Darren “HotSauce” Hardesty Jr., driver of the #99 Bilstein / Alumi Craft, has been on fire during the 2018 Lucas Oil Off Road Racing Series (LOORRS). Wild Horse Pass Motorsports Park, in Chandler, Arizona hosted Round 11, the last race in the 2018 points championship, followed by the Lucas Oil Challenge Cup. Hardesty blazed through the final race weekend with a 2nd place finish in both races also grabbing the Optima Batteries Fast Lap Award pushing him into his third consecutive points championship.
From early on in the season, the reigning Pro Buggy champion has dominated the division landing on the podium 9 times which also includes 6 race wins. “HotSauce” now has 16 race wins and has become the winningest Pro Buggy racer in Lucas Oil Off Road Racing Series history.
“Looking back, this has got to be our best performance so far,” Darren grinned. “I am thrilled with a three-peat championship and we had another great weekend for the #99 Pro Buggy to finish off the 2018 season. I was fast and smooth in practice, so I knew the #99 Alumi Craft was good for the track conditions which made me very comfortable. When it came time to race, I guess I caught some nerves even though my whole team was relaxed and confident. As I rolled onto the track in the 3rd position all the feelings disappeared. The green flag drop and Watson and I made quick work of Bud Ward. Watson took the win and I finished second. It was a great race. I just really had to be conservative and not over drive the car to ensure our finish and the championship!”
Hardesty continued, “I must thank everybody for one heck of a year. All our partners like Bilstein, Alumi Craft Race Cars and Mickey Thompson Tires are the reason why we can push these buggies so hard. Special thanks to all my friends and family and everybody who supported me these last 3 years. This third championship is dedicated to all your hard work, THANK YOU!”
They say the first championship is the hardest to attain and the rest come easy after that. Hardesty is now a 3X award winning Pro Buggy Champion and might make it look easy. In fact, it is the hard work and long nights of thrashing to make sure the equipment is in perfect working order.
In short course off road racing there is typically nothing easy about it. There are so many variables out on the track, anything can happen at anytime. The best way to win races is to be faster than everyone else, stay up front and clear of the competition and leave the carnage behind. Darren “HotSauce” Hardesty Jr. has perfected his secret recipe for winning races and cooking up championships. Any good chef knows its all about the ingredients and preparation. The right ingredients for “HotSauce” starts with a red hot Alumi Craft Race Cars, some Bilstein shocks, a four pack of Mickey Thompson Tires, wrapped in Impact Safety, STEEL-IT coated all over, some ORW sprinkled in, a dash of Lucas Oil Products to thicken it up, and finally get Bink Designs in there to stir it up just right.
Photography By: Bink Designs
About Darren “HotSauce” Hardesty Jr.
Darren “HotSauce” Hardesty Jr. is a third generation racer who is making his own mark in racing. Working his way up the ladder from JR1 Kart, where he was named “Rookie of the Year” in 2011, he graduated to the fastest kart class in the Lucas Oil Off Road Racing Series,. Racing a Pro Buggy In 2015, HotSauce earned the Rookie of the Year title and the points championship in the Lucas Oil Off Road Racing Regional Series. He gave the pro level series a try and did extremely well; so well that he also ran the Pro series for the rest of the season. He became the youngest driver to win a race in the Pro series and went on the take the Rookie of the Year title; earning his second Rookie of the Year title during the same season. In 2016, he has continued to accrue wins and podiums at the professional level. During his trip to the World Championships at the Big House in Crandon, Wisconsin, he earned a victory and second place podium finish racing against the Crandon regulars. At only 16 years of age, Darren Jr. became the youngest driver to win a pro series championship when he dominated the final race of the series. He vaulted from third place in the standings to a tie for first. Having more wins than his top competitor broke the tie, earning HotSauce the title. Darren’s strong performance in 2016 attracted a huge fan following and a rising star nomination from the Off Road Motorsports Hall Of Fame. He backed up his strong run in 2016 and 2017 with a third straight championship in 2018. Anytime he is in the driver’s seat, it’s guaranteed he will spice things up as his nickname “HotSauce” suggests.
Visit // www.darrenhardestyjr.com
About Bink Designs
Bink Designs is a premier graphic design company located in San Diego, CA. Since 2007, Bink Designs has been committed to providing cost-effective solutions for clients’ high-end graphic needs. Bink Designs will work with you to develop a strategy that matches your goals. Bink Designs offers a number of services, including: Identity, Print Design, Vinyl Graphics, Web Design, Photography & Apparel.
Visit // www.binkdesigns.com