Douglas Motorsports experienced some tough times during the opening weekend of the TORC Series presented by AMSOIL.
The host facility, the Dirt Oval at Route 66 Raceway in Joliet, IL created an entirely new layout that saw the AMSOIL/Rusty’s Off Road/Walker Evans Racing Wheels/Cooper Tire PRO-4×4 adapt quite well to, but did not show in the final results.
Since last year’s visit to the Chicago-area facility, the half-mile circle track was reduced to 3/8-mile in length. This brought the race action even closer to the fans as the new short-course layout that was fast in speed and thanks to three tabletops, very high flying. All the teams took the track on Friday and the #7 AMSOIL PRO-4×4 turned the second fastest time of the day.
The Saturday morning qualifying session saw Douglas stopping the timers as the third quickest PRO-4×4, putting the familiar white and black truck starting in the second row for the eighteen lap event.
TORC added a new twist to the racing with the addition of the joker lap. All racers would bypass the infield portion of the track and run the 3/8-mile oval one time during the second half of the race. This would add excitement to the race, and new strategies for the competitors.
The race saw the #7 AMSOIL PRO-4×4 running in third place when on lap 10, the ignition cut out leaving the truck motionless. After about 30 seconds the engine restarted and Douglas persevered, gaining a couple of spots to finish in fourth place when the checkered flag was waved.
Quickly the crew found the culprit of the stall as a new electronic control unit was replaced. A quick Sunday morning shakedown run deemed the truck race ready. The Sunday’s final race of the day saw Douglas running in third place when the halfway mandatory caution brought the field back together. On the restart, Scott Douglas began pressuring second place Keegan Kincaid, as the two entered the tight infield right hand corner. Upon exiting the turn, Douglas suffered a broken link on the rear suspension ending the weekend for the AMSOIL/Rusty’s Off Road/Walker Evans Racing Wheels/Cooper Tire team.
“The computer that controls our engine had an issue on Saturday, but we performed the best we could under the circumstances,” notes Scott Douglas. “The second round it looked we were had a solid running going until the suspension issue. The new layout at Joliet was a challenge to drive and the Joker Lap really made us think even more about late race strategy. We are really looking forward to ERX in a few weeks as the place is really unique and blast to drive.”
The next stop on the TORC Series presented by AMSOIL tour is June 10-11 at Elk River Action Track in Elk River, Minnesota.