Adds Second Truck for 2014 - Keeps Busy @ Primm Valley
Bark River, MI - Kleiman Off-Road Racing
headed to Primm Valley, Nevada with two PRO-Light entries for the 2014
TORC Series presented by AMSOIL. Mark Kleiman will be entering his
sophomore season driving the #42 Dodge while his sons Cody and Kyle will
share the driving duties of the #48 Ford. The opening weekend of the
season saw all three drivers show their potential, but due to various
racing incidents the team had only one top ten finish.
The Kleiman Off-Road
Racing Team is a true family affair. The two PRO-Light race trucks are
driven, maintained, and prepared by Mark and his two sons Cody and Kyle.
Meanwhile Mark's wife Reva, coordinates the affairs of the team while
daughter Kyndra assists mom and handles scoring and statistics. Kyle's
girlfriend Sara Schram is team photographer and adds her talents to the
marketing side of the operation. Cody's girlfriend, Brittany Klee
oversees the hospitality duties for the group and Cody's good friend
Jimmy Charlier, who puts in some really long hours working on the trucks,
is also the team's crew chief. When the family isn't racing they are all
back home working together at Kleiman Forest Products.
In 2013 the team began a
relationship with Ponsse halfway through the season, and the manufacturer
of cut-to-length method forest machines is back on board as the team's
primary sponsor for the 2014 season. Also continuing with the team is as
a secondary sponsor is Kenda Tires while Rotochopper is a new secondary
sponsor for the season.
The family took a racing
vacation and arrived in Nevada a few days before the race to take
advantage of the two-day test session. This allowed rookie racers Cody
and Kyle to get valuable seat time behind the wheel of the #48 Ford. Of
course Mark was glad for the added practice time as well.
Saturday's season opening
round of racing had Cody winning the flip of the coin and was first
behind the wheel of the yellow and black #48 while dad Mark would be
piloting the all-yellow #42 PRO-Light. Both trucks have Ponsse,
Rotochopper, and Kenda Tires are their primary sponsors.
Mark Kleiman's weekend
was over just after it began. As Mark was heading into the first corner
of Round One when there was hard contact between several trucks.
Unfortunately one of the chassis tubes on Mark's truck broke tearing
apart an engine oil line. Before he realized what happened, the engine
lost most of its oil, causing internal damage to the powerplant.
Cody was having a much
better race. After qualifying eighteenth out of twenty-four PRO-Light
racers, Cody was gradually moving up the running order. At one point the
#48 Ponsse/Rotochopper/Kenda Tire Ford was in the eighth position when
the truck lost first gear and then brake issues slowed the rookie's pace.
At the checkered flag Cody finished in tenth place. Cody also recorded
the sixth fastest lap of the race.
Later that night the prep
work on the #48 was completed as Cody began thinking about his PRO-Light
debut. Meanwhile Mark would be supporting his sons while waiting for
Charlotte to get back in the driver seat.
Sunday morning Kyle went
out for practice only to come off track via a tow truck. A rear trailing
arm broke taking out the driveshaft and transmission. Somehow the team
was able to make to necessary repairs in time for the Round Two lineup.
With Kyle behind the
wheel of the #48 Ponsse/Rotochopper/Kenda Tire Ford a great battle for
position during much of the race with Luke Johnson and Jesse Johnson, the
brother of NASCAR's Jimmie Johnson. Even with only third gear working in
the transmission, Kyle was running in the seventh position. With only two
laps to the finish, another truck made hard contact breaking the steering
box. Officially finishing in twentieth position.
"Well, we sure did
go through a bunch of parts this weekend," noted Mark Kleiman.
"It's an awesome feeling to be on the same race track competing with
my sons. Really having the whole family involved especially at this level
is just a great feeling. We will have both trucks ready for Charlotte, it
may take a few late nights, but we're in this sport for the long haul. I
have to thank Ponsse along with their family of associate sponsors, Kenda
Tire, and Rotochopper for giving us great support."
The next race on the 2014
TORC Series presented by AMSOIL is the "Showdown in Charlotte"
April 25-26 at The Dirt Track at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
Off-Road Racing would like to thank their team partners including:
along with their family of associate sponsors;
Trelleborg, Arrow Terminal, Taimi, Klinner Insurance, Oregon, & Exide
Kenda Tire, & Kleiman Off-Road Racing
Performance, VP Fuels, AMSOIL, and Radio Results Network.
You can find out all
the latest news about Kleiman Off-Road Racing on their facebook page.
The internet stream of
the first two rounds of racing can be found on www.youtube.com/TORC
as well every round of racing during the 2014 season.
The date of the NBC
Sports Network broadcast of the "Duel in the Desert" is April
25 at 11pm Eastern.
Mike Reusche, race report/race photos
Sara Schram, team photos