Primm Valley Resorts and casinos hosted the SNORE‘s Battle at Primm (BAP) race. Located on the border of Nevada and California, the Primm casinos have off-road roots tracing back to the former owners, the Terrible Herbst boys. It also has been the current starting line of the famous Mint 400.
Buffalo Bills Resort and Casino, one of three resorts of Primm Valley, is the main hub for the weekend. Known for its indoor water log ride and its very thrilling roller coaster on the property, it is also one of the main gathering areas for racers after the race at the Tree Bar located in the center of the casino.
The BAP Course
This years race course was a 13-mile loop consisting of a short-course stadium section leading into a dry lake bed, where racers push speeds excess of 100 miles per hour. The course exiting the lake bed leads into open desert consisting of technical turns and whoop sections. If racers strayed off course they would find themselves in deep sand or deep washouts.
Getting through the desert, teams are able to enter the hot pits area. If a racer decides to pull into the hot pits, they need to drive 25 miles per hour to their pit crews. After making sure the vehicle is still in one piece, there is a small straightaway leading up to the crowd-pleasing dyke jump. The dyke jump attracts all the spectators as they watch drivers see who can hit the jump the fastest and farthest.
Tech & Contingency
Tech inspection was held in the back parking lot of Buffalo Bills. Teams pushed their race vehicle through the vendors. Teams could buy any last minute parts or get things looked at by vendors like PCI Race Radios, King shocks, Dirty Life Wheels, Pretty Dirty, and Butch’s speed shop.
We were able to catch Class 11 racers Ryan Kennedy and Jessica Nickerson. This race was the debut in Class 11 for the two of them. Ryan has previous experience racing in larger unlimited classes. “I have always had an enormous amount of respect for anyone willing to race Class 11,” Ryan explained his reasoning behind dropping to a limited class.
In the pits, we were able to chat with the Class 2000 guys. Class 2000 is stock leaf spring mid-size truck that must maintain the factory frame and body. Jerrard Shaffer and Dustin Logee, truck no. 2037, were ready to get on the course after a DNF at the previous race.
The Las Vegas-local Aaron Baker and Larissa Mulisha, no. 2071, were racing in a now open desert-adapted short-course Class 2000. Joel Leboeuf and Kameron Wells, no. 2092, were hoping to shake up the class and attempting to get on the podium. There was also the team of Tyler Denny and Ashley Perrine, no. 2042, who decided last minute to come out to the race. They had spent the previous week prepping the truck at home and in the parking lot. By the time dusk came about, all teams were ready to do battle Saturday weekend.
Saturday morning, races would be broken into seven heats. Ryan and Jessica were sent to leave the line in the second heat of the day. The weekend held a fierce field of competition in Class 11. They steadily and surely maneuvered their VW Bug through the course. About three-quarters through the heat race they suffered a rear broken shock mount and had to limp it to the finish, After the race they found a welder to strengthen the mount, they would be back to race Sunday.
At the end of they day, Heat 7 was the Class 2000 heat and two by two the 2000’s left the starting line. The first few laps were some great door to door battles amongst the class before the gaps spread out the class. The no. 2037 of Shaffer would lose both his fiberglass bedsides and later lose power steering couple hundred feet from the finish line taking him out for the race.
The no. 2092 of Leboeuf found him gaining positions, but was also battling high motor temps forcing him out of the race. Aaron Baker in the no. 2071 would persevere and finish in fifth place. Denny in the no. 2042, who started towards the back of the pack was pushed hard towards the front. Unfortunately, he was forced off the race course to avoid a major accident with another racer and snapped the front right spindle in half. Teams would spend all night and the beginning of next day working on their vehicles to make sure they were ready for day two of racing.
Sunday morning, a quarter of the entire field had suffered some type of issue causing them not to line up for the second day of racing. The no. 1165 found a fellow racer, had its rear shock mount repositioned and strengthened the night before and were ready to take to the course early in the morning.
The course had now transformed from the previous races, the holes were deeper, the whoops were bigger, and large rocks had been unearthed. The no. 1165 would find its way picking and choosing lines between all the dangers. Mile by mile the no. 1165 would cross the finish line in one piece and in fifth place. “I have raced unlimited classes for a few years and after ripping in a stock bug all I can say is wow,” Ryan described after finishing up the weekend. “I had an absolute blast and I can’t wait to do it again.”
Heat 7 brought back the Class 2000 heat, but unfortunately the no. 2092 of Leboeuf would not return due to motor issues as well as the no. 2037 of Shaffer due to severe steering issues. The no. 2071 of Baker would be ready for the heat after a good morning prep.
On the other side of the fence, Tyler Denny spent the night before and the morning of tracking down a spindle locally. With luck a friend from California drove out a spindle while his co-rider Ashley drove into Las Vegas to pick up the remaining parts from an auto parts store. The time was against them to get to replace the parts and get over to staging.
The vehicles in staging began to enter the short-course and take the green flag. Tyler and Ashley put it all back together and raced through the parking lot into staging to enter the race. The no. 2071 of Baker pressed hard on the first lap, but developed power issues going into the second lap. Unable to determine a diagnosis for the power loss, they would be forced to end their race with a sixth place for the weekend.
The no. 2042 Denny again start from the very back and pushed his way back to the front. On the third lap, a misfire hindered them, but they pushed on limping it around the course. On the final lap, the coil pack caught fire forcing the team to pull over and put out the small electrical fire. This would put an end to their race but they would still end up eigth place in the class. This would put a wrap on a weekend of racing at Primm. All Racing results can be found on SNORE’s website.