Terribles 250 2009 Wraps LIVE! Coverage and Best In The Desert Off-Road Race

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Off-Road 1.com LIVE! From Primm Nevada Pics and Story

The age-old saying, “they come in threes,” spelled out the end of McMillin Racing’s three-race win streak. It was a disappointing outcome for McMillin Racing at the Best in the Desert’s Terrible’s Town 250 desert race after an unfortunate crash in the blinding silt ended the hopes for the team’s fourth consecutive victory.

Poised for the opportunity to make history in one of the most competitive classes in off road racing, the unlimited truck class, McMillin Racing strategically had planned for Andy “Bebo” McMillin to race the 207-mile sprint race alone, without changing drivers.

Scott McMillin explained, “We felt Andy could easily run the entire race on his own and we could save seconds from completing a driver’s change. The southern Nevada desert offers very challenging terrain, however we knew that we needed to run a fast pace to stay up front.”

Spring boarding off of three consecutive wins, the young McMillin racer was poised to make history by claiming his fourth consecutive victory in the unlimited truck class. The #31 McMillin Homes truck was second on the starting grid after a stellar qualifying effort. The strategy was to run fast and wait for the leader to make a mistake.

After two 69-mile laps, the unofficial timing in the McMillin Racing pit showed the #31 truck ahead on time by a mere 30 plus or minus seconds. The main pit was abuzz with anticipation as “Bebo” began his final lap.

Only minutes later, as the crew began to gather up the fueling equipment, the race frequency came alive as Andy reported they were involved in a crash with the physical race leader, Jerry Whelchel. In fact, Whelchel, who was only seconds in front of the McMillin race truck, had crashed into a limited class truck that was stopped and buried in the deep Nevada silt. While Whelchel attempted to get his truck out of the cloud of silt, the #31 unknowingly drove at speed directly into the path of the trapped race vehicles.

“We’re relieved that no one was injured. Unfortunately, racing incidents of this nature do occur from time to time. Andy and his co-driver, Brady Thompson, did a great job at getting out of the accident and back in the race as fast as they could. Once they were out of the jam and back in clean air, they raced hard for the final 62.5 miles of the race,” explained team manager Greg Williams.

Bebo drove across the finish line in third place among the Trick Truck class and finished fifth overall with a time of 3 hours, 48 minutes and 3 seconds. The #31 McMillin Homes truck was less than 5 minutes off the winning time of 3:43:18. This important podium finish earned Andy McMillin the point lead for the 2009 Best in the Desert Series championship in the elite Trick Truck class.

Seated in his truck Andy said, “Wow! That was crazy! We never saw the stopped trucks in the blinding silt. All of a sudden, they just appeared and by that time it was too late. I’m really glad that no one was hurt. I’m surprised that the front of our truck was not more damaged. After finishing the second lap, we felt we were in the right spot for this 3-lap race. The truck was running perfect and we had no flats all day long. Then out of nowhere appeared the #40 truck and well the rest is history. That mishap cost both of our teams the chance to race to the finish.”

The F-150 Raptor, Ford’s new off-road performance truck was put through its paces by Sprint Cup driver Greg Biffle Thursday, at Primm, Nev.

Click to enlarge photo

I was lucky enough to tag along with Biffle as he drove the truck though a course that had been set up in the desert adjacent to the Nevada-California state line. Biffle held nothing back as he pitched the truck sideways through the turns and caught some air on the course’s rough spots.

The Raptor is built to handle high speed off-road driving that would be impossible for a regular four-wheel-drive production truck. After winding the Raptor up to 75 miles per hour on the course’s short straightaway, Biffle pitched the rear of the truck to the right as he used the rear wheels to steer the burnt orange colored pickup through the first turn. I was doing everything I could to try to look cool and unconcerned as we went sideways though the corner.

Biffle and off-road racing champion Rob MacCachren were on hand to drive the Raptor as part of Ford’s efforts to promote the new truck.

MacCachren and Biffle also took turns driving the Raptor R, which is a race-prepared version of the street Raptor that is shown in the photos below. This was the truck that competed in the Baja 1000 and it will be competing in this weekend’s Best in the Desert Terrible’s 250 at Primm.

