I was eager to get out to Ultra 4 KOH 2020, and I started on the right foot. I ended up qualifying 3rd, so that put me in row 2 with Guthrie JR and both millers on the first row. Guthrie got me off the start and had a blistering pace that was hard to catch. We caught the millers before mile 2, and the race was on. Despite the lack of wind and a crazy amount of dust, we were bumper to bumper all the way to pit one where Guthrie stopped for fuel, and Hunter and I kept going.
I battled with Hunter for the next 20 miles and was able to capitalize on a mistake he made in the Notches to take the lead. We ended up being neck and neck all the way to Backdoor and coming Into Hammertown on lap 1. My co-pilot Scott Lawrence got out to tether us down the back door, and he noticed the transmission was leaking a lot of oil. So our plan was to radio pit one and tell them to tell pit two at mile marker 119 to have fuel and gear oil. I knew I could baby the car through the desert and create enough dust hunter would not be able to pass.
That plan never ended up working and was shot down after our radios decided to stop working. At around mile 90, I had to pull into pit one and relay the message verbally. At that time, Hunter got around us, and we ate his dust for the next 20 miles. Then things started to go downhill, literally. I’m following hunter up a rock hill very close to avoid the dust. Boom! Next thing I know, we’re on our side. Scott and I crawl out of the car, and we attempt to flip it back over. The car was tipped downhill, so we are fighting gravity to get it back up.. We try with no luck. Then Scott says, grab the Pro Eagle co2 jack with a bright idea to get us out. I start digging under the cage and wedge the jack between the ground and cage. That got the car at least 12” off the ground, and we were able to push it back onto its wheels. However, this was the moment I knew that we had made a grave mistake.
The car started rolling backward down the hill. I forgot to put it in park. I knew if I did not get it slowed down or stopped, it was going to flip down the mountain. I did everything in my power to get in to get the brake to peddle or park lever, but my attempt failed, and by that point, it was too late. The car had caught me and threw me like a rag doll. I was lucky enough to slow it down, and it made a slight turn and stopped sideways in the track. When I went to stand back up, I felt a rock on the bottom of my feet, and both my shoes were gone somehow. Scott threw me one, and the other one was close enough to grab. I went to put my right shoe on and couldn’t because I realized my toes were broken. I quickly pushed them back straight and got both shoes on. I tried to get up and run to the car, but I could hardly stand. I S to the car and barely got in to finish the race. The crash was so bad that it had blown out the power steering. I had to drive to the bottom of the mountain to get turned around and came back up to get Scott and try to fix the power steering. After a few minutes, he finally found it was a blown a fuse. Of course, we had none, so we cut a wire out of our helmet pumper, and he jumped the fuse to get it back working.
We got back on track and had a few miles left to pit 2. We got to the pit, and they gave us fuel and rear gear oil. At that time, we had lost 20 minutes, and I knew I had to drive flawlessly through the rocks to even have a chance to podium. We hit our marks and blitzed through some of the toughest rock sections known to man. By the time we roll into Hammertown to see the checkered flag, we were able to make up 17 minutes in under 30 miles, but we fell under 2min 46 sec short of the win.