Andy Mac 2009 V2R RACE REPORT

Andy Mac

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First of all, what a great race! I loved the 3 day stage format. Who wouldn’t? Three straight days of good ole’ off-road racing!

Qualifying
The goal was, as it always is, to be in the top 5 at the starting line. I felt really good about my run. I didn’t make any mistakes, and felt that we were for sure in the top 5. With guys like Hovey, BJ, Berri, Herder, Whelchel, and Dean you just never know! We ended up qualifying 1st, and I knew it was going to be a huge advantage, or so I thought!

Race Day 1
The plan was to have me drive all of Day 1, 332 miles. The day started out really good, just driving at an 80% pace and not wanting to make any stupid mistakes or get a flat tire. Our first pit was at Pit 3 in Cottontail. We were already catching slower motorcycles on our way into this pit. We came into the pit with a right rear flat that we didn’t even know about. Changed 2 rear tires and put fuel in it and off we went. My dad stayed behind to watch the next 10 or so vehicles come through. BJ was next in, and he had me on time by 1 minute. My dad radioed to me that we were running 5th on corrected time, as guys like Letner, Dean, TJ, and BJ all had me on time by less than a minute. I thought I was still in really good position as I wasn’t running as fast as I could. I knew that for those guys to put some time on me out front that their pace was a little faster, and I knew people were going to have problems towards the end of the day. I decided to pick the pace up a little bit, but still wanted to be very smart and cautious, as there was no pre-running of the race course.

Pretty uneventful next 100 or so miles, came into Pit 6 for fuel and tires and everything was good to go to make it to the finish. We came through the last pit of Day 1 before Tonopah, and we wanted a really good split on BJ who was the closest one to us on time. While in the Pit, the truck fell off the jack. It was a big scare for me because I didn’t know if someone was underneath the truck or not. It cost us a couple of minutes, but amazingly I stayed super calm and knew we had a really long race ahead of us still. BJ pitted for fuel and tires at the very last pit stop (Pit 8 I think), and when he left we had about 1:30 on him on corrected time. I was pushing pretty hard from that last pit to Tonopah, as I knew BJ wanted to be 1st on the road for Day 2, and I wanted my dad to have clean air for Day 2 as he was planned to start that day. We came into the finish and immediately looked at the clock on our GPS. BJ was next in about 6:30 behind us physically, which was about 1:30 on corrected time.

We came in for our 60 minutes of service time. We changed the driveshaft out, as planned, and checked everything to make sure all was good. We finished with about 15 minutes to spare, so we spent extra time looking over the truck just to make sure. Before I could even shower or eat anything, the driver’s meeting for Day 2 started. Casey announced I had won Day 1, which we were unclear about until the driver’s meeting. We looked at the times after; I beat BJ by 1:22, then TJ by about 3 minutes. Perfect, clean air for my dad on Day 2.

Race Day 2
My dad would start with my 24 year old sister Jessica riding with him. Some of you may question this, but this is a family sport and we are out here to have FUN first. I went straight to Pit 1 to see them come through. Let me tell you. Chasing is much more stressful than being in the race truck! My palms were sweaty, I was nervous, and whenever someone would call on the radio I thought it was my dad saying they had a problem! Anyways, Dad comes into Pit 1 and he was 1:50 up on BJ physically, which meant he put 50 seconds on BJ since the start. I immediately thought how awesome that was, and told him on the radio to just keep doing what he’s doing because he was putting time on everybody. He responded “I’m just cruising Bebo. And by the way, I LOVE this truck! It is so comfortable!” Then, about 30 minutes later my sister calls on the radio that they have a flat front tire. I thought, crap! BJ 1st on the road, and now my dad has to make up some time. I did not want to go into Day 3 having to make up time! They got the flat changed and were back on the road in about 4-5 minutes. Then, about 30 minutes later, my dad calls me on the radio and says he has another flat! CRAP!!! I was waiting at the Tonopah pit for our first fuel/tire stop for the day. I knew my dad would be tired after changing 2 flats, and I had a feeling I would be getting in at that Pit. He called on the radio, said how sorry he was, and told me he needed Brady and I to get in for him and Jess. We pitted, fuel and tires, then threw on 2 new spares, and we were off. I believe we were now 5th or 6th vehicle on the road. I was 8+ minutes behind BJ physically, I had quite a bit of time to make up on him.

