Hutchins-Albins-Vegas-to-Reno-8-27-13Reno, Nevada — It was a punishing 550 miles for all the drivers in the longest race in the United States. More than 250 teams battled the brutal desert terrain in this year’s BITD General Tire Vegas to Reno race. Justin Lofton and Harley Letner led the Class 1500 pack for most of the day, but in the end, it was CJ Hutchins who pulled off the win. CJ’s car, which features an Albins AGB, crossed the finish line in 9:34:58 to place fourth overall and take the top spot in Class 1500. John Walker, also running an Albins AGB, took 2nd in Class 1500.

Banning Motorsports continued their winning ways in Class 1100, claiming their third BITD win this season. Brian Folks drove Banning car 1178, that features a Mendeola MD5, to first place in Class 1100.

Fort Mill, SC – The Best In The Desert (BITD) Series travels to Parker, Arizona this week where Team GT driver Justin Lofton will lead a convoy of drivers on General tires into a two day affair.  In a unique format, Lofton and his Team GT teammates will complete 150-miles across two days with the ability to make adjustments to their vehicles following the first day.  While moving between paved ovals and the demanding desert terrain is no easy task, Lofton makes it look effortless.

Usually found gracing the pavement of a NASCAR track in the Camping World Truck Series where he’s currently vying for a championship with one win, four top-five and 11 top-10 finishes under his belt, Lofton will spend this weekend in the deserts of the southwest.  Lofton returns to his roots at an off-road course considered by many to be his “hometown track” (he hails from just outside Blythe, AZ right down the road).  And with notable landmarks like The Matterhorn, The Snake Pit, The Haunted House, and The Bunny Jump, the Blue Water Desert Challenge course is sure to challenge the patience and endurance of every driver, including Lofton.

The Snore, Mint 400 takes place in some of the most evil desert terrain imaginable. The Mint course is comprised of rocks, big rocks, little rocks, sharp rocks and deeply embedded rocks that seem to be cast in concrete. The only relief from the constant pounding is a few sandy stretches and the deep pockets of blinding silt… with rocks. Everyone knows going in, it’s going to hurt. Car control is a major factor in surviving to the end. The terrain demands effective shock damping, precise steering and controlled braking in order to hold your lines through the rocks at speed. Overall winner BJ Baldwin credits the time spent tuning his shocks for his hard fought victory.

“The course was really rough as usual,” said BJ “I couldn’t have done it without Iribe’s help tuning the shocks, the truck worked better than it ever has. We knew we had to run a smart pace and save the driveline but be fast enough to win. I battled with Roger Norman for the first three laps but we eventually pulled ahead for good to take the victory.”

BJ was followed by the second Baldwin racing unlimited truck driven by his Father Bobby and Chad Ragland. They overcame some issues off the start to finish second overall to BJ for a one-two finish for Baldwin Motorsports.

Third overall and first in class 1 was King Shocks racer Mikey Childress and co-driver Jimmy Hook. The duo posted their first class 1 victory for THR Motorsports in only their second race. “We had a great race,” said Mikey Childress, “We started off going too fast, Jimmy was yelling at me to take it easy. From mile 30 to 50, the course is filled with deep whoops. We just got on top and passed a lot of cars. My 3.5′s in front and 4.0′s in the rear were amazing, we could just charge into the biggest holes with no problem. We lost about fifteen minutes when we got tangled up with another driver and blew a rear tire but other than a broken limit strap we ran flawlessly all day”. Fourth place overall and second in class 1 went to another King Shocks racer Terry Householder. The Householder Motorsports car ran up front all day until they developed steering problems in the last 30 miles. Their five-minute lead turned into a four-minute deficit relegating them to a second place finish. Rounding out the podium in class 1, (6th overall), was King Shocks racer Richard Boyle in his Motion Tire Motorsports car. King Shocks racers put in a dominating performance in some of the roughest conditions on the planet. King’s highly refined damping technology gave them the control they needed when the going got tough. King puts that same durability and performance into every product they make. When you ride on Kings you’ll know, there really is a difference. Nothing rides like a King.