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TORC 2009: Ben Wandahsega makes his 2009 Debut in Crandon.

Team Wandahsega and driver Ben Wandahsega rolled into Crandon June 20th and 21st for rounds 5 and 6 of the Traxxas Off-Road Championship Series (TORC) with a brand new Pro 2 chassis. Only had 60 feet on it, shop to the trailer. The goal for the weekend was simple. Finish both races, get the feel of the truck and make whatever changes to to improve the truck for the Bark River race.

The crew worked on the truck right up until the Friday practice. With not knowing what to expect, Ben went out for the three lap practice session and was very happy with how the truck handled off the trailer. The Wegner motor ran perfect along with the ATD transmission. The only thing that needed changed was a slight tire groove change as the General Tires hooked up well in the loose Crandon Dirt.

For Saturday's race Ben Started 12th out 17 trucks, his starting position put him in the grass toward the end of the line. When the green flag dropped, the truck spun hard due to the grass and he got a less that desired start for his first race in the 2009 season. By the time the competition yellow came out; Wandahsega was sitting in the eighth position, then the next lap saw Ben lose his power steering. With that gone, it's near impossible to drive one of these trucks and Team Wandahsega would have to settle for a 14th for their 2009 debut.

For Sunday's race, Ben got a much better start as he ran eighth into the first corner. The track really got tore up as the corners had huge ruts in most of them. The truck handled every condition Ben put it through. He was able to chase some of the other competitors down, and prove that Team Wandahsega can run with some of the best Pro 2 racers out there. At the yellow Ben was in about the same place as the day before. It came to an end when the transmission failed due to a filter plug gasket, which let all the transmission fluid leak out. At day's end Ben and Team Wandahsega were given credit for a 13th place finish.

The first weekend out was not a total loss. Ben did get valuable seat time and used this race weekend as a test session to work out some bugs and get a feel of things with the new truck. Now the team knows what areas that need to improve and will have them corrected for the Bark River race in 3 weeks.

The Team has high hopes for the next race and is planning on finishing well at rounds 7 and 8 of the Traxxas Off-Road Championship Series in Bark River on July 11th and 12th.

2009/07/08 | 21:54 CET | Editor: MR/HS/Mark Miller

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