The Greaves’ dominate Sunday TORC @ Bark River – Johnny wins PRO 4 & CJ PRO 2
Posted on Sunday, August 12, 2012
Another massive crowd gathers in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula to watch the Traxxas TORC PRO racing @ Bark River Raceway!
By Pat Schutte
BARK RIVER, Mich. (Aug. 12, 2012) – In just 24 hours Johnny Greaves went from being the most bummed guy at Bark River Raceway to, by far, the most pumped. The former 2010 Traxxas TORC Series, presented by AMSOIL champion had yet to win on the circuit this year. And yesterday he’d all but won, only to suffer a mechanical failure on the last lap. On Sunday Greaves served up much of the same in terms of domination, but this time his oft-broken truck this year held up as he won the PRO 4x4 main.
And to top that his son, CJ, won in the PRO 2 division just moments before. So yeah, JG was pumped!
Another huge crowd packed the Michigan Upper Peninsula track for the round ten of the 2012 Traxxas TORC Series, and the racing was again spectacular as you’ll read below.
Monster Energy/Toyota/Maxxis’ Johnny Greaves bit the head off the snake rival Ricky Johnson (Red Bull/Mopar/Ram/KMC Wheels) said bit Greaves yesterday at Bark River. The Wisconsin native again dominated the rest of the PRO 4 field at Bark River, this time making his massive lead stick through the checkers ahead of Johnson (3rd) and second place Mike Jenkins (Traxxas/AMSOIL/BFG) for his first TORC victory of the season.
“Man, finally,” said an elated Greaves from the podium. “And what a better place to do it than Bark River – a great track and with all my friends and fans here. I feel like staying here another couple weeks just to let it soak in.”
Greaves launched out to an early lead and never looked back, ruling the race – as he did yesterday before breaking and placing 4th – from start to finish. “The crew helped me get this win today. The truck ran great and, though the season’s been tough, we’re going to keep moving forward and try and make up as much as we can.”
With Greaves up front early, Mike Jenkins and Scott Douglas (AMSOIL/Borla Exhaust/BFG) got into it on a turn leading away from the grandstands, the result of which left Jenkins high-sided and stuck on a dirt berm – relegated to last place. A lap later Douglas over-shot a corner and dropped spots to Mark Jenkins (who moved into 2nd) (Traxxas/AMSOIL/BFG) and Johnson in 3rd, joining Greaves (1st) for the Competition Yellow restart. Johnson would have to make a run to the hot pits to have a flat tire changed, coming back out in dead last.
As Greaves checked out up front, Johnson came blazing back – benefitting in part from an Adrian Cenni (Real Tree Energy)/Mike Jenkins get together and a Mark Jenkins spinout into the infield. Later in the race Johnson would collide with Mike Jenkins off the Red Bull Arch jump, giving RJ a flat right rear tire with one lap to go.
When the checkers flew Greaves, who won the Oakley Bomb Award for the fastest lap, was still well out front. A battle ensued for the final podium spots with Mike Jenkins getting 2nd and Johnson holding off a hard-charging Douglas for 3rd.
Noteworthy: DOH! Mike Jenkins, President of TORC Series title sponsor Traxxas, took out one of the event film crew’s Traxxas RC trucks with a GoPro HD camera mounted on it. Un-phased, Jenkins was pumped to be on the podium. “I’m up here with Johnny Greaves and Ricky Johnson – this is a great day for me,” he said.
PRO 4x4 Results
1- Johnny Greaves 2- Mike Jenkins 3- Ricky Johnson 4- Scott Douglas 5- Dan Baudoux 6- Mark Jenkins 7- Al Drews 8- Jim Ridderbush 9- Adrian Cenni 10- Jerry Conrad
Looking to win his 200th pro off-road race, all Ram/Mopar veteran great Rob MacCachren had to do was get past a 17-year-old. Piece of cake, right? Hardly as CJ Greaves (Monster Energy/Toyota/Maxxis) slammed the door shut on MacCachren to win Sunday’s PRO 2 main event at Bark River.
Give it up for Rob Mac, though, as he raced CJ clean – in a race filled with banging from beginning to end - with nary a fender or side panel bump on the thrilling final four turns.
“I remember seeing CJ in diapers … his dad taking his training wheels off … CJ riding his first dirt bike, so I’ve got to hand it to him for winning today,” said MacCachren (2nd), who won the Oakley Bomb Award for the fastest PRO 2 lap around Bark River in his pursuit of the win.
Added 1st place CJ Greaves: “Rob’s got to remember I’ve been able to watch him race all these years and did a lot of studying of my own. We got a good start and I just tried to race the smartest race that I could and it worked out in the end. Thanks to my team for sure. They worked their asses off changing a motor last night, so this was really a team effort for the win.”
Pulling the PRO 2 holeshot on Sunday was Steve Barlow (Real Tree Energy), who led CJ Greaves, Scott Taylor (Miller Electric Welders) and Jeff Kincaid (Traxxas/AMSOIL/BFG) through the first turn. Barlow would make a mistake early, which allowed CJ Greaves to take the lead – which he kept through the midway Competition Yellow. Rounding out the top three at the halfway point were Taylor and Chad Hord (BOSS Snowplows/Nissan/AMSOIL.CJ Greaves and MacCachren hooking up late in the race was the direct result of MacCachren’s pursuit of Taylor for 2nd place. The two put on a serious chase, the result of which was MacCachren’s Oakley Bomb Award. And while CJ Greaves cracked off consistently fast laps, Taylor and MacCachren’s battle allowed MacCachren to take second when Taylor took a turn wide and MacCachren ducked underneath. On the single file restart CJ Greaves blew it open, with MacCachren getting past Hord for 3rd.
