King-Shock-HDRA-Davis-4-11-13HDRA hosted the King Shocks 250 in the High Desert of Ridgecrest California. 99 competitors pre entered the second event of the 2013 season and over a hundred teams showed up to gain points on their quest for the Off Road World Championship. As a sweet bonus to the title sponsor, King Off Road Racing Shocks supported drivers took the top overall finishing positions (1st, 2nd & 3rd) sweeping the podium with Trophy Trucks and also collecting 5th overall with the Class 1 win.

King Shocks Marketing Director, Micheal Leighton commented, “We are just thrilled with how this event turned out. Drivers using King Shocks swept the overall podium and also the top 5 qualifying positions. We are very proud to be able to support the racers and HDRA for what they have put together. New races at new venues are attracting a lot of top competitors and the World Championship format is a great thing for the sport.”

King Off Road Racing Shocks is proud to continue their support as the Official Shock of Ultra4 Racing and the King of the Hammers for the 3rd year in a row. Taking place in Johnson Valley, California on February 1st – 9th, the 7th annual King Of The Hammers event will mark King Shocks’ 5th year offering free support to the racers participating.

“The King of the Hammers has become an international phenomenon and prestigious cornerstone event in off road motorsports,” declared Ultra4 Racing founder, Dave Cole. “Competitors from around the world are challenged to race at high speeds through the rough open desert and maneuver their vehicles over difficult obstacles, walls of rocks and boulder strewn canyons. King of the Hammers, Ultra4 Racing and King Shocks are practically made for each other forming for a perfect partnership.”

At Stage 2 of the Dakar Rally on Monday, Darren Skilton experienced fuel delivery issues in his Revolution VI buggy that pushed him to the back of the pack, yet Skilton and navigator Skyler Gambrell were still able to complete the stage under their own power.  That evening Skilton’s crew made aerodynamic modifications to provide additional airflow to the fuel pumps in an effort to remedy the issues.  In short, this was not successful.  Just 40 kilometers before the beginning of the special stage, the General Grabbers on Skilton’s car stopped turning due to the same fuel problems.  The team was able to coax the car to the start line without any time penalties, but that was just the start of the special stage!

While pushing hard to close the gap on the competition, Skilton slid into a sharp rock and damaged a tire, then later on the fuel issues surfaced yet again.  “The pumps were actually not that hot,” Gambrell explained.  “The fuel in the tank is cool, but with three separate fuel cells there is a collection point with a filter ahead of the pumps.  We bypassed this system and did not experience any more fuel delivery problems after that.”  Already starting in the back of the pack, once they stopped the team was caught in traffic with the huge T4 trucks, which quickly degraded the track conditions and visibility.

Skilton finished 118th for the day, completing the 208 km special stage in 4 hours and 52 minutes.  “I am heartbroken that my teammate Mark McMillin was not able to continue the rally,” Skilton noted.  “He has graciously offered his support to my race effort and that has been extremely helpful already.”  The team now heads to Chilecito in the shadow of the Andes mountains, with elevations on Stage 5 topping 10,000 feet.

Darren Skilton would like to thank the following sponsors for their support: General Tire • King Off-Road Racing Shocks • Method Race Wheels • Baja Designs Lighting Solutions • Neo Synthetic Oil • Redline Performance
PCI Race Radios • Signpros Custom Lettering

Follow the latest action from the Dakar Rally at Baja Automotive’s Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/pages/Baja-Automotive-Adventures/298123813554060.

After a strong finish on the first short special, Darren Skilton made the long liaison to Santa Rosa de la Pampa.  The second day of the Dakar Rally started with another long drive, including deep silt beds and square ledges… and that was just on the liaison!  When the 290 kilometer special stage started, initially Skilton was able to run his car wide open on the loose gravel roads.  “The V8 engine and X-Trac transmission allows me to reach speeds over 120 miles per hour in the right conditions,” Skilton shared.  Unfortunately the conditions deteriorated as the stage went on, culminating in the dreaded Nihuil dunes.  Fuel delivery issues in the scorching heat of the black sand brought the Revolution VI buggy to a halt on multiple occasions, giving up valuable time to the lead cars.  “We had to pour our water onto the fuel pump whenever the problem surfaced,” explained navigator Skyler Gambrell.

The team also lost a wheel off the vehicle late in the special stage, costing even more time.  Sounds bad?  The black volcanic sand dunes ended the aspirations of Carlos Sainz and Stéphane Peterhansel in 2009, when both rolled in this same area.  “I have driven the Dakar Rally enough to know not to get rattled this early in the race,” Skilton stated.  “Skyler and I were able to complete the stage without harming the car and I am confident my crew will have the fuel delivery problems sorted by morning.”  The third stage of the rally travels on fast gravel roads through the Argentine wine region of Mendoza on its way to San Juan, providing Skilton with another opportunity to uncork his Redline Performance engine.

Follow the latest action from the Dakar Rally at Baja Automotive’s Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/pages/Baja-Automotive-Adventures/298123813554060.

Darren Skilton would like to thank the following sponsors for their support: General Tire • King Off-Road Racing Shocks • Method Race Wheels • Baja Designs Lighting Solutions • Neo Synthetic Oil • Redline Performance
PCI Race Radios • Signpros Custom Lettering