DRIVE WTC Townsel Memorial

DRIVE returns to Plaster City after their summer hiatus and once again proves they put on some of the best and safest off-road racing in the country. With over 65 volunteers, 16 rovers, life flight helicopters, introduction of the hot pit and fuel containment to their desert series; DRIVE continues to prove that they are on the forefront of putting on safe yet fun and competitive desert racing. With a meticulously marked racecourse through what has always been known as some of the toughest terrain any desert has to offer, DRIVE put on a GP style two-heat race format with morning and afternoon races with overall times determining finishing spots.

Ross Mattox
Ross Mattox

Heat 1: Cody Robinson had a good lead in1600 but engine troubles took him out of contention leaving Ross Mattox in the top spot for the weekend.

Mark Valverde
First in class 1300 went to Mark Valverde who looked to have a flawless day

Heat 2: Steve Looney took both heats with ease; besting the biggest class (1450) in the field with a combine time of 2hrs 26min 12sec., eleven minutes faster than the competition

Heat 3: Jeff Dickerson of Brawley Ca. took the class 1 and o/a win for the weekend. Jeff had an intense battle with Kyle Conlon for the o/a position but caught a break when Conlon lost a CV on the last lap. An added bonus for the Dickerson family was Jeff’s son Broc took the win in trophy kart with an awesome third lap pass in the rough stuffing the front end with an explosion of dirt.  Broc made the pass stick and brought it in for a half car lead at the finish. Jeff was unavailable for comment when the results came out but you could tell Jeff was very proud of his son on race day.

Proud dad and son, Jeff and Broc Dickerson
Proud dad and son, Jeff and Broc Dickerson

Brandon Whitehead
The class nine battle was super tight with Brandon Whitehead taking the win over Jeff Morrison by just 39 seconds

What is WCT Townsel (provided by DRIVE)

On Saturday morning May 16, 2009, Wes Townsel with his two sons, Cody 10 and

Tanner 5, left his wife Jenifer and daughter Hailey at home. They were headed out to go fishing on the East Highline Canal, a normal trip where they had been countless times before, but this time they would not be coming home. As Wes was driving his sons to the canal they were involved in a tragic accident that took all three of their lives.

Not only did this accident leave Jenifer with the unimaginable heartache of losing all three of her boys at once, but it also left her with the burden of having to pay for the services to put them to rest.

Wes and his family are close friends of Larry Cox and his wife Tracy. Most of you know that Larry and Tracy are dedicated volunteers of DRIVE. Larry spends countless hours in the desert with me looking for new courses and Tracy is an important part of our timing team. Wes was also a friend to the off-roading community here in Imperial Valley. We named this race after Wes, Cody, and Tanner to give back to the Cox Family, the Townsels, and to the Imperial Valley Community.

A personal note

As I wrote this, I remembered the day Wes and his sons passed very clearly. I was in Texas for the TORC series race at the Texas Speedway; I got the call from a good friend in the Imperial Valley. Wes and his wife Jenifer were friends I went to school with and had known for the majority of my life; I had many good times with them hanging out with family and friends in the desert. Wes was a person who would go above and beyond for a friend and even more for his family; I’m sure his boys would’ve turned out the same. Wes is sorely missed and this race in his and his son’s honor is only a small way to show how much. Thank you Doug, Larry and all the DRIVE crew for this memorial race.

Top 3 results in each class:

Group A

  • 1600

1st 1619  Ross Mattox

2nd 1656  Ben Abatti

3rd 1611  Troy Phelps

  • 1300

1st 1303  Mark Valverde

2nd 1353  Barry Blue II

3rd 1311  Polo Ramirez

  • 900

1st 988    Brandon Whitehead

2nd 987    Jeff Morrison

  • 1900

1st 1904   Sam Rosenberger

Group B

  • 1450

1st 1464   Steven Looney

2nd 1494   Brian Cully

3rd 1453   Sean Julian

Group C

  • Unlimited Truck

1st 41      George Rosenbaum

2nd 80      Robert Wagner

  • Class 1

1st 123    Jeff Dickerson

2nd 100    Sean McCallum

3rd 127    Kyle Conlon

  • Class 8

1st 800    Berry Canela

  • Class 1000

1st 1099   Eddie Zimmerman

2nd 1021   Michael Deardorff

  • Class 1200

1st 1202    Daniel Rinear

2nd 1278    Greg Farkas

  • Class 1400

1st 1448    Trevor Klat

2nd 1401    Cameron Reeves

  • Class 6/7

1st 7291    Greg Parker

  • Class 550

1st 562    Heather Herrmann

2nd 555    Charles Guy

3rd 556    Stephanie Lozano