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Insane! Crandon Off-Road Championships

Posted in Events on February 1, 1999
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Contributors: Scott KilleenTrenton McGee
Photographers: Trenton McGee

If you're seriously addicted to four-wheeling, you must see a CORR race. Sure, tough-truck racing is cool and rockcrawling has its charm, but nothing holds a candle to the pure adrenaline rush of watching these guys and gals swap paint and kick the rearend out at more than 100 mph, then launch side by side over jumps that commonly net more than 130 feet of hangtime. Once you're hooked, the best place to get your fix is at the Chevrolet Off-Road Championships held at the Crandon International Off-Road Raceway.

Located on the outskirts of tiny Crandon, Wisconsin, the raceway boasts a 1 3/4-mile professional dirt track that includes everything you could hope for in an off-road race: long straightaways, tight turns, and plenty of jumps. The championships are held over Labor Day weekend and attract the best short-course off-road drivers from all over the country for a three-day bash that peaks with the $100,000 Borg-Warner Shootout on Sunday. That kind of cash will buy a lot of tires and speed parts, so the racing action is some of the best of the season.

If you think CORR racing isn't your style, watching one of Crandon's land-rush starts might just convert you. You haven't lived until you've seen a gaggle of high-tech race trucks heading into the nasty 90-degree first turn four and five across at speeds topping 100 mph with tires and fiberglass flying everywhere. Even the smaller classes are a kick to watch in this corner, and there's always a ball o' buggies left on the outside during the start of the Sportsmen Buggy classes.

Although security had to crack down on the campers this year (in years past, the camping area has rivaled the infield action at Daytona), the action on the track wasn't disappointing. With the total points standings in both Pro 4 and Pro 2 extremely close and only one race to go after Crandon, all the teams were hungry for a decisive victory. Jamey Flannery set a new track record during time trials and even netted a victory on Saturday, but last year's champions Scott Douglas, Curt LeDuc, Jack Flannery, and Walker Evans were all strong contenders leading up to the big race on Sunday. In the end, Flannery, Douglas, and Pro 2 driver Rob MacCachren had a shot at the Borg-Warner trophy, but LeDuc and his Ford truck passed the finish line first, setting a new track race record in the process.

If you want in on the racing action in Crandon, contact the Crandon International Off-Road Raceway, Dept. 4WOR, P.O. Box 101, Crandon, WI 54520, 888/611-6092.

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