The Flying Dutchman Off Road Race Team Finds Success and Heartbreak at the Oshkosh Speedzone Appleton, WI (July 28, 2010) - It was another exciting weekend of racing for the TRAXXAS TORC Series presented by Amsoil race fans in Oshkosh, WI. The...
The Flying Dutchman Off Road Race Team Finds Success and Heartbreak at the Oshkosh Speedzone
Appleton, WI (July 28, 2010) - It was another exciting weekend of racing for the TRAXXAS TORC Series presented by Amsoil race fans in Oshkosh, WI. The Flying Dutchman Off Road Race Team headed to town with high expectations. With Mike Vanden Heuvel currently leading the Limited 2 Points Standings and Dan Vanden Heuvel looking to gain on the points leaders in the Pro 2WD class, the Flying Dutchman Team was ready for what would prove to be some wild on track action.
With no practice on Friday due to rain, Mike got behind the wheel of his No. 299 Flanagan's Stop-n-Shop sponsored Chevrolet for the first Limited 2WD race of the weekend. Starting in the 4th position, he knew he had to get past the competition as fast as possible. The trucks come up to the start and the green flag flies. Vanden Heuvel started making quick work of the competition and made it to the front within the first two laps of the race. Once he got out front, there was no looking back. Mike took the lead and started to pull away from the rest of the field up to the mandatory caution at the half way point of the race. With the field bunched up, Mike knew he had to get a great start in order to stay out front. The green flag drops and the second half of the race is under way. Mike had an incredible start and kept the lead. Never looking back, Mike would take the victory and add to his point lead.
Mike Vanden Heuvel - Limited 2WD
Mike takes to the track for the second Limited 2WD event of the weekend on Saturday night. Again, Mike is set to start in the 4th position and knew what he needed to do to get out front. The green flag drops and Mike starts making his way towards the front. Moving up to second place by the end of the first lap, it looked like this would be a repeat of the night before. Mike pulled up behind Dan Baudoux, who jumped out to an early lead. Going back and forth racing side by side at times for the lead, Mike and Dan put on a great show for the Oshkosh fans. At the half way point, Mike found himself still in the second position. He knew that in order to take another victory, he would have to get around Baudoux as soon as possible. The green flag flies again and Mike goes to the outside to attempt to get around the leader. Baudoux closes the door and Mike stays in second. Just a couple of laps later, coming around turn 5 Baudoux gets a little loose and the leaders make contact. Baudoux goes into the infield and then heads back up the track and gets into the driver side of the points leader. Baudoux is forced to pull off the track with damage, while Mike takes over the lead. Mike would hold the lead until he was forced to pull off the track due to damage from the earlier contact. As the race comes to an end, Mike is scored in the fourth position.
Mike Vanden Heuvel Quotes:
"Without any practice on Friday, our main goal was to go out and get a feel for the track in the first few laps. We also knew no one else had any practice time either, so we knew we would have to get around them as fast as possible. Once the green flag dropped and I felt how good our Goodyear tires were hooking up, I knew we had what it would take to get to the front."
"The first half of Saturday night's race was a lot of fun. Battling with Dan Baudoux and putting on a great show for the fans was great. When I saw Dan getting loose in turn 5, I hit my brakes to try to avoid him, but his truck came down and we couldn't avoid the contact. Then his truck came back up the track and hit me in the left rear. I was able to keep going for a while, but the damage was done and I had to pull off the track less than a half a lap from the white flag. It's a real shame we were forced to pull off and not get my crew and sponsors the victory they deserved."
Dan Vanden Heuvel - Pro 2WD
Dan Vanden Heuvel lines up in the 7th position for the start of the first round of Pro 2WD action of the weekend. As the green flag drops, Dan makes an aggressive move to the inside of the pack making his way up to second place by the end of the first lap. As the laps pass by, Dan finds himself moving back to third by the half way point of the race. During the second half of the race the transmission started slipping and Dan found himself losing another position by the end of the race finishing in 4th. Looking at the truck after the race, the team found a rock had come up and broke a transmission cooling fan blade causing the transmission to run too hot. It was determined this was the cause of the transmission slipping later in the race.
Dan Vanden Heuvel lines up fourth for the start of what would be an exciting race with battles all over the track. As the race gets under way, Dan found himself losing a few positions right from the start. Being farther back in the field, the battles were fierce and body panels were flying all over. At one point, the hood flipped up and was partially blocking Dan's vision making it difficult to gain positions. By the half way point in the race, there were very few body panels remaining on the No. 77 Maxxis Tires sponsored Chevrolet. Restarting in eigth after the competition yellow, Dan knew he had to start gaining positions right away in order to salvage a good finish. Picking off other competitors every chance he had, Dan fought his way back up to a 5th place finish. With 4th and 5th place finishes in Oshkosh, Dan is currently 5th in points and only 6 points out of third. With a great showing in Bark River in a couple of weeks, Dan is looking to move up in the standings.
Dan Vanden Heuvel Quotes:
"Being both a competitor and a co-promoter of the event made for a very busy weekend. I'm thrilled with the crowd turn out and all the great action on the track. We had some of the most exciting races I've seen in a while and doing it under the lights is always a great show for the fans."
"We would have liked to come out of Oshkosh with a win, but sometimes you can't control what happens out there. On Friday night our ATD Transmission held out as long as it could with the cooling fan blade being broken. They always build us great transmissions and I knew there had to be a reason for it to start slipping."
"Overall it was a great weekend for the team and we're looking forward to better results in Bark River."
The next event for the Flying Dutchman Off Road Race Team will be in Bark River, MI on August 14 & 15.