Coming off a win at the season opening round at Joliet, Eric Ruppel was confident a podium finish at the TORC Twin Cities Takedown in Elk River, Minnesota was well within reach. The #37 Maxxis Tire/Chetek Off-Road/J & H Transmission truck looked fast throughout the weekend, but fell short of expectations.
The weather in central Minnesota was unseasonably hot with temperatures approaching 100 degrees on both Friday and Saturday. After one practice session Ruppel was comfortable with the handing of the 700 HP hot rod and headed for some shade and cold freshment.
The start of the late afternoon fourteen lap race had Ruppel starting in the third row. A miscue on the start saw the Maxxis Tire truck move back a couple of positions. Ruppel regrouped and gradually worked his way into a battle for second place with just two laps remaining in Round 3. As Ruppel and Lovell were heading into the sand section of the track, Ruppel made contact causing the Maxxis Tire equipped truck to veer off the track ending the day for the popular driver from Northwest Wisconsin.
“I made two mistakes today,” noted Eric Ruppel. “One early one which I recovered from, and then the contact with Lovell that broke a tie rod end. I should know better. From here on out, I need to finish on the podium every time if I want to have chance at the championship. Kramer gave me a great truck today I just didn’t get the job done.”
Unfortunately, before anyone could go out for practice Sunday morning a line of severe thunderstorms swept through central Minnesota causing substantial damage through the ERX facility. Luckily no one was hurt, but the damage postponed Round 4 of the TORC Series until the return trip back to ERX in late September.
Next race next weekend June 24-25 at Crandon International Off-Road Raceway. Remember if you can’t get to see a TORC event in person, each weekend will be streamed live at torcseries.com.
Ruppel Motorsport thanks its supporters including:
Maxxis Tire, J & H Performance, Petit Development, Chetek Off-Road, Matuszak Builders, A&J Landscaping, Trailready Beadlocks and The Wrap Guys.
Eric Ruppel has several marketing opportunities available for the 2017 season. Please send your inquiries to: firstname.lastname@example.org