|Holland, MI (May 30,2012) – After a third place finish in Charlotte, Ross Hoek arrived in Buchanan, Michigan confident knowing his team can compete with the big teams in the sport. Early in the weekend it looked like the Ignite Racing Fuels/Venom Energy/Allstar Performance Ford Ranger would be a strong contender, but the Red Bud MX natural terrain layout showed its grit and created a long night for the Ross Hoek Motorsports team.
The .75 mile long track was completely redesigned since the 2011 event. Twelve days before Round Three, Ross Hoek was asked to come to Red Bud to give some input with the track design, but knew all too well what he saw would not be the finished product. By race weekend, additional jumps, whoops, and sand were added to the layout changing the complexity of the track. Competing on the new Red Bud track with twelve other PRO-Light drivers would prove to be a real challenge for everyone.
The Friday qualifying session saw Hoek take a conservative approach and stopped the clocks with the sixth fastest time in the class. Thanks to the inversion process, this put the Ignite Racing Fuels Ford on the pole for Saturday’s Round Three race.
The start saw a handful of competitors battling for the top four positions. Ross was right in the middle of this battle and running fourth at the mandatory caution. With only two laps from the checkers Ross was really putting the heat on two trucks ahead of him when the rear suspension broke as he landed the big step-up hillside jump. This sent the Michigan native for a wild ride. Fortunately all the safety equipment did their job and Ross walked away from the incident. The Ignite Racing Fuels Ford wasn’t so lucky. The Ross Hoek Motorsports team worked well into the night repairing the front and rear suspension as well as various driveline components.
Due to the poor finish on Saturday Ross was relegated to start near the back of the twelve truck field. Right from the start of the fifteen lap race, Ross knew the truck wasn’t handling the Michigan terrain as well as the day before. The damage from Saturday’s had taken its toll on the trucks performance. Frustrated and disappointed Hoek persevered and crossed the finish in ninth place.
“Yesterday we really had our Ignite Racing Fuels/Venom Energy/ Allstar Performance Ford Ranger working really well,” noted Hoek. “This track is really rough on equipment, and it’s really tough to pass. Other competitors had suspension failures throughout the weekend and speeds these trucks are able run, makes it gamble if your equipment will make it to the checkered flag. We’ve got three weeks until the next race and we will get our hot rod back to one hundred percent for the run at the Big House.”
Next Race: June 16-17 – Crandon, Wisconsin