DANVILLE, CA - JULY 10, 2009: Jeff Mello celebrated his 100th competition win at the Reno Rocks WERock event June 19th and 20th at the Sands Regency Casino. After the team of Jeff Mello and spotter Dave Cole completed their final course in the Formula Toyota class and clinched the event win, Mello jumped on the roof of a vehicle he didn’t even own and claimed the victory.
"I'm so happy my 100th win could come at such a fantastic event. Having Dave Cole as my spotter, the King of the Hammers preview, Pirate4x4.com coverage, and having my family here was the icing on the cake. The irony of having 99 wins all in Jeep brand vehicles and then the 100th in a Toyota is fine with me. Who would have thought," said Mello. The remarkable success of the Mello and Cole team shows they are winners no matter what they drive. This particular Formula Toyota vehicle was new to both of them, so new that they had never even met the owner.
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Mello's career has spanned over three decades and nine different disciplines of off-road racing. Starting in BMX and local mud racing, Mello evolved as a privateer into national events such as the Clear Channel Pro Arena/ Stadium series, eight rock crawling championships, King of the Hammers, and XRRA rock racing. He's earned wins on the international level both as UROC World Supercrawl Champion in 2003 and as a hired shoe for the Pirate4x4/ Shaffer's winning Jeepspeed in the 2007 SCORE Baja 1000. Other honorable mention wins include the 2002 Pro Rock Series with four back-to-back event wins, and the Stock Modified Championship. Mello is recognized as a driver who can get the vehicle onto the podium and claims his "race any thing" attitude toward seat time to be a keystone in his success. He is always looking for the next ride and the next big challenge.
Jeff Mello runs a budget team that has had to find ingenious ways to get and maintain the vehicles to competition standards, and successfully does so weekend after weekend. “We make winning financially smart, it’s part of the challenge for me,” says Mello. “That’s just good business, and our sponsors and fans alike respect that about us.”
Jeff Mello is one of the most successful, well-known, and easily liked drivers in the Jeep Racing community. But Mello is not only successful on the race course; he is also a key part of the off-road community. “I'm also on the trail with my family (often),” says Mello, “and I'm active in supporting land use issues. I feel I'm a good representation of the 4wd market consumer.”
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