WE Rock Western Nationals Finale at Miller Motorsports Park
For the second time in just over a month, Off-Road.com traveled to Miller Motorsports Park in Tooelle, Utah, to cover an off-road event. The park, which has hosted a number of road-racing motorcycle events since its opening, has added a number of off-road events to its calendar in 2010 and plans to continue this in the future. After attending the Lucas Oil Off-Road Racing Series in June, this time, Miller Motorsports Park hosted the WE Rock Western Nationals, the final western round for the rock-crawling season in 2010.
The Miller off-road park features man-made concrete and gunite obstacles built on the flat desert surface. The WE Rock event was the first major rock-crawl competition at the facility, and in an effort to really test the drivers some new obstacle sections were added. WE Rock’s Western Nationals were a two-day event ran in the evenings with the competition starting at 4:00 p.m. each day, with the competition climaxing with a shootout on Saturday evening.
Friday’s competition went well and many of the teams posted some very low scores. In the Unlimited Class, the team of Dion Wakefield and Ken Dowdie ended the day with an amazing score of -63. The rumor around the paddock was that course designer Lil Rich was surprised at how much traction the surface had at Miller. Even with decent traction the courses still gave some teams issues, as there were several vehicles that ended up upside down. After seeing how the teams handled the terrain in competition, the WE Rock officials changed the course for Saturday’s event making the lines more technical and challenging.
The weather was nice and warm, as it should be at this time of year, for the duration of the competition on Friday, but the weather had different ideas for Saturday. Just minutes before the competition began, the heavens opened and it rained very hard for several minutes. Thankfully, the rain didn’t last long, but it did come back a couple of more times during the evening but it was never significant enough to effect the competition. As the sun began to get low in the sky the, weather was clear and the fans were graced with an amazing sunset as a backdrop to the great action on the courses.
The maiden WE Rock event at Miller went well, the fan attendance was decent and the competitors and organizers seemed happy with the new venue. WE Rock series has one East Coast event in Dayton, TE, before coming back to Miller in October for the Nationals, where the top teams from the East and West Coasts will compete for the national title. Prior to the Nationals in October, more obstacles and terrain will be added to the Miller course, which once the additional terrain is added “Big Rich” Klien says Miller will be the premier rock-crawling course in North America.