When its time to stop racing


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It was pretty easy to stop racing dirt stocks cars and go to asphalt modifieds . I had decent to good results on dirt. Asphalt mods for a time on the West coast I could run with the top three guys at any track we went to.
Then the grind of 50 hrs a week working on the car and all the bitching and whining from others at the track made it no fun. Cut back to 4 hrs prep for a race and became a 5th place car . Done with that in a hurry.
We love Baja and decided some off road racing was the thing to do. 7s 3rd place at Yerrington and did donuts at the finish . That was fun ! 7 open in a POS truck I bought then junked ,learned a lot .
2008 bought used TL #1 race ready ,LOL . What a rig with a mile of all red wire . Made every update imaginable and raced the crap out of that 2.2 . Learned from the McMillions at the 09 V to R the only truly really valuable thing in the desert on a hot day is water . We had it and they didn't . Nice guys they let us use their sat phone while drinking our 140 d. water bottles zip tied to the frame. Bought #20 w a buddy raced,updated and then sold it . Ordered #28 and sold #1 . Built $28 from bare frame . Only 1 red wire in the truck ! I learned a ton from #1 and 20 . Baja 500 first race Joe Moore meets me to do some shock testing on the way South . Roll it 3 B rolls because driver (me) is an idiot. Joe aint too smart either as he gets back in for 2 more hours and finishes testing and tuning. Great guy that Joe is ! 18 hrs and B500 finish !!!!!
Mostly skip TL races with a few exceptions and run Vorra , Score , NORRA ,Dos Mares . Cant get enough Baja ,still cant . Won unlimited sportsman at 14 B1k 43 hrs in the seat ! I cant believe how much work I put into that entire race .
Couple of more races after that. We were able to lead in each race and had DNFs engine failure , trans and then limp mode issue at Parker .
Getting to the point of too much work and too little time and money to spend on racing,at least as an owner. You probably have to own a truck/buggy to fully understand . Being in Nor Cal is another ball buster for making it to Baja with everyone and everything in tow. I can still run the truck hard and fast while not tearing off parts . Just cant do the whole deal . Between Rick Johnson ,TL rental trucks and who knows what other deals I think I can still get some good racing in.
Now to inventory a gazillion dollars worth of spares and try to sell everything for maybe 40% of the cost .
Not sure why I wrote this . My mind is made up . Maybe just need to make it final.
Of course building that 79 Bronco pre runner or maybe my Checker Marathon into a NORRA class 6 will happen........................................ wish me luck Ben R Phillips 6043



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Good luck BRP in whatever you decide to do. I know you're a hell of a competitor and driver. Banging that TL motor off the red limiter at Prairie City was the best! Donating a car to our cause and helping me and my buddy fulfill a dream at racing and winning NORRA in a vintage buggy is still tops on my list.



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I know its a hell of a struggle. With all the DNFs and broken parts, it makes it hard to go on sometimes. As I write this with a fully prepped car for next weekend "everything is perfect", untill yesterday when I figured out I have a blown head gasket and have to work out of town this week. I dont know if Im gonna make it. Hope all goes well for you and you know you are always invited to hang with us. Best of Luck.

Wendell #527

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I am in the same boat. Owned and built a several race cars over many years, lots of wins, not so active any more. Preps burned me out and especially burned the wife out. I try to fully retire from it but can't. I'm down to a couple races a year mostly with my old car in Norra races. Still get to drink beer and tinker with the car on Friday nights and talk about how cool we are. I am trying to get some younger team members to start racing their own cars so I can just help. I will probably never leave completely.

Bdub 1020

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This is the best thread EVER. They need to have a self prep class lol. There is a whole different satisfaction one gets out of off road racing when your family works , preps , packs and pits for your vehicle vs. just paying to have someone do it and just haul it there and drive. But I will admit if we could afford to have someone else do all of that and just race and camp we would still race every month. But the family dinners and barbeques would not have the same self pride stories. To me its a financial thing to know when to get out and not spend so much on a HOBBY because no matter if your a TT , Class 1 or stock bug racer, off road racing is a Hobby with the exception of Rob Mac and BJ they might make a living off of driving haha


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I'm with you. Once I got the kids and they oldest started Quarter Midgets - I suddenly don't have the time - or at least my priorities changed. I'm still going to run a couple races a year in the slow classes, and show my kids why I got into this #$%! sport - which as you rightly state - is the people.

You also happen to be one of the nicest, most generous racers I know. I hope we see you in the desert one way or another.

Jim Carius


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If your heart is in it don't ever quit!

