and I really got to thank my team back in the pit…and my family, my wife, (son) CJ, all these guys. They pour their hearts and souls into this. I get to do the easy job to sit up there and drive and look pretty sometimes.”
In the final race of the TORC Series season, PRO 2 and PRO 4 drivers lined up to race for the AMSOIL cup. The PRO 2s were given a 12-second head start, but it wasn’t enough as Douglas, the runner-up for June’s Crandon Cup, began knifing through the field. Gordon took the holeshot for PRO 2s, but was unable to complete a lap as his driveshaft broke, giving the lead to Jeff Kincaid, the 2010 Crandon Cup winner.
Douglas, in his AMSOIL-sponsored Ford, was third overall on the third lap and was reeling in Kincaid and MacCachren, running second. Huseman, however, was still fast and was able to make the pass for the lead at the stripe, but the lead didn’t last long as mechanical issues struck, giving the lead to Douglas.
“It was just an awesome race,” Douglas said from the Winner’s Circle. “The track was prepped perfectly. I knew I had to commit and get through the PRO 2s quick. I had a lot of fast competitors running and this AMSOIL/Kumho F-150 was just right there. It just handled awesome.”
Steve Barlow, who would finish second, along with newly-crowned PRO 4 champ Johnny Greaves were able to catch up to Douglas, threatening his lead. In the last turn before the line, a dangerous corner all weekend, Barlow got loose and made contact with Greaves. Douglas appeared to have an easy lap to take the checkered flag, but Barlow came up to Douglas’ bumper at the Traxxas Launch Zone. In the final corner, Barlow threw his truck in deep, but Douglas’ lead was too strong and he took the checkered flag in first with Barlow literally pushing him across the line. Greaves was able to bring home a third-place finish.
The TORC Series Sportsmen classes also saw its champions crowned Sunday. Chris Bowser took both the title and the win in the Enduro class as did Milan Mazanec in Formula 4×4. Dale Chestnut was crowned Classix champion while Kurt Schuch took the race win. While Mike Vanden Heuvel earned the championship after taking the green flag Saturday, he was looking to end the season on top of the winner’s podium, but was taken out by a lapped truck in the final turn of the final lap, allowing Dan Badoux to sneak by for the victory. The Super Stock class was a relatively straightforward race with Scott Beauchamp winning both the event and the season title.
In the Buggy classes, Greg Stingle finished the day as both the race winner and 1600 Light Buggy champion and Mark Steinhardt finished second to John Fitzgerald for the 1600 Buggy win, but Steinhardt was crowned class champion. The Super Buggy season finale became a family affair as CJ Greaves joined his father, Johnny, as a 2010 TORC Series champion. He put the icing on the cake by winning the race ahead of John Frana.
For full results and final 2010 points standings, visit TORCSeries.com.
For more information on the Traxxas TORC Series Presented by AMSOIL, visit them on the Web at TORCSeries.com. For information on the United States Auto Club, visit USACRacing.com. Don’t miss the recap of the 2010 TORC Series season every Thursday at 8 p.m. ET with “The Off Road Championship” on Discovery’s HD Theater.
Race fans can follow all the action throughout the TORC Series season on its official Twitter site at Twitter.com/TORCMedia and its official page on Facebook.
The Traxxas TORC Series Presented by AMSOIL, is the fastest, most punishing short course racing series on the planet. TORC events are packed with flag-to-flag fender banging as drivers push the limits over whoop and jump filled natural terrain racetracks. Off-road racing fans come from far and wide to experience this most challenging form of high-octane competition and once they taste TORC for the first time they’ll be hooked for life.
USAC is the sanctioning body of TORC. The United States Auto Club (USAC) adds a superior level of professionalism to the series. USAC will play a major role in series operations just as it does in the K&N Silver Crown Series, National Sprint Car Series, Mopar Midget Nationals, Ford Focus, and 1/4 Midget series. Each year TORC champions will be recognized for their achievements at the prestigious USAC banquet.
Traxxas is the title sponsor The TORC Series through 2012. Based in Plano, Texas, Traxxas has been building the world’s fastest Ready-To-Race® radio controlled vehicles for over 23 years. Traxxas’ award-winning line of high-performance models is sold exclusively in Hobby Stores, 4-Wheel Parts, and Pep Boys.