CORONA, CA (January 31, 2019) - After winning back-to-back championships in the Lucas Oil Off Road Racing Series Production 1000 UTV class, Brock Heger knows he will have a target on his back in 2019.
The 19-year-old from El Centro, California simply smiles at that suggestion.
"I want to have that target on my back and be that guy to beat," Heger said in a recent interview. "I like it. I don't fold under pressure or anything. I like the pressure. It's kind of more fuel to the fire."
The way Heger has performed in the Production 1000 certainly makes him the man to beat until proven otherwise. He finished 64 points in front of runner-up Mickey Thomas in 2018 with four wins and podium finishes in all but one race.
Now as the winter months pass, with a little bit of desert racing to feed his speed need, Heger said he's started to get itchy for the new season to begin. The LOORRS opener is March 16th at Glen Helen Raceway in San Bernardino, California.
Things will be a little different for Heger as he no longer will team up with JM2 Motorsports.
"I'm going to be running out of my own tent. That's kind of the only thing that's changing," Heger said. "We have a few new sponsors, but besides that it's the same stuff, new year."
Heger said one of the keys to winning another championship will be approaching it with the same mentality of a year ago - keeping the approach simple.
"I pretty much just ran last year as if I didn't win it the year before," he said. "I made a plan at the beginning of the year of how to go about it and the plan came through. We just kept our head down and went race by race."
As one of the rising young stars of Off Road racing, Heger has moved up through the ranks. He was JR1 Kart champion in 2011 as an 11-year-old and followed up with the JR2 title a year later before capturing Pro Lite championship honors in 2014. He was named the LOORRS Driver of the year in 2017 when he won his first Production 1000 UTV title.
Heger eventually would like to compete in the Pro 2 and Pro 4 trucks, but for now is content to remain in the Production 1000 UTV and Pro Lite divisions. He finished fifth in Pro Lite points last season.
Campaigning in the Production 1000 UTV appeals to Heger because of the factory-backing that is provided, thus making the vehicles fairly standard to all.
"You only have to do a little bit to them and you go racing," Heger said. "Everyone is close to the same and it comes down to the driver. It's cool for me to race in this class. It makes me a better driver."
Heger, who began racing go-karts at the age of five, lists LOORRS champion Rob MacCachren as one of his biggest influences.
"He started the way I did, small, and worked his way up through the ranks," Heger said of MacCachren, the 2018 Pro 2 champ. "His job is racing off road. That's really cool and it's something that I want to do.
"We've talked about building a Pro 2 or maybe a Pro 4. We're not quite sure which route to go. Lucas started doing a few rules changes so we've kind of put that on hold and are waiting for the rules to get stamped down to where they're going to stay for a few years. Then we'll probably venture out and race our UTV, Pro Lite and maybe a bigger class."
Story by Lyndal Scranton
About the Lucas Oil Off Road Racing Series Production 1000 UTV division:
The Production 1000 UTV two-seat class is for Stock 1000 cc motors with 80-110 horsepower. Minimum overall width of the vehicle is 70.5 inches. Minimum weight for RZR, Arctic Cat and Can Am is 1,610 pounds (including driver); for Yamaha the minimum weight is 1,780 pounds (including driver). Production 1000 UTV car numbers are 900-999.
About the Lucas Oil Off Road Racing Series:
The Lucas Oil Off Road Racing Series (LOORRS) pits the top short course off-road racing drivers against each other across an ever-expanding series of fan-friendly, pulse-pounding tracks. Born from the long-standing traditional home of midwestern short course off-road racing, and enlivened by the fast-emerging west coast short course movement, Lucas Oil Off Road Racing is the premier series in the world off short course off-road. Driven by Lucas Oil and the company's founder and CEO Forrest Lucas, both of whom have been long-time passionate supporters of this sport, the series continues to progress and evolve, carrying on the heritage of short course, as well as pushing its limits into the future. Lucas Oil Off Road Racing Series
Lucas Oil Off Road Racing Series: This is Short Course! For more information, please visit www.LucasOilOffRoad.com and be sure to sign up for our newsletter in our Newsletter Signup section of the home page.