March 25, 2011–Las Vegas, NV: At race mile 11.5 of The Mint 400 Kevin Sacalas of Big Ugly Racing experienced a rollover at 96 miles per hour (MPH). While this was Sacalas’ first time racing The Mint 400, he is no stranger to desert racing. Sacalas placed first in the Ultra4 class in the 1000 mile 2009 Best in the Desert Vegas to Reno race and second in the 2010 Best in the Desert Silver State 300.
Sacalas was racing in the Ultra4 (4400) class and started in the 31st row off the line and first for the 4400s. He had passed nearly a dozen cars in the first ten miles when he came upon a trophylite. On board camera footage shows Sacalas overtaking the vehicle on the left as the trophylite turns slightly towards Sacalas causing Sacalas’ rear right tire to connect with the driver door of the trophylite sending Sacalas’ car into a barrel roll three and a half times before coming to an upside-down stop. Both Sacalas and co-driver, Bryan Grigsby exited the vehicle on their own and quickly put out a car fire caused by the rollover. Both Sacalas and Grigsby suffered only minor injuries.
Due to the severity of the damage, Sacalas was unable to recover the vehicle until Sunday morning. Upon seeing the wreckage, Sacalas said, “The cage definitely did its job and protected us. This is about the worst case scenario I could imagine for a rollover and we were able to walk away.” Sacalas was scheduled to race the 2012 Ultra4 Pro and Western Region Series as well as the Lucas Oil Southern California Regional Series. When asked if he would be able to continue this season, Sacalas said, “We’ll take the car back to the shop, assess the damage, learn what we can from the crash, and figure it out from there.” After a pause he added, “Don’t count me out yet. There’s always a way to build it bigger and uglier.”
Sponsors –The Orleans Casino, BFGoodrich Tires, Artek Industries, STS Turbo, GenRight Off Road, Raceline Wheels, RCV Performance and Spidertrax.
About Kevin Sacalas – He is a 28 year old native Californian, based out of Riverside, CA who has been off road racing for 3 years. Sacalas has raced 15 races with 7 podium finishes. For more information on Kevin Sacalas and Big Ugly Racing, please visit:www.biguglyracing.com or become a fan on Facebook: Big Ugly Racing