Erik Miller is unofficially the 2016 Nitto King of the Hammers winner.

Erik Miller is unofficially the 2016 Nitto King of the Hammers winner.

After coming so close in recent years, 2012 race winner Erik Miller set a blistering pace today en route to his second victory at the 2016 Nitto King of the Hammers. With his win here today in Johnson Valley, Miller now joins elite company, as only Shannon Campbell, Loren Healy and last year’s winner Randy Slawson have earned two wins at KOH.

“It’s been three long years, Rick,” Miller said at the finish line to announcer Ricky Johnson. “I’ve been dreaming about doing this again since we’ve won it in 2012, and you know, we’ve been right there every single year, and we’ve had a problem that took us out of the lead, and that’s just so hard to swallow when you put all of this time, energy and effort in, and I’ve got all of these people behind me that really allow us to do this.”

Even though the race was shortened this year 44 miles compared to last year, Miller still said the 167-mile course was the toughest to date.

“I don’t know how Dave [Cole] reduced the miles on the course and made it that much harder,” Miller said. “I’ve never been this beat up after a race in all of my life.”

Jason-Scherer-2016-Nitto-King-of-the-Hammers-2-5-16

Jason Scherer had a solid race but was unable to make his #1 pole position translate into a victory.

Second across the finish line was Jason Scherer, the fastest qualifier for the race and the 2009 winner of the King of the Hammers.

“I guess I’m a little bit bummed out but it’s hard to be bummed about second place,” Scherer said at the finish line.

Although technical issues plagued the team, Scherer came off the line first after he posted the fastest time in qualifying on Wednesday. Scherer said he wouldn’t even be back in Hammertown if it weren’t for his crew.

“I wouldn’t have made it here if it weren’t for my crew,” he said. “I have the best crew. I love those guys so much.”

Third across the finish line today is Raul Gomez, who battled with Shannon Campbell toward the end of the 167-mile race.

“I’m ready for another lap!” Gomez said, who noted he lost his steering toward the end of the race, which would explain why he nearly lost control of his car when coming off the finish-line jump.

Shannon-Campbell-2016-Nitto-King-of-the-Hammers-2-5-16

Shannon Campbell charged hard all day long but was unable to avoid mechanical issues that prevented him from earning his third KOH win.

Shannon Campbell was the fourth vehicle across the line and looks to have just missed the podium since he started in front of third-place finisher Gomez. Campbell wasn’t able to secure another victory this year, but his name will no doubt carry on, as his son Wayland and daughter Bailey have put forth solid efforts throughout the day, with all three Campbell cars running in the top 10 late in the race.

Campbell also showed his appreciation for the fans at the finish line interview. “I thank everyone out here,” Campbell said. “I really love everyone out here.”

Unofficial Results – 2016 Nitto King of the Hammers
1. Erik Miller – 7:30:55
2. Jason Scherer – 7:55:28
3. Raul Gomez – 8:23:55
4. Shannon Campbell – 8:26:22
5. Bailey Campbell – 8:46:156. Jason Shipman – 8:52:38
7. Brian Caprara – 9:9:44
8. Randy Slawson – 9:22:54
9. Macy Higgins – 10:49:55
10. Clay Gilsrap – 11:22:53
11. Rob MacCahcren – 11:26:57
12. Travis Cook – 11:32:59
13. Wayland Campbell – 11:33:24
14. Ben Napier – 11:37:25
15. Alex Hardaway – 11:47:54
16. Andrew McLaughlin – 11:48:21
17. Matt Trebino – 11:51:00
18. Corey Kichta – 11:51:51
19. Chris Hoyt – 11:57:29
20. Gary Ferravanti Sr. – 12:00:29

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