2022 Champ Off-Road: Who's racing? - Rumors - Hype

handmethemic

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Three weeks from today, haulers will be starting to pull in to Antigo... so I guess it's time.

Rumor mill stuff:
- a former Super Stock champion is building a brand new truck and will be back sometime this year
- a Midwest 1600 legend is returning to the fray
- Champ has a "special" announcement about Antigo coming soon

Drivers listed here with a [-] are confirmed (or it would be surprising if they don't race); drivers with a [?] are maybes/"somebody told me they're racing"/part-timers.

PRO 4:
- CJ Greaves
- Kyle Leduc
- Jimmy Henderson
- Johnny Greaves
- Andrew Carlson
- Adrian Cenni
- Kyle Chaney
- Scotty Lawrence
- Cole Mamer
- Ben Passa
- Danny Beauchamp
- Travis Dinsmore
? Paul Schlueter
? RJ Anderson
? Rick Ness (yes, the guy from Gold Rush)

PRO 2:
- Keegan Kincaid
- Cory Winner
- Jerett Brooks
- Ryan Beat
- Mickey Thomas
- Kyle Kleiman
- Zac Zakowski
- Ricky Gutierrez
- Zach Kirchner
- Troy Cox
- Johnny Hentges
- Bob Brand
- Justin Suhr
- Doug Mittag
- Dave Mason Jr.
- Jay Schaefer
- Guillaume Michaud
- Serge Michaud
- Gregoire Michaud
? Michael Stell
? Patrick Denis
? Trevor Leighton
? [Driver A] (driver from another class--not sure on timeline, may be a 2023 and beyond situation)

PRO LITE
- Brock Heger
- Kyle Greaves
- Dillon Pointon
- Carson Parrish
- Madix Bailey
- Mason Prater
- Jason Plouff
- Travis Milhausen Jr.
- Troy Schaden
- Zach Szymik
- Johnny Holtger
- Matt Oreskovich
- Collin Wichman
- Matt Wood
- Jacob Rosales
- Trey Gibbs
- [Driver B] (coming from another class--confirmed to be racing but nothing public yet)
? [Driver C] (coming from another class--nothing public yet)
? Rob Shepherd
? Chad Rayford
? Nick Piskula
? Cody Kleiman
? Brandon Mattmiller
? [Driver C] (moving from another class--has truck in progress but unsure of timeline)
? Ronnie Anderson

PRO SPEC
- Nick Visser
- Easton Sleaper
- Chris Van Den Elzen
- [Driver D] (racer from another class--a confirmed Spec driver told me about this one)
? [Driver E] (newcomer to short course)
? RBM Truck (Beat told me last year he had another driver ready to move in to Spec, but I've heard nothing about it since)

All the other classes are looking great, too. Mod Kart might still hover around 10 or so (they have lost two that I know about, but gained another), and every other class is going to be strong, deep, and tightly-contested.
 
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handmethemic

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Now, some editorializing from me:

Pro 4 is lining up to be a dogfight among the "front pack". Obviously, it's hard to pick against CJ and Leduc as the two championship favorites, but Johnny showed at the end of last year that he can tap into his dominant mojo and lay a beatdown on the field. Carlson remains a threat to win (and at the very least, is a difficult driver to beat). Having had front row seats to Henderson's and Chaney's improvement over the last couple years, I think it's an easy argument to make that Henderson will be competing for wins regularly this year, and with the reported (by @stephenrjking in another thread) additional support behind Chaney, he's a short step away from being a podium regular as well. I'm also still convinced that Cenni can compete with the best (and the fan in me wants to see it happen).

Pro 2 is the best class in short-course racing right now, in terms of its status as an intersection of talent, parity, rivalry, and depth. Six different drivers (Kincaid, Brooks, Beat, Thomas, Gutierrez, Leighton) split the 11 points wins last year, and despite not being one of those six, Winner nearly took the championship anyway. Add in Mittag and Kleiman (both having been dominant in Pro 2 at times), along with a mix of up-and-comers/unprovens, and this class could have even more drivers claiming a win than last year. Pro 2 in 2021 set the entertainment/excitement bar very high, but I don't see why this year's group can't set another new standard.

Pro Light had the least dramatic points race of the "big three" classes in 2021, but the entry list is crammed full of talent. Nine different drivers finished on the podium across the 11 rounds, with a couple more drivers peaking with top-five finishes. I expect a closer points race in 2022, and more wins distributed among people not named Brock Heger and Kyle Greaves.
 
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Jacob D

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I think Keegan said something last year about running Pro-4 this season. I’m not sure if that meant both Pro-2 and Pro-4. Nothing has really been said about that this year though.
 

handmethemic

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Already a correction in order, and I can't edit the OP.

Kirchner is OUT of Pro 2.
Brody Eggleston is IN for Pro Light.
 

stephenrjking

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I think Keegan said something last year about running Pro-4 this season. I’m not sure if that meant both Pro-2 and Pro-4. Nothing has really been said about that this year though.
Sounded like that was the plan as of last fall. Other than saying he has a new truck coming on IG a couple months ago there haven’t been any updates.
 

Entrussed Racing

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Some hype- Ricky G is looking really strong! He already has two full weekends of racing under his belt this year and looks like they are putting in a really serious effort in COR. I watched him hit turn one perfect all 14 laps on Sunday at Glen Helen. He will be fun to watch!

Not on the list above- Connor Barry will be racing Pro Lite after a Mod Kart championship in Lucas and a very strong Pro Lite debut in the GAS (Great American Shortcourse) Series at the end of last year against Polvoorde and Bailey. They are also putting in a serious effort in COR. My son Ezra will be working on the truck for them over the summer out of the Winner's shop.

