Washington, D.C., February 23, 2012 – Mega Monkey Motorsports™ is proud to announce their partnership with Dezert Outlaw Motorsports and Team Tracie for this year’s Best in the Desert Mint 400, March 23-25. The announcement was made on February 20th on The Down and Dirty Off Road Show, hosted by Jim Beaver.
Sammy Navarro of Dezert Outlaw Motorsports has created Team Tracie to raise money to fight colorectal cancer, which is diagnosed in over 130,000 people each year in the United States alone. Team Tracie’s mission is to help spread the word of early detection in the fight against colorectal cancer. Early detection is very important and vital, for over 80% of all cases of colorectal cancer can be prevented with screenings and follow up appointments. March is Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month, and the team wants to pay tribute to Tracie and encourage her to stay strong. Tracie, you are not alone and that she is not alone in this fight!
Mega Monkey Motorsports™ includes driver Emme Hall and her father, Larry Hall, as well as a team of unpaid (but highly appreciated) mechanics, welders and wrenchers. They are happy to join forces with Team Tracie and race their new 2/1600 at the Mint.
“When Sammy told me about Tracie’s story I was only too happy to help. Racing for Tracie in the Mint will be such an honor. The fact that I get to share driving duties with such an awesome driver is just a bonus.”
Sammy is excited as well. “I can’t tell you how excited I am to be teaming up with such a wonderful person like Emme and her motley band of racers. Through this partnership we will be able to spread the word about colorectal cancer and honor my friend, Tracie. I would like to thank Emme for allowing me to bring along my team members Mike Jenkins and Cortney Mcrae and race with the TeamTracie.org and FightColorectalCancer.org names on the new 2/1600. Together we are going to make a fantastic showing at the Mint 400”
The Mint 400 is one of the best known desert races in the United States. The new 400-mile course is located in Jean, Nevada, and will feature a high-speed passing zone near a dedicated spectator area, as well as rocky washes, silt beds, high-speed graded roads, rock gardens, and the giant rolling jumps The Mint is famous for. Additionally, racers will start side-by-side (two at a time), making “turn one” a new exciting spectacle of the race.
About Dezert Outlaw Motorsports
Dezert Outlaw Motorsports has raced in many off road series such as SCORE, BITD, MDR, SNORE, and the recent Lucas Oil Off Road Racing Series. With teammates Jenkins and Mcrae, the team has had multiple wins and podium finishes. Dezert Outlaw has been featured in magazines such as Dirt Sports, OFF-ROAD, Skinnie Magazine, Dusty Times as well as in the off road video games Baja: Edge of Control and TrophyLite Rally for Play Station 3 and XBOX 360. Sammy loves being behind the wheel but also excels outside of the car. When he is not promoting sponsors and racers on live radio, at off road expos, and at race contingencies, you can find him working public relations for Mike Jenkins Motorsports. More information can be found at www.teamtracie.org and http://FightColorectalCancer.org You can follow Sammy on Twitter @DezertOutlawSam
About Mega Monkey Motorsports™
Mega Monkey Motorsports™ campaigns a 2/1600 and has been featured in Dusty Times, Dirt Sports, S&S Off Road Magazine, and Gearbox Magazine. Last year Emme helped Desert Dingo earn the VORRA season championship in class 11, and holds the record at the Buffalo Peak Hill Climb, co-driving for JT Taylor. Although sidelined for a year due to health reasons of her navigator, Michele Martineau, Emme is currently working towards running with the Gazelles in the 2013 Rallye Aicha des Gazelles, a 9 day all female rally through the deserts of Morocco…no GPS allowed. Emme holds an MFA in Costume Technology in North Carolina School of the Arts and is also a graduate of Yale School of Drama. She is the Costume Manager at Ford’s Theatre in Washington DC and reviews new cars for Roadfly TV. During her few free weekends you can find Emme campaigning her stock 2001 Miata in SCCA autocross events. She has been aptly described as a “charisma missile.” To learn more visit http://www.megamonkeymotorsports.com, and follow on Twitter @MMMotorsports.
Just wanted to post up some more pics and video of the new race car. We’ll be at the Mint 400 in Vegas March 23-25th. Big announcement coming soon regarding the Mint as well as partnerships. I can’t wait to blab all about it!
At one point during this weekend I said to my dad, “What day is it?” To which he replied, “Saturday.” To which I asked, “Day or night?” It was just that kind of weekend. In three days we drove LA-Barstow-Parker-Parker Strip-Parker-Anaheim-Venice Beach-Barstow-Hacienda Heights-LA-red eye to DC.
I left DC late Thursday afternoon on a ticket I had earned by refashioning a pal’s pink gorilla suit to get it ready for her boyfriend for Mardi Gras (I swear I can’t make this stuff up). At LAX I picked up the 2012 Audi A5, with a manual transmission thank you baby Jesus, to review for Roadfly. From there I drove up to Victorville and met Dad. Early the next morning we were off to tech for Parker 425.
