Team HUMMER Posts Two Seconds at Parker

Mar. 01, 2003 By George Thompson

Parker, Arizona - Feb 8, 2003: Best in the Desert Racing Association opened the 2003 season with the inaugural 'Parker 425', within sight of the mighty Colorado river. The course was so demanding that only 30% of the vehicles that started ever made it to the finish line. Those that did, limped across with varied states of damage and many were held together with little more than bailing wire and duct tape. Within the first 80 miles of the start, the race course became a sea of wrecked and immobile race traffic making it difficult to distinguish between the course and a battlefield of armored vehicles that came up on the short end of an aerial assault. Some vehicles had no bodies left, reduced to a series of tubes and structural carbon
fiber panels. One truck passed by impaled by a 6" diameter log which had entered the body just behind the front door, narrowly missing the co-rider's head. This was a very easy course to underestimate.

The Team HUMMER #8102 Full-Stock Pick-up went off the line shortly before 8:00 AM on Saturday morning with Chad Hall behind the wheel and Mike Winkel in the second seat. The pick-up was running well and swapping the lead most of the day with the Big V-10 Ford driven by Greg Foutz of Phoenix. A few minutes back were Rod Hall and Rob Henderson in the Team HUMMER #4101 Full-Stock SUV, who were first to start in their class. "We were running in a lot of dust for the first 40 miles" said Hall. "We were working our way through race traffic when we got stuck in the dust of the Henn brothers Class 8100 HUMMER Pick-up. They were throwing out tons of dust when I pulled over to one side to make the pass and hit a berm on the side of the course."

The right front side of the Big 8000 Lb. HUMMER lifted off like a Beluga Whale breaking the surface of the water, performing a gradual roll as it took flight before landing with a colossal thud back on it's wheels. According to Hall, "Both front fenders were destroyed but the lights on the roof were still intact and the engine still running when we finally came to a stop. I figured I escaped with some cosmetic damage and could just get on with the race but soon discovered that we had
two flats and both half-shafts on the driver's side were gone. The on-board CTIS system pumped up one of the tires and the other was replaced so we could drive the
remaining distance to pit #3 at Graham Well (RM81) for repairs." After two hours the crew had the SUV back in the race. The windshield had been knocked out during
the rollover and Rod drives with an open faced helmet.

Not wanting to eat unrestricted dirt for the next 120 miles to the scheduled driver change, the SUV went out with son, Josh behind the wheel, who drives with a closed helmet which is fed filtered air from a pumping system. Newsletter
Join our Weekly Newsletter to get the latest off-road news, reviews, events, and alerts!