2013 Venom Off Road Jam
Blue Springs, Missouri
Race Report by Neil Pestka
My journey to the 2013 Venom Offroad Jam started Thursday with an 8.5 hour drive. I arrived in Blue Springs and went to check out the facility and the track. The track looked technical but fast. The track looked to be a clay topsoil mix. Friday the doors opened at 9 with practice to start at 10 and end at 8pm. I took full advantage and got set up and right on the track at 10. Saturday the doors opened at 7 and qualifying would start at 9 with Mike Garrison on the mic race directing. This race had not only local racers but racers from surrounding states with guys as far as California. With over 250 entries and 3 rounds of qualifying on Saturday this was going to be a long day. This race was heads up starts and qualifying points so getting in consistent laps was key to get a head of the pack. Sunday would bring us into the mains starting at 9am. 8 cars would automatically be in the mains with 2 bump ups. Even if you didn’t qualify for the A you still had a chance to work your way up to the A mains.
17.5 Stock SCT
First round of qualifying I got lucky and started in the 1 position. This first round would be key to staying in the front on the starts but not a definite with qualifying points. The tone went off and the whole pack had a great start. I started out front and finished this way with being the only truck to complete a 20 lap run with a 20 in a 5.10. The second qualifier 2 other trucks and myself now put in 20 laps but I raised the bar even higher with a 20 in a 5.07 run. The third round was just as important as the previous 2. I was not sure I had the pole position secured for the mains yet. The competition was very close behind.With this being said I had to bring my A game to the plate to be sure. This round ended up being my best run of the day. I pulled away from the pack and never looked back. I raised the bar even farther with another 20 lap run.I raised the bar even higher with a 20 in a 5.03. I now knew I had the pole for the mains.
I would be In race 30 for the 17.5 Stock SCT A main. I had plenty of time before I was up to go through everything and make sure my truck was ready. The tone went off and we were underway 2nd and 3rd were right behind me. I snagged up against a pipe letting 2nd and 3rd by. I knew then I had some work but with plenty of time with this being an 8 minute race. Lap 3 came around and I got the inside line on the 2nd truck with the 1st truck not far ahead. I caught up too the truck running in the 1 position and stayed on his bumper for a lap looking for the opening. Finally I got an opening and got a picture perfect inside pass. I was now in the lead again with around 5 minutes left on the clock. I knew I had to have fast laps and be consistent. The rest of the race I put down very consistent laps and pulled away from the pack taking the win.
First round of qualifying I would start 6th on the grid. The tone went off and I had a great run with qualifying 3rd. The 2nd round I would start in the 3rd spot.This round I just couldn’t get my rhythm down and didn’t better my time.3rd round I would still start in the 3rd spot even with qualifying points.This round would be a tough one I got stuck in the pack and just couldn’t get away. I would start in the 6th spot for the main.
I would be in race 31 for the Mod Sct A Main. I would start in the 6th position for the main. I knew the competition would be fierce and knowing I had to drive well. The tone went off and it was a very clean start. With starting in the 6th spot I had to be smooth and patient. I got around the 5th truck putting me in the 5th position with 4th not far ahead. I put in some good laps to close the gap. I am now on his bumper waiting for a chance to make a move. The truck running in 4th makes a bobble letting me now move to the 4th spot.The 3rd place truck has a pretty good lead. 2 laps went by and I’m now not far from him. Going down the straight into the down hill slope he goes wide. My line for the turn into the down hill slope was spot on. I hugged the tube on the inside blasting to the inside of the next corner now taking the 3rd position. I’m now in a spot to take a podium finish. The race is now over I secured the 3rd place on the podium Behind Matt Gosch and Matt Olson.
Jconcepts takes the whole Podium in Mod SCT.
First round I would start in the 9th position on the grid. I’m running the new Tekno truck. Even with starting in the 9th position I was able to put myself in the 3rd starting spot for the 2nd round even with having to get through traffic. 2nd round I started in the 3rd position able to get past the 2nd starting position bettering my time. With qualifying points My accumulative times would put me still 3rd on the grid. 3rd round I would finish 3rd not bettering my time.
I would be in race 33 for 4X4 Mod Sct. I would start 3rd on the grid for this 8 minute main.The start was good and it was freight train. I went over the middle section and got the down side of the big table top turn wrong. I came out last after that. I took a deep breathe and got back under way. I had about 7 and a half minutes to try and work through the field. I worked through most of the field but came up short with a podium finish. I place 4th in the main
This race has already been announced as an annual event and had 250+ entries this year. With this being said it will be bigger next year. The track layout was great for all classes and a lot of fun. The track staff was great and on spot to help all racers and keep the operation running. Mike Garrison did a great job directing the races and announcing. Whether it be the E main Or the A main it was announced like they were all A mains. This race was not only fun but exciting. I recommend this race for next year. I will be there.
JConcepts Team Driver Matt Olson sent us this update on his results…
I had a great weekend out at the 1st ever Venom Offroad Jam with my JConcepts/MIP equipped Short Course Trucks. All throughout the week my trucks were untouchable on JConcepts rubber. I was able to TQ all three rounds of heads up qualifying in Pro2 and Pro4 mod SCT, and take home the overall win on mains day. On my Pro4 truck I was using JConcepts Pressure Point Green Compound tires all the way around and on my Pro2 I was using JConcepts Pressure Point rear greens and Double Dee Green Fronts; all of my tires were used with JConcepts wheels and foams. I was able to get away with a set per truck for practice, qualifying, and mains without any wear on the tires it was a no brainer! Thank you JConcepts for exceptional products.