Laughlin: Saturday, day one summary

Dean leading Class 1 Mexico's Vildosola patiently waits as early race leaders break to take SCORE Trophy-Truck lead at 14th SCORE Laughlin Desert Challenge Race finishes Sunday as Harrold, Watson, Boyer, Nunez, Chamlee, R. Hall, Holmes all ...

Dean leading Class 1

Mexico's Vildosola patiently waits as early race leaders break to take SCORE Trophy-Truck lead at 14th SCORE Laughlin Desert Challenge

Race finishes Sunday as Harrold, Watson, Boyer, Nunez, Chamlee, R. Hall, Holmes all leading classes

LAUGHLIN, Nev.--Mexico's Gus Vildosola Jr. patiently waited his turn Saturday as the early race leaders all fell off the pace to take the first day Overall and SCORE Trophy-Truck class lead after the first of two days of racing in the season-opening 14th annual SCORE Laughlin Desert Challenge.

Sixth after the first of 8 laps over the surprisingly rugged 6.25 mile race course, Vildosola patiently waited his turn to finish the lead with a time of 1 hour, 16 seconds, averaging 49.78 miles per hour in the No. 4 Vildosola Racing Ford F-150 SCORE Trophy-Truck.

Racing concludes Sunday for 17 Pro and 2 Sportsman classes for cars and trucks with racing starting at 7 a.m. and lasting to 5 p.m. Running 8 more laps each, the featured SCORE Trophy-Truck division will start the final portion of its race at 1 p.m., followed by the unlimited Class 1 at 3 p.m. The start/finish line area is located at the Laughlin Events Park at Edision Drive and Bruce Woodbury Drive in the heart of the Laughlin resort district.

Round 1 of the 2008 SCORE Desert Series features 141 starters from 19 states, Mexico and Germany competing for nearly $400,000 in prize money and contingency postings.

Vildosola crashed severely during Friday's qualifying run but the crew was able to work until early Saturday morning to complete chassis repairs and pass tech of the vehicle wouldn't have been able make the starting line.

One of the top Mexican desert racing teams, Vildosola Racing is based in Mexicali, Mexico. Gus Vildosola Jr. and his father Gus Vildosola finished second in SCORE Trophy-Truck in last year's legendary 40th Tecate SCORE Baja 1000.

Vildosola was ninth after the first lap, hoping to run consistently and got much more than he had planned. He ran consistent laps of 7:23, 7:30, 7:29, 7:30, 7:28, 7:34 and 7;54 to take a 44 second lead in SCORE Trophy-Truck going in to Sunday's final half of the race.

Second in SCORE Trophy-Truck is Rich Ronco, Peoria, Ariz., in a Chevy Silverado while third is Damen Jefferies, Apple Valley, Calif., in another Chevy Silverado, two minutes and one second behind Vildosola.

The unlimited Class 1 race was the closest of the day with Las Vegas' Pat Dean and B.J. Richardson only one second apart and two-time race winner Dale Ebberts third just four seconds behind Dean.

Both part of the Las Vegas Dissemination Company team, Dean and Richardson drive near-identically Chevy-powered Bunderson open-wheel desert race cars. Ebberts, Whitlow, Calif., is driving a Porter Chevy.

Vildosola outlasted early leaders Robby Gordon, Chet Huffman and Brian Collins to take the leading heading into Sunday's final half of the popular race. Gordon, Huffman and Collins all broke down and Gordon's first lap, turned in 6:55 was the fastest of the day. Gordon and Huffman went out on lap 4 while Collins was sidelined on lap 6.

Among the other class leaders after Saturday included: Corey Boyer, Bakersfield, Calif. (Class 1-2/600, Lothringer-VW), Marcos Nunez, Ensenada, Mexico (Class 5/1600, VW Baja Bug), Ramon Fernandez, Ensenada, Mexico (Class 11, VW Sedan), Dan Chamlee, Carpenteria, Calif. (Class 7, Ford Ranger), John Holmes, Olivenhain, Calif. (Class 7SX, Ford Ranger), Juan C. Lopez, Tecate, Mexico (Class 8, Ford F-150), Rod Hall, Reno, Nev. (Stock Mini, Hummer H3), John Griffin, Mission Viejo, Calif. (Stock Full, Ford F-350), George Seeley, Glendale, Calif. (Class 5, VW Baja Bug), Chris Harrold, Chula Vista, Calif., (Class 10 AlumiCraft-Honda), Tom Watson, El Centro, Calif. (SCORE Lite, Prill-VW).

Besides Class 1, several class leaders are less than a minute ahead of second place.

In Class 1-2/1600, Boyer leads Adam Pfankuch by just one second heading into Sunday's finale. In Class 5/1600, the top three vehicles are only 20 seconds apart. Second by 12 seconds behind Nunez is Enrique Zazueta Jr. and eight seconds behind Zazueta is Jose Alonso.

In SCORE Lite, Tom Watson has a 46-second lead over David Callaway.

The stadium seating area includes the immensely popular SCOREvision large-screen LED display, showing live footage from nearly the entire race course.

More event information is available at www.visitlaughlin.com

-credit: score

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Series Score
Drivers Robby Gordon , Damen Jefferies , Rod Hall , Jose Alonso