Is Protruck Currently the Best Class?

Harpo

Well-Known Member
This is probably going to start a fire but since we are on the subject of Protrucks I am suprised that we don't have more racers joining the ranks of Protrucks. I realize that some people are going to have negative things to say about this, but I am a firm believer that this is the best class to race in at this moment.This is probably going to start a fire, but since we are on the subject of Protrucks I am surprised that we don't have more racers joining the ranks of Protrucks. I realize that some people are going to have negative things to say about this, but I am a firm believer that this is the best class to race in at this moment. Here’s why:

- The class is competitive and the Protrucks are consistently in the top 10 overall in the SCORE/BITD races.

- The Protrucks are very reliable. (Most motors go for a year or more with no problems, some components are over seven years old and still being used on our trucks)

- It is the only class that has their own year end points fund, and it’s a very generous one at that. (A fund that you don’t need to put up extra cash towards a year end points fund. e.g. Prodirt, Pro16, Class 8 Coalition, etc.)

- They have their own television series. Eight awesome one-hour shows dedicated to the Protrucks and their teams shown several times. (Casey Folks quoted after seeing the Parker 425 on OLN “That’s the best off-road racing show that I’ve ever seen.)

- Parts are available right off of the shelf.

- The Protruck Teams get some input on the races that they choose to race as a series.

- The teams get to race at great locations with some generous purses & financial help. (Re: La Paz, Guam, Crandon, & Laguna Seca).

- The Protrucks have a high finishing rate.

- Being a spec class you don’t have to constantly upgrade to be competitive. (Re; Rob Rinertson races chassis #1, the truck is over seven years old and is still one of the top trucks in the series.)

Now before you start bashing the Protrucks, Ivan or myself, I am just wondering why more racers don’t join the ranks. I am not selling Protrucks but I would like to see the class grow. I realize that they aren’t as exciting as some Trophy/Trick Trucks or Unlimited cars, but being on this side of the fence I just want to see what people are going to say.
 

John Bitting

Administrator
Great post..

I personally love protrucks and think its the most competitive class in racing today. The trucks are always seperated by minutes at the finish line after 300 and 500 mile races. That says a lot about the trucks. I am not sure why so many people move on, I would love to see 20+ trucks at every race. Hopefully someday we will.
 

fishd00d

What A Joke
I personally like the Protrucks for the main reason its purly a drivers class. You dont need an unlimited budget to be competitve in it.

If I was going to race I think it would be a Protruck because you can find a used one for fairly cheap and parts are all the same like you said off the shelf. Noone has an advantage.

They are pretty much as close as you can get to a TT without spending all the $$$ of one.

I have heard rumors that once you drive a TT its just about impossible to go back to a Protruck
 

JCA

Well-Known Member
I too like pro truck. That is where I would like to be one day. We shall see.
 

billymanfroy

Well-Known Member
Tell you what, give me a truck and I'll proudly drive it!!! I might even trade you for my Class 7!

I can't say why others do what they do, but I personally can't afford $115k plus all the maintenance. Maybe Dwight Lunkley will let me drive his someday! LOL And please tell me when Laguna is coming back because that was fun to watch, and my buds were the borrowed corner workers...

Billy
 

martininsocal

Well-Known Member
If I could afford it, I would probably be running a Protruck too. The idea and competition are great, the costs are reasonable compared to any other unlimmited truck class(TT,8) and the trucks work well. I don't know if I would say the class is the most competitive as long as Pro1600 is around, but it is close.
What would I change? I would open up the parts suppliers to increase the competition between brands and bring lower costs and more sponsorship possibillities to the class. Let King, Fox, Swayaway, etc...all offer shocks with a spec length and diameter/ max # of bypass tubes allowed. Open the tire supplier rule up and get some tire wars going again. Same with seats, and some of the other "bolt-on" stuff that could benefit the racers pockets and the suppliers market shares through advertising and supporting the class. Miller has proven that with a few tweaks and more HP the trucks are as fast as any other TT out there.
 
Protruck has a lot going for it right now. There is no other class that has such a great deal of coverage. Ivan and crew have put a first class TV package together, things have really started coming together lately. The trucks arent perfect, yes it is a pain only having a 40 gallon fuel cell, goodyear's pit support just isnt there yet, and a couple other small things, but the main point is the trucks are all equal. These trucks being equal makes them so fun to race. Rick Johnson will back me on this, at the last Baja Mex 300 race it was awesome racing down the coast section before Erindera with eveybody all bunched up. So yes there is problems like any series or class, but most important it is equal playing field and has been heading in a much better direction this season...........
 

