Off-road racers are a hardy lot. That is an example of understatement, we toss that out right up front because the more successful the off-road racer, the more understated they become. Case in point, John Holmes, the Riverside, California, Pro Buggy Unlimited racer and owner of Holmes Motorsports. Even the buggy part sounds gentle - when in reality it's anything but placid.
This is John Holmes idea of a nice buggy ride.
K&N sponsored John Holmes won both his races in round five of the Lucas Oil Regional Off-Road Series.
Here's another example of understatement, "Had a pretty good weekend." And by pretty good weekend Holmes means he won both races of round five of the Lucas Oil Regional Off-Road Series run at Glen Helen Raceway in San Bernardino, California.
"We fell back to third in points from that crash at the previous race, I believe we should be real close to the points leader at this point though. I'm going to have to pick it up and keep the pace if we're going to win another championship," adds Holmes.
Holmes Motorsports sits atop the points standings with only one race to go.
And by crash Holmes means a spectacular double flip with a perfect landing a gymnast would envy, only it was in a buggy.
"I was chasing down first place and made a move to the right to try to make the pass, the right front wheel caught some soft dirt and turned the car sideways right before I was to hit a six foot jump. The car did two complete flips and landed back on all four wheels, never touching the roll cage. It knocked the wind out of me and I thought the car was damaged." Turns out there wasn't a scratch on the car, the only damage was to Holmes.
"I got it started and finished the race with two bruised ribs and fell to third in points," adds Holmes.
But that was so the last race, after his dominating performance at Glen Helen, Holmes has once again regained the points lead going into the last race of the season.
Holmes started racing over thirty years ago on motorcycles. At age fifteen, in order to make payments on his new dirt bike, he got a job working for Dave Callaway, owner of Callaway Motorsports.
"That's when Dave asked me to race the Baja 500 with him on a KX 250. We finished fifth, and then raced the 1000 five months later and got a third. Dave and I stayed in touch and in 1992 we started racing buggies. It took a few years for us to quit braking parts, and in '97 we won our first Score Off-road points championship."
Holmes and Callaway won it again the following year, both wins came in a two seat Class-12 buggy. "The Baja 1000 win in '98 was one of our most memorable," says Holmes. "Dave and I raced off and on for a few more years, we got a fourth place in the Baja 2000."
Holmes got out of racing for a short time, he claims he just wanted to enjoy going to the desert with his family and friends, but the race retirement thing didn't take.
"I had to race something and Glen Helen looked like a great place to do it. In '09 I bought my unlimited super buggy and I was able to win our first short course championship, I'm kind of hooked now, because we are on our way to a second points championship. My mind set has all ways been to look smooth and be fast and have fun. I believe you could ask anyone who has seen me race, I love side-by-side racing, it's a rush!"
I've had K&N Filters on everything I had ever raced," adds Holmes. "Nobody had to tell me that their filters were the best!"
The last race of the season for Holmes Motorsports is November 13th.
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