Mint 400 in December

BajaboundMoto

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This was actually the 1st time I've raced in the Primm/Jean area with a steering wheel, and the bike races haven't been many there for me.
Now that you guys are talking about names of sections I'm putting it together.
Like the technical area around I'm guessing 35'ish with all the garbage... when I first went thru there I thought that was all truck body parts 'till 50 yards farther, oh, it's trash.

@MTPyle called it Gunslingers, the long whooped straight... I didn't know what it's called but that's where I've gone the fastest I've been on 4 wheels in the dirt, 114 with @PAB a few years ago.
That ride with Cameron learned me a lot about the control of the truck and how close I was this race to taking out Luke McMillin. I was on far right bouncing in the 10 car and looking for a smoother line i went left (looked rearview first) and just about as I reach the flags he brushes past me on my left at 2X my speed.
If Luke reads this, sorry about that!
And I'm always the one telling Jen to hold her line... she had fun with me on that one...

@dirtslinger do you mean the rock quary at the far north end of the course, the short twistys between a few road crossings?
I loved that little section.
And that hill at 71 @JenMorton had warned me about when she got out of the 10 and put me in (she also did it in the vintage 16 car Friday). It was destroyed come lap 4 Saturday.
I dig that you 11 guys are saying parts were to gnar for an 11 or some limited cars because too many internet experts talk that Mint is a lame course and that Baja is where the real tough races are. I can agree with Baja being gnarly, but having limited cars who DO race Baja say Mint had too hard of sections is good proof that Mint is legit.
 
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dirtslinger

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@dirtslinger do you mean the rock quary at the far north end of the course, the short twistys between a few road crossings?
I loved that little section.
And that hill at 71 @JenMorton had warned me about when she got out of the 10 and put me in (she also did it in the vintage 16 car Friday). It was destroyed come lap 4 Saturday.
I dig that you 11 guys are saying parts were to gnar for an 11 or some limited cars because too many internet experts talk that Mint is a lame course and that Baja is where the real tough races are. I can agree with Baja being gnarly, but having limited cars who DO race Baja say Mint had too hard of sections is good proof that Mint is legit.

The sand was non-passable in the 11's, the hill 71 was doable, but not a cake walk. I've raced the Mint for the past 5 or 6 years, and I always laugh at the people who say it's easy, or graded roads. I've also raced Baja so I have some experience to compare them. While not apples to apples, the Mint stacks up with some tough terrain.
 

MTPyle

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The hill I posted a video of is called Thumpers.

Trophy trucks can easily get on top and fly. Ryan Arcerio said they do 120mph up thumpers. But for us we have never got over 80mph going up.

Mike
 

BRINGTHERUCKUS

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"rock quary - rock garden" from the "old Mints??" same?
Spectator 2 is the Quarry. The red circle is what I remember being known as the Rock Garden, I believe the northern (proper Mint) course had its own. Right after (or before) the 'Shooting Range'. Used to be worse, one of my favorite pictures of a 1600 car completely upside down about 8' in the air came from this area.
1638902586523.png
 

MTPyle

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Just watching Jason Duncan post a video of them catching a class 10 and how it slowed them down at the Mint. He complained about the dust but I didn't see anyone call him a cry baby. haha He is the furthest from that as anyone. He is just sharing his experience.

We started towards the front of 6100 and behind the class 1 cars. The top 6 or so 6100 caught the slow class 1 cars pretty fast. Huge difference in speed. We were going to pass a C1 and caught his rear tire and ran over the back of the car. We have video of it and it was clear that the truck in front of us had jsut passed the C1 right before our truck got to it. We reached out on IG and apologized for the crazy pass and to make sure we didnt do any damage. The guy said thanks and told us our pass was fine but the truck in front of us hit them so hard it took them out of the race. He was pretty upset about it. I know that truck did not hit them on purpose that hard, just like Connor did not plan to driver over their rear tire. Just a bad deal.

Not trying to start drama but it seems pretty clear to me that slower buggies should not start in front of full size trucks that are clearly faster.

