GRASS VALLEY, CA (Sept 8, 2009) - Kevin Yoder took First Place at the Hawthorne 250 in the Sportsman class on Sunday September 7th. With four 55-mile loops to complete, he outran and outlasted all of the competitors to the checker flag.
With twelve vehicles starting in the Sportsman class, Yoder pulled the pole position for his class. He hadn’t pre-ran the course, so the first lap was relatively medium paced. Ready to take it up a notch for the second lap, he started to get a lot more play in the steering, sometimes taking a half turn of the steering wheel to get the tires to move at all. With the attrition rate high on the course, Yoders focus was to finish, so instead of stepping it up, he slowed down to be consistent and stay on course.
On mile 20 of lap three, Yoder finally pulled off the track to visually inspect the steering problem and the loud banging in the drive train that was getting worse by the mile. When he stopped, he lost his lead to Tom Wayes who had been chasing him all day, and now the table was turned. But on mile 8 of lap four, Yoder took the lead again when he passed Wayes with a front left shock mount broke and through the hood. Knowing he had the win captured with just finishing, Yoder and co-pilot Dean Reed stopped to help a couple of other competitors upright their rigs and get unstuck in the nasty desert silt.
As the Yoder Racing 34 car headed towards the finish line, there wasn’t just silt dust flying behind it, but dark gray clouds of smoke too. The rear end had grenaded and sprayed rear differential fluid everywhere. The 150 miles of knocking that they had heard would later be associated with the rear ring and pinion and ARB. With only a half-mile to go, and the finish line in sight, the transmission locked up stopping the car. Not giving up, Yoder put the car into low range and could still only find third gear with it feeling like it was going to lock up too. He used momentum and pushed the car to the finish line for his second First Place finish in a VORRA desert race.
With the list of issues that plagued the car this race, the Pit Bull Tires performed with no issues and no flats! Yoder was also awarded for having the fastest lap time in the class at 1 hr 18 min. With a class one car being the only one to finish ahead of him, Yoder is certainly keeping pace with desert racers in his rock buggy / KOH car.
Kevin Yoder is currently sitting in first place in the Sportsman Class of the VORRA series. The Hawthorne 250 was the last VORRA desert race for this years season, buy they do have two short course races in October that Yoder will attend to clinch the championship.
Next Race: VORRA Short Course Prairie City, California October 10-11
He has a substantial point lead in the Sportsman Class series with 2 short course races left. www.vorra.net
About Kevin Yoder: Kevin Yoder proves weekend after weekend that he is a force to be reckoned with on the track, and an all around off-roader that gives back to the community on the trail. He is currently the Nor Cal Rock Racing champion for the second straight year in rock short course racing. He is in the lead of the Sportsman Class in the VORRA series that combines desert racing and short course. He also competes in the CalRocks series and finished the 2009 King of the Hammers race in 18th place. On weekends not at a competition he is trail riding assisting with trail maintenance, trash pickup and other club activities.
Sponsors: Pit Bull Tires, Performance Cryogenics