Douglas Dominates at '06 Crandon World Championships
CRANDON, WI -- Scott Douglas, El Cajon, CA, won the 12th annual BorgWarner Shootout at Crandon International Off-Road Raceway this past Sunday in convincing fashion, claiming the $125,000 sterling silver and gold BorgWarner World Championship Off-Road Cup for himself and Ford Trucks.
In front of a wildly cheering sell-out crowd, Douglas overwhelmed 24 other entries and was the clear dominant force in off-road racing's richest and most prestigious event. Douglas previously won the event in 1997. He is only the second driver to have won two BorgWarner Shootout events.
Douglas cruised to victory winning $26,300 in cash and prizes for 10 laps of high speed work over Crandon's famed 1.5-mile course. The BorgWarner Shootout pits high performance Championship Off-Road Racing 4x4 race trucks against similarly configured 2-wheel drive race trucks in a high speed, royal rumble. The Pro 4 trucks have a competitive advantage. The top eight Pro 2 trucks receive a special 1/4 mile head-start in the race and Crandon Raceway officials drop two starting flags. The event was the showcase of an entire weekend of Lucas Oil CORR racing.
Part of off-road racing's AMSOIL SuperTeam, the Douglas Motorsports Ford F-150 4x4 equipped with Kumho tires was first into Crandon's famous turn one from the Precision Gear land rush starting line, leading a snarling pack of 16 other high horsepower machines.
Chasing down eight Pro 2 trucks given a handicap lead, Douglas used all 800 hp at his command and quickly moved to the front of the field by lap four and never looked back, finishing the race with a time of 14:51.091.
Douglas, one of the most popular drivers in professional off-road racing, had a weekend for the ages at Crandon International Off-Road Raceway during the 2006 BorgWarner World Championship Off-Road Races -- the crown jewel of off-road racing events.
Earlier in the day, Douglas stormed to victory in Round 12 of the Lucas Oil CORR Pro 4 points chase. On Saturday, the veteran won the annual 2006 World Championship Pro 4 class title with a win. He was undefeated for the weekend in three events. His total purse and prizes for the weekend was $31,000.
The Douglas sweep left no doubt about his superiority. "In a pressure packed environment like the annual off-road World Championships, Scott rose to the occasion," said Cliff Flannery, Crandon track president. "He is now the premier off-road racer in the country with his three huge wins," he said. "Douglas is a class act proves again that the cream rises to the top in off-road racing."
In a wild Crandon Victory Circle Shootout celebration, the Douglas Motorsports pit crew and sponsors rushed the track, joining Douglas on the podium. Douglas was awarded the giant sterling silver and gold BorgWarner Cup and $7,500 World Championship Driver's Trophy and prize money by Cindy Niekamp, president, BorgWarner Torque Transfer Systems, Auburn Hills, MI. The Douglas truck is equipped with a BorgWarner 4x4 transfer case.
"It's nice to be back on top and this is a powerful win and statement by our team", said Douglas. "It has taken plenty of hard work by my crew and sponsors and they need to share in this win." Douglas cited AMSOIL, Kumho Tires, Rancho, Ford, Precision Gear, MasterCraft race seats and BorgWarner for making the winning weekend possible.
"Kumho tires made the difference for the Shootout", said Douglas. "I want to thank Kumho for delivering the right tire combination and their hard work," he said. "No doubt about it -- Kumho's put me in a position to dominate today." In off-road racing tire wars, Kumho stopped a string of nine consecutive Shootout wins by BF Goodrich. "This win puts Kumho, AMSOIL, Rancho and our other sponsors on the off-road racing map in a big way," exclaimed Douglas.
Also on hand with congratulations and prizes in Victory Circle was Gus Frank, chairman, Forest County Potawatomi Community, Crandon, WI, as well as Cliff Irey, Ford Truck Motorsports, Dearborn, MI. Irey awarded Douglas a $3,500 Ford Racer Performance Award. "Ford Truck Division is proud of Scott's accomplishment," said Irey. "He is one of our top drivers in off-road racing circles and his dominating BorgWarner Shootout win proves again that Ford Trucks are number one." Ford racers have won eight of 12 BorgWarner Shootouts.
Frank awarded Douglas a special $2,100 Potawatomi Northern Lights Casino award. Douglas also claimed a $2,300 Miller Electric welder as part of his winnings. A jubilant Jeff Dinan, national sales staff, Kumho Tires, awarded Douglas a $1,000 "Kumho King of Off-Road Racing" award.
Runner-up in the race was Adrian Cenni, New York, NY, in his 4x4 Atrium Chevrolet, winning $3,600 as well as the traditional Wisconsin Aluminum Foundry "Pressure the Leader" Award. The first Pro 2 to cross the line was Jerry Whelchel, Irvine, CA. It was Whelchel's first BorgWarner Shootout in the Monster Energy Ford. Whelchel placed third overall in a spectacular display of adept off-road driving winning a total of $8,200.
First Sportsman 2 driver to cross the Skyjacker Finish Line was Skyjacker Toyo Tire racer Ross Hoek, Holland, MI. Hoek won a grand total of $2,700 for the feat, including a special Skyjacker "Finsh Line" Award from his title sponsor. Hoek was the only Sportsman racer to finish on the Lead Lap. The previous day, Hoek set a new Sportsman 2 lap record of 1:29.551. Hoek also receives the annual Precision Gear "Rear End Award" for being the last truck on the lead lap.
Eleven racers finished on the lead lap over Crandon's punishing, high speed track -- a new record for the Shootout. Rhonda Konitzer, Oconto Falls, WI, the only female competing in the Shootout, finished sixth, winning $1,000. It was the highest place finish in history by a female racer. In a first in off-road racing, she competed against her father -- long time off-road veteran Sam Konitzer, who finished 14th. Pole-sitter Rick Huseman, Riverside, CA, finished 15th.
The 12th annual BorgWarner Shootout will be held Sunday, September 2, 2007. Douglas will enjoy the recognition associated with winning the BorgWarner Shootout and reigns as the mythical "King of Short-Course Off-Road Racing" until the green flag for that event. Douglas will serve as "Grand Marshall" for the 2007 World Championship Labor Day Parade in downtown Crandon next year.