Thank you to our Local Presenting Sponsors for this years Congress, AZ event:
We paid out over $4400 in winning!
2014 Kickoff to W.E. Rock Rock Crawling and Dirt Riot Endurance Racing in Congress, Arizona a Grand Success
Rock Crawling Winners: Unlimited: Justin Hall ; Pro Mod: Jared Neff
Sportsman A: Uriel Varela ; Sportsman C: Charlie Vacha
An Arizona a double header this time of year normally means you are going to a baseball game, but on this particular weekend it meant there were two days of professional off-road events in town: Trail-Gear Western W.E. Rock Championship Rock Crawling on Saturday and Dirt Riot Endurance Series on Sunday brought to you by Fly-N-Hi Total Offroad Performance Center and LetzRoll Offroad. The action packed weekend gave all the spectators a lot to watch on the rocks and through the fast sections of dirt on the Thompson’s Ranch in Congress, AZ, a short hour from Phoenix.
“We can’t thank the crowd enough for coming out and letting the drivers put on a spectacular show for you all,” said Rich Klein, President and founder of W.E. Rock Events. “As the awe struck spectators watched the events unfold during both days events, we can certainly say that the drivers literally drove the wheels off their cars! We love being able to bring this type of racing to venues across the country.”
The Trail Gear Western National Pro Series Rock Crawling event kicked off with great showing of drivers, setting up the field for the next event in Rangely, Colorado, the second of three event series. Professional Rock Crawling is one of the most intricate sports in the motorsports arena. It is technical, mechanical and filled with the one day event consisting of six courses of difficult obstacles that the drivers had to complete, followed by a final shoot-out obstacle.
The Dirt Riot Endurance Racing Southwest series puts race buggies, 4×4 trail jeeps, and UTVs on a track to complete as many laps as they can within their group’s set amount of time. Polar opposite to rock crawling, rock racing is a race of speed and endurance to complete as many laps of the rocky terrain as possible. The Arizona race challenged the drivers to complete 3 hours of the 4.5 mile course of challenging rock obstacles, technical and fast sections.
Team Rock Hard Justin Hall would take the win in the Unlimited Class, proving that last year’s championship rookie year in W.E. Rock wasn’t just a one-time event. Second place Dion Wakefield from Canada was the crowd pleaser when his tire and wheel broke loose from his car bouncing down the hill into the crowd. But that didn’t stop him, he continued on the course with three tires on the ground and a brake rotor. Pulling out of the gates with only seconds to go, he completed the shootout taking over second place. Trail-Gears Matt Messer, who went into the shootout tied for second, finished in third place after trying to complete the final bonus in the shoot-out round. Team Moab Steve Nantz, making a re-entry into rock crawling after focusing on his Moab 4×4 offroad based business for the last few years, proved with a fourth place finish that he is ready to again. Matt Heimsoth, also coming out of retirement, would have been the winner based on competitive points, but due to a firesuit penalty, he fell down to fifth place. Trail-Gear Olivia Messer, age 14, made her debut in rock crawling with her dad Matt Messer spotting for her, finished sixth. Fly-N-Hi Justin Keilman and Jason Jordan, Arizona locals, did well throughout the day until a broken knuckle kept left them finishing in seventh. Following up on her initial appearance in 2013, Campbell Racing Bailey Campbell, spotted by dad Shannon Campbell, followed her Dad’s lead up some of the hardest obstacles for an 8th place finish.
The Pro Modified Class was a close battle all day and finished with only 4 points separating each of the competitors. The class featured familiar names to all, Aaron Sykes, Jesse Haines, Jason Feuilly, Jared Neff and Buzz Bronsema challenged each other, all champions from previous years. Course A4 proved challenging to three of the teams with A6 taking out the other two. No one ran a perfect day. At the end of the day; Jared Neff with spotter Bernie Martin took home the win.
The Sportsman classes are designed for teams to try their hand at competitive rock crawling and see how they fare; in this case, Charlie Vacha with spotter Airen Patrick took honors in the Sportsman C class and Uriel Varela with spotter Ryan Miller took the win in the Sportsman A Class. They were competing against Paul Tyler, Michael Krupp, Troy Dagen, Rob Flandro and Virginia Foster.
The day ended with the awards ceremony where hundreds of dollars were distributed to winners along with classy trophies made by Artec Industries.
Rise Above Photography: Facebook Album
Bower Media: Facebook Album
Trail-Gear compliments of Domenick Satterberg: Facebook Album
Digital Dirt Media: DigitalDirtMedia.com
Don McNeilly: SmugMug Album
Yarnell Pics by Scott Colbath: YarnellPics.com
Dirt Dreamers Photography: Facebook Album
HigherGround4x4: W.E.Rock “People” Album
HigherGround 4×4: W.E.Rock Comp Album #1
HigherGround 4×4: W.E.Rock Comp Album #2
Amy Cramer Photo: AmyCramer.com
Trail-Gear compliments of Domenick Satterberg:
See Schedule and Get Directions: CLICK HERE
Pre-Purchase Spectator Tickets: CLICK HERE
Please use this method if you would like to use a credit card. There is limited online access at most event sites to process credit cards. These are rain or shine events, no refunds.
