Life is about setting goals and working hard to achieve them no matter how difficult it may seem. You never give up, you keep pushing until those goals are reached. Rob MacCachren in his illustrious off-road career has never won the overall at The Mint 400.
“I was born and raised right here in Las Vegas, my first Mint 400 I raced was 1984, we won some Class 8, 7s, 1600, but never won the overall. 3 of the last 5 years we were leading on the last lap and had a mechanical and it feels good to get that monkey off my back.
The race wasn’t a complete blowout though for Rob Mac as the lead changed multiple times not just physically but on corrected time as well. The majority of the day Jason Voss was leading the pack and after lap one was leading the race over Andy McMillin by a mere 19 seconds followed by Bryce Menzies who was 1 minute 12 seconds behind McMillin.
In the first part of the second lap the #4 RPM Off-Road truck of Justin Matney sneaked into the lead but only until the halfway point of the race when McMillin started to put the hammer down and took over the lead. By the start of the last lap it was a very close race with Andy leading physically and on time by 3 minutes but was still a very close race with over 100 miles to go.
Rob Mac, Voss, Menzies, BJ Baldwin, Apdaly, and Tavo Vildosla were all still in the game. At one lap remaining it would take a small break for any one driver to move forward, and after McMillin suffered a flat tire it was the opportunity the pack needed. Voss would take back the physical lead with Rob Mac on his heels and that is where things got interesting. With Voss starting first off the line, and Rob Mac starting 4th in order for him to win over Rob Mac he would need to finish at least 2 minutes and 1 seconds ahead of him.
At race mile 50 the tracker system had Rob Mac ahead by exactly one minute on time, and by mile 75 only stretched it a few seconds. With a little over 30 miles to go and now racing in the dark Voss could take advantage of his dust trail that Rob had to follow and he pushed hard to gain the time back. Voss saw the checkered flag first but after hundreds of miles in some of the most brutal desert terrain in the world he would fall short by only 44 seconds.
That would make Rob MacCachren the 2017 Polaris RZR Mint 400 presented by BFGoodrich Tires Overall Champion. With the win he not only achieved one of his goals in life but he will walk away with $10,000 from BFGoodrich, another $10,000 for Fox Shocks, and a brand new Polaris RZR.
In the the Class 1500 race Harley Letner proved why his car is nicknamed the #TTDestroyer as he laid down a finish time that put him finishing higher then over 50 Trick Trucks. In his own class he beat second place finisher Pat Dean by one 30 minutes.
In the morning limited race there was also some great battles to be had in the Class 1000 race. After winning the Parker 425 a month earlier Brock Heger in the #1074 repeated his winning way adding another trophy to the 17 year old’s resume. The win didn’t come easy however as the lead changed hands multiple times during the morning with #1088 Chase Warren, #1090 T.J. Tuls, #1099 Adam Phankuch and last years winner #1067 Roger Starkey all in the mix.
Other Mint 400 Class winners include Mitch Guthrie Jr. winning the UTV Pro Turbo class, Swift Racing in the 6100 class both who also won in Parker earlier this year. Greg Adler won the 4400 class in his 4 Wheel Parts Ultra 4 car, Todd Jackson took home the win in Trophylite, and Jay Leno can now say he is a Mint 400 winner after winning the 7300 class teamed up with Camburg Racing in their Toyota Tacoma.
Another year and another great Mint 400. Thank you to all the racers, crew members, BITD staff and volunteers, members of the media and the great fans that come out and help support this race and all its legend. Until next year!