2020 has been a trying year for off-road. From trail rides to trade shows and races to rock crawls, events across the board have suffered cancellations and setbacks. But today came some more sad news. Lucas Oil announced they have officially discontinued ownership and operation of LOORRS.
“Lucas Oil has made the decision to discontinue owning and operating the Lucas Oil Off Road Racing Series and the Lucas Oil Regional Off Road Series,” said Director of Race Operations Ritchie Lewis. “This year, Lucas Oil made an incredible financial effort to keep our off-road commitments to employees, promoters, racers, and sponsors, during arguably one of the roughest periods for our country. As we look ahead, there are too many variables that could impact the financial commitment and overall health of the series going forward, which necessitated this difficult course of action.”
Undoubtedly, it is a sad day for fans of this off-road series, myself included. I was first introduced to LOORRS back in 2015, when I attended the Challenge Cup in Lake Elsinore, California. It was thrilling to watch legends like MacCachren and Renezeder launch their trucks off ramps and come down on all fours, only to keep their momentum up and into a turn. It’s sad to think that 2020 marks the end of this awesome series.
However, every cloud has a silver lining. While Lucas Oil’s closure of the series is depressing, there are two reasons to still have hope for short-course. First, we should remember that short-course races have died and been reborn already. You may recall that before LOORRS, there was CORR (Championship Off Road Racing). And before CORR, there was MTEG (Mickey Thompson Entertainment Group). Short-course races tend to leave a vacuum that fans want to see filled, so I’m betting we’ll get to see the next iteration of this style of racing get revived fairly soon.
Second, there are still race series going on that offer the short-course experience. These include Championship Off-Road in the Midwest, and the global phenomenon that is Stadium Super Trucks (SST). Both of these series had a rough year, but both are still making plans for 2021.
For these reasons, I’m hopeful about the future of short-course racing. What do you think will become of short-course in the near future? Deposit your two cents in the comments below.