The #1466 Kibbetech Racing Team had a successful weekend competing in the opening race of the season, Battle at Primm, which is a two-day race format, on February 20-21, 2016. Team driver, Justin Oquendo took home a second place trophy for the weekend in the SNORE series and first place for the Competition 1450 Series.
The amount of competitors and level of competition in the 1450 class has not gone unnoticed. With the staggering race entry of 52 vehicles in class and a total of 79 vehicles within our heat race, the fans were on the edge of their seats for the entire race.
Justin started mid-pack on day one, drawing 21st starting position. Leaving the start 3 wide, 1466 immediately pulled both trucks off the line. The guys set a fast pace, pushing the truck as hard as they could, on the hunt for the leader of the pack. Completing Lap 1, we had worked our way up to 6th place physically on the course. Keeping up a fast pace, we started picking off the top trucks over the next 3 laps. At the end of Lap 4, catching the lead truck, we ended up going door to door, battling it out for the number one position. We crossed the finish line physically first, but were edged out on corrected time and ended up in second place for the first day.
Coming into day 2, we started in the first row. With all of the top trucks finishing up front from day one, we knew we had our work cut out for us. Leaving the infield on the first lap, 1466 started experiencing a fading power steering pump. As a result, we backed off our pace just a bit to stay consistent and push for a finish. Coming around on Lap 3, we were consistently making time on the leader, as we got back into our groove and pushed the truck to 100%. On the start of lap 5, we were within 100 feet of the 1st place truck. Keeping our pace, we out-drove the lead truck through its braking zone in a corner, over taking the number 1 position. Driving hard on the gas out of that corner, we broke a driver’s side rear axle, allowing the lead truck to instantly regain the number one position. At this point, 9 miles to the finish, we knew we had one option – keep our foot to the floor and don’t lift and pray that the 3rd member and the remaining axle would hold together through the finish line. As 1466 came into the finish line, rounding the last corner in the in-field, we took the checkered flag with the three top trucks, within a few hundred feet from our competitor’s rear bumper. The fans and team exploded into cheers, knowing that Justin had battled the last lap with a “one tire fire” and held off his competition, beating second place by only 2 seconds, to clench a 2nd Place podium finish with SNORE and a 1st Place finish in the growing and ever popular Competition 1450 Series. We can’t thank our sponsors enough for the continued support as we look forward to the second race of the season in Ridgecrest, Ca on April 1st – 2nd 2016.