Torchmate team racer Brad Lovell was named Dirt Sports Racer of the Year at an awards presentation at the Oakley world headquarters in Foothill Ranch, Calif. on Feb. 13, capping off a remarkably successful year of off-road competition for one of the most versatile drivers in off-road racing.
Lovell is coming off of the racing season of his life. He won the TORC Pro-Light series championship, the Ultra-4 Pro series championship and the Baja 1,000. He said the Dirt Sports award was the pinnacle of his racing career.
“I really do feel it is the highest award that our team could get,” said Lovell. “It’s a benchmark in my career.”
Lovell, who cut his teeth tackling the rocky, off-road terrain of the Colorado high country, has raced and won everything from short-course tracks and desert races to rock crawling events and hill climbs. He attributes his record season and the Racer of the Year honors to “flat-out determination and teamwork.”
Lovell said there were many highlights to his season. He locked up the TORC Pro-Light championship on pure racing skill after losing his rear brakes. He remembers his body aching as he exited his Baja 1,000 rig after the pounding desert epic, and delivering BF Goodrich their first Baja win.
“It is not a hobby for us, it is a passion and a business,” said Lovell. “You can’t buy passion and you can’t buy the relationship that family has and how they work together.”
Lovell has raced with his older brother Roger for 10 years. And he credits the close connections only found among family members for much of Lovell Racing’s success.
“Our leg up on the competition is the way we communicated and worked together,” said Lovell.
After six rock crawling championships, Dirt Sports Rock Racer of the Year honors in 2009, wins in some of the world’s most demanding off-road races, dual championships in TORC and Ultra-4 Pro and a Baja 1000 win under his belt, Lovell has solidified his status as one of the most versatile and accomplished drivers in off-road racing.
But as he was awarded an honor that recognized his individual talents as a driver, Lovell credited his team and his sponsors for helping him reach the pinnacle of the sport he knew he would compete in ever since he saw the Baja 1000 on television as a kid.
“I want to thank the team and thank the people who helped me get here,” said Lovell.