| W.E.ROCK Jellico, TN
Eastern U.S. Nationals Event Three, July 4-6, 2008
Written by Andy Johnson
Photos by Andy Johnson and England Photography
Coverage brought to you by Full Size XJ Gear and 4wd Hardware.
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UPDATED 8:45AM SATURDAY
Last month we left W.E. Rock East in Dayton, TN with lightning and heavy rain. This month we arrived to Jellico, TN to much of the same. Tech inspection ended with the Emergency broadcasting system interrupting the radio to let everyone know the National Weather Service had issued a server thunderstorm warning with nickel size hail and cloud to ground lighting. It made for an impressive show, but the accidents it caused shut down I75 going north and forced some of the competitors to take a detour along W25, a twisty mountain road, to get to Jellico.
This morning we woke up to heavy rains, but the good news is the thunder storms have passed. Weather forecasters are calling for the rain to be out of the area in about an hour, so W.E. Rock made the decision to take a rain delay. We should be getting started about 11am. I knew I should have grabbed the rain gear.
Also the courses here in Jellico are pretty spread out so I am going to be doing a lot more running around getting as much info I can. Be ready for updates every 30 minutes instead of every 15.
The rain has stopped and the sun is actually trying to peak out behind the clouds. Drivers have walked the courses and the judges have been given their instructions and we will be getting going in just a few minutes.
The courses look really nasty and we should be seeing LOTS of throttle to get up the muddy courses. Little Rich set the courses for rain, but man they still look intense.
First up on B2 is Bunny Rose of Rose Crawlers is starting on B2. This mud is making it tough. She is barely through the start gates is having lots of trouble.
Bottums Up Rock Racing got eaten up on B2 and put it on its lid.
Shameless Racing gave B4 heck but ended up rolling off the start gates.
Wild Nut Express made a nice clean run on A3.
Team Quadratrec took a little different approach on B4 and tried to back down the starting gates. While backing down lined them up pretty good for the second set of cones they still put the rig over on the second set of gates.
Alan Rich put on a heck of a show on B4, but couldn't get through the course.
Shannon and Nick Campbell backed down the start on B4 then winched up the second set of gates. They spun it around and did a nice nose stand off the big drop. Sometime during the run they ended putting a nice cute in the sidewall.
Rusty Bray had to really use the throttle on B3 but ended up being the first to make it up the muddy climb that has been denying everyone.
Team Crush did their best on B2 but this muddy climbs are being really kicking the teams butts.
The 4wd Hardware sponsored buggy of Kelly Young just did her best on C1 but ended up running out of time.
Yota Offroad is seeing if they can get up the nasty climb on B2. Everyone can make it to the first set of rocks but they just can't get any traction.
Bunny and Eugene Rose just made it through B3.
The sun is out and the courses are getting better but damn it is sticky out here. You walk 100 yards and you are sweating like a pig.
Team Wombat finished up a nice run on B3. It took him a couple of shots to get up the big climb but her made it.
Bottoms Up Racing rolled over on B4
Rickey Artes got spank on the entrance on C1.He wasn't the only one because Kyle Bruso was the only one to make the start gate and finish the course.
Ken Blume with his son Brando spotting finished up B1 with a 21.
Dearren Caseda and Mike Young decided to skip the bonus on A1 and ended up making the course with a decent score.
Ok, today we have 5 Ftoys Running, 7 ModStocks, 11 unlimited and 14 in the ProMods.
Team Quadratec was spitting rocks and dirt into the crowd as they worked their buggy up the big climbs on B2. They were the first of the day to finish the course with 2 seconds left on the clock.
Team Monster just used that LS motor and jumped the buggy up the climbs on B2 and finished up the course.
Bill Durham was working his rig through the rock pile on C2, but just couldn't get it through.
Ken Blume is getting ready for his turn up on B2.
Kyle Bruso is getting lined up for C2.
Rain, thunder, lightning it just doesn't seem to matter to these east coast fans because they are out here in force!! Just the line for the food court is comparable to the amount of fans in Cedar City. You just can't say enough about the effort Julia puts into marketing the events.
Kyle is picking his way through the boulder field on C2.
Ken Blume is got Brandon stacking some rocks so he can shoot right up first set of cones. After all the work today I hope Ken ups his allowance!
Ok, off to run around in the humidity some more. Look for another update at about 2:45 or so. Until then check out the live radio feed Pirate Radio!
Ouch Ken Blume just took a very hard roll off B2! He looks to be ok but it had ring his bell.
I think I jinxed us! It was nice and dry and sunny, but now the rain has returned. People can barely make it up the XRRA table top jump!
B2 was getting easier. Well forget it team 818 can barely make it to the first set of gates!
Team Rockaholic is walking through first section of C2 but is stuck in the mud on up hill climb.
Rusty Bray is up next on B2. It will be interesting to see what he can do what is now a big slip and slide!
Fat Head Racing is up on C2.
Today's action has slowed down but the rain sure hasn't! Does anyone know a reverse rain dance? We could really use one!
Jon Terhune is high centered on the first break over. His spotter is pulling with everything he has but it just will not move! Jon is now in the rig rocking back forth.
The wind shifted and that was all she wrote. Our little tarp protecting all of the electronics went bye bye and everything got soaked!
I can't say it enough but the weather really kicked everyones butt today. The poor ModStock and Ftoy guys were just getting smacked around. It goes with out saying that the day would have been tons better if the sun would have stayed out.
I should have final scores in about a half hour.
Here are some scores for you:
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