I immediately charged out of that pit and was really on the loud pedal trying to make up time. I caught up to TJ’s car, and just couldn’t make a move to get around him in the dust and risk ending our race. We were very close behind him, and I knew that on some of the switchbacks his co-dog was looking back and could see us coming. I was running a much faster pace than he was, I had already put at least 4 minutes on him from when I got in the truck, and I really wanted him to let me go by because I knew I would not be holding him up at all. Of course, that never happened. We were coming into Pit 5 I believe and my dad radioed to me that Pat Dean’s car (2nd on the road) was pitting, and that TJ’s car would probably be pitting there as well. “Thank God!” I said over the radio. Finally I can get around him and start running down BJ and make up some ground we lost with the 2 flat tires. I turned onto the straightaway with Pit 5 in my sights and BOOM! Left rear flat! Dang it, but if TJ is pitting and changing drivers, then I will still be able to get out in front of him. Long story short, our main chase guys weren’t at this pit and TJ left before me. When I left my dad told me I was 6 minutes behind BJ and making up time, even with the flat. “Okay” I said, knowing we still had to get around TJ’s car to get in clean air. TJ got in his car for Kevin Colan, and TJ was running a faster pace which allowed me to run dust free for a little bit. Next thing we know TJ is pulled over with a flat. We are now 3rd on the road with clean air. We pitted at the next Pit and were down only 4 minutes physically to BJ when we left after getting fuel and tires. I was still running very hard, trying to narrow that gap as much as I could going into Day 3.

Coming into the last Pit on a graded road, my Dad radioed to me that BJ was pitting. This was a familiar Pit and road I was on, and I knew I was close to the pit and asked my dad if BJ was still pitting. He said yes he was. I came into the pit, saw BJ pitting, passed him, and knew we had the lead back and BJ had a problem! We were only 30 seconds behind Pat Dean’s car with Danny Anderson driving also. My dad radioed to me that BJ was down with a broken transmission (not a Kroyer trans). So I back way off the throttle and just wanted to follow Danny all the way to the finish line. The truck started to make a couple of weird noises, and then we lost one of our fuel pumps (or so we thought). It was definitely stressful coming into the finish watching the Fuel Pressure gauge to make sure it didn’t drop at all. At the finish line, we saw Troy Herbst come in behind us, and knew it was going to be close on time between me and Troy.

We did our usually driveshaft change in the service. We also changed out a bad fuel filter that was the culprit of the fuel pressure dropping. I was so glad we had our Data Acquisition hooked up to our laptops so we could identify exactly what the problem was and how we could fix it. We finished with time to spare again, and put the truck to sleep for the final day tomorrow.

I went to the driver’s meeting to check times. Pat Dean and Danny won Day 2, as expected. I finished .03 seconds ahead of Troy for 2nd for the day. So, going into the final day I had 10:35 on Pat Dean for the Overall and 18:38 on Troy for TT. Perfect, I can just cruise the last day and run my own pace. Troy has to pass me and put 17:38 on me in order to beat me.

Race Day 3
The plan was to drive seriously 70%, and just cruise it on in to the finish. The plan was working out well. We passed Pit 2 and were 50 seconds behind Pat physically, and up 45 seconds on Troy physically. Out of that pit, I radioed that it felt like the left rear spring/shock was broken. The truck was leaning really badly to the left hand side. I was super nervous, thinking we had a serious problem. Then, we made a right turn on a graded road and the left rear exploded. Oh no, but at least I knew that the spring was not broken and it was just a flat. Well, the pin on our jack was jammed and wouldn’t come out. I ended up getting out after about 3 minutes (which I don’t usually do as our guys can change a flat by themselves in less than 3 minutes with no air jacks) and help Brady. I got the spare, stock truck bottle jack out of the bag in the truck and Brady started pumping that little thing up. I could see the Herbst chopper overhead, knowing they were thinking “Please take longer, please take longer!” The bottle jack didn’t lift the truck high enough, so we had to begin to dig out under the tire so it would fit. Mark’s truck with Brian Ewalt driving pulled in right as we were finishing offering to help. He left, we started leaving, and then the KC Hilights 8 truck went by on the road on the left. I couldn’t see anything, so I was hesitant to just jump in on the race course. The 8 truck pulled over for us (THANK YOU!!!) and we were behind Brian in Mark’s truck. They pulled over for us too, and we were now behind Bryce Menzies’ 10 car in a silt bed. We radioed to Kevin Kroyer, who was in our chase truck helping us at this race, to go talk to Menzies’ guys to see if they would pull over for us (Kevin builds his motor as well). Bryce pulled over in the silt (Thank you so much Bryce!!)

We came into the Pit, got a new spare and a splash of fuel, and took off. We were down for a total of 16 minutes! Not exactly what I had in mind for the last day of racing, but I thought we would be okay. Herbst was only 1:38 on corrected time behind us now, and I had to pick it up! We came into our last pit at Pit 5 which was Gabbs. Fuel and tires and we were off in 27 seconds! My crew radioed that I was 15 minutes physically down to Herbst, and 13 minutes down to Pat Dean. They also told me Herbst was 1st on the road, so I knew he had perfectly clean air in front of him. I set a very fast pace all the way into Top Gun, knowing I wanted more of a cushion in case we had another flat. I went from 7th to 4th on the road after passing Jesse Jones, Staats, and Pat Dean. I came into Top Gun only 14 minutes physically behind Herbst, and TJ’s car with Kevin Colan driving again was 5 minutes physically in front of me. We knew we had the race won if we could just keep it clean all the way to the finish.