Drivers Registration: CLICK HERE
Last Years W.E. Rock Action at Congress: CLICK HERE
We will be updating THIS PAGE with any Announcements,
Results and Photos for the Event
Double Header Weekend in Arizona with W.E. Rock Championship Rock Crawling and Dirt Riot Endurance Racing
Professional Rock Crawling Saturday March 8th Starting at 9am outside Congress, AZ
Dirt Riot Endurance 4×4 Racing Sunday March 9th Starting at 9am outside Congress, AZ
BLACKFOOT, ID MARCH 3, 2014: Enjoying the Arizona sun is the best way to kick off two of the hottest series in the off-road scene. Trail-Gear Western W.E. Rock Championship Rock Crawling will be on Saturday March 8th and Dirt Riot Endurance racing will be on Sunday March 9th at Thompson’s Ranch in Congress, AZ, a short hour from Phoenix. Both races are spectator and family friendly with vendors and food available, small cars will be fine on the 5-mile dirt road to the event entrance. Local Off-Road shops LetzRoll Offroad and Fly-N-Hi Total Offroad Performance Center are joining Maxxis Tires, Artec Industries and Jones Ford Jeep in promoting the event and displaying in vendor row among many others.
“The rock terrain in Arizona gives us a perfect platform to build some of the hardest rock crawling courses in the US,” said Rich Klein, President and founder of W.E. Rock Events. “Then on Sunday we are having the Dirt Riot race that will put speed on the track. Of course we welcome local UTV’s and Trail Class drivers to come and race, everyone is welcome!”
The Trail-Gear Professional Rock Crawling Series will start at 9am on Saturday March 9th. The Professional Unlimited Class will have many of the well-known names in the rock crawling world, but will also host two daughters of champions: Trail-Gear’s Matt Messer’s daughter Olivia Messer and Campbell Racing’s Shannon Campbell’s daughter Bailey Campbell. Both girls will have their Dad’s as spotters. Competing against them in the Unlimited Class will be 2013 Unlimited Class Winner Team Rock Hard Justin Hall, 360 Racing Justin Keilman, Trail-Gear Matt Messer, Team Moab Steve Nantz, Mission Snow Dion Wakefield from Canada among others not yet pre-registered.
The Pro Modified Class will also be packed with stiff competition from across the western United States. The 2013 year long battle between Team Superchips Aaron Sykes and Hooked Triangle Racing Jared Neff will continue into 2014. Aaron Sykes took the final points win in 2013 by a mere one point. The Sportsman Class is open to any offroad enthusiast in the area that would like to compete. There are minimal safety requirements to take on the courses. You can join the already registered Chris Nazarewicz, Rolling Gnomes Paul Tyler and 602 Racing Charlie Vacha among many others.
Dirt Riot Racing picks up the speed and puts race buggies, 4×4 trail jeeps, and UTVs on a track to complete as many laps as they can within their groups set amount of time on Sunday. The course is 4.5 miles of rocks, technical and fast sections. Pre-registered racers include 2013 Dirt Riot Southwest Series Winner LetzRoll Offroad Andrew McLaughlin and second place Fly-N-Hi Jeremy Hammer. Both companies are sponsors of this weekend’s event and they will be going head-to-head to see who will start the season with the top points position. Also pre-registered for the Unlimited Class are 602 Racing Airen Patrick, Goodall Racing Kenneth Goodall, Odd Angle Paul Garner, Rocking J Offroad John Brock and many others.
UTV Drivers and Trail Class competitors are welcome to pre-register or register onsite. They are more of a run-what-you-bring class with some safety requirements. The Unlimited Trail Class looks to have a large contingent coming to race out of the local Arizona Undertakers Club including Miller Racing Ryan Miller, Short Bus Mafia Racing Carlos Gonzales, Kroger Racing Paul Kroger, McGhie Offroad Racing Rawlin McGhie, Jones Auto / Select Glass Team Jayson Mitchell, Paul Patel, Rolling Gnomes Paul Tyler, JSE Racing Joe Whitcomb and Modified Trail Class pre-registers Team MMI Trevor Crane and Scrap Metal Racing John Garrison. Or join the pre-registered SXS racer ColeCar Motorsports Colby Johnsen.
Both days’ events have classes that are built to encourage local 4×4 or UTV participants to join in a day of fun competition and racing. For registration information go to http://www.werocklive.com/2014-registration. W.E. Rock is a Professional Rock Crawling series composed of 2 series of 3 events each that crisscross the country. Dirt Riot is an Endurance Racing series that is composed of 5 series of 3 races each that stretch across the country.
Spectators are encouraged to come and enjoy the day of entertainment on Saturday March 8th with Rock Crawling starting at 9am, and the final shootout expected to begin about 5pm. On Sunday March 9th, qualifying for the 4400 professional group starts at 9am followed by racing all day. The professional 4400 4×4 is scheduled to start at 2pm for three hours with a grand prix finish at approximately 5pm. All times are subject to change. The winners of each class are determined by the most number of laps completed in the set amount of time. The awards ceremony immediately follows the final race.
Admission is $25 for a two day pass, $15 for adults, $5 for ages 8-15, children 7 and under free and Military with ID get $5 off. There are vendors, food and amenities on site, and we encourage you to bring chairs and shade structures. There is camping available onsite. For additional details go to http://www.werocklive.com/2014/w-e-rock-western-series-1-congress-az-2
After the event we will have the results, pictures and stories posted at http://www.werocklive.com/2014/dirt-riot-southwest-round-1-congress-az for the Dirt Riot Race and http://www.werocklive.com/2014/w-e-rock-western-series-1-congress-az-2 for the W.E. Rock Rock Crawl.
Past Event Coverage: http://www.werocklive.com
Event Sponsors: Maxxis Tires, Artec Industries, Nitro Gear & Axle, Trail Gear, Branik Motorsports, ASR Offroad, Crown Performance, Superchips, Dirt Skins, MetalCloak, PSC Motorsports, Currie Enterprises, Spidertrax Off-Road, Axel Off Road Gear & Apparel, PCI Race Radios, The SickLine.com, Race Team Store