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Red Bull RockCrawling Team  -  2008 Event Report

Becca’s FanClub is Excited to see RockCrawling Return to Cedar City! "Round 2"

May 21, 2008 - What a roller Coaster ride this last weekend was.  Rockcrawling returns to Cedar City and so do the crowds!  With over 2800 people in attendance, Becca was definitely a fan-favorite as she was the returning champion from the last W.E.ROCK event held in Cedar in 2006.

Arriving in Cedar, we picked up a local paper to find Becca’s picture not only on the front page of the entire newspaper, but also on the front page of the Metro Section, including a long story about the sport and Becca, but also three other action packed photos, two of which were Becca!  Here's the one from the front page:

Let’s just say, she signed tons of autographs and posed for photos time and time again, all the while trying to keep focused on the insane obstacles the teams faced.  Here in Cedar, Lil Rich, W.E.ROCK’s course designer set the bar yet again with the hardest obstacles ever done, and a nasty off-camber downhill that made the “GRIPPER” vertical drop of the Perris event look like child’s play.   The latest obstacle, rightly named “CRUNCH” was 6 feet of vertical to perfectly flat ground, and having a long diagonal entry to the drop that was about 30 degrees of sidehill and 65 degrees of downhill…there was NO line down that obstacle and the talk of the weekend was “Will ANYONE even attempt it???”  Well, the real question should have been, can anyone even complete the obstacle BEFORE getting to the bonus dropoff, and the answer was pretty much NO!  Vehicle after vehicle was denied, even in the day 1 “unlimited” class’s attempts where pretty much anything goes in vehicle design.  If they can’t make that obstacle, how in the world can the Pro Modifieds???.

Moving onto the event story, as I mentioned before, the obstacles were just plain NASTY.  Becca had a bad draw in the running order and started on obstacle B3, which had a really problematic bonus line on it.  She wheelie’d up the first climb three times before making the first gate, but no matter, she made it, which many teams did not.  Her and Mike were able to get the second gate in one-shot when most other teams making it that far, took four of five attempts, if even making it at all.  Now for the problematic bonus line.  Right at the top of a sidehill dropoff, there was a large stack of round boulders.  Round boulders right on the edge of a big cliff…well, that makes it tough because if and when those boulders decide to leave the cliff, you’ll go with them.  Becca was as careful as possible but the RockHer got tied up enough in those boulder to have them moving around a bunch as she tried to pivot off them to make the drop-off.  Working the Lovell transfercase between front drive, rear drive, and four wheel drive, she maneuvered around to do the drop but not wanting to take the rocks with her, took a sideways line to turn back into the hill and dove of the cliff on a less-than-perfect line BACKWARDS.  Because of the steep angle and the sidehill she was on, the RockHer decided it wasn’t happy and decided to roll over and play dead.  Becca wasn’t done and with the RockHer laying on its side on a 20 degree slope, she nailed the throttle and to the crowd’s delight, she spun the vehicle enough to get to a ledge and fall off in the correct position to right the vehicle and drive right out the exit gate.  An INSANE finish to a very difficult course!

 

 

The next course was a critical one with a big bonus line and like many, Becca and Mike chose to try a very difficult bonus line.  And like many, they got jammed in that bonus crack so tight that it took a winch to pull them back out!  Ouch, that hurt…50 points down from the leaders is tough to swallow. The third course had another crazy bonus line on it and because Becca was now hurting for points, she and Mike made up their minds to go for it.  Like the others that tried before them, their course would end there as well, and now they are totally out of the points game.  The next courses went amazingly well but were not enough to put them in the top 10…actually, they were not even in the top 20…even worse, they were third to last in a field of 27!  No chance of coming back from that point…or is there???

Day 2 comes and the team’s fans are back for more!  Becca and Mike pull off some nice obstacles but with the limited bonus lines available on day 2 compared to day 1, there seems there is no chance she’ll move much from her 24th place ranking.  On Becca’s second obstacle, she catches a break and pulls off an amazingly clean obstacle due to some quick thinking by Spotter Mike Berard.  Teams were unable to make a certain gate without taking numerous backups and then a cone, but Mike finds a giant…no, let me re-phrase that…a GIMONGOUS dead stump buried in a silt-bed.  If you’ve never seen a silt-bed, imagine a pool of quicksand, only it’s find powder that’s far lighter and slicker than flour.  Mike dove into the bed, pulled out the stump, stacked it on the climb and they cleaned the obstacle with a nearly perfect score. The next obstacle was rough…not just one rollover, but two, after she rolled all of the way over on the first and hit it again, only to find the door on the second.  OUCH. 

The fourth and final obstacle was “CRUNCH”, lovingly named by what it would do to your vehicle and body if you dared to dive off of it.  Only two teams in the Unlimited class even made it to the big bonus drop and they barely pulled it off…keep in mind, they have GIANT tires and no front bumper to drag in the dirt!  At that point, only 6 Pro Mod teams out of the 27 had even made it to the point where they could choose to do the “CRUNCH” dropoff, and of those, only 3 actually attempted it.  Becca crossed the start line and immediately nailed the throttle to make the first climb that denied the high-majority of teams. I guess Red Bull really does give her wings as her launch up that hill was incredible! I guess I should mention that her tires, Pro Comp SCC X-Terrains, played a huge role as well ;-)  The next two gates went nearly perfect and with less than 30 seconds left on the clock, she found herself perched atop the craziest downhill line we've ever seen.  Mike lined her up the best he could and she repeated the steps she did on the “GRIPPER” in Perris as she drove to the point of no return.  About 1 foot from the vertical section, the axle tube drug on the rock and the vehicle was instantly pitching off-camber on a drop you don’t want to do even in perfect alignment.  She was beyond the point of backing up so she nailed the throttle and hung on for a ride that would surely be ugly.  Because she was in second gear, the wheel-speed pulled the differential off the high-center and the vehicle lawn-darted the dirt below.  The bumper dug in deep and halted all forward progress of the nose, while the rear was quickly overtaking the nose.  How in the world she saved this, no one has a clue, but she stayed fully in the throttle and the nose leapt out of the hole it dug and began gaining on the fast overtaking endo.  About 25 feet off the wall, the rear of the vehicle touched down and Becca spun the RockHer around in a skidding turn and raced out the exit with only a few seconds to spare.  An INCREDIBLE finish once again!

 

Because of their unbelievable score on that course, Becca and Mike gained 12 positions in the ranking and finished 12th overall.  What an amazing comeback!

At this point the team is ranked 7th in the Series Points and they are looking forward to their return for round 3, right there in Cedar City.  That’s right, Cedar City again, but a different area of the Tree Peaks competition area.  Why?  Because someone threatened a lawsuit on the city of Ellensburg, Washington because of a law made many decades ago that doesn’t allow “for profit” competitions.  That’s the third year in a row that the cities in Washington have made deals with W.E.ROCK, only to re-nig.  I doubt W.E.ROCK will be returning to that area in the near future and that is unfortunate considering how many fans LOVE crawling in that area.  What a shame!!!

 

For more on the sport, check out www.WeRockLive.com, www.pirate4x4.com, of pick up an issue of CRAWL or DirtSports Magazine...better yet, visit www.haulinorcrawlin.com and pick up one of their Extremey Award winning DVD's, which our team is featured in.
The included photos are not for re-distribution in any form.  If you wish to use any of them or access more event or team specific images or video, please contact Dustin Webster and he will arrange official photo releases.

Copyright © 2008 Becca Webster