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Familiar Faces Top Championship Off-Road’s Debut at Dirt City

After an exciting inaugural season opener for Championship Off-Road at ERX Motor Park earlier this month, the biggest question for competitors and fans alike in the series’ second event of 2020 at Dirt City Motorplex was if the same names would stand on top of the podium. Dirt City’s addition to the Pro schedule for the first time in 2020 meant a lot of big names would be hitting the track for the first time, theoretically opening a window for drivers who weren’t able to take advantage of the ERX doubleheader.

The results on that front were mixed: most classes saw at least one new winner on Saturday or a rain-affected Sunday, including a first-time Pro 2 winner and two veteran stars scoring their first Pro Mod SXS victories of the season on back-to-back days. But a handful of ERX race winners were able to carry their dominance into Dirt City, setting up what might be a highly dominant 2020 season.

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Mickey Thomas broke through for his first Pro 2 victory at Dirt City Motorplex on Sunday.

That was certainly the case for Kyle LeDuc, who was one rut on Saturday away from going a perfect four-for-four on the season so far in Pro 4. But while he opened the door for defending midwest champion CJ Greaves to take a victory on Saturday, LeDuc rebounded on Sunday for his third win since switching to the series full-time. Kyle Kleiman scored his second straight Pro 2 victory on Saturday, but couldn’t make it three in a row, as Mickey Thomas took the checkered flag for the first time since moving up from Pro Lite in Sunday’s race.

Speaking of Pro Lite, it’s the only class where any driver still stands a shot at a perfect season, as rookie Kyle Greaves’ move up from the SXS ranks has led to a perfect season thus far. Stalwarts Kyle Chaney and Rodney VanEperen prevented CJ Greaves from sweeping the Pro Mod SXS ranks for the second straight event at Dirt City, but Greaves continued his chase for another Pro Stock SXS title by accomplishing the feat in that class instead.

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Can’t keep him down forever: it’s been an up-and-down 2020 so far for Kyle Chaney, but a win on Sunday ended his time at Dirt City on a high note.

Championship Off-Road’s Sportsman classes put on an exciting show of their own throughout the weekend as well, in part owing to the fact that they’d raced at Dirt City in a standalone event last year. Although Sunday’s weather led to shortened races, every class managed to get a race in on both days. Sportsman winners were as follows:

  • Pro Buggy: Michael Hester, Mark Steinhardt
  • 1600 Buggy: John Fitzgerald, Jeff Bechinski
  • 1600 Light Buggy: Colin Schulz, Billy Buth
  • Super Stock Truck: Nick Byng, Nick Visser
  • Stock Truck: TJ Ewert, Stan Wood
  • Formula 4×4: Danny Beauchamp, Danny Beauchamp
  • Classix: Aaron Konitzer, Aaron Konitzer
  • Mod Kart: Sam Marquardt, Sam Marquardt
  • Short Course Kart: Andy Johnson, Hunter Vanzile
  • Sportsman SXS: Dylan Marquardt, Jonny Hentges
  • 170 SXS: Kody Krantz, Carson Greco

In spite of Bark River International Raceway electing to cancel its August event, Championship Off-Road currently stands to complete its planned five-weekend schedule for 2020 thanks to a replacement event that will return the series to ERX on August 15-16. From there, it’s off to Crandon International Raceway for the month of September, where the World Championship Off-Road Races will return to their traditional Labor Day weekend slot before the rescheduled Brush Run completes the season on September 26-27.

Chris Leone

A veteran of the motorsports industry (both physical and digital), Chris Leone contributes coverage of race events of all types to Off-Road Racer. Elsewhere, he is the marketing/communications manager at iRacing, media director of Jim Beaver's Down & Dirty Show, and a frequent contributor to UTV Underground.

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