TORC Oshkosh Race Report: Ross Hoek Motorsports Holland, MI (July 27, 2010) - After coming out of the gate strong at Crandon the RHM team struggled with chassis setup at Bark River. After two weeks of work back at the shop, and several...
TORC Oshkosh Race Report: Ross Hoek Motorsports
Holland, MI (July 27, 2010) - After coming out of the gate strong at Crandon the RHM team struggled with chassis setup at Bark River. After two weeks of work back at the shop, and several major changes later, the team was at Oshkosh ready to test the new setup. Due to typical Midwest spring weather, testing the new RHM truck has been very limited. The weather during the Oshkosh event didn't help matters either, as nighttime thunderstorms put excessive amounts of moisture on the track, therefore canceling both practice sessions. Even with the weather setbacks the weekend of racing at Oshkosh had the team learning more and more about the new and highly competitive PRO-Light division and the #21 Venom Energy BFGoodrich Tires Ford Ranger is gaining ground on the top performers in the class.
The .8 mile long short track really tested the driver and race truck alike. The outer section of the layout was high flying and fast, while the infield portion was technical with a lengthy rhythm section and a tight 180 degree turn. With no practice on the new track or to test the suspension changes on the #21 PRO-Light the team was forced to jump right into racing conditions.
Round Six of the Traxxas TORC Series presented by AMSOIL saw the orange Venom Energy Ford starting on the front row! With a 2x2 start and a tight track the front row start is a huge advantage but when the green flag flew Ross new he had problems. The truck wouldn't accelerate! The carburetor issues impacted performance driving out of the corners and at the same time the front suspension wasn't handling the rhythm section very well. Regardless, Ross drove hard and finished sixth.
"Overall I'm happy with today" noted Ross after the race "The truck turned really well and I think the suspension will perform when I can actually drive the truck, the carburetor issue is a huge disappointment; we went through everything since Bark River and just missed it."
Before Round Seven the team made a few changes, including correcting the carburetor issue as well as a spring and sway bar change. When the green flag was dropped the carburetor issue was gone, but now Ross was racing from the back of the starting grid where many of the less experienced drivers are lined up. It seemed like there was more than a little rubbing and pushing going on at the tail end of the field. Ross felt like a pinball. Regardless Ross and his team gathered valuable information about the truck during the evening as it crossed the finish in eighth place.
"Obviously this is not how we want to finish," remarked Ross Hoek. "We have a very small baseline to start with and that puts our team behind the top guys in our class. Each week great strides are being made. We will continue that trend throughout the remainder of the year, and you will see Ross Hoek Motorsports back on the PRO-Light podium soon."
The Oshkosh weekend also saw the return of the RHM Super Buggy to the track. Ross had the previous owner of the buggy, Ryan Mulder, come to Oshkosh to assist with the setup on the coil over designed Super Buggy. Early in Saturday's race the clutch stuck stalling Ryan in a turn long enough for a competitor to drill him. The impact tore the left front wheel off the car ending the day early.
Saturday morning the car was repaired and Ryan started the race in the back once again. The gray Super Buggy was running well during Round 8, and came across the finish line in a well deserved fourth place. Thanks to Ryan's help the team looks forward to getting Tori back in the buggy for Bark River.
"Right now we are still learning about the two vehicles, the progress we are making now will pay off as we head into the second half of the season," commented Ross Hoek. "Look for good things to come in the near future for Ross Hoek Motorsports."