When the white flag flew Taylor would have to hold off a spirited charge from Hord to take the final podium spot behind CJ Greaves (1st) and MacCachren (2nd).
Noteworthy: Mark Jenkins (Traxxas/AMSOIL/BFG) pulled off the ‘Save of the Weekend’ when he bicycled his PRO 2 truck in one of the faster sections of the track for about half the length of a football field before putting ‘er back down on all fours and continuing the race.
PRO 2 Results
1- CJ Greaves 2- Rob MacCachren 3- Scott Taylor 4- Bryce Menzies 5- Chad Hord 6- Steve Barlow 7- Mike Oberg 8- Mike Jenkins 9- Jeff Kincaid
A thrilling finish to the Bark River TORC PRO Light event saw defending series champ Andrew Caddell (Ram/Mopar/Traxxas) chase down and catch Brad Lovell (AMSOIL/Nissan/Torchmate) on the last lap, then held off a furious charge by Lovell to take the checkers.
“My spotter came on over the radio and said ‘The guy in front of you is now ahead in the points.’ (Note: Caddell & Lovell were tied after Saturday at Bark River, Lovell took the lead with the Competition Yellow points he received on Sunday.) So we made a couple moves on the restart and got up into 2nd. Brad then made a little mistake on the last lap on the back stretch and I just stuck it in there and got the lead.”
Added Lovell: “I was doing the math in my head there during the race and figured we were ahead in points after the competition yellow. We tried our darndest to get up here on top of the box. And while you’re never upset to be up here, this one’s tough.”
And if you can believe it, the battle for the third and final podium spot between Keegan Kincaid (Traxxas/AMSOIL/BFG), Matt Cook (Supercross.com) and CJ Greaves (Monster Energy/Toyota/Maxxis) as Kincaid and Cook went all demolition derby on each other, causing flat tires and opening the door for Greaves to take the final podium spot.
“We came from dead last, picked everybody off one-by-one and were able to get up here,” said Greaves.
Noteworthy: For the second straight day Traxxas/AMSOIL/BFG racer Luke Johnson won the Traxxas Maxx Lap for the fastest lap in PRO Lights – literally on a truck that Johnson said “Just came off the welding table.” Saturday podium finisher Shaun Morris (Maxxis/AMSOIL/Proformance) was vying for a podium finish as well, but suffered a flat tire late in the race and dropped back.
PRO Light Results
1- Andrew Caddell 2- Brad Lovell 3- CJ Greaves 4- Luke Johnson 5- Matt Cook 6- Randy Eller 7- Nick Baumgartner 8- Mark Oberg 9- Jason Janusz 10- Eric Ruppel 11- Josh Hintz 12- Keegan Kincaid 13- Ross Hoek 14- Shawn Morris
PRO Super Buggy
High drama on the last lap of the TORC PRO Super Buggies at Bark River! Saturday winner and series points leader Mitchell DeJong (Traxxas/BFG) was battling back from last place, having entered the hot pits with vision issues, all the way up to 2nd - and closing on leader John Frana – when his motor let go. Frana, clear of the then 3rd and 4th place racers, Andy Zipperer (Loctite/Warn/Redline) and Bryan Bernloehr, looked to have things wrapped up. But on top of the hill at the Red Bull arch a big puff of white smoke popped out of Frana’s buggy, and he soon came to a dead stop. This left Zipperer in 1st place, which he easily cruised to victory – a half lap ahead of the broken Frana. Bernloehr raced to 2nd (in Scott Schwalbe’s buggy) and yesterday’s 3rd place finisher, JR Wheeler, wound up 3rd.
“I wish it would have come a little differently, rather than by attrition – but I’ll take it,” said Zipperer.
Wheeler, who crossed the finish line upside down in the air for 3rd on Saturday, then summed up spirit and comradery of TORC racing at Bark River for all the racers: “They guy I hit yesterday (Las Vegas’ Aaron Hawley) gave us two new back wheels and a new front wheel … and that’s what this sport is all about.”
Super Buggy Results
1- Andy Zipperer 2- Bryan Bernloehr 3- JR Wheeler 4- Chris Haenlein 5- Tom Schwartzburg 6- Scott Schwalbe 7- John Frana 8- Mitchell DeJong 9- Aaron Hawley 10- Bob Klaus
Up next … Crandon (Wis.) International Off-Road Raceway World Championships, Aug. 31 - Sept. 2.
Media contact: Pat Schutte, HPPR, firstname.lastname@example.org
Photo by Mike Roth
For more information, please visit: www.torcseries.com
The Traxxas TORC Series, presented by AMSOIL, is the fastest, most punishing short course racing series on the planet! TORC events are packed with flag-to-flag fender banging as drivers push the limits over whoops and jump-filled natural terrain race tracks. Off-road racing fans come from far and wide to experience the most challenging form of high-octane competition. And once they taste TORC for the first time they’re hooked for life!