Now before you get all excited, this is not a race report. The trip to Parker was merely to See and Be Seen. I met up with, Michele, my navigator for the Rallye Aicha des Gazelles in Morocco. For those of you not in the know, this year we were planning on running the Gazelle rally, a 9 day adventure similar to Dakar except it’s all female, points are awarded for shortest distance not fastest time, and no GPS is allowed. All navigation is done with an outdated map and a compass. Unfortunately Michele needs to have some surgery so our plans are on hold. You can read the whole story at www.teamcouragegazlles.com But we wanted to make it out to Parker to show the off road community that we are still determined to run with the Gazelles.
So we worked tech. I mean we WORKED it! We talked to the Fast Aid guys, we joked around with the Dirt Sports Magazine dudes, we chilled with Azunia Tequila, shot the bs with the guys from Major Performance Engines, checked in with PCI race radios…hell we even discussed how Dakar could be promoted better in North America with Darren Skilton. But enough of the shameless name dropping. Let’s just say we had a great time. For my twitter followers, I tried to get some pics out but the network was so crowded it was impossible.
We spent the night north of Parker at some old time race guy’s house and I remember something about a jacuzzi and my dad acting like a turtle on his back and that’s really all you need to know about Friday night.
The next day we had to get to Anaheim by 3pm to meet with a potential partner, but we knew we HAD to watch some of the race. There was an awesome spot where the cars would go under highway 95, race the largest part of the loop, then come back under 95. You caught them coming and going. So there we were, just chilling and we hear, “Oh man the Hall Ass Racing truck is here? Hide your beer, everyone!” It was Randy, Carol, and Guy, some old neighbors from San Felipe. What a small, small, world.
If you haven’t watched an off road race before, its a little different than a pavement race. Spectators are required to stay off the course, but there are still no barriers between you and the cars. This means that it can be quite dangerous, as evidenced by the California 200 tragedy a few years ago. However, Best in the Desert did a great job keeping everyone safe. The safety guy in our area made sure everyone was a safe distance from the course, and when this bozo couple tried to cross from one side to the other he was ON them like stink on poop. They returned to their place much maligned, as they should have been. A hot course is a hot course, and just because you can hear these guys and see their dust before they get to you, doesn’t give you, as a spectator, carte blanche to just walk across the lines.
Alas we couldn’t stay long as we had to get to Anaheim. I don’t want to say too much about it as we are still negotiating, but a few weeks ago I got a call from a speciality fabrication company who expressed interest in partnering with us. It’s a family owned company and dad and I had a blast meeting everyone. We were even their guests at the Supercross that night. Expect a fairly big announcement soon, but for now all I will say is that we are looking forward to hammering out the details.
After a quick sleep in Anaheim it was off to Venice to pick up the new race car. Now let me start off my saying that this whole weekend was an exercise in herding cats. I had to make sure we met up with Michele at the designated time, then she and I split off from dad at tech so we had to coordinate meeting times, figure out where we would sleep that night. Getting dad out the door on Saturday morning was a bit of a chore (his goodbyes tend to be a little long), then we had to separate ourselves from the Old Gang at the race and make it to Anaheim on time, and find a place to crash that night.
So the final hurdle was getting the car up to Barstow for a little testing. Skiny, who raced the car in the Baja 1000 as part of his Gentlemen’s Guide to Racing series, had it in storage in Venice Beach, but he had to go out to Vegas that Friday. It was ridiculous to think he could drive from Vegas to LA, pick up the car, then bring it back to Barstow, so we did what Gentlepeople of Racing do: Skiny called his girlfriend, she gave us the keys and the title, we hitched the car up to the truck and brought her up to Barstow. Now, we had met Skiny before, but I don’t know a lot of people that would trust 2 people to basically steal his car and bring it to an appointed place in the middle of the desert. But trust us he did and when Skiny came up behind us about a mile away from the Slash X, we knew it was cosmic fate.
The throwout bearing is bad in the car, so when Skiny took off with me as co-dawg, she made an awful, awful noise! But once she started there was no stopping! With the longer wheel base she handles the whoops SO much better than our 5 unlimited. It’s not necessarily more powerful, but she could definitely run through the whoops better. There’s no speedometer in the car, but on the flat I’d say we were up to 70 mph or so…and this is with a motor that hasn’t been prepped since the 1000. Major Performance built the engine originally and they know the car well. They said the car SMOKED all the other 1600s in Vegas to Reno a few years ago. Same engine as we have now. That’s not to say that I’ll do the same thing, of course. Getting the most out of this car is going to be a challenge. I’ll have to change my mind set to realize that whoops may or may not mean “slow down”.
I took a little bit of video while we were out there. I need to do just a bit of editing, but I was on that red eye last night. Even though my pal upgraded me to first class on the way home, I probably only slept two hours. Just rolled right from the airport to work. So video will happen tomorrow, probably. The entire photo album is up on my Facebook page for your enjoyment. But for now, this is Mega Monkey Motorsports™, off to find my bed after a whirlwind weekend of dirty fun!