Josh_K

Well-Known Member
NO!!! Its not. I will agree that they are cool, but 100k+ limites the amout of people that can afford one. I think if we were to look at the overall picture of the people that race in the desert it would show that most people are working stiffs and protrucks are just out of the buget.
I race in class 8 and it takes everything that I have to get to three races a year and I paid under 30k for my truck. What I think seperates guys like me form most of the protruck guys ( other than the wallet) is that I love to fabricate and prep. In the last 24 months I have put 10k in parts in my truck (new moter, trans, rear-end so on). I now have a truck that many who have rode in pro-trucks say is hands down faster after getting out of my truck. .
So now I have a truck that is faster that a pro-truck, less than a third the cost to purchase, can fab on to my harts delight, If i brake something I can reengineer and build it. All of this is with a 500hp engine that will last for years. A c-6 trans that is good for 6 races or more.
Now why should I trade it for a pro truck?
 

motoxscott

Well-Known Member
If I had the money I would run the Pro Truck class, sure they aren't as trendy as Class 1's or TT but the cost to get into them and race at that level is a great value. Everything can be improved it just doesnt happen over night. Their have been some pretty good points made already that would improve it I believe.

-Just my opinion for what it's worth.
 

Doug_Powell

Well-Known Member
A recent interview with Ivan sums up a lot of good reasons a single supplier of shocks and tires are used (see link below). I believe Ivan and his organization have created the perfect racing model for our sport, and I hope to see it grow. Small gripes I hear from people choosing other classes are cost of replacing rear fiberglass fenders a lot, as they see a lot of truck finish without them (probably due to flats?). Still the concept is proven and I too can't wait to see 20-30 of them at one race.

Interview with Ivan Stewart
 

Billy_the_Kid

Well-Known Member
I would like to see a part by part break down with prices, as to why they cost $115k. I looked at several of them up close at Crandon last year, and I just can't figure out, for what they are, how they can cost that much. Does Ivan pocket like $65k for every one he sells or something?
 

klaus

Administrator
Bill,

I am very sure That the Protruck organization does make money of each vehicle.
Labor, R&D of the vehicle itself plus the cost to run the Protruck series.

Example Ford sells a new vehicle for $30.000. The cost of each part for them is just a fraction of that retail price tag. The rest of the money goes into profits, advetisements for the vehicle, the brand, employs a lot of people etc etc.

Same applies to EVERYONE in this sport. We all love it and put our heart into it, may even get out of our way at times, but ultimatly it is a money maker.
 

Rory

Crayola Killer
This is the only thing I see wrong with PRO TRUCK. I think, to date, there are close to 40 Pro Trucks out there. My question is, Why are they not racing the same races? The whole Idea of getting a Pro Truck is to have the same equipment and to race against other drivers to see who is better on that day. How many PT's are racing PRIMM? 3! Come on guys, get together, pick a series and give everyone a dose of what PT racing is. I'd love to see 30-35 PT's at every race. Fact is, i don't get excited about watching 3 PT's race out in the desert, Hell, 3 TT's don't help either. I think this is the reason Off Road racing is going no where, becase everyone races 2 or 3 different series instead of concentrating on one for a Championship (ok, not everyone). Don't get me wrong, this is by no means PT's fault, but just a product of the enviornment of off road racing lately. Pro Truck racers need to get together and set a series EVERYONE will run. I've talked with Ivan about this and he agree's but "It's alot easier said than done". You start getting 30-35 Pro Trucks at each race, sponsors will take notice, than maybe TT's, Pro 1600, Pro DIRT, and PRO 10 will all follow suit and we'll have entry #'s we had in the mid to late 80's (400+ at each race).

Sorry, I'm off my soap box. Pro Truck is probably one of the best classes to race if your looking at getting noticed and competition.......BUT only if you have the money to do so. Class 1600 for the rest of us who have no money
 

Desert Specialties

Well-Known Member
When they first came out I hated the concept. But now feel that would be my next step if I could afford it. The protruck racing organization really helps promote the class, Which may help bringing in sponsors. As for now I could not afford it, unless we get some sort of sponsorship.