I know I have gone back and forth on what order to put vehicles in. But I now think it should be heavy metal as they qualified and lighter metal behind that group. In other words We should start TT, C1, and Spec as they qualified. Then other classes behind that group. There are some super fast C1 so they need to be where they qualified but no reason to put slower C1 in front of the fastest 6100.

We have 4 camera angles of the pass so Connor is putting together the video.

Mike
 

ProfessionalPitMan

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You obviously haven't had tacos in Nashville. Not many things are more disappointing than me in the sack except for Tennessee tacos. All tacos and burritos here are jammed packed with fillers like potatoes, rice and beans. Tried ordering a machaca burrito recently at 3 different shops, all staffed by Spanish speaking authentic Mexicans, and not one knew WTF I was talking about. After living my entire life in sunny S.D., I never thought Id experience a Mexican individual, or establishment that did not know how to make a machaca burrito, or even WTF it was.
Hey, but they knew who Johnny Cash was.
Nashville was rough for tacos when I first moved here. We are getting some good Cali style taco shops more and more. I have 3 within 8 miles of me in Hermitage and they are all on par with Alberto's in Escondido. They just don't open early for Breakfast burritos which pisses me off! Texas is just all TexMex so that was more disappointing to me.
 

Viola1685

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Just watching Jason Duncan post a video of them catching a class 10 and how it slowed them down at the Mint. He complained about the dust but I didn't see anyone call him a cry baby. haha He is the furthest from that as anyone. He is just sharing his experience.

We started towards the front of 6100 and behind the class 1 cars. The top 6 or so 6100 caught the slow class 1 cars pretty fast. Huge difference in speed. We were going to pass a C1 and caught his rear tire and ran over the back of the car. We have video of it and it was clear that the truck in front of us had jsut passed the C1 right before our truck got to it. We reached out on IG and apologized for the crazy pass and to make sure we didnt do any damage. The guy said thanks and told us our pass was fine but the truck in front of us hit them so hard it took them out of the race. He was pretty upset about it. I know that truck did not hit them on purpose that hard, just like Connor did not plan to driver over their rear tire. Just a bad deal.

Not trying to start drama but it seems pretty clear to me that slower buggies should not start in front of full size trucks that are clearly faster.

I know I have gone back and forth on what order to put vehicles in. But I now think it should be heavy metal as they qualified and lighter metal behind that group. In other words We should start TT, C1, and Spec as they qualified. Then other classes behind that group. There are some super fast C1 so they need to be where they qualified but no reason to put slower C1 in front of the fastest 6100.

We have 4 camera angles of the pass so Connor is putting together the video.

Mike
I think no matter how this is slung there’s always going to be this debate. Look at chase warren and the top couple 10 car guys how many slow 6100’s do you think they passed throughout the day let alone the first lap. I agree that it sucks because we have done it before too in class 10 where we had to pass probably 20 slow 6100’s but it is what it is. Would I like to start in front of them sure but on any given day any can be faster or slower. On paper class 1 should be faster. They are more nimble in the technical stuff, and have the big horsepower to open up on the straights they just don’t have the travel that the trucks have to smash the big holes. Honestly for the unlimited race they should’ve had everyone qualify and start how you qualify. Then it’s truly the fast guys starting where they should. However that doesn’t always work either because then guys like lofton or rg who broke in qualifying are now behind everyone so it’s a tough battle to make fair and even but as I stated before I think no matter how’s it’s done or start orders are this debate will always be there.
 

J Prich

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I think no matter how this is slung there’s always going to be this debate. Look at chase warren and the top couple 10 car guys how many slow 6100’s do you think they passed throughout the day let alone the first lap. I agree that it sucks because we have done it before too in class 10 where we had to pass probably 20 slow 6100’s but it is what it is. Would I like to start in front of them sure but on any given day any can be faster or slower. On paper class 1 should be faster. They are more nimble in the technical stuff, and have the big horsepower to open up on the straights they just don’t have the travel that the trucks have to smash the big holes. Honestly for the unlimited race they should’ve had everyone qualify and start how you qualify. Then it’s truly the fast guys starting where they should. However that doesn’t always work either because then guys like lofton or rg who broke in qualifying are now behind everyone so it’s a tough battle to make fair and even but as I stated before I think no matter how’s it’s done or start orders are this debate will always be there.
Agreed. Not discrediting Mike's POV, because it's valid. But aside from having 7 races so that we group all like vehicles together, I'm not sure there is too much more we can do to solve that. And again, it's worth noting that the conditions were "unusual" this time around. No rain for months and zero wind all weekend. It's always dusty, but this weekend was another level, in part due to those factors. Even a slight breeze may have helped alleviate the visibility which would have helped a ton. Like we mentioend previously, we didn't have these issues last year so much and I think next March will be improved a bit just by the nature of the timing.

