Dan Fresh | 1st Place | Modified Class 4500
In the world of offroad desert racing, a bad qualifying round can give you a disadvantage that makes it nearly impossible to win a race. With races like King of the Hammers, being stuck behind even a few cars can cost you hours on your final time. Technical rock sections like Jackhammer quickly become a traffic jam of metal tubes and tires as racers break shocks, pop tires, and stop to winch - it’s mayhem.
We caught up with Dan Fresh after KOH to talk about this year’s race.
“The course was definitely a tough rock course this year. We had a terrible qualifying run and had to start at 71st - the cards were stacked against us that day.”
Starting so far back Dan and co-driver Mike Kim knew they had to charge hard in the desert.
“We knew that if we didn’t make up a lot of time in the desert, there was no way we were going to get through the rocks and get anywhere near the front. “
Working the field, they passed nearly 60 cars, working their way into the top 10 physical, top 5 corrected time position.
In the rocks, Dan was able to radio back for positioning and found out they were just behind the leader. Catching up at Outer Limits, they were able to make a pass at the bottom of Wrecking Ball for the lead physically, at that point knowing they were already ahead with corrected time.
While the race continued, constant communication with the main pit proved critical. Being able to radio current positioning meant Dan and Mike knew exactly how hard to push the car.
“We used our radio to find out where we’re at because it all comes down to corrected time. Having our team be able to relay back to us and tell us where we are at all day, so that we can manage the lead.”
Blowing fast through the desert, and then keeping a consistent pace throughout launched Dan and Mike into a first in class victory for KOH 2021!
“Our radio makes a huge difference - without it we’re flying blind.“