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King Shocks equipped racers were the sure bet at SCORE, Laughlin season opener.

Desert racing success seems to be easy. Run your own pace, don’t punish the car, get to the finish and things will sort themselves out. When the race is only 100 miles long and the terrain changes every lap, that game plan goes right out the window. Such is the case each year at the SCORE Laughlin Desert Challenge. You would think that a few short laps would be a piece of cake but the pace required to outrun the competition and the punishing holes that form in the deep sand conspire to break parts, explode motors and dash dreams. Such was the case at this year’s race as the common opinion amongst competitors was “it was a tough course”.

The brutal course took its toll on the Letner Racing entry driven by Harley Letner. His lower a-arm broke and he was forced to limp around for two laps to the finish with the front wheel held on only by the shafts of his King Shocks. The shock shafts could have been fixed by King’s trackside support crew but the arm was deemed un-repairable so Harley was out after Saturday’s race. The other Letner Racing class 1 entry fared much better with Cousin Kory Halopoff taking the overall victory. “It was a good run”, said Kory, “Everything worked well, it was just rough out there, really rough”.

The big Class 8 Ford of Juan Lopez reported no problems at all taking the win both days. “Everything went well, it was a lot of fun”, Said Juan,” I love the track and I’m planning on coming back next year”.

In Class 10, the juggernaut that is the Lawrence Equipment team and driver Mikey Lawrence continued its dominance winning both days. Last year’s event was the only race the Lawrence team did not win on their way to the 2009 SCORE Championship. With a win right out of the box in 2010, it does not bode well for the other class 10 competitors.

Stock Full driver Joe Bacal, no stranger to the podium, took another win after a fierce battle with Justin Matney in his big Dodge. The two got together on the first lap with Matney taking the lead. In the end, the nimble Toyota of Bacal was able to get past the bigger Dodge for the victory. Expect these two King Shocks racers to be dicing all year.

In Class 5 Kevin Carr’s only competition was the course itself. Carr scored some karma points when he stopped to help the Cops team right their car and had fun racing with a pack of class 12 cars. The course almost won on the last lap of Sunday’s race when a CV joint started to complain but Carr made it to the checkered flag to take the win.

The “Trophy Truck Killer” Chenowth driven by Rory Ward made it two in a row in the Sportsman Buggy class after a flawless win at the Baja 1000 last November. The next SCORE race will be in San Felipe, Baja Mexico March 12th-14th  where the racers will see some of the same sandy, whooped out terrain but this time it’s for 250 miles.

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