PERRIS, CA – At the SCORE Baja 400, Brenthel checked off everything on their list short of the win. They finished second place in the highly competitive Trophy Truck Spec class on a brutal race course that was almost entirely shrouded in dust. What really stands out is the precise and calculated way they accomplished it.
Brenthel has a well-oiled machine that delivers turn-key competitive race trucks right from the shop. This was the case at the 400 as Kyle Jergensen grabbed a freshly minted truck off the production line and took it straight to the podium with no issues; just a solid performance. “We qualified 4th fastest which I was happy with,” said Kyle. “It was a tight, technical course which favors my driving style. I always strive for the number one spot, but the other top qualifiers were more willing to take risky chances. You need to find the right balance between going all out and being out of control. The Brenthel Brothers trust me to find that fine line. I push pretty hard; that’s what they expect from me. It’s a long race, starting in the top five; I’ll take it.”
On race day, there was no quarter shown by the course. The opening miles are a twisty labyrinth of narrow trails that weave between trees and rocks. Communication between driver and co-driver is crucial because the Spec Trucks started only 30 seconds apart. Kyle and co-driver Shawn Shanks were dicing with the truck ahead when they got a greeting from the Grabowski truck from behind. It wasn’t clear if he was truly faster or just going for a Hail Mary in the dust.
“It was a tight, technical, dusty dog fight; it was gnarly” Kyle continued. “You could not see the front bumper. Everyone was driving blind, but if you backed off you would get freight trained by the guys behind you. I’ve done this long enough to know what the pace should be. As the race panned out, people were crashing, catching fire, getting flat tires and tearing up drivelines. We were running our pace at the front. The crew told us to push it to catch McNeil so we ran really hard from Santo Thomas towards the finish. We were dead even on time to him with 20 miles to go. Despite the thick dust and setting sun in our eyes, we closed the gap on him and led on corrected time. Then we got stuck behind a Trophy Truck. We did not want to throw a podium finish away in the closing miles. We are always going for the win, but are very happy with the Brenthel team’s performance and the second place starting position we will have at the Baja 1000. The truck was perfect, the pit stops were flawless, we had zero penalties and we had no flats to our Yokohama tires. We ran a smart, calculated race.”
Brenthel Industries is a renowned name in off-road racing and fabrication, known for our exceptional craftsmanship, cutting-edge design, and pursuit of excellence. With a strong commitment to pushing the limits of innovation, we create high-performance off-road vehicles that are built to withstand the toughest terrains. Led by a team of passionate individuals, Brenthel Industries continues to revolutionize the off-road racing industry and set new standards for performance and reliability.
If you’re looking to experience the thrill of off-road racing like never before, we have the perfect service for you with our Arrive and Drive program. Whether you’re a seasoned racer or a passionate enthusiast looking to fulfill a lifelong dream, our program makes it easier than ever to get behind the wheel. This service gives you the opportunity to participate in a one-time desert off-road race, providing you with an unforgettable experience of a lifetime. It’s also an excellent option for those who want to familiarize themselves with the race vehicles before committing to purchasing and racing their own
Words by: Mike Ingalsbee