Darren Hardesty Jr. goes “super deluxe” in Wheatland, Missouri and ordered up the Double/Double with two Race Wins and 2 Fast Lap Awards. The 2x reigning Pro Buggy Champion known as “HotSauce” has been on fire going into the weekend with a double victory sweeping Mexico. And now, taking down 1st place for both Rounds 4 & 5 of the Lucas Oil Off Road Racing Series (LOORRS), that makes 4 wins in a row!
The long haul from Southern California across the heartland of America all the way to Lucas Oil Speedway in Wheatland Missouri, was quite the journey. Darren and the small support crew made a road trip out of it stopping at a few interesting road side attractions, but the focus was not lost along the way. Hardesty is a quick study and hungry for success. Last year Darren scored a 2nd place finish with a race win on the final round at the then brand new track in 2017. The main objective for this race weekend was to continue the good finishes and or keep the streak alive.
The new off road short course that is now part of the multi-motorsports complex has become a series favorite for many of the drivers. Hardesty Jr. is one of those boasting about Lucas Oil Speedway. “Wow! What an Incredible weekend. My favorite track in the series. Back to back weekend sweeps our Team Bilstein #ProBuggy99. So excited to have 4 straight Wins! Plus 3 straight wins in Missouri! Can’t thank my team, family, friends, and partners enough for making this all happen. THANK YOU!
In Round 4, Darren Hardesty ran the #99 Bilstein Alumi Craft Pro Buggy smooth and quick. A back-and-forth race long battle between Ward (1st) & Hardesty (2) revealed an opening for “Hot Sauce” to possibly charge ahead through the whoop rhythms. The Bilstein Off Road Shock Absorbers allowed the Alumi Craft suspension to soak up the rough and carried extra momentum through into the corner. Darren assumed the lead after brief contact. “It was a great race up there,” said Hardesty, who said the contact was unavoidable. “After that, we kept chugging along. My spotter was telling me, ‘Drive it like a go-kart’ and that’s what we did.”
Round 5 racing was garnished with a heavy rain storm and a soupy sloppy track. The Pro Buggies were re-scheduled to fourth in the order so after two UTV races and then the Pro-4 races the track had turned out a little better and Hardesty made quick work with his rear wheel drive Alumi Craft. Darren jumped out to an early lead using the hooked up Mickey Thompson Tires to launch ahead and kept it that way to easily take the race win with all the race carnage happening behind.
“What a race. The track was super wet and super slick. I was doing everything I could to keep it going straight but was super fun out there. I couldn’t be happier. That’s four back-to-back wins and I couldn’t ask for anything more,” said Hardesty, who is seeking his third straight Pro Buggy points championship. “The next thing we pursue is the championship.”
At this rate, Hardesty is well on track to accomplish just that. A third championship would be life changing for the young off road rising star. Darren does not take it lightly and verifiably understands it all comes down to the team effort and the valuable supporting partners who all help make this a reality. Thank you to Bilstein, Off Road Warehouse, Mickey Thompson Tires, STEEL-IT, Impact, Lucas Oil Products, Bink Designs, Alumi Craft Race Cars, Black Rhino Performance, and RacerX.”
Photography By: Bink Designs
About Darren “HotSauce” Hardesty Jr.
Darren “Hot Sauce” 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, Hot Sauce 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 with a second straight championship in 2017. He is going for his third championship in a row this season. 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 2003, 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