TORC: Douglas Motorsports Oshkosh event summary
DOUGLAS ANSWERS WITH 1ST AND 2ND PLACE FINISHES IN OSHKOSH Oshkosh, Wisconsin-Scott Douglas climbed into the number 7 AMSOIL Kumho F-150 in a brand-new MasterCraft driving suit for round 5 of TORC Series presented by AMSOIL race action. Off-road ...
DOUGLAS ANSWERS WITH 1ST AND 2ND PLACE FINISHES IN OSHKOSH
Oshkosh, Wisconsin-Scott Douglas climbed into the number 7 AMSOIL Kumho F-150 in a brand-new MasterCraft driving suit for round 5 of TORC Series presented by AMSOIL race action. Off-road racing is a dirty sport, but when Scott Douglas scrambled to the roof of the number 7 AMSOIL Kumho Baileigh Industrial Ford F-150 in victory lane, his custom black MasterCraft driving suit was still spotless. That's because after passing for the lead in turn one, Douglas didn't relinquish the number one position, leading the race wire-to-wire. Now that's the way to break in a new driving suit.
The win moved Scott back into second place in TORC PRO 4X4 points, picking up additional bonus points for leading at the mandatory competition caution mid-race. The tight and technical track was made more challenging by heavy rains days before the race that turned the heavy clay surface extremely tacky. Traction wasn't a problem, but tire selection was critical. "Tire selection is important in any off-road race, but with conditions like we had today, the right tire compound and groove is critical," commented Douglas after the race. "Our Kumho Tires had just the right combination of forward bite for acceleration and side bite for cornering. The AMSOIL Kumho Baileigh Industrial F-150 was a rocket off the line and it turned-in and rotated in the corners just right. Crew Chief Jason Schampers and the Douglas Motorsports team had the chassis setup just right too. The infield rhythm section was really rough. We were using full suspension travel and occasionally the bump-stops. The Fox Racing Shox did there job perfectly and I was able to pick my lines and drive through traffic," continued Douglas.
Tires would be a determining factor for round 6 on Saturday night as well. TORC inverted the top six trucks, which put Douglas back in row three for the rolling start. Scott needed to battle his way through some very fast and aggressive traffic to get back to the front.
The move forward didn't take long and Douglas was already in third by the end of the first lap, closing on the Monster Energy Toyotas driven by Johnny Greaves and Rick Huseman. Race action was intense and the rough sections of the track were getting rougher with each lap. Douglas moved into second place on the third lap and looked for an opening to get around race leader Johnny Greaves. The crowd was on their feet as these two veterans went at it. Douglas was able to pull ahead for the lead on lap seven before the competition caution, but contact with the Toyota put a big cut in the sidewall of Douglas' right front tire.
Fortunately, these tires have an inner liner that will prevent them from going all the way flat, but handling and traction are a problem when running on the liner. The Douglas Motorsports team decided there simply wasn't time to pit for a fresh tire. Since the Oshkosh track was built utilizing three turns and the infield of a clay oval, every corner but one was a left-hander. In left hand turns, the right front is the most critical tire. Thanks to the beadlocks on the Walker Evans Racing Wheels, the tire stayed on the rim, but the Kumho was taking an amazing amount of abuse as Douglas threw the 850 horsepower race truck into one left hand turn after another at race speed.
TRAXXAS driver Mike Jenkins made an impressive late race charge and blasted past both Rick Huseman and Scott Douglas as Douglas was sorting out the truck's new handling characteristics. It didn't take Scott long to figure out how to drive fast with the cut tire and push back up to a pace that would challenge for the lead. The last two laps of the race were both 40- second laps with the flat - just one second off full race speed when the truck was fresh. Scott was able to put a fender on Jenkins, in the last two corners but a clean pass wasn't possible and Douglas finished second right on the bumper of Mike Jenkins.
After the race, Scott Douglas credited the tough construction of his Kumho tires for his winning weekend. "Our Kumho tires were amazing this weekend, they hooked up even after a big cut in the sidewall let all the air out. Any other tire would have come apart under the abuse we put them through." The second place finish on Saturday closed the gap between first and second to just 12-points at the mid-point of the season. Johnny Greaves is leading PRO 4X4 points with 139 and Scott Douglas has now has 127.
Rounds 7 and 8 of the 2010 TRAXXAS TORC Series presented by AMSOIL are scheduled for August 14th and 15th in Bark River, Michigan.
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