TORC PRO Light, PRO 2 & PRO 4 drivers to compete at a track Ricky Johnson envisioned when he helped found TORC in ‘09
When Red Bull/Mopar/Ram/KMC Wheels’ Ricky Johnson looked out over the Jeff Nordstrom-designed & built Traxxas TORC Series, presented by AMSOIL, track on The Dirt Track at Charlotte Motor Speedway it was as if a longtime dream of his had come true for the off-road short course series he helped found in 2009.
In his adopted second home state of North Carolina, Johnson saw something the off-road stronghold of Baja California couldn’t offer – PRO-style TORC truck racing delivered to the masses right smack dab in the middle of a major metropolitan area.
“When I first walked up to the fence and looked out over Charlotte’s dirt track I was blown away. There, right before me, was the realization of what Mitch Covington, myself and the majority of drivers now competing on the TORC tour had dreamt about when we started this series,” said Johnson. “A true USAC/TORC, Jeff Nordstrom-designed track on Charlotte Motor Speedway’s dirt half mile, showcasing all of the series sponsors in a stadium setting that’s no doubt going to be packed this weekend.
“And packed with all kinds of new sets of eyeballs on our sport.”
USAC/TORC President Kevin Miller was equally pumped with TORC’s most ambitious move eastward in the series’ history, stating: “In addition to its impressive yearly lineup of events including NASCAR’s Coca-Cola 600, World of Outlaws battles, NHRA drag races and Late Model contests, Charlotte Motor Speedway’s TORC event positions short course off-road racing – the same racing as seen on TV in TORC’s Discovery HD program – right in the heart of motorsports central on the east coast.”
For his part Nordstrom, whose background weighs heavy on building motocross tracks, “gets it,” according to Johnson when it comes to, in essence, building a stadium motocross (aka “supercross”) track for 4,000-pound, 900-horsepower TORC PRO trucks.
“To me this is a motocross on four wheels,” said Nordstrom. “The track’s real jumpy, technical with launcher jumps and rhythm sections. It’s got two mogul sections instead of one, including one built into the outside of the oval – something we’ve never done before. All the drivers I spoke with that saw the track are pumped to get out there. And it’s going to be real exciting for the fans.”
Also … if you’re in town be sure to check out the Traxxas TORC Charlotte Motor Speedway pre-race party, Thurs., July 21, from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the Tilted Kilt Pub & Eatery, 13230 Carowinds Blvd.
TORC/CMS event info
Where: Charlotte Motor Speedway’s Dirt Track
When: Friday and Saturday, July 22-23
Time: Gates open at 3 p.m., qualifying begins at 4 p.m., main event opening ceremonies begin at 7 p.m.
Tickets: $20 for adults, $10 for kids 12 and under. Note: NASCAR card holders get in for TEN BUCKS!!!
Words by Pat Schutte
Photos by Gary Laster