Other GAS/West Coast racers coming out and what I know-
-Trey Gibbs stepped up to Pro Lite after winning a Pro Buggy championship and already looked like a seasoned Pro Lite driver in the first round of GAS. He will be fast!
-Dave Mason Jr. looked substantially faster in the Pro 2 that they acquired from Mittag this year in a quick run. It will be fun to see him up against such a strong field.
-RJ (Pro 4) and Ronnie (Pro 2) will be racing three races in COR from what I was told (hopefully more)! Ronnie looked good in the Pro 2 last weekend. He probably still needs a little something (test time etc.), but I could tell that he will do what it takes to be up front! RJ did not run.
-Excited to hear that Brody Eggleston will be racing. He looked good in Polvoorde's second truck last year and later in his own.
-Myself- Finally put the pieces together to race the full season in Pro Buggy. That was almost derailed when I had a bad crash in the first practice of the first weekend in GAS. Ripped the engine and trans apart from each other and over about six inches, destroyed all four rear arms, the rear cage and ripped the front seat mounts out. Lothringer Engineering helped us out and put it back together in time for Ezra to make his debut in last weekends GAS race (He ended up with a podium). The car was really fast before I crashed so I am excited to get back to racing it in Antigo.
-Christopher Polvoorde- I believe I heard that he will race the two Crandon's.

Would love to hear from anyone I missed that is going and that isn't already established in COR. I know me and my family are super excited just to get the chance to be at each and every race and see the action this year. -Dale
 

stephenrjking

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Have a great season!

RJ and Ronnie raced roughly the same schedule last year. Two Crandons and ERX last season, perhaps the same this year.
 
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Volkspower Racing

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They should let the west coast mod karts race back East, lots of great karts for sale cheap out west
But good to see big truck counts, brings back great memories. Might need to convince my boss to get a pro 2 someday if this keeps going
 

CYS Motorsports

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Some hype- Ricky G is looking really strong! He already has two full weekends of racing under his belt this year and looks like they are putting in a really serious effort in COR. I watched him hit turn one perfect all 14 laps on Sunday at Glen Helen. He will be fun to watch!

Not on the list above- Connor Barry will be racing Pro Lite after a Mod Kart championship in Lucas and a very strong Pro Lite debut in the GAS (Great American Shortcourse) Series at the end of last year against Polvoorde and Bailey. They are also putting in a serious effort in COR. My son Ezra will be working on the truck for them over the summer out of the Winner's shop.

Other GAS/West Coast racers coming out and what I know-
-Trey Gibbs stepped up to Pro Lite after winning a Pro Buggy championship and already looked like a seasoned Pro Lite driver in the first round of GAS. He will be fast!
-Dave Mason Jr. looked substantially faster in the Pro 2 that they acquired from Mittag this year in a quick run. It will be fun to see him up against such a strong field.
-RJ (Pro 4) and Ronnie (Pro 2) will be racing three races in COR from what I was told (hopefully more)! Ronnie looked good in the Pro 2 last weekend. He probably still needs a little something (test time etc.), but I could tell that he will do what it takes to be up front! RJ did not run.
-Excited to hear that Brody Eggleston will be racing. He looked good in Polvoorde's second truck last year and later in his own.
-Myself- Finally put the pieces together to race the full season in Pro Buggy. That was almost derailed when I had a bad crash in the first practice of the first weekend in GAS. Ripped the engine and trans apart from each other and over about six inches, destroyed all four rear arms, the rear cage and ripped the front seat mounts out. Lothringer Engineering helped us out and put it back together in time for Ezra to make his debut in last weekends GAS race (He ended up with a podium). The car was really fast before I crashed so I am excited to get back to racing it in Antigo.
-Christopher Polvoorde- I believe I heard that he will race the two Crandon's.

Would love to hear from anyone I missed that is going and that isn't already established in COR. I know me and my family are super excited just to get the chance to be at each and every race and see the action this year. -Dale

Good to hear that you're coming out. Super Buggy has made a nice comeback out here, glad to see that continue!
 

handmethemic

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Excited to see COR grow some more, creating a lot of depth in the classes

Every class from Pro 4 down to 170s (with the exception of the still-nascent Pro Spec) is full with deep talent pools. There are no real "top-heavy classes" on paper for 2022.
Super Buggy has made a nice comeback out here, glad to see that continue!

+1, buggies are awesome. Super Stock Truck has been called short-course's best kept secret, but the three buggy classes are going to be face-melting excitement this year. Anyone who tunes into the live stream just to see the "fast classes" will miss some excellent racing.
 

afortune46

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Going into year 3 with ISOC and having stability in the midwest is awesome to see along with the numbers up. obviously theres been some heart burn this year but with growth comes pain sometimes.

I am curious what people think of the duel race they announced for friday nights. I also saw they have a pro autograph session which is pretty cool for fans.
 
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Tater

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Ben is actively looking for a tire sponsor, assistance there would enable him to attend more races this year. His motor is fresh, will be installed soon. He's awaiting trailer and tow rig completion. Testing with Danny at The Big House went well last week.
 

handmethemic

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Jason and I will be out there for the season racing in Pro Turbo - can't wait to get out of the heat of AZ for a few weekends this summer!

ERX in July will be a nice reprieve for you--it's usually only about 95 and 90% humidity...

Glad to see you're coming to the midwest all season!
 
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Jacob D

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Does anyone know if the track at Antigo is any different than last year? Or is it just the same/tweaked??
 
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