I don't care if my last dying breath is in a race car in the desert.. I envy y'all .. I'm a poor boy that lives in Oklahoma and $$ and opportunities are in short supply.. I was born when offroad racing here was Big (70's-80's) .. I was raised watching my Pop race then it died out in the late 80s, now I'm stuck with a dream, my wife calls me a "hopeless romantic".. I volunteer occasionally for THE AWESOME team called "Youtheory Racing" and I thank God everyday for it.. That seems to scratch my itch .. For now.. But some day for hopefully at least one race .. I will get to drive my own race car in the desert ...... Someday

Sent from the RDC Mobile App. Get it for your IOS device today


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Seems to be my life for the past 18 years. I can admit it gets very old, but for those few prerun and race days it all seems worth it. Although now that I have a kid it is seeming harder to justify it!
Its all about fun at any level. My family has been all in and all out 3 times in 40 years. If the fun meter is not working any more its not worth anything. Its always good to get away for a while and get the hunger back . See ya soon.....


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love the candle . I have always tried to stick to burning from the middle out as well as both ends.
Not being an owner will actually let me afford to be in the dirt more than before. also might leave more cash to worm my way into a ride or 3. I know what it takes and can pay my share and what it takes to fix the broken stuff..

harleys dad

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I know the trucks are the cool thing but at my age now after 40 years behind the wheel and doing all my own prep I enjoy working on my cars for my kids to race but I still keep my 51600 and class 11 around for me to race. The expense is what keeps my class 11 as a go to when money gets thin and I enjoy driving it just like I did when I was 14 years old. I have quit several times over the years but refused to sell my stuff for once I did I would never be able to afford to get the cars back. I went threw a period where I GAVE all my Vw parts away just get them out of here I am done lol when I went back to it with my kids I had nearly nothing to support my class 11 lol and today I am still thin on parts for it but still have a lot of stuff for the 1600 cars and my Baja bug. I found it easier to get things ready and then do none racing stuff with the family and went from racing all the time to 2 times a year both short races where we have a great time and the cars sit for the most part all year. Still have a race to look forward to but doesnt take every waking moment to get ready. Competition is in my blood as well as my family and I am sure in yours also, taking the step to quit when frustrated step back pick a couple in the year it will give you your race fix unless you need the money it sounds like a big loss at the end of the day. Works for me, I could sell all of it and build a bad azz pre runner but its just not the same for me, I love racing!

3 Amigos Racing

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Take a year off or set up a bucket list race schedule... Chasing a series gets old after a couple years.. And never forget your getting older all the time.. It does matter and getting old is real..and the possibility of health or career issues forcing an end to your time in a car needs to be considered.. I worry all the time when I will lose my opportunity to race..
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I think what drives me to improve my companies is the thought of moving up to a truck class from ATVs that I've raced all these years. It's a motivation like no other. I'm not sure about everyone else but for me if I don't have a goal to reach I get lazy at work!

To me the "prep" is and always is very very very rewarding. When you do a project on the vehicle and get done and look at it and then use it it's like "wow". I've built vehicles and designed things people said would be impossible. I love it and will not mind major hours working on a truck vs the ATVs.

FYI, we all need to ban the word "hobby" around here. If you've been to Baja and your still on here it's more of an obsession or religion. Hobby a are for RC cars.


Dunarri LLC

Bdub 1020

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OK , I will consider OBSESSION instead of HOBBY LOL. But America built on In God We Trust is what allows us to race IMO.

Josh 8

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Laugh out loud.

"Stand around on a Friday night prep the car drink beer and talk about how cool we are".

That's the entire point! Plus after some more drinking, if you have a running 600 hp truck doing burn outs in the drive way in front of the shop starts to really make good since.


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Ben it is normal to have these thoughts at your age and amount of money you have spent .To start a thread like this you are sublimely waving the white flag, you have made the decision but just can’t face it and are reaching out for some enablers to offer to give it one last try .Don’t confuse someone offering to pay gas and entry with all the effort and money it takes to prep your equipment and take all your stuff to the races ,do whatever it takes to get to the finish line ,haul all your stuff home and re prep your equipment so you can try and sell it at a 40% of what you paid for it where you live is also going to hamper the efforts of prospective car buyers .There is nothing more sad than a old man holding onto his race inventory as gold when it is going to be a burden for his family to liquidate to a tow company after his passing. With that being said take your stuff out and either race it or joy ride as you are only going to get pennies on the dollar when you try and sell it .Your next big Race date should be the Curt Luduc swap meet with the pricing to reflect the mindset that you are going to take nothing home .Unfortunately this may not be what you want to hear but this is what it sounds like when you decide to sober up from racing. This is the calm before the storm what do you think the race market is going to look like next year when Hillary becomes our president and our economy collapses. I am in the same boat but not going to quit until all my stuff is used up .You will see me at the swap meet I am trying to quit .


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It's Simple really and my kid told me this.
We just sold his Pro Buggy after many years of chasing Shortcoarse championships in UTV Superlite Pro lite and Probuggy
Tough call but it was his to make. Life changes and Priorities change


I was getting burnt out there a few years ago racing a full schedule. Since we have built the 10 car, we have picked 2-3 races a year that are the most fun for us and it really has made racing fun again. We do all the prep at our shop so only doing a couple of races a year makes the prep much more fun since we're not under any deadlines to make the race. This year is the 500 and 1000. Perfect amount of time between the 2.