Blade Hildebrand is a 19-year-old racer from Yucca Valley, California. A high-school football player, he began racing at age 4 in mini moto, go-karts, and BMX. He was selected to participate in the KTM Jr, Super Cross challenge in 2007. Well known to off-road racing, he has competed in Class 5 unlimited, where he earned a SNORE championship, as well as Class 10, and new for 2018, in the 6100 truck class. He has also raced non-winged sprint cars, and Pro Lite trucks in the Lucas Oil series.
“It’s pretty cool to be a local boy here this weekend as SST travels all over the world,” says Hildebrand. “I have a good fanbase coming out here; I raced Pro Lites here as well. Shelly (Sheldon Creed) and I grew up racing dirt bikes here at Glen Helen. It brings back a lot of great memories. It’s a huge difference going from dirt to pavement. It’s big. On pavement you have to be a little more conservative. You have to hit your marks every single corner. Dirt is a little more forgiving for sure. It’s going to be tight, fun racing.”
When asked about racing the trucks on pavement, Hildebrand replied, “Driving on three wheels is a cool feeling you can’t really get anywhere else. If you are on three wheels, you know you are pushing it; it’s an adrenaline rush. If you can do that and hit your marks, you’re going fast. It’s a great feeling. Robby did a great job building these trucks. The SST trucks are loaded with good equipment and the Toyo tires really hook up in the dirt, and on pavement.
“Qualifying is a big deal because you get points for qualifying well,” commented Hildebrand. “Qualifying up front lets you pick your starting gate for the land rush start, so it’s important.”