For what it's worth, we had Friday racers complaining about it too. The fast UTVs are very fast, much faster than the slowest limited classes. We just don't have the ability to run a bunch of separate races in which everyone is evenly matched so passing, dust, etc are going to be a somewhat inevitable part of racing a loop race like this. In spite of the conditions, it's worth pointing out that all weekend we had no major crashes or significant injuries. So it's nice to know that even with all of those challenges, everyone managed to stay safe, etc.
 

MTPyle

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The big question is do you start in qualifying order or class order.

You guys are right you can’t solve everything. But having the heavy classes that qualify in that order would help. Does not help the C10 guys but like I said you can’t solve everything.

So just suggesting in qualifying order wouid have at least helped. But I still don’t think C10 or UTV should start with heavy metal.

Mike
 

jon coleman

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just put the broke/ crashed in qualification behind in their respective class, not the Whole grid, i would be ok as a racer with that
 

Jeff Furrier

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It was helmets. I'm not aware of any other moto related issues with tech. We did have a lot of issues with helmets though. In fairness, our rule book does state that helmets need to be SNELL certified. Its the very first item listed in the technical rule book:

TR1 HELMETS
Helmets used in four-wheel vehicles must meet the following requirements; Snell memorial foundation, SAH2015, SA2015, or SA2020 with a legible Snell sticker attached, FIA Standard 8860-2004, 8860-2018, 8860-2018-ABP, 8860-2010, and 8859-2015 with a legible with a legible FIA sticker attached. Motorcycle and ATV’s must meet the following requirements; Snell memorial foundation, M2015, M2020D, or M2020R with a legible Snell sticker attached, FIA Standard 8860-2004, 8860-2018, 8860-2018-ABP, 8860-2010, and 8859-2015 with a legible FIA sticker attached. Youth rider/driver may use SNELL/FIA CM2016. M400 recommends each helmet be labeled (painted) with the driver/rider’s name, blood type, allergies, or any other medical information. Left hand side of the helmet must be free of all stickers. Straps must have “D” rings, no snaps or Velcro. As of January 2021, SAH2010, SA2010, FIA 8860-2004 and M2010 helmets will no longer be allowed.

My understanding is other orgs that most of these moto guys race in don't require that, and they probably didn't look too deeply in to our rule book before signing up, so there was some gruff at tech when Bill said they couldn't race unless they had SNELL certified helmets. Not a "huge" issue IMO. I understand why the moto guys might have missed that and been upset, and I also understand why Bill enforced that rule.

With all due respect, whoever wrote or copy and pasted these rules doesn't understand helmet certifications. As these rules are written, the bike racers could have raced with an auto racing helmet with a 17 year old spec. An auto racing helmet would probably be fine for a bike as far as the safety standards if you could deal with the shield. To allow an auto helmet, but exclude a properly certified ECE Motorcycle Spec that you could race anywhere in the world with doesn't really make sense. The AMA allows the use of ECE, Snell and DOT, the variable from sanction to sanction is usually if DOT is allowed at all. I could explain all of the differences, but there's plenty of information on line as this is no a new debate.

Knowing the rules is the racers responsibility, but understanding the rules/specs is the racing organizations responsibility.
 

10 shot

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Some orgs will make a class up for one guy to enter just to get his entry fee. Set the classes and make the ppl build to the rules of what is available.
 

