- Oberg Finds Fourth
Place @ TORC Chicagoland
Nitro Circus 3D Movie Takes a Wild Ride
Eagle River, WI (July 25, 2012) - The Traxxas TORC Series
presented by AMSOIL has some of the toughest PRO-2WD
competitors in the country and Mike Oberg continues to show
why you should never count out the veteran off-road racer from
the Wisconsin Northwoods. The Friday night PRO-2 event saw
more than its share of bumping and grinding, but Oberg made a
late race charge and narrowly missed the final spot on the
- The track layout that
was built within the confines of Chicagoland Speedway's
half-mile banked dirt oval. After two years of the same
design, the TORC track builders came up with a more technical
layout that included more turns and more jumps, which gave the
racer's additional opportunities to pass and more reasons for
fans to stay on the edge of their seat.
Thursday - Round Seven
After a limited practice and qualifying session, the #80
AMSOIL General Tire Chevy qualified ninth out of thirteen
trucks. The team knew more worked need to be done to improve
the handling of the 3800 pound racer. Before race lineup Matt,
Brian, and the rest of the crew went to work on their King
Shock set-up. A few changes were completed just before Mike
and the race truck headed for race day (evening) staging.
actual race had the AMSOIL Chevy moving up the standings as
far as eighth place when contact from Matt Crafton rolled the
race truck, just before the mandatory caution. Fortunately the
race truck landed back on its General Tires and continued with
After the mandatory caution, Oberg made up the four positions
lost in the rollover and was in sixth place with two laps to
go, when a battle broke out with Bryce Menzies. The result had
the two racers making contact with Oberg spinning and losing a
position. After all the rollover, the contact, and the spin,
Mike Oberg finished Round 7 in seventh place.
"That was a rough fifteen laps," commented Mike Oberg. "We
really got pushed around by a couple of very aggressive
drivers tonight, and it cost us a couple spots at the finish.
Our suspension set-up needs a few tweaks, but we are not far
off. The level of competition is incredible and just being a
tick off with the setup can have you go from a podium
contender to a racer fighting to stay on the lead lap. Right
now we are very close to landing on the podium."
Friday - Round Eight
Before Mike Oberg could try out the changes in the chassis
set-up, the team went over to watch Jolene Van Vugt take her
first practice laps in the Oberg Motorsports back-up truck.
Van Vugt, a member of MTV's immensely popular television show
Nitro Circus, was going to compete later that night looking to
gain some seat time, as well as promoting her new movie, Nitro
Circus 3-D. Unfortunately the #36 Nitro Circus 3-D movie
PRO-2WD never made it to the starting grid.
one and half laps into the practice session, Van Vugt got the
truck sideways coming over the start/finish jump causing the
truck to barrel roll at least five times. The driver emerged
from the truck unhurt, but the truck was destroyed. Someone
overheard Travis Pastrana saying that the barrel roll will
somehow be added to the film that is scheduled for release in
Jolene Van Vugt's Practice incident -
The starting had Oberg starting from his finishing position
from the day before, seventh. As soon as the green flag was
waved everyone seemed to be fighting for the same piece of
real estate. Somehow the #80 black Chevy survived all the
abuse was running in the tenth position when the midway
mandatory caution flags were waved.
When racing resumed, Oberg skillfully avoided all the serious
contact and began moving up the running order. With three laps
to go, the AMSOIL Chevy moved up to fifth place. Then on the
final lap he and Menzies drove around Kincaid to take the
checkered flag in fourth place.
"We weren't the fastest truck out there tonight, but we ran a
smart race and just missed the podium," exclaimed Mike Oberg.
"The chassis set-up still needs some minor work, but it's
getting closer. The General Tires really came through tonight.
This track is really a driver's layout. It can really beat you
up if you aren't careful. My crew really worked hard all
weekend and if we had another lap or two, our team might have
landed on the box. I also have to thank all the fans that came
out both nights as the grandstands were packed. I can't wait
to come back next year."
Next Race: August 11-12, 2012 in Bark River, Michigan.
- Mike Reusche - words & pics
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