Click to enlarge photo

Biffle driving the Raptor R/By: Mike Smith

Off-Road 1.com Qualifying Results:
Time Trial Results for Class 1400 and Class 1500
Pos Veh
Num Cls
Pos Class/
Div Time On
Course Avg
MPH Driver Of Record Vehicle Make
1 1 1 1400 00:02:53.562 43.56 Chet Huffman Ford
2 31 2 1400 00:02:58.359 42.39 Andrew McMillin Ford
3 1555 1 1500 00:02:59.171 42.19 John Harrah Jimco
4 1549 2 1500 00:02:59.484 42.12 Sam Berri Jimco
5 1528 3 1500 00:03:01.140 41.74 Chuck Dempsey Jimco
6 1517 4 1500 00:03:01.625 41.62 Kevin Colan Bunderson
7 1570 5 1500 00:03:01.953 41.55 Kory Halopoff Unknown
8 1516 6 1500 00:03:02.968 41.32 Derrick Sproule Aceco
9 2 3 1400 00:03:03.843 41.12 Pete Sohren Ford
10 94 4 1400 00:03:04.125 41.06 Steve Strobel Jimco
11 71 5 1400 00:03:05.218 40.82 Rick D Johnson Ford
12 1518 7 1500 00:03:05.375 40.78 Chuck Hovey Jimco
13 1506 8 1500 00:03:06.453 40.55 Dale Dondel Racer Eng
14 1522 9 1500 00:03:06.468 40.54 John Cooley Alumicraft
15 35 6 1400 00:03:06.875 40.45 Jason Voss Ford
16 1546 10 1500 00:03:08.609 40.08 Steve Raskett Porter
17 1558 11 1500 00:03:09.031 39.99 Tony Smiley Tatum
18 1571 12 1500 00:03:09.203 39.96 James Scott RPS
19 5 7 1400 00:03:09.593 39.87 Todd Jergensen Chevrolet
20 1586 13 1500 00:03:11.546 39.47 Shawn Croll Ford
21 1575 14 1500 00:03:11.703 39.44 Pat Dean Bunderson
22 1559 15 1500 00:03:11.968 39.38 Steven Appleton Jimco
23 1563 16 1500 00:03:12.343 39.30 Richard Boyle Unknown
24 1511 17 1500 00:03:12.578 39.26 Erick Jacobs Jimco
25 1536 18 1500 00:03:12.671 39.24 Pierre Lavie Porter
26 42 8 1400 00:03:12.703 39.23 Will Staats Ford
27 1564 19 1500 00:03:12.765 39.22 John Koltura Porter
28 1527 20 1500 00:03:12.765 39.22 Jerry Penhall Penhall Fab
29 65 9 1400 00:03:14.484 38.87 Lloyd Sproule Ford
30 1567 21 1500 00:03:15.218 38.73 Mike Bilek HMS
31 1579 22 1500 00:03:15.625 38.65 Rob Gibbs Dunebuggy.com
32 60 10 1400 00:03:15.921 38.59 Michael Voudouris Ford
33 39 11 1400 00:03:16.343 38.50 Ron Whitton Ford
34 1588 23 1500 00:03:16.453 38.48 Gary Weyhrich Ford
35 1504 24 1500 00:03:16.465 38.48 Steve Garcia Unknown
36 1513 25 1500 00:03:16.515 38.47 Todd Romano Tatum
37 1503 26 1500 00:03:17.312 38.31 Mark Weyhrich Ford
38 51 12 1400 00:03:19.562 37.88 Kory Scheeler Chevrolet
39 68 13 1400 00:03:19.859 37.83 Marc Ewing Chevrolet
40 56 14 1400 00:03:20.718 37.66 Kevin McGillivray Ford
41 1545 27 1500 00:03:21.156 37.58 Vince Galewick Dunebuggy.com
42 1587 28 1500 00:03:23.625 37.13 Darren Ebberts Ford
43 78 15 1400 00:03:24.750 36.92 Jesse Ashcraft Ford
44 1550 29 1500 00:03:35.625 35.06 Philip Mazzio Unknown
45 1581 30 1500 00:03:40.750 34.25 Charles Rodrick Dunebuggy.com
46 98 16 1400 DNF Jason Shick Chevrolet

Off-Road1.com and Sopwith Agree on terms on Terribles 250 LIVE! Webcast

Off-Road 1.com continues to offer the #1 Sources to Off-Road Racing in the West! The Best In The Desert Series is the "Best" Racing for Racers and Fans. "We are proud to continue our support of the sport and Casey Folks and Sopwith in our talks this morning", said Black e Media Group Manager Denise Yee.

We are really proud of Jeff, the "SurfRat" for his making it BIGTIME with Best In The Desert. Jeff's coverage was enjoyable of all the past races that we worked with the blacklisted SurfRat.

After the Laughlin race, that we promoted, Jeff was blacklisted by the Desert Racing Crackheads. Off-Road 1.com was proud to pickup his coverage and promote his work, he's a real professional. "The Mint 400 was a blast!", said Yee.

The Group has a long history with Best In The Desert. When Casey Folks was being "blocked" from getting Mexican insurance for his start-up races in Mexico, Casey called and received assistance from our group ownership.

"We guided racers through Tijuana too, back in those days", said Steve Davidson, part of the logistic services we provided to Best In The Desert racers, going into Mexico. The Baja Mex 300 was a great series of desert off-road races, started in 2002.

Since 2006, Off-Road 1.com has co-promoted Best In The Desert Series as THE place to race in the West. We are particularly proud of our Historic First LIVE! Webcast of the 2009 Parker 425, In Memory of "Radio" Bob Hynes, founder of the BFG Tire Radio Relay Service.

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