Charlotte, N.C. – Robby Gordon OFF-ROAD officials are honored to announce that the 2013 SPEED Energy Stadium SUPER Trucks Champion will be the recipient of the Inaugural Mickey Thompson Championship Trophy, named in honor of the late championship racer, innovator, and promoter, Mickey Thompson.
Born December 7, 1928, in San Fernando, Calif., Thompson was an integral player in the West Coast drag-racing scene of the 1950’s. His most notable achievement during this time was the creation of the first slingshot dragster in 1954.
However, it was during Mickey’s time managing the Lion Drag Strip near Long Beach, Calif., he created some of the most innovative improvements in racing safety. The development of the ‘Christmas Tree’ starting lights that are implemented throughout drag racing today, took the human starter out of the equation. During the same period, it was Mickey’s idea to fill barrels with water to help absorb a car’s energy during a crash; the same safety technique is now used in Stadium SUPER Trucks competition years later.
As a championship driver, Thompson set more speed and endurance records than any other driver in automotive history. A 2007 Automobile Quarterly article estimated that Thompson participated in more than 10,000 races, drove more than 1 million race miles, and set nearly 500 speed and endurance records, including 295 records at the famous Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah.
Though it was his love for off-road racing that led Thompson to found SCORE International in 1973, a sanctioning body to oversee endurance off-road racing throughout North America. Thompson continuously said that the only ones to enjoy this form of magnificent racing were “Nothing but cactus, and jackrabbits.” He wanted to bring the excitement of desert racing to a wider audience.
In 1979, Mickey and wife Trudy formed Mickey Thompson Entertainment Group (MTEG) an indoor motocross and off-road vehicle racing show and competition. The goal was to take the sport from back-country terrain to stadiums in heavily populated metropolitan areas. Beginning with the first stadium event at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, MTEG was able to bring off-road racing to the masses, giving city fans a taste of the ultra competitive racing throughout the Baja 1000.
As a competitor and innovator, Thompson lived his life in the fast lane and gained thousands of fans and admirers. His memory continues to inspire drivers and promoters around the world today. As it most recently inspired Orange, Calif., native Robby Gordon, in the rebirth of Mickey’s vision bringing back off-road racing to city fans in stadiums around North America. In 2013, those visions became reality as Stadium SUPER Trucks Inaugural event was held on April 6 at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Ariz.
Stadium SUPER Trucks Founder and President Robby Gordon stated;
“There was no other name more fitting for the Stadium SUPER Trucks Championship Trophy than to name it in honor of the late Mickey Thompson. What we are doing was Mickey’s vision back in the day of bringing off-road to the masses, people are able enjoy a fun night of racing and entertainment while being in some of the finest facilities throughout North America.”
The winner of the SPEED Energy Stadium SUPER Trucks Championship will hold possession of the Mickey Thompson Championship Trophy for exactly one year. At that point it will be returned to series officials to award to the following years champion.
After Round 1 at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Ariz. the 2013 SPEED Energy Stadium SUPER Trucks Championship Point Standings have been calculated and to no surprise Rob MacCachren, of Las Vegas, Nev., driving the Traxxas #21 has jumped out to a comfortable early lead over second place Robby Gordon and third place Justin Matney of Bristol, Va.
SPEED Energy SST Championship Point Standings after Round 1:
1. Rob MacCachren 42
2. Robby Gordon 33
3. Justin Matney 29
4. Greg Adler 27
5. PJ Jones 24
6. Justin Lofton 23
7. Arie Luyendyk Jr. 22
T- 8. Nick Baumgartner 19
T- 8. Mike Jenkins 19
T- 8. Jeff Ward 19
11. Lalo Laguna 18
12. Austin Kimbrell 14
The Inaugural season of SPEED Energy Stadium SUPER Trucks continues Sunday afternoon, April 21, in Long Beach, Calif. at the historic Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach. SST’s will run the same street course as the IndyCar Series, hitting metal ramps and flying 120 feet down the straight away.
Tickets to see the SPEED Energy Stadium SUPER Trucks at the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach are available for purchase online at http://www.gplb.com.