BARSTOW, CA –  Rick D. Johnson drove the General Tire / Lucas Oil #71 Trophy Truck Friday November 18th at the Tecate SCORE Baja 1000.  He started 11th and finished at RM122 when a specialty bolt broke. “The start of the race was muddy through the wash, and then the traction was perfect for the General Tire Grabber’s to the help us gain 3 positions in a very short amount of time,” said Rick D. Johnson.  “We are disappointed with not making it to the finish of the Baja 1000, but are now prepping the truck for the final Best in the Desert race,” said Johnson who is top 10 in season points going into the TransWest Ford Henderson 250.

Rick D Johnson had a full week of pre-running, autograph signings, press conferences and contingency as part of the Baja 1000 pre-race festivities.  On race day, the #71 started 11th and was one of the first group of Trophy Trucks that left the Official Starting line and the Official Restart line.  After the almost hour and a half delay, Johnson and co-driver Brian Sallee got into a solid race pace.  “Everything was going great and the truck was solid, then all of a sudden around RM122 the oil pressure light comes on and the power steering goes away so we just thought we lost a fan belt. We got out to change the fan belt and the front accessory drive pulley and the pump drive for the oil pump Bolt had sheered and broke. The whole front pulley and belt broke off the end of the crankshaft. So, we were done. We had no fix.  It takes a special bolt that was in a chase truck over three hours away from us. Once they got to us, we tried to repair it, but didn’t have enough tooling,” recalled a very disappointed Johnson.  It took over 12 hours to recover the truck from the remote location where it broke.  “I was really looking forward to using the new Baja Designs lights in the night section, and the King Shocks really did make the whoops a little more bearable!”

The All-American Red, White and Blue truck doesn’t need a lot of preparation for the Best in the Desert TransWest Ford Henderson 250 this weekend December 3, 2011. “Using Lucas Oil has absolutely cut the gear wear down letting the Pfaff engine perform at top efficiency, so all we are really working on is cleaning it up and double checking everything,” said Johnson, who has podiumed in the Trophy Truck class at multiple races in the past.  He will ironman the race with longtime co-driver Brian Sallee.  “I have driven all the races with Brian co-driving for the last 5 years.  We make a good fit, he likes to talk and I just have to make it happen,” laughed Johnson.  The team will qualify for starting position on Thursday December 2nd.

Team Updates for the Henderson 250 will be on Rick D. Johnson Facebook Page  www.facebook.com/rickdjohnson71

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