TRAVISD

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With all due respect, whoever wrote or copy and pasted these rules doesn't understand helmet certifications. As these rules are written, the bike racers could have raced with an auto racing helmet with a 17 year old spec. An auto racing helmet would probably be fine for a bike as far as the safety standards if you could deal with the shield. To allow an auto helmet, but exclude a properly certified ECE Motorcycle Spec that you could race anywhere in the world with doesn't really make sense. The AMA allows the use of ECE, Snell and DOT, the variable from sanction to sanction is usually if DOT is allowed at all. I could explain all of the differences, but there's plenty of information on line as this is no a new debate.

Knowing the rules is the racers responsibility, but understanding the rules/specs is the racing organizations responsibility.


Jeff, remember Bill Savage knows all. He has done his own testing! lol
 

MTPyle

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I have been watching in car cameras from the race and this year was way worse dust than last.

I think the combination of later in the year and our dry weather in the west has made dust worse than ever, by a lot. I am not a climate change freak but our deserts climate has for sure changed.

Mike
 

SMS81

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With all due respect, whoever wrote or copy and pasted these rules doesn't understand helmet certifications. As these rules are written, the bike racers could have raced with an auto racing helmet with a 17 year old spec. An auto racing helmet would probably be fine for a bike as far as the safety standards if you could deal with the shield. To allow an auto helmet, but exclude a properly certified ECE Motorcycle Spec that you could race anywhere in the world with doesn't really make sense. The AMA allows the use of ECE, Snell and DOT, the variable from sanction to sanction is usually if DOT is allowed at all. I could explain all of the differences, but there's plenty of information on line as this is no a new debate.

Knowing the rules is the racers responsibility, but understanding the rules/specs is the racing organizations responsibility.
You are so smart 😉
 

BajaFand

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Agreed. Not discrediting Mike's POV, because it's valid. But aside from having 7 races so that we group all like vehicles together, I'm not sure there is too much more we can do to solve that. And again, it's worth noting that the conditions were "unusual" this time around. No rain for months and zero wind all weekend. It's always dusty, but this weekend was another level, in part due to those factors. Even a slight breeze may have helped alleviate the visibility which would have helped a ton. Like we mentioend previously, we didn't have these issues last year so much and I think next March will be improved a bit just by the nature of the timing.

For what it's worth, we had Friday racers complaining about it too. The fast UTVs are very fast, much faster than the slowest limited classes. We just don't have the ability to run a bunch of separate races in which everyone is evenly matched so passing, dust, etc are going to be a somewhat inevitable part of racing a loop race like this. In spite of the conditions, it's worth pointing out that all weekend we had no major crashes or significant injuries. So it's nice to know that even with all of those challenges, everyone managed to stay safe, etc.
The way this race has evolved maybe it’s time to change the format into KOH style. This is something I’ve been thinking for the last couple years the Mint should be doing. Let every category get their time and space on course and reduce incidents. Hell, the Mint is almost a week long event anyway when you consider the parade, so why not? And bring back prerunning to the event. Not only is it good and safer for racers it’s an excellent opportunity for promotion for local and national media and celebrities who may be interested but aren’t able or have the desire to race in a race car.
 

fastfelix

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Agreed. Not discrediting Mike's POV, because it's valid. But aside from having 7 races so that we group all like vehicles together, I'm not sure there is too much more we can do to solve that. And again, it's worth noting that the conditions were "unusual" this time around. No rain for months and zero wind all weekend. It's always dusty, but this weekend was another level, in part due to those factors. Even a slight breeze may have helped alleviate the visibility which would have helped a ton. Like we mentioend previously, we didn't have these issues last year so much and I think next March will be improved a bit just by the nature of the timing.

For what it's worth, we had Friday racers complaining about it too. The fast UTVs are very fast, much faster than the slowest limited classes. We just don't have the ability to run a bunch of separate races in which everyone is evenly matched so passing, dust, etc are going to be a somewhat inevitable part of racing a loop race like this. In spite of the conditions, it's worth pointing out that all weekend we had no major crashes or significant injuries. So it's nice to know that even with all of those challenges, everyone managed to stay safe, etc.
Great race really injoyed the course
 
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