They are there to make money of course and are doing it.
If they could cut the price in half it may make more $ents for guys.

The winner of the race can always look back and say his trucks exactly like mine.
you can feel very confident about the win.
 

klaus

Administrator
Rory,

100% agreed. The Ivan Stewart interview (link posted above) is quality reading. Ivan talks about his take on what is wrong with the sport.

If the racer gets involved in rulechanges and the promoter gets put on the spot to change rules, the promoter either doesn't allow it and losses x amount of entries to another promoter or he goes along with it and looses x amount of entries to another promoter... You cant wint.

From what I have seen its too many promoters that have too many different rules and classes.

Currently each promoter is also a sanctioning body. Those two need to be seperated. ONE sanctiong body, multiple promoters. ONE or maybe TWO series.

Look at CORR. CORR is just a sanctiong body. All they do is get racers, deal with rules, points, sponsors and a TV package. Then each track is a differnt promoter that fills the house, provides a track under CORR supervision. It seems to work.

NASCAR is ONE sanctioning body that races almost every weekend with different Tracks. They have 3 big series. Winston, Bush, Trucks.
 

drtdevil93

Well-Known Member
i think the protruck class has been a great asset to the sport. although im the "spend more money to go faster" type, i really like the affordability of protrucks. really, 120,000 for a truck as capable as a protruck, is a deal. not to mention all the things you get when you race... spare parts are all brought out for you, many expenses are paid, etc. not to mention GOOD tv coverage.

erik
 

martininsocal

Well-Known Member
The concept and where it came from are good, but Ivan has not let the path be followed. He looked at successful operations like Nascar and decided which route to take, but refuses to let the single lane road turn into a 6 lane freeway. He isn't following Nascar, Busch, or the Craftsman trucks, all those allow independent chassis development. What they do to keep cars equal and racing tight is to make rules that limit things like spring rates, aero packages, spoiler heights, etc... Not what Protruck does. Protruck is based on the IMCA concept. Everyone runs the same basic chassis. The geometry is rules based, but any manufacturer can build the chassis for you, it just has to meet the rules. This allows full chassis to be purchased for a few thousand dollars. Then the individual can make the decission of which parts that meet the rules they will place on the car. This allows competetive parts pricing from the manufacturers because they want their product on the car when it wins. The current Protruck system doesn't allow this. And because of that, there is no competitive marketplace for the other manufacturers to be involved in. Bilstien, Goodyear, Mastercraft, etc...get to advertise a win every race, period. They may not be the best part, but you would never know that if you were not aware of the parts requirements for the class. Also- being the sole proprietor of the Chassis keeps price higher than if say, a fabrication shop could purchase a chassis jig and produce parts to class specs and sell them to racers. If you could choose from 5 or 6 shops offering chassis and parts, prices would be lower. There would also be a lot more "racers prices". Remember those from the '80's?
The idea is a good one, the class is competitive, but I think it is artificailly high for the initial buy-in(names do cost money...)and the parts being produced at a production level should be less. Its not a custom part if you sell 100 of them to 50 different people. I do believe he is just about right on with his motor/transmission rule, and he should eliminate the race gas rule, as he even said, folks started to "fudge" when they could bend the line a bit. Make it standard unleaded pump gas, no addiditives, period. No issues with timing, etc...then.

The interview was a great read, but I still don't see why you can't open up some rules to the bolt on parts. Think about this, what if Levi Beard wnated to race a Protruck? Who's seat would he like to run? and why would his seat make him any faster?
Martin
 

AP255

Well-Known Member
There is no doubt in my mind that Ivan has Protruck headed in the right direction. Talk with any team and in general they have all good things to say. Is it the best class? What makes any one class the best? Why aren't there more entries? Wait and see. There is no other class that has the available product, promotion and support. I credit Protruck for being slow to change. The ability to keep the costs down is key. The top drivers in the class in my opinion are better than most trophy truck drivers. Protruck drivers that win do so because they can. Not because they have a better truck or some hired gun driving for them. I wouldn't trade my Protruck experience for anything.
 

mhniles

Member
Protrucks are great for the sport but when a 15 year old Raceco Class 10 car can pull a protruck in the rough that's pretty sad. The protruck has the horsepower on the graded roads but so does a Subaru WRX.

Matt
 
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