GREENVILLE, S.C. (Feb. 9, 2017) – BFGoodrich® Tires, coming off another successful season in motorsports, is poised to continue its passionate support of racers and drive for innovation in 2017. Last year, the company leaned on its race tire development expertise and support of its partner racers to record impressive off- and on-road victories while expanding its presence in three impactful racing ventures.
A quick start to the season witnessed the return of BFGoodrich Tires to the Dakar Rally in January. It was an ideal result, bringing the brand’s 13 th overall victory at Dakar supporting the Peugeot Sport entry of Stéphane Peterhansel and Jean-Paul Cottret. After a four-year absence from Dakar, racers on BFGoodrich tires and Peugeot Sport swept the podium at the world’s most famous cross-country rally.
That effort characterized the dedication to developing new race tires as BFGoodrich Tires took an aggressive approach to expand its motorsports portfolio.
BFGoodrich also became the official tire of the Red Bull Global Rallycross in 2016. Relying on its performance heritage and the resources of its parent company, Group Michelin, with its world-renowned engineering experience, BFGoodrich created a new radial tire solution for the GRC series, the BFGoodrich g-Force RC02. The company will once again be the official tire of the Red Bull Global Rallycross series in 2017 bringing a unique set of challenges to driver, vehicle, and tire with its sprint race, mixed-surface format.
“We can look back at last year as one of success,” said Chris Baker, North American motorsports director for Michelin and BFGoodrich Tires. “The definition of that success is not only based on the race wins and overall season championships but also the broader purpose of our motorsports purpose – to continuously seek new technology and tire design to develop the very best race tires for today and tomorrow. That concentration around engineering and our dedication to supporting racers off and on-road with long-standing relationships and new ones will continue in 2017.”
The investment a tire company makes in motorsports often directly integrates technology and testing into developing its latest consumer-focused tires. That played out again this year with development of new products in desert racing, the 40” Baja T/A KR3, a competition slick for the emerging Global Mazda MX-5 Cup cars for road racing in addition to the solutions for the Global Rallycross and the Dakar Rally.
After another banner year for the brand, BFGoodrich looks to continue its dominance in North American desert racing. Having claimed the overall win in eight of the 10 major races last year between SCORE International and Best In The Desert, the brand will be poised for another race-winning and tire-developing season.
The season begins with the Best in the Desert Parker 425 in February and BFGoodrich will look to match last year’s success that had racers on the brand’s tires claim 83 percent of the podium positions in 10 races, spanning the widest variety of race classes of any manufacturer. BFGoodrich racers also captured overall championships in both series; Rafael Navarro IV in SCORE and Jason Voss in Best in the Desert.
In 2016, BFGoodrich was also awarded the SCORE Pit Support of the Year and Contingency company of the year.
Racing begins in earnest at the Best in the Desert Parker 425 and the Ultra4 King of the Hammers in February.
Lucas Oil Off Road Racing Series
With a line-up of drivers that includes Rob MacCachren, Bryce Menzies RJ Anderson, and Carl Renezeder, BFGoodrich opens the Lucas Oil Off Road Racing season in March at Lake Elsinore, Calif. with visions of championships in their eyes.
In 2016, BFGoodrich, which was named Tire Manufacturer of the Year by Lucas Oil, captured 27 class wins across 16 Lucas Oil events and helped Rob MacCachren secure a Pro 2 title for the second consecutive season. In fact the company swept the top three spots in Pro 2, with Anderson and Renezeder capturing second and third, respectively a BFG season podium sweep of Pro 2 for the second consecutive year.
In Pro 4, while coming short of the championship, BFGoodrich put Renezeder in second overall for the season and MacCachren captured third.
Off-Road Contingency Program
Looking ahead to this season, BFGoodrich rolls out an enhanced contingency program to reward overall winners on BFGoodrich tires at the most iconic events on the calendar. This includes events sanctioned by Best in the Desert, SCORE, and Ultra4.
First up in early February both the overall winner of the Ultra4 King of Hammers Everyman Challenge (EMC) and the open field King of Hammers rock race in Johnson Valley, CA will be eligible for awards of $2,500 and $5000 respectfully with victory and proper vehicle branding while running BFGoodrich tires exclusively.
In the Best In the Desert series, the first weekend in March brings the BITD Mint 400 presented by BFGoodrich Tires in Las Vegas where the overall winner on BFGoodrich Tires will take home $10,000. Two-time defending race champion Justin Lofton will look for the three-peat, while fighting off top drivers Rob MacCachren, Bryce Menzies, Jason Voss, and a slew of other drivers on the new 40″ Baja T/A KR3 tire.
June can only mean one thing and that is the 49th SCORE Baja 500 in Ensenada, Baja, Mexico where an overall win will reward the driver with a $10,000 prize. In August, racers at the famed Vegas to Reno race will vying for a $5,000 prize for the overall winner.
For desert racers past and present November will be a special anniversary with the 50th running of the legendary SCORE Baja 1000. Off-Road Hall of Famer Rob MacCachren has won the last three running in his BFG-shod Ford Trophy Truck and will be out with a vengeance seeking his fourth consecutive win. The pack behind will be deep in talent and just as hungry; and if a BFGoodrich equipped truck takes the overall win they will be $50,000 richer in celebration of 50 for 50.
All the above events and the entire SCORE and Best In The Desert seasons will be covered by the award winning BFGoodrich Pit Support program and include technical assistance on-site to maximize the performance of your race vehicles tires.
Along with new tire development supporting the Red Bull Global Rallycross series for both Supercar and Lites classes, BFGoodrich increased its exposure with presenting sponsorship of the Battery Tender Global Mazda MX-5 Cup series, which featured fields of 40 cars in its inaugural season, all running the BFGoodrich g-Force™ slick.
On the club road racing circuit, which includes the Sports Car Club of America (SCCA) and National Auto Sport Association (NASA), BFGoodrich Tires claimed 11 national championships. Seven of these open class titles came at the SCCA Solo National Championship for the BFGoodrich g-force™ RIVAL-S and three at the SCCA Runoffs national championship for amateur road racing with the g-Force™ R1-S™. Josh Allen then added a NASA national championship title to the BFGoodrich roll-call too.
About BFGoodrich Tires
Using motorsports as a proving ground for more than 40 years, BFGoodrich Tires is involved in every type of racing, including sports car, short course, desert, dirt, rallycross, short course and extreme rock crawling. BFGoodrich Tires combines technological expertise with vast motorsports experience, delivering a high-performance tire for every type of vehicle. Visit the BFGoodrich Tires Racing site at http://www.bfgoodrichracing.com on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/BFGoodrichTires or on Twitter at @BFGoodrichTires.