We got to Weeks, the last pit of the last day, and we were now only 12 minutes physically behind Herbst, and only 45 seconds behind Colan! I thought to myself, “How did I make up that much time?” I just need to get around Colan so Herbst can’t put any more time on me going into the finish which is very, very rocky. It was making me so nervous with how slow we had to go behind Colan again. I had to tell myself that even though he is going slow, we just can’t have any problems or flats in the last 50 miles and we would be fine. “Troy can’t make up 5 minutes on us if we are moving forward,” Brady and I chatted as we were sitting in Colan’s dust.

We came into the finish, and sat there for 25 minutes before it was announced that we had won! I did my roof dance, and immediately started hugging everyone I could see! This was our 4th win in the last 5 races, and this one meant so much to our team! The longest race in North America!!

I have to thank all the people who made this happen!

Casey Folks and all of the 450 volunteers. Without you guys, this wouldn't have been able to happen!

Greg, Beau, and Hector who work on this truck everyday. Your hard work is really showing guys!

All of our family and volunteers who made this possible. From the chase crews, to the cooks. to the motorhome/trailer drivers, to the camp setter-uppers. Thanks so much!

And, of course Fox Racing Shox, KMC Wheels, BFGoodrich Tires, Vision X Lights, VP Fuels, K&N, Geiser Brothers, Kroyer Racing Engines, Eibach Springs, Signpros, and Danny Adair for the new graphics on the truck!

Our next race will be the BITD Mesquite race.

P.S. Sorry for the grammatical errors! And sorry it is so long!
 

Chris Tobin

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Andy, very good read!!! Thanks for the race report! Keep up the good work behind the wheel and behind the keyboard!!!!
 

OldGreen

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WOW. . .what a great story!! Say thanks to your radio relay guy that was really patient with us on Day 1 when we were on the same frequency. It was kind of fun to listen to him keep all of your cars and trucks straight and call out all the positions.
 

Joser1726

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awesome story, thanks for sharing AM..... good job to you and all your team!!
 

PAB

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Dust it off and come to Primm stud...lot's of player and missing you!
 

Tundranation

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Thanks for the report ....great reading ! :D This is what makes RDC so good ! :D Not all of the drama :eek: !!!!!
 

randy68

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Andy....didn't Tim start the TT?
 

Andy Mac

Simply Stunning
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Dust it off and come to Primm stud...lot's of player and missing you!
I wish Cam! We easily could, but were getting it ready for the Mesquite race in 2 1/2 weeks!

Andy....didn't Tim start the TT?
No, Tim drove the truggy and Troy drove the whole way in the TT.

Thanks everyone for the responses!

And Old Green, I'm pretty sure that would have been our airplane relaying to the racecars. It's never fun when people are on your channel, so thanks for finding a new one for us! (or did you? haha)
 

BRINGTHERUCKUS

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I wish Cam! We easily could, but were getting it ready for the Mesquite race in 2 1/2 weeks!



No, Tim drove the truggy and Troy drove the whole way in the TT.

Thanks everyone for the responses!
Troy is the faster brother for sure!
 

harleys dad

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Good job Andy and Scotty, Andy you have one of the very best co driving with you, they dont get much better or faster than your dad!!!
 

OldGreen

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And Old Green, I'm pretty sure that would have been our airplane relaying to the racecars. It's never fun when people are on your channel, so thanks for finding a new one for us! (or did you? haha)
Yep, we found a new one at Pit 4 since both of our chase trucks and the race truck were all in the same place. It would have been much tougher for you guys to coordinate it. Your relay flat out ROCKED. Very professional. One thing I noticed (even though I was driving LOL) was that the relay only relayed YOUR information and never talked about any other teams, just your 4 cars. :cool:
 

Andy Mac

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Yep, we found a new one at Pit 4 since both of our chase trucks and the race truck were all in the same place. It would have been much tougher for you guys to coordinate it. Your relay flat out ROCKED. Very professional. One thing I noticed (even though I was driving LOL) was that the relay only relayed YOUR information and never talked about any other teams, just your 4 cars. :cool:
Haha, isn't that the point of having a relay for YOUR team? I know you didn't mean anything by it, nor do I Old Green! LOL! :D

And yes Dave, my dad is one of the best. He doesn't give himself enough credit!
 

johnnyweb

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I know how your nerves where feeling in that last 50 miles or so. Every one of the rocks up over the hill into Dayton are nerve racking as hell when you are in the lead and just need a clean run in. It's (almost) easier on your nerves to be charging for the win with nothing to loose. Great write up on the race. Congratulations on the Win!
 
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Josh @ DanZio

Chains
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YYYYEEEEEE!!!!! Nice read!!!!!! I got an A in my writing classes too!!!
 

bajaxp

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Nice write up Andy...and great job! Nice meeting you at contingency. See you at the SS300.
 

chicken lips the ocho

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that was a fun read haha i just got a question, how is it that a class 8 and 10 are running im front of the 1st place tt:confused:
 

TreyP

"F" you Bill
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Looks like you had FUN!!! That is all that matters. Props on the win, that just makes it that more fun. See you at Primm. And dress appropriately...;)
 
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