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The Bandit Series; A New Take On Big Rig Racing

It is a new year which means in just a few short months a new race season will start for The Bandit Series. The Bandit Series is a racing series for big rigs of all kinds from different walks of life. The Bandit Series picked up where ChampTruck had left off but they are sticking to short tracks and just one night for the race. Give or take 10 trucks at one time on a short track meant for cars… there is definitely going to be interesting events that happen that will keep you sitting on the edge of your seat and coming back for more.

There were a total of 15 racers last year including a guest appearance from Aaron Kaufmann in Greenville, SC in August. If you had the opportunity to watch him race you saw that he had an unfortunate crash with Justin Ball (#17) during the first race knocking both of them out. Something must have hooked him because he will be racing his own truck this season.

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The end result of Aaron Kaufmann and Justin Ball (#17, not pictured) crashing during the first race in Greenville-Pickens (August)

Last season the events were held mainly in South Carolina with their last race in Cordele, Georgia. This year they are expanding their locations to be within 400 miles of Nashville, Tennessee. The racers will be returning to a few locations such as Hickory Motor Speedway, Crisp Motorsports Park as well as Greenville-Pickens Speedway. The newest locations will be in Montgomery, Alabama; Timmonsville, South Carolina; Greenbriar, Tennessee; Madison, Wisconsin; Cedar Rapids, Iowa; Lebanon, Missouri; and Toledo, Ohio. Their first race this year will be on March 25th at Hickory Motor Speedway in Newton, NC. Make sure you check them out if you’re in the area!

With almost any racing event there are some crashes that happen. Here are a few pictures to show what happens when semi-trucks go racing on a short track.

 

Chris Kikelhan (#01) continued racing even after his hood was taken off.
Chris Kikelhan (#01) continued racing even after his hood was taken off.
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Jon Lisenbee, #7, fortunately drove and walked away from this accident.
Adam Neely was racing truck #63 this race and made contact that resulted in losing his hood.
Adam Neely was racing truck #63 this race and made contact that resulted in losing his hood.
Jon Lisenbee, #7, spun around and to everyone's surprise did not hit a single truck.
Jon Lisenbee, #7, spun around and to everyone’s surprise did not hit a single truck.
Justin Ball (#17) punctured fender.
Justin Ball (#17) punctured fender.

There was an incident that happened towards the end of race one in August at the Greenville-Pickens Speedway that made me think that all these racers were more than just competitors. Allen Boles, #3, had bounced into the outside wall causing damage to his front right tire. He came driving into the pits and immediately everyone started helping to fix it. All the drivers, their crew chiefs, and even Aaron Kaufmann had helped. They even had lights from a 4-wheeler to guide their way. This accident left little time to spare between the first and second race but surprisingly everyone got Allen’s truck up and running for him to compete during the second race.

Allen Boles received damage to his front tire after bouncing into the outside wall.
Allen Boles received damage to his front tire after bouncing into the outside wall.

Before the racing begins the drivers hold an autograph session for everyone to come down to take pictures, receive hero cards from all the drivers and have them signed and even let kids get into the driver seat. During the race event you can purchase t-shirts, can koozies, and other merchandise to showcase what driver is your favorite.

Only half of the spectators that came down for the autograph session at Greenville-Pickens Speedway in August.
Only half of the spectators that came down for the autograph session at Greenville-Pickens Speedway in August.

As a spectator and experiencing the first year for this series, it became more and more successful at each event. The series stuck to local tracks and kept ticket prices at an affordable price making it available for all families. All of the drivers are very involved in all aspects and not just about driving their trucks. Behind the scenes, before and after racing, they help set up and take down booths, fix each others trucks and offering a helping hand wherever needed. The Bandit Series is an absolute thrill to attend and will keep me coming back again and again.

From top left to right; #54 Tyler Kruckeberg, #88 Mike Morgan, #63 (undetermined), and lastly #14 Ricky Proffitt
#54 Tyler Kruckeberg, #88 Mike Morgan, #63 (undetermined), and lastly #14 Ricky Proffitt
#17 Justin Ball and #01 Chris Kikelhan
#17 Justin Ball and #01 Chris Kikelhan
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#3 Allen Boles, #26 Darren Proffitt, #7 Jon Lisenbee, and lastly #4 Scott Treadway.

If you are interested in becoming a racer or a sponsor you can find more contact information on the bandit series website.

http://www.banditseries.com

Make sure you check out The Bandit Series on Instagram and Facebook for more pictures and updates on the schedule for 2017!