The first race of the season is often like the first day of school. Full of nervous energy, meeting new people and getting settled in your new surroundings. The first-day jitters are long gone for Radar Tires as it earns its first short-course top-10 finish of the 2014 TORC: The Off-Road Championship presented by AMSOIL season at the hands of Cam Reimers.
Now in its second season of short-course off road racing, Radar Tires is using the LT265/75R16 and 32X11.50R15 Radar Renegade R5 tires for this weekend’s “Duel in the Desert” at Primm Valley Off-Road Raceway in Primm, Nev.
On Saturday morning, Reimers, driver of the No. 21 SSI Decal/TiLube PRO Light, qualified 12th for the afternoon PRO Light race. Now in his second year of TORC, Reimers knew what to expect from the rough and tumble PRO Light truck field. He battled the competition and was shuffled around a bit during the 15-minute race. Reimers held strong and finished eighth in his first race with Radar Tires.
Reimers’ teammate Ian Harris, driver of the No. 22 SSI Decal/TiLube PRO Light, had an eye-opening experience in his debut race. Looking to hold his ground, Harris qualified in the 22nd position of the 24-truck field. In a conservative debut-race, Harris reached a race-high of 13th, but ended up dropping to 15th at the end of the event.
Luke Johnson, driver of the No. 14 Project648 Motorsports Nissan Frontier, qualified 13th for the Saturday event. The first lap was unkind to Johnson for the second consecutive race. At the season opening Lucas Oil Off Road Racing Series event in March, Johnson’s truck – Becky – lost a cylinder in the opening moments.
Today, Johnson had a fuel pick-up issue and was struggling from the drop of the green. Looking like he was riding an elevator on the timing sheets, Johnson dropped from 13th to 15th at the start of the race. He was able to get a couple of strong laps strung together to battle for position with Reimers. Experiencing varied fuel pressures throughout the race, Johnson was ultimately unable to find a smooth momentum to contend for a top-ten finish. At the end of the race, Johnson finished in the 11th position.
“We all learned quite a bit this week at Primm,” said Gary Blalock, Radar Tires Motorsports Manager. “Cam, Ian and Luke put forth an incredible effort today and we have a solid baseline of where we are in relation to the competition. We have a plan for Sunday and the rest of the season. The Radar Renegade R5 tires performed to my expectations - they were solid, consistent and had great traction. The track conditions evolve constantly and when we combine what we know and what we learned today, we anticipate stronger runs and podium finishes moving forward.”
Racing resumes on Sunday at the two-day TORC “Duel in the Desert” at Primm Valley Off-Road Raceway. The PRO Light race begins at 2:15 p.m. (PT) on Sunday and is live streamed on the Motor Trend YouTube channel. The race can then be seen on NBC Sports on April 25.