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Pennsylvania Rock Crawling - Neuroc Attacks

Christian Lee | Writer
Posted November 18, 2003

Final Round at Paragon

The final round of the popular Northeast USA Rock Crawling & Off-Road Championship (NEUROC) was held at Paragon Adventure Park in Hazleton, Pennsylvania, closing out the 2003 season. Tackling some of the world's oldest mountains, the NEUROC event attracts competitors and spectators from throughout the eastern U.S., offering plenty of rock-pounding action and extraordinary driving feats.

With drivers competing in three classes (Stock Modified, Legends, and Unlimited), the event drew a healthy field, offering a non-stop display of vehicle and driver ability every which way you turned. The NEUROC staff did a great job of laying out the obstacles so that multiple runs could be viewed from the same general location. A short walk led to the next trailhead, where competitors were simultaneously putting forward their best efforts. Along the way, spectators were offered a stroll through vendor's row where event sponsors BFGoodrich, Skyjacker, and OK4WD were showcasing their latest products. BFG also provided its services to competitors by mounting tires, welding broken parts, or doing whatever it took to get a vehicle back in the hunt. In the end, the company's efforts paid off, with BFG clinching victories in all three classes.

Establishing new "Shupe groupies" with every obstacle completed, Ken Shupe and spotter Rusty Bray battled to First Place in the Unlimited Class in their Dynatrac-sponsored Jeep Scrambler. Randy Torbett finished just behind Shupe, and Charlie Melchner landed the final podium position. Adrian Dognin of Terryville, Connecticut, nabbed the Legends win, with Adam Wycislo taking Second and Mike Cole landing in Third Place. In the Stock Modified arena, Dale Cousino of Deerfield, Michigan, swept the competition by more than 50 points to secure the win. Separated by just one point, Danny Jenkins took Second Place in his '91 Wrangler and Chris Biviano finished in Third.

Plans for the 2004 NEUROC season are currently in the works and promise to provide continuing rockcrawling action at Paragon Adventure Park. For more information on NEUROC, contact: (570) 384-0550,

Series Results

Stock Modified
1. Riccardi/Levy
2. Cousino/Bellinger
3. Crone/Burger

1. Dognin/Cleary
2. Wycislo/Stringham
3. Green/Wilson

1. Melchner/Ciano
2. Styles/Walker
3. Waldrop/Schmaus

Event Sponsors
All Terrain
A&A Auto Parts Stores
BFGoodrich Tires
OK Auto 4WD & Tire
Rockcrusher Diffs
Skyjacker Suspensions
Tom Wood's Custom Drive Shaft
Warn Industries


View Photo Gallery
  • Placing in the Top Ten in Unlimited Class series points, Bryan Whaley piloted his '03 Jeep Buggy throughout a successful season.

  • Bryan Hamilton of Brevard, North Carolina, finished Fourth in series points in the Unlimited Class.

  • The Legends Class boasted a number of entries. Brian Simpson and spotter Justin Trogdon traveled from South Carolina to compete in their '88 Jeep Wrangler.

  • Charlie Melchner and spotter Frank "The Excavator" Ciano descended from Mahopac, New York, to capture a Third Place finish in the Unlimited Class.

  • Finishing in Second Place for the event, Randy Torbett of Sale Creek, Tennessee, provided a great show of ability piloting his '03 Chevy 4.3L buggy.

  • Karl Kowatch and spotter Dave Kemner, both of Allentown, Pennsylvania, made a good showing in their '03 Skunkworks tube-chassis buggy.

  • Notching a First Place finish for the event, Ken Shupe and spotter Rusty Bray finished Fifth for the season in the Unlimited Class.

  • Nursing an injured hand, Robert Lane of Kennesaw, Georgia, made a number of impressive runs at the obstacles in his 454-equipped '86 Jeep CJ.

  • Mike Cole of Greenville, South Carolina, grabbed extra points after completing an obstacle with his spotter sitting shotgun. Cole finished Third in the Legends Class for the weekend.

  • BFGoodrich was on hand throughout the weekend, attending to competitors' needs and distributing posters to spectators. BFG tires captured victories in all three classes, marking its third rockcrawling title of 2003.